Capital controls

The EU has abandoned Europe’s Christian tradition and appears likely to drop its capitalist tradition as well:

This document is sitting in a drawer at the Directorate of Economic and Monetary Affairs in Brussels. It was written by a small cellule of EU officials in 2003 or 2004 (If I remember correctly) under prodding from Paris. It explores the legal basis for measures to stabilise the euro and EMU. After combing through the EU treaties and court judgments, it concluded that Brussels may impose “quantitative restrictions” on capital inflows. Free movement of capital in the EU is not an “absolute freedom” and could be limited in an emergency. “Should extremely disturbing capital movements endanger the operation of economic and monetary union, Article 59 EC (Maastricht) provides for the possibility to adopt restrictive measures for a period not exceeding six months,” it says.

It would be renewable every six months. Any decision would be taken by EU finance ministers under qualified majority voting, so no country could veto it.

So much for the oft-heard Europhile defense of the EU as a free market entity. This is why no government or bureaucracy should ever be permitted to have “emergency” powers. It’s rather like telling a rapist that as long as he cries “emergency” first, it isn’t rape, it’s just emergency sex.