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Out of Europe

Out of Europe

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Out of Europe

Länge:
248 Seiten
3 Stunden
Herausgeber:
Freigegeben:
Feb 29, 2016
ISBN:
9781310332838
Format:
Buch

Beschreibung

'Out of Europe', a short novel on what will come from, come to, and come out of Europe.

There are many hands seeking to guide the destiny of the European Union. Probably the least known and the most powerful is the secretive and profoundly manipulative Policy Evaluation Unit (PEU).
Headed by the ambitious and ruthless Frenchman Valery Montaigne, and staffed by some of Europe’s finest brains, the function of the PEU is to build the route map by which the European Union will be made to reach its long sought after utopia of peace and boundless prosperity.
OUT OF EUROPE follows the blundering machinations and twisted logic of the PEU as it drags Europe, step by step, back into a dystopia of destruction and annihilation.
Initially seeking to reconcile Europe’s age-old nationalisms to a single state, the PEU is compelled to manipulate the rooted racism of its peoples to forge a common identity. Having triumphed over the forces of dissolution, the PEU realises its victory stands to be lost on the rising grey tide of a terminally ageing population. In desperation it finally stumbles into war as the only way of reinvigorating a geriatric and failing Europe.
OUT OF EUROPE is a darkly cynical look at the technocratic project that is the European Union. It takes Europe’s quest for peace and prosperity and shows how it can easily be inverted and perverted to place Europe back in the nightmare it is still seeking to flee from: fascism and war.

Herausgeber:
Freigegeben:
Feb 29, 2016
ISBN:
9781310332838
Format:
Buch

Über den Autor

Peter Franks was born in 1962. His personal history has given him an abiding interest in the politics of nationalism and identity. His early life was peripatetic and he learnt and unlearnt in quick succession how to speak English with an Australian, Canadian and Irish accent. Coming to reside in the Home Counties in his early teens he was relieved to learn that communication was best effected without any accent at all. Mr Franks went to art college where his limited talent was quickly spotted by himself. He studied history at university were he found it easy and an effective way of avoiding work. His fondness for Europe and the French in particular was born from a strip search by French customs whilst on holiday in his early twenties. Mr Franks continues to combine a passion for European travel with an abiding interest in cars. In the 90s he went on a 3,000-mile motoring holiday that went as far east as Bulgaria. He now travels to France regularly to enjoy that unique British motor racing institution, the Le Mans 24-hour race. Mr Franks has yet to learn to drive but is fortunate to know people who have. Mr Franks is unmarried and has a declining interest in cinema.


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Buchvorschau

Out of Europe - Peter Franks

EPILOGUE

PROLOGUE

OUT OF CREATION

First Effort

In the beginning there was the void. And God said let there be light. And behold there was light.

And darkness. Black shadows scarred the face of the deep.

God looked into the face of the blackness. He felt a sublime terror run through him as he contemplated the horror that lurked there so he turned up the light to drive out the darkness. The light became intense and blinding, burning everything that it touched upon. Such was the heat that all hope of life was driven from the universe.

Satisfied that the universe had been purged of the vile shadows God turned off the light and returned to his slumbers.

Creation had to wait for another day.

Second Effort

God stirred for a second effort. This time his conception of what had to be done was clearer. He felt confident he could crack it.

He skipped past the fear of the shadows by giving them a time called night. For that part of the day the shadows would be obliterated by general darkness. Spurred on by this gratifying success he got as far as the sixth day and the creation of Adam and Eve.

Suddenly a revolting dilemma dawned on him. If he wished Adam and Eve to procreate the only way the generations would be able to unfold would be with the aid of incest. He stopped to ponder.

The need for further creativity was snatched from him when Adam raped Eve. In a fit of rage and disgust God turned on the all-powerful light and roasted everything to cinders. Everything was once again purged from the Universe.

God felt irritated with himself over being tripped up by a detail like incest. He also felt bitterly betrayed by man. Solutions would be forthcoming but he was too tired and disgruntled to implement them. God returned to his slumbers.

Creation could sodding well wait for another day.

Third Time Lucky

He’d cracked it. Six days work, a lot of fornication, and the human generations began to unfold. Hugely satisfied he returned to his slumbers.

