EU latest: to leave or nor to leave; or No More Treaties, please!

Two of the latest heavy comments on the Irish referendum on the Lisbon Treaty show signs of thinking outside the box.
So then, after sticking two fingers at the EU, Irish voters might be inclined to say next: “see if I care” and quit the whole sheebang? Not if they have half a wit, says Wolfgang Munchau of the Financial Times.

On the other hand, Ireland might be left off the hook, according to Hugo Brady of the pro-EU and highly prestigious think tank the Centre for European Reform. Maybe the Age of Treaties is Over, suggests Brady. . Not that any of this eases Taioseach Biffo’s immediate headache – but at least it shows the big boys are trying..

  • DC

    I’m surprised that the anti-Euro brigade didn’t accept Lisbon as within it there is an ‘exit clause’ put in place for members to leave with ease.

  • billie-Joe Remarkable

    “thinking outside the box”. Well, for that alone they should be ignored.

  • Greenflag

    Case A,

    Britain does’nt need Northern Ireland.
    Northern Ireland needs Britain .
    Could Northern Ireland go it alone?
    Yes with the living standards of Albania and probably losing half it’s population to emigration.

    Case B
    The EU does’nt need Ireland .
    We need the EU .
    Could the Republic go it alone
    We tried 1922 to 1958 .
    The result was abysmal.

    If Wolfgang Munchau had half a wit he’d be witless 🙂 Threatening the Irish with ‘expulsion’ is just what the ‘No’ voters would want . Biffo will have to have another referendum . There’s no other way out of this debacle .

  • Dave

    “After a week of what European leaders call reflection, another Irish referendum beckons, to be held early next year. Without it, there might well be an attempt to oust the Irish from the European Union.”- Wolfgang Münchau

    Firstly, there is no mechanism to eject Ireland from the EU, so he can forget that idea. Secondly, there is no mechanism for the Lisbon Treaty to come into force without unanimous ratification, so he can forget that idea too. Thirdly, another referendum will be rejected by an overwhelming margin, and it will be political suicide for Fianna Fail.

    The rest of his article is peppered with similar bogus assumptions, scaremongering and codswallop, e.g. that Ryanair “would not be able to offer its popular flights across Europe.” The location of a company’s HQ is irrelevant under Competition Law in the EU, with discrimination based on nationality being prohibited. And where that legal position to be reversed, then RyanAir Europe would simply incorporate as a subsidiary of Ryanair.

  • joeCanuck

    Brady is correct about the days being numbered on “Grand” treaties. This week’s Economist has an excellent article on that theme, written by Brady perhaps.

  • Dave

    Joe, not on the basis he advances for it: “National parliaments and the public are suspicious of grand treaties because they sniff a conspiracy to build a European super-state.”

    26 National parliaments were in the process of ratifying the treaty, and 27 would have been if it status as a constitutional democratic republic didn’t degree that sovereignty resides with the people and not with parliament. So, it isn’t the political class who object to attempts to engineer a super state (wherein that political class and their hacks and hangers-on will have alternative sources of political careers); it’s the people who object to the treacherous engineering which seeks to separate the nations from their respective states. That is why the political class excluded the people from the process, refusing to include them precisely because they knew that the people do not approve.

    The Treaty of Rome binds the member states to strive for “an ever closer union between the people of Europe”. That dynamic is repeated in the Maastricht and Nice treaties. The only logical outworking of “ever closer union” is unity, so the Euro-engineers will not stop at a federal Europe – they will press on until full integration is achieved (and that means a new country of Europe with all of the powers of its former nation states transferred to the new entity). If you look at the sentence before the sentence I quoted from Brady’s article, you’ll see that he hasn’t learned anything from what the only people who had a voice have said (“… pursue future integration issue by issue, in terms people can better understand.”) See? Abject contempt for what the people want, like the rest of his rapidly pro-EU, anti-democratic ilk.

    If the Lisbon Treaty was ratified then the era of grand treaties between member states would have been over because that treaty is designed to be self-amending.

