Inside the Eurozone Blog Articles

Against long odds, Chelsea FC overcame both Barcelona and Bayern Munich to win the UEFA Champions League. While Chelsea lost the final (and the semi-final for that matter) by any metric but the score line, goals are all that matters in the end. Style, invention, elegance belong to the football purist, not the pragmatist, and in this case the pragmatist won out. Beauty and efficacy aren’t always bedfellows on the pitch. It was Chelsea’s first Champions League trophy and a muffler to the criticisms that the club lacks a European pedigree. Moreover, it’s a result of which club and country can be proud. But pride should not be the only response, for the victory should give the English Football Association pause. Pause, not for how it was won, but pause because of who won it.

By Pat Lane  |  June 11, 2012

The Schengen Agreement has long been part of what makes Europe unique. With the elimination of domestic border controls, the agreement allows for unprecedented freedom of travel between member countries. One common border now stands between much the European Union and the rest of the world. As soon as international travelers pass through a checkpoint, they are welcome to visit 26 different countries. This arrangement, however vaunted, is now the subject of increased scrutiny from across the continent.

By Pat Lane  |  April 10, 2012

How do you define a generation?

Not easily. With countless exceptions and contentions, the characterization of an era is a project for the masochist. It is an endeavor far easier to criticize than to realize. This point proves especially true when one seeks to define the present generation, as the task is undertaken without the benefit of hindsight. Difficult as it may be, characterizing the present era offers the social sciences a useful predictive tool to gauge what the future holds for politics, economics, and society as a whole.

By Pat Lane  |  March 3, 2012

When Shergar wins the Epsom again. When Rev. Paisley does a jig down the Falls Road. When the Dail outlaws the drink.

Well, Shergar’s nowhere to be found, Paisley’s soon to see St. Peter, and considering recent economic forecasts, the Dail could use a pint just about now. But this year in Ireland, the once inconceivable, has become reality.

Queen Elizabeth II, the reigning British monarch, is now more welcome on Erin’s shores than the head of the Roman Catholic Church, Benedict XVII. A more surprising shift in recent history one would be hard-pressed to find. Time has proven once again that it does have a healthy sense of irony.

By Pat Lane  |  February 16, 2012

BERLIN — Walk down the Unter den Linden past the American Embassy. Acknowledge the Brandenburg Gate with a momentary gaze. Look right for a glimpse of the Reichstag, but head left to the square of austere concrete slabs. Spaced out evenly of assorted heights, the blocks lack the adorning touch of the aesthete. They simply exist — row upon row separated by narrow lanes. Edge deeper into the uncertainty until reaching the place where the monoliths consume you. This is The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. It stands at the center of Germany’s capital, a constant marker of national remorse.

By Pat Lane  |  February 4, 2012

On Feburary 4th, the Scotland Rugby Team will stand on the pitch of Edinburgh’s Murrayfield Stadium and listen to “God Save the Queen.” The 60,000 tartan supporters, UK citizens, will remain largely silent throughout. A boo or two may even make its way through the stands.  Then with saltires waving and bagpipes playing, the Scots will proudly sing:

                        O Flower of Scotland,

                        When will we see your like again

By Pat Lane  |  January 11, 2012

Maybe Turkey isn’t fit for Europe after all. And maybe, Europe isn’t fit for Turkey either. Many Europeans have long been hostile to Turkey’s bid for accession to the EU, while many Turks have always seen EU membership as central to the country’s future. Now the hostility is mutual.

By Pat Lane  |  January 5, 2012