He awoke to a dreadful screeching that rose up from the world. The racket was fearful. Searching for the cause he found it in the wretched sinfulness of man. The perversion of their souls was sounding through the universe. It was revolting.

So revolting he decided on silence. He didn’t want the tedium of going back to the beginning of creation so he decided against using the light. Instead he opted for water. Lots of it. What floated would survive.

A bloke called Noah did. He could start again. Meanwhile God could catch some sleep.

Reform

It was the same awful noise rising from the world. Millions of souls were in a state of vile sinfulness. The project dear to God’s heart was collapsing into grotesqueness. Man had not grasped the essence of the moral project that had been conferred on them. Creation was drifting towards failure.

God decided against destroying the world and starting again. The same problems would only emerge if he went back to square one. Instead he pondered deeply on finding a remedy. The solution he fell upon was simply inspired.

He would send a manifestation of himself. A man that could be called his son that would preach the word. His moral message would finally be cemented into the culture of mankind by his ultimate sacrifice. The world could start again.

And so it came to pass.

Whilst the noise that rose from the world still grated on God’s ears, within the tumult sweeter sounds could be heard as many souls sought to realise their moral worth. It was sufficient to give God occasional, if rather fitful sleep.

Release

God awoke from his slumbers. The endless machinations of man tired him easily. He discovered to his horror that he had been declared dead by an arrogant German thinker called Nietzsche.

It was just too much to bear. Well, he reasoned to himself, if I’m dead then let Europe have the devil. Let them have many devils. With a dismissive ‘pah’ he returned to his slumbers.

True to his word Europe laboured under the yoke of the devils for the better part of the next century.

Poor tormented souls. Poor tormented maker of souls. Hard life. And death. God died in his sleep. Nietzsche had killed him.

When God died so did the idea of mankind. God was the idea of mankind perfected. God was the moral aspiration, the very essence of human community. Without that idea all that was left was history.

OUT OF SQUALOR

No god - Oh dear! But fear not, Europe is not without moral guidance. It knows how to be good. It has a vision of how to realise its own goodness. It has a plan. A bold plan. A plan that will bring its goodness to fruition. Europe is building its future according to this plan. And it is bold to create the future by a plan. No other peoples have so clearly mapped out their future and so wilfully set about building it. That is moral action on a grand scale.

And how has Europe come to know the need for this plan? From whence comes this need for a bold future? It comes from the past. Europe knows that it is not without history. It has lots of the stuff, a veritable superabundance, no, a hyper abundance of the stuff. And so much of it is simply disgusting. So much is simply repugnant. Beyond words, beyond horror, beyond imagining. Europe has wallowed in the very pits of squalid barbarism. From staring into this pit a conviction has grown that a lesson must be drawn from this abundant squalor. The pit demands that knowledge must be extracted from it.

And a lesson has been drawn from it. Now that is bolder still. How can you learn from history when it is so hugely abundant? An abundance that would allow any learned mind to argue any learned case. There is such an endless richness of squalor to choose from and Europe has such an endless richness of learned minds. Any lesson might result. But abundance hasn’t prevented some learned minds from contending that only one lesson can be drawn from it. For these learned minds have the boldness to pluck a single certainty from an endless abundance. Now that is certainty. It is a certainty they can afford. In fact it is a certainty they must have, because these minds are those that have power. Not power of mind. No. Just power. Political power. And political power demands the pretence of certainty.

But what is this learned lesson? What single certainty has been plucked from abundance? The lesson is simple. The lesson is that I, you, we, the peoples of Europe are as wanting to slip back into squalor as our forbears. Europe stands forever teetering on the brink of the abyss. The merest spark, the slightest puff, will blow us back into the pit. And from this lesson they know there must be a plan to stop it from happening again. For without a visionary plan, we, all, or some, or just the Germans, will once again lapse into squalid barbarism.

It is this conviction that gives politicians boldness, certainty, drive, will, determination, arrogance or whatever politicians require to impose a plan on Europe. For impose they must for they know that we are squalid. For impose it they have for nobody has asked for their plan. Nobody is demonstrating in the streets demanding it, cheering for it, rioting for the sake of it or even being squalid in the name of it.

