Original Sins. Globalization, Populism and the Six Contradictions Facing the European Union

The revolt of the voters that exploded in 2016 represents a reaction to the effects of financial globalization, with economic discontent driving heightened political and cultural divisions. As populist parties grow across Europe, the common thread – on both left and right – is criticism of the economic policies embraced and enforced by the institutions of the European Union. To suggest that the answer is “more Europe” means putting the cart before the horse, and failing to address the substantive contradictions dogging the EU. As European nations look to the future, the goal must be to defend the well-being of the population as a whole, in a world where public institutions have too often been manipulated to the benefit of private interests.

Andrew Spannaus is an American journalist and political analyst based in Italy, known in particular for his early diagnosis of the populist revolt in the United States and Europe, starting with his June 2016 book Perché vince Trump (Why Trump is Winning). Spannaus contributes to numerous publications, and is the founder of the Transatlantico.info newsletter and website. He is the elected Chairman of the Milan Foreign Press Association.