Thursday, 15 March 2012

An Irish Referendum & The Undemocratic EU

An Irish Referendum & The Undemocratic EU


I rarely pass on, as postings, material that I find on the internet to which the author is insufficiently committed to apend his name as an identified individual, but I did find this essay cast into the public domain, on a blog unsupported by the conviction of the authors clear identity, on the Irish referendum of some interest and with which I substantially agree and thus choose to share it.

Irish Referendum

The recent decision by the Irish Republics Attorney General to advise that the Irish constitution requires a referendum, in order to ratify the proposed EU Fiscal Union (EFU), has been received with joy by critics of the European Union and it's attempts to 'bully' member states into ratifying the treaty without recourse to the democratic process. It will not have gone down well in the corridors of power in Brussels.

It is no longer a surprise to eurosceptics to find that the EU's contempt for democracy is demonstrated in it's actions of deposing the democratically elected governments of Greece and Italy, replacing them with EU Technocrats, and postponing democratic elections due to be held over the next few months. In the words of Herman Van Rumpuy, President of the EU, "This is not the time for elections". One wonders if in Mr Van Rumpuy's twisted idea of democracy there will ever be a place for free and fair elections?

The Irish referendum, it could be argued, is something of a side show; recent rule changes (manipulation) mean that the EFU only needs to be ratified by 12 of the 17 eurozone members to become EU law. The sceptic may believe that this is the reason the Irish referendum is being allowed at all, as the very concept of referendums, a cornerstone of liberal democracy, is regarded with contempt in Brussels, provoking the removal of those politicians who dare to publicly contemplate them, as the last democratically elected prime minister of Greece, George Papandreou, discovered to his cost. Ireland itself has surely learnt the lesson of crossing Brussels by producing the 'wrong answer' in the referendum on the Treaty of Nice in 2001, then being cajoled into a re-run a year later to 'produce the right answer'!

The Irish people and politicians have, for many years been regarded as 'enthusiastic europeans', indeed one of Irelands highest profile politicians, Bertie Ahern, was seen as the driving force behind the delivery and ratification of the EU constitution in the form of the Lisbon Treaty when Ireland held the EU Presidency in 2004. The Lisbon Treaty and the Euro where 'sold' to the Irish people as the means to strengthen democracy and guarantee future investment, jobs and prosperity within the EU and in particular for Ireland. Do the people of the Irish Republic, at least those who haven't been forced to emigrate in order to escape the collapse of the Irish economy and the appalling unemployment and fall in living standards resulting from the eurozone crisis, still believe that the EU has been 'good' for Ireland?

It must be clear to any intelligent observer that the eurozone crisis has arisen because the euro project is fatally flawed as an economic system. The arguments have been well rehearsed in these pages and many other places by greater minds than mine. Assuming that the EU leadership, the European Central Bank and the IMF are not completely inept one must question what the true purpose of the project has been. The only real conclusion that can be drawn about the euro project is that it is the mechanism by which the architects of the EU intend to draw the member states into the much vaunted 'european superstate'. There can be no other logical conclusion. Indeed, many in continental europe, now openly talk about the 'United States of Europe' as an entity who's time has come.

There is however one problem: No-one has bothered to ask the people of europe for permission to remove their democracy, their sovereignty, to remove their nationhood! No-one has bothered to ask the people of europe what form of government they should be ruled by. What is being foisted on the peoples of europe is a Soviet style Socialist (Communist?) authoritarian government, with the stealthy construction of a 'Police State' well under way. I say stealthy, but, the evidence is there for all to see if only they would open their eyes and look!

The arrogance of europe's politicians in assuming the right to arbitrarily override the democratic process and alter national constitutions and sovereignty without recourse to the people in countries such as the UK is astounding and is a slap in the face to the libertarian rights of the people. The Irish situation has shown that even with the supposed in-built protection within their constitution, the 'forced march' towards an undemocratic, and apparently authoritarian and totalitarian, 'United States of Europe' appears unstoppable. There is an ever widening view amongst academics that the 2014 European Parliamentary Elections may well be the last elections in europe for a very long time. Alarmist? No, a genuinely held fear by many intelligent and informed people.