So we have a plan. Of that we can be certain. The plan is simple. Some of the finest states ever seen in the history of political civilisation will be wound up and made to merge. These states must go. They must be purged. They must be destroyed because these states have been the instruments of our squalor in the past. That instrument must be forever struck out of our squalid hands.

This begs the question. What are these states the instruments of now? The answer is simple. They are the instruments of their own destruction. The question need not be asked. They will go because the plan demands it. That is the plan. The states will merge into one grand Union. One grand community. One magnificent new political entity. One bigger better state than its forebears.

And we have the future this state will bring. Of that we can also be certain. The Union will bring peace, justice, light, happiness. Or more peace, justice, light and happiness that we have now. Europe is destined for a superabundance of these things. No, a hyper abundance, because it is certain that this new big state can bring more of these good things because this state, unlike any other European state, will be good. Always good. It must, because that is what it is conceived for. It can, because it is not the instrument of our squalid hands. It will, because it is the instrument of the bold hands that conceived it.

But enough of how the plan arose from the past. Time to see its realisation. Time to go into the future. Time to watch this wonder unfold. Time marvel at the bold certainty of the minds that will see this project to the end. Time to marvel at the hands that have so firmly gripped our future.

CHAPTER ONE

PLANNING THE PLAN

Herbert Meynier scanned his hands. They were a mess of dis-colouration. Lumpy blue veins coiled underneath pearlescent skin, the freckles were darkening and multiplying, small shattered capillaries flecked them with shards of red. They trembled. Shock waves danced in the orange juice he was holding. He was old, he was running out of time.

The hubbub of conversation murmured around him. It was a confident almost elated noise made by strutting politicians and smug technocrats. They had pulled it off. The European Central Bank was up and running. To celebrate their triumph they had congregated under the high ceiling of the Reichstag rooms. The tall mirrors reproduced the suited herd in endless ante-chambers stretching into infinity. The room stank of perfume and accomplished arrogance.

Herbert had never seen so many neatly coiffured people loaded into so many new suits. Their unwillingness to spoil their sartorial elegance compelled them to replicate the rigid posturings last seen during the heyday of Prussian Yunkerom. Heads held bolt upright sneered conversation at each other. The circumference of the circles they stood in measured their importance. The extent to which they ventured jokes or vented laughter ranked each and every player.

Herbert stood on the fringe of a circle, silent, nursing his strength. He was there as an honourable relic invited to the occasion to give him a sense of completion. They had not invited him to probe his thoughts but to patronise him with queries on his health and give glad thanks that he was there to see such a landmark realised. The greetings had a touching sincerity about them. Many owed their careers to him. But there was a mutual recognition that his time had passed and the future was theirs to build. He didn’t have the strength to assert otherwise.

Sincere though the greetings were, he felt nothing for the assembled throng, neither for nor against. They were just his people. He knew he had made them all. It was his planning and his ideas that had culminated in this celebration. Any vaguely articulate European politician could rationalise projects for Europe but it was he who had ceaselessly identified the point of attack, marshalled the forces and loaded the effort behind every major initiative.

He didn’t doubt that the same vanity was shared by every other technocrat in the room but he was too tired to contest their vanity or to express his. He just warmed himself with the knowledge of his achievement. It was he who had exploited the post of Chief of Personnel in the Commission to ensure the European dream was realised. He had sought out right thinking minds, loaded them into the right positions, or, when circumstances required it, drained them and resources from sterile areas. Guided by a small think tank of senior officials in Germany and France, he had sorted the priorities, established the agenda and seen the programme through. And now the foundations had been dug, the walls erected and the first complete arch of the European house had been built. The structure was not yet sound, there were still gaping holes that had to be filled, but its immense importance kept everybody nervously eyeing the scaffolding to check the work in progress and pronounce on plans for completion. The momentum was irresistibly forward. Not even the puerile English could stop it now.

The need to cough and the prospect of the pain saw him arrest his musings. He clinched the glass with both hands and with practised self-control discretely blasted his throat clear by a spasm from his lungs. The steel claw of pain gripped him but he did not flinch. He was too used to pain to yield to it.

