In the name of defending its prosperity, Europe is encouraging a historic decline of the humanitarian principles and values on which much of European culture has been constructed during the last three centuries. Not only is the welfare state in retreat, but a hostile attitude towards vulnerable social groups is becoming prevalent. An outlook is gradually spreading of considering vulnerable people to be unacceptable, particularly when they come from abroad. The cultural implications for Europe, which long ago stopped being the leading producer of culture in the world and has been living in the shadow of the USA, are incalculable.
Yesterday something big happened in Parliament. Not many people will have noticed it, and not many words have been spoken or written on it either.
I Was a Teenage Europhile - But the EU's Sadistic Austerity and Lack of Democracy Have Changed My Mind
This is a political and economic scandal, not to mention a human tragedy. And progressives should be saying so. But the left in the UK has ceded all the Eurosceptic terrain to the xenophobes and the "Little Englanders", to Ukip and the Tory right. We were wrong then. Let's not be wrong now.
Expressing and debating differences of opinion is a welcome part of any healthy democracy. However, it can be hugely frustrating when opponents of a piece of legislation or negotiated agreement manufacture myths in an attempt to stifle debate.
For the trainees, or for me at least, the Euro bubble has finally burst. In the last few weeks in Brussels, plunged into denial that the traineeship is ending, we trainees become a red-eyed mass of reckless hedonists bouncing from leaving party to leaving party with work somehow sandwiched in the middle...
Farage is endlessly indulged by most UK journalists, notably the increasingly Eurosceptic BBC. He will survive this latest manifestation of how rickety his political edifice really is. But for those who place hopes in the European Parliament as an institution of prestige and democratic importance, this latest comedy is not encouraging.
One of the many joys of being a trainee in the European Commission is being able to socialise in the international melting pot of the European bubble, to gluttonously gorge on a feast of cultures and languages, to take the notion of 'nationality' and throw it off like a duvet on a sweaty summer night such as we have rarely experienced in the UK...
Growing up, I had a very simplistic view of the word 'democracy'. In history lessons, I'd learned about the past and how nations had been ruled by kings, queens or dictators. I was proud to live in a country where decisions weren't taken for us by one person, but where we the people could choose our own future. What an amazing, childish dream!
The EU juggernaut will still roll on, and Mr. Juncker will still become Commission President next week, but this time there are 24 UKIP MEPs determined to stand up for British interests and fight for democracy.
There is an appetite for change shared not only by EU member states, but also by many people in EU institutions, who are able to identify challenges faced by Europe nowadays. Poland believes in strong EU institutions and deeper political integration, as well as aims, like the UK, at the completion of the single market.