Unforced error Dep’t

Keeping Turkey out of Europe.

When the history of the early 21st Century is written, the failure of Europe to embrace Turkey may well stand as the most astounding blunder. Thank you, Your Holiness. Merci beaucoup, M. le President. Danke, Frau Bundeskanzlerin.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com

15 thoughts on “Unforced error Dep’t”

  1. Oh, for a decent press corps:

    From the NYT article you reference:

    Kerim Sarc, 42, the owner of Ottoman Empire T-Shirts and the scion of an illustrious Ottoman family, believes that the newfound fondness for a mighty empire that lasted more than 600 years and once reached the gates of Vienna is linked to the long struggle for membership in the European Union.

    Once reached Vienna? More like twice. 1683: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_vienna and 1529: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_vienna .

    Are there no copy editors? How do these things keep slipping through? It's not as if this is a minor fact. It has a huge significance for the psychology of the region, including that of the Austrians.

  2. I still hold out hopes for Turkey entering "Europe". It is no more "backward" than Romania or Bulgaria, & Western Anatolia has been considered "European" sicne the Ancient Greeks.

    Notwithstanding Sarkozy & Benedict, the door is not firmly shut.

  3. I've always thought that the issue had less to do with religion and more to do with geography. Turkey borders on Syria, Iraq, and Iran. I just think they're very nervous, and reasonably, about the idea of having the EU directly border on those kinds of crazy states.

  4. Which one is it — Is the Catholic Church allied with Islamists or engaging in Islamophobia? I think you only get to make one of these arguments.

  5. I’ve always thought that the issue had less to do with religion and more to do with geography.

    There's also economic and demographic concerns. To put it bluntly, one of the reasons why France, among others in the EU do not support Turkish membership is because they don't want to admit a state that's larger and poorer than even many of the poorer ex-Soviet Bloc states, one that is likely to send millions of Turks into their countries in search of work in the way that millions of East Europeans headed west.

  6. No objection to the substance of your post, Mark. But if you try to be ironic by using foreign titles, you ought to try to get them right. In Angela Merkel's case that would be 'Frau Bundeskanzler'. You probably didn't bother to check that because you thought most of your readers wouldn't know one way or another. Which may well be true. But to those who do your little flash of wit bombed right out of the gate.

  7. No, it won't stand as the worst blunder. Because any current decision can be reversed, allowing Turkey admission at any point in the future (assuming they even find it a prize worth having). But the United States cannot un-invade Iraq.

  8. Not sure where srw1 thinks he/she learned German, but "Frau Bundeskanzlerin" is correct usage. The "in" is a feminine ending, like "stewardess" as opposed to "steward", or "waitress" vs. "waiter".

  9. Since one of the US's most corrosive political issues is immigration from Mexico, we should perhaps not be casting the first stone at the EU.

  10. Well,two points:

    1.SRW1 thinks that he learned German by having been born and educated in that country, including University degree.

    2. The question of 'Frau Bundeskanzler' vs 'Frau Bundeskanzlerin' is a bit more tricky than you appear to appreciate, Steve. As 'Bundeskanzler' is a political position, the logically correct form of address is 'Frau Bundeskanzler', since 'Frau Bundeskanzlerin' is a form of double feminization. Nonetheless, on the occasion of Angela Merkel ascending to the position of 'Bundeskanzler', the very same argument you used for your deduction of 'Frau Bundeskanzlerin' was grounds for a debate which ended with a recommendation in the official protocol of the German Bundestag, dutifully fulfilling the image of Germans being thorough in all matters of state, which suggested the use of 'Frau Bundeskanzlerin'.

    So, you can consider yourself to be correct based on that recommendation, but you have a rather more weak position for the logical deduction you fielded as your argument. And you'll have to excuse, but as somebody of a certain age and education I have the unfortunate inclination to hang on to what I learned as being correct when I was somewhat younger and (hopefully) more flexible. And I seem not to be the only one: http://www.hs-zigr.de/~bgriebel/kommunikation.htm

    (Warning: Text is in German, but it deals with the question of whether Germany does have a 'Frau Bundeskanzlerin')

    My pleasure if I could be of any help.

  11. If you ever wonder why Americans are not respected in the rest of the world look at your post. Maybe most people in Europe feel Turkish people are not European? From my travels I tend to agree. I would argue with you the opportunity to bring the USSR into the west is a much greater failure, thanks to Bill C and LArry S and all the Harvard economists.

    The sheer arrogance your espouse by telling others what to do is mind boggling. Stick to your own knitting – you have plenty of your own problems to sort through.

  12. toby-

    I think you've committed an anachronism. Surely, when western anatolia (or Thrace) was populated or ruled by ancient Greeks, it was considered part of ancient Greece. And when it was ruled by Romans it was considered part of the Roman Empire. The thing that we call "Europe" did not exist. "Europe" as a concept emerged from the Crusades. I suppose it will irk some to declare that Christianity is inherent in the identity of Europe, but this is strictly true as an historical matter.

  13. "I would argue with you the opportunity to bring the USSR into the west is a much greater failure, thanks to Bill C and LArry S and all the Harvard economists." – Joe Noone

    You probably mean Russia, or at most the CIS, because the USSR was already gone by the time Bill C and Larry S came into office. What is true though, is that the 'Boys from Chicago' did a lot of damage in Russia during Boris Yeltsin's tenure.

    The observation that there is considerable opposition in significant parts of Europe against Turkey becoming a member of the EU is correct, but what that would have called for is carefully managed process of suitable duration, and not the idiotic way in which the EU dealt with Turkey.

    First the Turks were encouraged and told that they could become a member, if only they would reform this and reform that. When the Turkish government under Erdogan started to implement the demanded reforms, probably against the expectations of European leaders, the Turks were first strung along for a while, and then, when conservative governments in France and Germany took over, they started to hear 'Sorry, no place at the table for you guys.' There's no denying that the Turks are justified in being pissed on how they were treated in this context.

    What is particularly short-sided as far as Germany is concerned, is that there are already about five million Turks living in Germany, but especially because of the neglect in the eduction system, these people are not being integrated and many among the 2nd and 3rd generation youths feel pretty alienated. There's no doubt that the position Merkel and her party have taken on Turkish membership in the EU won't help that alienation one iota.

  14. these people are not being integrated and many among the 2nd and 3rd generation youths feel pretty alienated. There’s no doubt that the position Merkel and her party have taken on Turkish membership in the EU won’t help that alienation one iota.

    I remember a professor from Turkey that I had being somewhat bemused about how until recently (2000, if I remember right), you'd have third- and fourth-generation folks living in Germany of Turkish descent who were fully secularized and only spoke German, yet didn't possess citizenship status – as opposed to people who were never born in Germany yet had a parent or grandparent who was German, and thus could get German citizenship.

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