A wry smile came to his face. In his case it was truly only the starch of his shirt that kept him upright. It was giving out so he started to make plans to leave.

Suddenly he found the Chef de Cabinet of the Head of the European Commission standing at his shoulder. Herbert gave a stiff half turn and nodded in welcome.

‘Herbert, please, a word.’ The fat hand of Enrich Schlachter caressed his back with an effeminate delicacy and gently turned him from the circle of suits to face a discrete alcove. The circle thought nothing of it. It was a courtesy call on a spent old man.

‘How much longer before the gods take you Herbert?’

‘They should have had me in their grasp eight months ago…’

Schlachter stood unmoved.

‘About a couple of weeks I think.’

‘That grieves me Herbert, so it makes it all the more important that I know your thinking. I have been remiss in not calling on you sooner. Before you go Herbert I must know how you think this should be taken forward. Anybody can be a sketch artist but you’ve been the principle architect, engineer and mechanic. The room is full of witterings on future plans but I must know if you have a formulation that you can share with me.’

‘You flatter me greatly.’

‘Herbert, you’re so fragile I wouldn’t dare waste time with flattery, I genuinely want to know.’

Herbert’s enfeebled chest gave out a pale imitation of a guffaw. He stared at the marble wall. It had all seemed so simple in his mind. He did have a formula but now it escaped him. He decided couldn’t take anymore rich fawning. Those who were ready to depart the world had the right of indifference.

‘It’s escaped me, you’ll have to steer a course on your own. I’m sure you can manage.’

A barely perceptible frown came across the landslide of flesh that was Schlachter’s face. A figure emerged on the periphery of Herbert’s vision. Suddenly Schlachter’s powerful arm was raised and his hand vigorously gestured the figure away. Schlachter was taking his flattery seriously. Herbert decided it was only courteous to respond. He screwed up his strength. ‘The engine remains the Commission. It has to be directed. The Commissioner’s are turning into pure politicians. They will squabble over rank and tactics. The medium range thinking has to be taken down a level into a secure arena. It has to focus on the impact of technological change on social and economic structures. It must produce a sense of possible destinations and a route map to get there. As such it should not concern itself with short-term economic management. Leave that to the bank. You’ll need more than a think tank. You must give it powers to initiate debate. To make that substantive you will have to exploit the hierarchy that will emerge in the Commission. Any policy evaluation unit must be given the right to pull together the top six to debate its recommendations on a regular basis. It must be given precise institutional rights but it must be kept discreet. That requires two things, modest size and secrecy. Small size will make the selection of personnel all the more important. The selection criteria will be vital otherwise it will be no more than a hindrance.’

Schlachter’s fat hands waved away another intruder. The circle behind them almost lapsed into silence in amazement. Herbert was equally surprised that Schlachter wished him to continue.

‘The type of mind you’re looking for should not be pre-occupied with its own brilliance, you don’t want clever people, you want deep thinking pragmatists. Guilty cynics who feel compelled to explain themselves but too disgusted with themselves to want to direct events. English heads who want to serve Europe. Good luck if you can find them. I’m not sure how you can stop such a body generating a corrupting corporate culture except by purge. You’ll need to think of that. Oh, and small size will mean it will have to contract out major components of research but I don’t think that contradicts discreetness if it’s done properly.’

Herbert paused. Schlachter loomed a little closer.

‘I’m befuddled, but there has to be an agenda setting brain that can be left to work independently, after all……we don’t live in a democracy.’

‘Heaven forbid. European minded self disgusted English cynics eh? I’m not sure I’ve met the type but I know what you mean.’

‘No, self disgusted English minded cynical Europeans.’ The cliff of Schlachter’s face parted to reveal his canine smile.

The rapid formulation of Herbert’s witticism instantly exhausted him. An inkling of a dark abyss formed in his imagination.

Schlachter prompted him to continue. ‘The top six. Which ones?’

Herbert plundered his weakening mind for a response. ‘Economics,…industrial development…’ Pause.

‘Trade relations…foreign affairs…,’ Pause.

Herbert felt it was just getting too demanding to feed Schlachter’s appetite for the contents of his mind. He stalled.

BANG! The sound of a distant powerful explosion brought the world

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