  • Dave

    Joe, just to elaborate on that ‘second’ sentence from Hugo Brady. The people rejected the blueprint for a federal/integrated Europe precisely because they understood what it was, not because they didn’t understand what it was. His solution to this rejection of his aims is to pursue his aims by the currently available means.

    It was also a deliberate conspiracy by EU quasi-fascists to make the detail of the treaty as unintelligible as possible to the public by cross-referencing it with other documents that were not provided for the purpose with the specific intent of then claiming that is why the people were not permitted to vote of a document that fundamentally alters their constitutional, human, political, civil, national, and economic rights. So, at least Hugo Brady is de facto admitting that the fraud backfired on the conspirators and that they should learn how to better trick the public in future (by, presumably, being sincerely patronising) but doesn’t seem to grasp that tricksters and hucksters (and failed hucksters at that) are not to be trusted to exercise our democratic rights by proxy.

    At some future point, I reckon that rabid pro-Europeanism will be defined as a mental illness. 😉

  • manichaeism

    If the EU ever starts to eject members for refusing to do what they are told the EU project will be at an end. Fear will spread rapidly. Especially among the smaller states. Is that what Wolfgang would like? An EU composed of states that are terrified of Brussels. Just a little bit removed from the original objectives I think.

  • DC

    “At some future point, I reckon that rabid pro-Europeanism will be defined as a mental illness. ;)”

    Dave you should consider a job in public diplomacy, you’re a real winner what with those arguments you put forward.

    Besides if your statement is a funny one but not as funny as you boiling your head.

  • Setanta

    We don’t need the Lisbon Treaty.The EU, operating under the Nice Protocols is operating just fine.
    There is already a multi-speed Europe.

    Some nations aren’t and wont be using the Euro.
    Some nations aren’t in the Schengen Plan.
    Some nations are neutral (to a degree) and some are in military alliances,

    The French and Germans need to whind their necks in a realise that even if the other governments in Europe want to be part of a EU Super-State, their people don’t.

  • Fergus

    What I can’t understand is why people assume the No vote in the RoI referendum was “sticking two fingers at the EU” or was an expression of widespread dislike of the EU or a deire to leave. They rejected the Lisbon Treaty is all (by a small margin with a fairly low turnout), not the same thing (some may indeed want to leave, but a small minority I suspect).

    Some of the responses from EU officials , politicians and some on this site seem bordering on hysterical (on both sides). I am no Europhobe, living in the UK I’m not sure how I would have voted in a referendum if there was one on the Lisbon Treaty here, but I am disturbed by the attitude of many of the great and good that really Europe’s people have no right to make decisions on the future of the EU, we should just leave it all to them. They don’t seem to be learning the right lessons from this episode.

  • Dave

    DC, Europhiles display an ability to delude themselves about the nature of reality that is very close to the psychiatric pathology of delusion, i.e. a false fixed belief characterised by certainty (sans supporting evidence), incorrigibility (not altered by proof to the contrary or counterargument), and falsity of content.

    In the example I cited above regarding “a deliberate conspiracy by EU quasi-fascists” to defraud the people of their democratic rights “to vote of a document that fundamentally alters their constitutional, human, political, civil, national, and economic rights”, there is compelling evidence for a rational person to believe that those who harbour abject contempt for both the democratic process and the democratic will of the people are “not to be trusted to exercise our democratic rights by proxy.” Yet, Europhiles cling to their false fixed belief “trickster and hucksters” can be trusted to act in good faith and to have respect for democracy when the compelling evidence is that they cannot:

    Giuliano Amato, former Italian Prime Minister and the Vice President of the Convention which wrote the EU Constitution said that EU leaders had decided that the Lisbon Treaty should be unintelligible as part of their conspiracy to defraud the public:

    “They decided that the document should be unreadable. If it is unreadable, it is not constitutional, that was the sort of perception. Where they got this perception from is a mystery to me. In order to make our citizens happy, to produce a document that they will never understand! But, there is some truth [in it]. Because if this is the kind of document that the IGC will produce, any Prime Minister – imagine the UK Prime Minister – can go to the Commons and say ‘Look, you see, it’s absolutely unreadable, it’s the typical Brussels treaty, nothing new, no need for a referendum.’ Should you succeed in understanding it at first sight there might be some reason for a referendum, because it would mean that there is something new.”

