The Trading Bloc Cup

Thrilling

Imagine, writes Dalrymple, a football match between a team representing the European Union and one representing, say, NAFTA, or ASEAN.

Would anyone take the slightest interest in the result, or be either pleased or downcast by it?

He notes that human feelings are mutable, so he supposes that

it is possible that one day emotions similar to those that millions feel for national teams might attach to teams representing supranational organisations.

But

I suspect that that time is a long way off. For the moment, we’re stuck with national sympathies and passions, which perhaps is just as well. Genuine patriotic attachment to whole blocs of nations would bring us close to the situation imagined in Nineteen Eighty-Four.

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