… and I got up very early in order to take the seven o’clock train to Paris. After all that stress I needn’t have worried. The evidence-giving went very well and, taken together with the ensuing exchange, it did indeed feel almost like an academic seminar. As the Section’s rapporteur neatly summed up, I presented thesis, antithesis and synthesis. My thesis was the Jean Monnet vision of the nation state slowly dissolving. My antitheses (there were two) were, first, Alan Milward’s brilliantly counter-intuitive argument about The European Rescue of the Nation State and, second, the just-as-brilliant Andrew Moravcik’s argument that the self-interested nation state can best pursue its interests through liberal intergovernmentalism. The synthesis was the Luuk Van Middelaar analysis of three spheres: the traditional ‘concert of power’, based on alliances and balance of power; the Monnet vision, based on the Community method; and a middle sphere where the state paradoxically played a role that went beyond itself. I met Van Middelaar a month ago and I am convinced that we’re going to hear more from him. He’s currently Herman Van Rompuy’s speechwriter but he is best known in the Netherlands as an incisive and original political philosopher and a political commentator. His book, The Passage to Europe. A History of a Beginning, is currently being translated into both English and French, and will surely provoke a lot of interest. Anyway, my evidence was faithfully recorded by a stenographer and I’ll surely post it all when I receive the final version.