The Failure of the EU in the Global “Lisbon Process”: A Cross-national, Quantitative Tribute to the Relevance of the Economic Theories of Professor Panayotopoulos
In this paper we analyze the Lisbon performance of the countries of the European Union from a long-term, structural perspective. It again turns out that first of all things get worse, before they get better – the old wisdom of classical development economics (Kuznets) and political science modernization theory of the postwar period. In addition, it emerges that foreign savings, “economic freedom”, low comparative international price levels, and World Bank type pension reforms are not compatible with a solid and longrun development path, based on our knowledge of 17 component variables, integrating the dimensions growth, environment, human rights, basic human needs satisfaction, and gender equality. In addition, European Union membership (EU-15, “old Europe”) has the numerically highest negative effect on the global Lisbon process; while Muslim population shares in no way bloc the development process, on the contrary. Neo-liberal globalization strategies are condemned to failure; while European decision makers in particular would be strongly advised to re-think their Lisbon strategy, which pushes countries towards accepting strategies, which, inter alia, lower instead of increase the comparative international price level. Is a price level of say, the Congo’s dimension, really the aim of the Lisbon process? Balassa and Samuelson assumed that rising international price levels for the periphery country are a precondition of positive development. Falling relative price levels would suggest in the neo-classical argument that the price of the nontradables in the European economy decreased dramatically over time. Structuralist economists, like Stanford Professor emeritus Pan Yotopoulos, usually warn the weaker countries of the periphery that:“Currency substitution represents an asymmetric demand from Mexicans to hold dollars as a store of value, a demand that is not reciprocated by Americans holding pesos as a hedge against the devaluation of the dollar!” (Yotopoulos and Sawada, 2005). In addition to the above specified dependency theory and world systems theory arguments, urbanization positively affects Lisbon Process Index Indicator. Ceteris paribus, World Bank pension reforms will be negatively related to the process: Pushing Europe downwards the path of falling comparative prices will only increase the growth impediments of the growingly multicultural Europe.