There is a growing predictability about the behaviour of the EU when a perceived threat to 'the plan' is raised. Ireland is now seeing the same levels of 'encouraging' visits and talks by EU politicians attempting to fool the people into believing that their best interests lie within the EU, whilst at the same time denying opponents a level stage on which to put forward an alternative view of the EU. These tactics have been witnesses elsewhere, most recently in Croatia where the vote to join the EU was manipulated to an appalling extent amid a massive campaign to entice the Croatian people into voting 'Yes'. At least the opportunity for a referendum was given to the Croatians. But, the fact is only 43.51% of the electorate voted and of that number 66.27% voted 'YES'; consequently 3,205,757 (71.16%) voters, from an electorate of 4,504,765, did not vote for or rejected the wish to join the EU. Hardly the 'Overwhelming mandate' claimed by Brussels.

There is a growing alarm amongst the ordinary people as the realisation of what is being done in Brussels and a fear that it is too late to alter course. It is through the ballot box ultimately that the EU juggernaut must be defeated. The British public must force their national government to allow and uphold a referendum on continued EU membership, the Irish also have an opportunity to force their politicians to alter course on the EFU by voting a clear 'NO' in the upcoming referendum.  

But, it is not for an Englishman to tell the Irish what is best for them; they need only look around them at and contemplate the emptiness of the promises of prosperity, so boldly forecast by the EU and their own politicians just a few short years ago; much as the people of Greece, Spain and Portugal are also being forced to contemplate today.
if the author of the article wishes to contact me and supply his or her verifiable name and contact details I will happily include them by way of attribution.
. .
"In politics, stupidity is not a handicap." 
Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821)

Greg L-W.

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Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Anthony COUGHLAN'S COMMENTS ON The EU In The Irish Times 14-Apr-2010

The Irish Times - Wednesday, April 14, 2010

'Disturbing direction' of EU governance


– It is interesting to see Dr Garret FitzGerald (Opinion, April 3rd) stating that since the European Council of EU prime ministers and presidents was established in 1974 the governance of the EU has evolved in what he calls “a disturbing direction”.
This is because, he says, “meetings of the European Council tend to be dominated by the Big Three” – Germany, France and the UK. He points out it is difficult to mobilise up to 27 states in defence of their common interests in relation to these, in contrast to the period when there were only nine EU member states and “five or six of them could easily combine to oppose undesirable developments.” I must have debated the pros and cons of European integration dozens of times with Dr FitzGerald in the lead-up to Ireland’s referendum on accession to the EEC in 1972. Twenty years later I discussed them with him again when he advocated the abolition of the Irish pound in favour of our adopting the euro, the currency of an area with which Ireland did only one-third of its trade.
It has always struck me that the basic flaw in Dr FitzGerald’s thinking on EU integration was his assumption that the big powers of Europe, in particular Germany, France and Britain, were going to subordinate their longterm national state interests to some common pan-EU interest to the benefit of Ireland and other smaller EU members.
Irish people are finding out the hard way these days that we cannot restore our lost economic competitiveness by devaluing our national currency, as we have no currency to devalue, so we can only restore it by cutting pay, profits and pensions instead, for possibly years on end. This experience will surely lead future historians of our times to conclude that abolishing the Irish pound was the worst decision ever taken by an Irish government.
The unwillingness of a surplus country like Germany to increase its home demand to counter deflation in the deficit-running “Club Med” countries and Ireland, shows the limits of solidarity in the euro zone at present. Some fear, others hope, the resulting tensions will blow the euro currency apart.
Dr FitzGerald’s article omits to mention that the Lisbon Treaty gives this conclave of national prime ministers and presidents a much more central role in the EU’s institutional structure than hitherto. The treaty turns this body into an official EU institution for the first time. It charges it with giving the constitutionally new EU which Lisbon establishes “the necessary impetus for its development” and with defining the EU’s “general political directions and priorities”.
This Lisbon-based change is bound to give Germany, France and Britain greater scope to determine basic EU policy. Combine that with the other Lisbon Treaty change, that from 2014 onward EU law-making will take place primarily on the basis of population size, with 15 states being able to outvote 12 as long as they have 65 per cent of the total EU population between them. This will double Germany’s voting weight in making EU laws from its present 8 per cent of the total EU Council votes to 16 per cent. It will increase France’s and Britain’s from 8 per cent to 12 pre cent each, while halving Ireland’s from 2 per cent to 0.9 per cent.
These changes are bound to make ever clearer the drawbacks of giving such power to Dr FitzGerald’s “Big Three” and will surely lead to appropriate political reactions by the other EU members in due course. – Yours, etc,
The National Platform EU
Research Information
Crawford Avenue, Dublin 9.

To view the original letter CLICK HERE
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