Five years ago, the European Union's account of itself resonated with end-of history triumphalism.

In organic fashion, democratic socialism would spread eastward and southward, recivilizing the old Warsaw Pact and the Balkans through cradle-to-grave entitlements, state unionism, radical environmentalism, and utopian pacifism. No wonder that Turkey begged -- and often humiliated itself in the process -- to get inside this more perfect union.

Over here, we were often lectured by “progressives” that almost everything Europe did was better -- subsidized mass transit, free college tuition, extended maternity leave, early retirement, and “soft-power” diplomacy.

Indeed, Obama's presidential campaign was in some senses a stealthy referendum on Europeanization. And once he was elected, his moves to raise taxes, expand government, expropriate some private industries, run up exponentially increasing deficits, subsidize environmentalism, and triangulate with enemies and allies abroad were European Union to the core.

Few wanted to listen when it was pointed out -- well before the Greek meltdown -- that on key questions of demography and immigration, the future of the European Union was bleak. The very idea that, in historical terms, socialism, agnosticism, pacifism, and hedonism were not only interrelated and synergistic, but also suicidal for civilization, was considered crackpot ...