[Tagging] Should admin_level=1 tag be applied to EU?

Alan Mackie aamackie at gmail.com
Thu Jul 30 13:05:38 UTC 2020

On Thu, 30 Jul 2020 at 13:35, Colin Smale <colin.smale at xs4all.nl> wrote:

> On 2020-07-30 14:02, Frederik Ramm wrote:
> Hi,
> On 30.07.20 13:32, Colin Smale wrote:
> The EU is «composed-of» whole member states. It has all the attributes
> of a governmental administrative body - with the executive, parliament
> and justicial branches impacting citizens directly.
> To me as a citizen of a EU country it does not feel like the EU is a
> higher-level administrative body than the country. Yes, countries have
> decided to contractually transfer some rights and responsibilities to
> the EU but that doesn't (in my mind) mean the EU is some form of
> super-state. Quitting the EU if you don't like it is much easier than
> seceding from a country.
> Ask the Brits how easy it is to leave...

I think it's a great deal easier than it would be for e.g. California to
succeed from their union. Easier is not the same as easy.

You might not like it, but the EU is already a super-state that acts as
> one, with a federation of states below. I know the whole idea of a "United
> States of Europe" and a formal federal constitution is toxic, but basically
> we are already there. What is left to do is to remove the opt-outs and
> other exceptional treatment afforded to certain states.

If this is truly the case then we already have a label for this:
admin_level=2 (but see below).

> I would prefer to map the EU as a contract than as an administrative
> boundary. There are many such contracts around the world, where smaller
> countries pool their defense or other typically national capabilities,
> and I would not be surprised if there were situations where countries
> pool their defense with one group, and their currency with another.
> Mapping these things as "areas on the map" is old-style cartographic
> thinking. We can do better than that.
> The EU has laws with direct effect, which override national laws. This
> pooling of capabilities you refer to would not have any laws of its own -
> only treaties between countries, which may implement certain measures in
> their national laws as a consequence. The EU is not like that, it has its
> own laws, that our representatives get to vote on.
EU directives generally have to be transposed into national law by all the
member states. IIRC it is the copy-pasted law that theoretically holds the
power even though the members have all agreed to run everything through the
photocopier. Whether this is a tangible thing or just a figleaf is for the
lawyers to fight over.

> Even *if* a boundary was mapped, it would probably more pragmatic to map
> the outer boundary of the Schengen region than the outer boundary of the
> EU states.
> The Schengen region is DEFINITELY not an admin boundary..... It does not
> actually exist in a tangible form, only as EU law and treaties of
> association on paper. It covers only part of the EU, and several non-EU
> territories.
I disagree with this, the agents at the border are very tangible.
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