Sometimes it's the little things, tinged with geekiness, that reinforce my love of Europe. Brickwork, for example. Once the art of brickmaking had been developed in stoneless Flanders it spread outwards across the continent, finding an early home in East Anglia with strong Flemish design influence, but also reaching Eastern Europe, where the stepped gable transmuted into baroque machicolations. The rail gauge, 4' 8½", almost universal in Europe except, unexpectedly, for Ireland and Spain, and exactly equivalent to the wheelbase of horse-drawn carts and wagons used since Roman times. I love our quirks, our differences, and Europe's defining national characteristic, its cheeses. I'm very proud to call myself a European.
My Europe isn't the Europe of the federasts. For them, Europe means homogeneity, a dull equalised sameness, a bland and mediocre non-identity. Bruce Anderson writes in the Telegraph this morning on how these ideologues, exactly like the Marxists before them, love their ideology more than they love Europe; they are, indeed, prepared to see Europeans suffer in poverty, see lives and families ruined, and see a generation of lives spoiled in order to preserve the ideology. They love federism more than they love Europe.
It's because I love Europe that I want to see the baleful powers of the EU destroyed.