    The President of the Convention that wrote the EU Constitution, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, said about the Lisbon Treaty:

    “A last good idea consists of wanting to preserve part of the Constitution and camouflaging this by distributing it among several texts. The more innovative provisions [of the Constitution] would be simple amendments to the Nice and Maastricht treaties. The technical improvements would be gathered together in a bland and uncontroversial treaty. These texts would be put to Parliaments to vote on them one at a time. Thus public opinion would be led to accept, without knowing it, the proposals that we dare not present to them directly.”

    Valéry Giscard d’Estaing also said:

    “What was [already] difficult to understand will become utterly incomprehensible, but the substance has been retained… Why not have a single text? The only reason is that this would look too much like the constitutional treaty. Making cosmetic changes would make the text more easy to swallow.”

    The other Vice President of the Convention which wrote the EU Constitution, Jean-Luc Dehaene, also said that approved the trickery:

    “The paper [the Reform Treaty] is incomprehensible. Good! We need incomprehensible papers if we are to make progress… we have to be realistic.”

    Garret Fitzgerald also confirms this deliberate fraud wherein the people were deliberately excluded from exercising their democratic rights by the EU political elite:

    “Virtual incomprehensibility has thus replaced simplicity as the key approach to EU reform. As for the changes now proposed to be made to the constitutional treaty, most are presentational changes that have no practical effect. They have simply been designed to enable certain heads of government to sell to their people the idea of ratification by parliamentary action rather than by referendum.”

    A conspiracy to commit defraud the people of their democratic entitlement is at the core dynamic of the EU enterprise, and the two Vice Presidents and the President of the Convention of the future of the EU freely boast about their contempt for the democratic process and their ability to circumvent it because, in their little world, self-aggrandisement and being part of the elite club of EU quasi-fascist engineers who seek to further the mandate in the Treaty of Rome to engineer a state of Europe is their the core dynamic. They talk about democracy as they go about their demented business of systematically undermining it.

    You can only claim that these people respect democracy if your brand of ‘mental illness’ creates that unalterable fixed belief.

  • Dave

    [b]Continued:[/b]

    Ergo, my claim that there was “a deliberate conspiracy by EU quasi-fascists to make the detail of the treaty as unintelligible as possible to the public by cross-referencing it with other documents that were not provided for the purpose with the specific intent of then claiming that is why the people were not permitted to vote of a document that fundamentally alters their constitutional, human, political, civil, national, and economic rights” has a evidential basis. Your faith in these blackguards has no such foundation in reality: it is wholly delusional.

  • Dave

    “You can only claim that these people respect democracy if your brand of ‘mental illness’ creates that unalterable fixed belief. ”

    Actually, I withdraw that statement. There is another alternative: Europhiles simply don’t have an effing clue what democracy means.

  • Wilde Rover

    Wolfgang Münchau,

    “Without it, there might well be an attempt to oust the Irish from the European Union.”

    Ah, the charm offensive has begun.

    “The same goes for the Czech Republic, another potential non-ratifier.”

    Beware the non-ratifiers because they carry the plague.

    “I do not want to get into the legal details of how a country’s departure from the EU could be accomplished. Suffice it to say that it can be done within European law as long as there is political will.”

    I think we know the same guy… very professional and discreet… a clean scene every time…

    “The Irish could use the euro if they wanted to but this would be like Panama using the dollar – a little sad, really.”

    Yeah, I know you are, but what am I?

    “The No vote put Europe’s most impressive economic miracle at stake, and the cards are not looking good.”

    That’s OK, I know this Dub fella who is great with the horses. Not in Euros mind.