Major events in history tend to bring about or further major innovations in technology. The announcement of the then Prime Minister of the UK, David Cameron, in January 2013 that he wanted to organise an in- or out-referendum about British membership of the EU triggered the present author to start a series of blogs about Brexit on the website of this library. Blogs form a challenge for traditional academics inasmuch as they have to be short and sharp. The effect of the blog will be highlighted by the punch line in which it culminates. A blog, which solves an age-old conundrum, may turn out to be a greater leap forward in academic advancement than many contemplative books have been.

The tedious process of Brexit, which is still a work in slow progress six years after the start of Cameron’s adventure, coincided with my efforts to develop an own and distinct political philosophy for the European Union. It struck me that his insistence on deleting the term ‘ever closer union’ from the text of the Treaties touched the nerve of the process of European integration. For decades, the ‘determination to create an ever closer union among the peoples of Europe’ had been regarded as a steppingstone for the foundation of the European state, in which the member-states of the EU were to merge. The federal dream, however, faded away after the rejection of the so-called Constitution for Europe in 2005. The Lisbon Treaty, which came to replace the ill-conceived constitution in 2007, subsequently construed the EU as a democracy without turning the Union into a state. Thus, instead of creating a federal state, the term ever closer union proved to have paved the way for the emergence of a European democracy.

Obviously, European democracy is a new concept, which requires an own and distinct political philosophy. The insistence of Cameron & comrades on deleting the term ‘ever closer union’ prompted me to take stock of the democratic achievements, which the term has brought about over the last 70 years. While the EU has been criticised by Cameron for its undemocratic character and depicted by Johnson as a Fourth Reich, the Union constitutes the first organisation of democratic states in the world, which also aspires to function as a democracy of its own.

Consequently, the term ‘ever closer union’ is crucial for the theory of democratic integration (TDI), which I developed during the years of the Brexit-debate. The TDI suggests that the EU is currently evolving from a ‘union of democratic states’, as the then European Communities were described by the European Council in 1973, to a European democracy. Cameron and the Brexiteers want to reverse the process by returning to the concept of a conventional free trade association. The alternative for this Westphalian organisation of states is not a European SuperState, as they like to suggest, but a European democracy.

Although Brexit has not yet been completed and the corresponding debate still continues to divide if not paralyse the United Kingdom, its unintended consequence is that it has contributed to the development of an own and distinct political philosophy of the European Union. The theory of democratic integration will be published in the book European Democracy, which the present blogger will launch in the European Parliament in Brussels on the eve of Europe Day 2019. The book contains a distinct chapter, which contains a selection of the blogs, which he wrote for the Peace Palace Library. The blogs reflect the progress made on the path towards the construction of a post-Westphalian philosophy for the EU. Blogs are here to stay and to contribute to academic debates. Consequently, the book European Democracy bears the subtitle: Blogs, Tweets & Treatises.[i]

[i] European Democracy, Blogs, Tweets & Treatises (www.wolfpublishers.com) will be lendable as soon as possible

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