Thursday, June 02, 2005

Off Topic: NON and NEE to the European "Constitution" 

The French and the Dutch said NO to the European Draft "Constitution". Of course they did not say NO to the Draft "Constitution", they said NO to both their local politicians AND to the EU politicians, because they are fed-up by these morons.

Normal citizens basically cannot have a position on the draft, because I doubt that even 1% have read it. Why? Because it is unreadable. I have downloaded the draft from here, opened the 265(!) page pdf at random on page 97 in Article III-86 and the first I saw was the following paragraph about the Economic and Financial Committee:
2. The Committee shall have the following tasks:
(c) without prejudice to Article III-247, to contribute to the preparation of the work of the Council of Ministers referred to in Article III-48, Article III-71(2), (3), (4) and (6), Articles III-72, III-74, III-75 and III-76, Article III-77(6), Article III-78(2), Article III-79(5) and (6), Articles III-83 and III-90, Article III-92(2) and (3), Article III-95, Article III-96(2) and (3) and Articles III-224 and III-228, and to carry out other advisory and preparatory tasks assigned to it by the Council of Ministers;
No comment.

I do not want to discuss the content of the draft, because this was not the issue anyway, the real problem is the procedure for ratification.

Every normal citizen having his five senses together could have told these idiots in advance that this procedure will never work out and in addition, these idiots do not even have an EXIT strategy!

Every parent having a child at school and attending a parents meeting with say 25 participants could have told them that if one makes in such a meeting the most straigtforward proposal or statement, say for example 2+2=4, at least one or two participants will object, e.g. by saying: NO, 1+3=4. Trust me, I have 4 kids.

So if you ask 25 countries, you MUST assume even if they really judge only the issue at hand that at least one or two countries will say NO, although it is irrational. It was irrational also in this case because the real question posed was: do you want to continue with the severly flawed Nice treaty or do you want the lesser flawed draft constitution?

In addition every politician should know from elections at home that never only the issues at hand influence the outcome of an election or referendum.

So why are there curently such morons in charge at the same time both nationally and on the EU level?

The reason is twofold: a long-term bad strategy and a short-term glitch, both coming together at the same moment. Of course both failures are caused by the national governments:

The long term bad strategy was that ALL European governments used since years the EU as waste disposal of third level politicians unwanted or unneeded within their countries, both for the commission and also for the parliament (exceptions prove the rule, especially for the unwanted). In addition, all national governments use the EU (keyword Brussel) as excuse in elections for their own short-comings, and the weaker they are, the more they do finger-pointing.

National governments have their cyclic up and downs. At this moment most national governments, and ALL of the important ones have their downs (Chirac, Schroeder/Fischer, Blair, ...), to continue with countries thinking they are important (Berlusconi, ...), etc.

A process where ALL 25 MUST agree can only work out if either
  • all countries ratify the draft within their national parliaments within a VERY SHORT period of time, assuming that the same governments negotiating the draft still have the majority in the national parliaments
  • let the European parliament decide
  • or make an EU-wide referendum on the same day.
I know that all of these options are not possible legally at the moment, so it would have been the main task of the politicians to enable one of these options beforehand.

Is there a way-forward possible in Europe? - I have also no idea, but there always is. And in the meantime the European citizens will have to live with the severly flawed Nice treaty and I only can hope that some of the citizens dancing on the street this week enjoying the defeat of the morons will not have to pay dearly for this outcome soon.

And I also hope that the politicians have their lessons learnt - but I doubt that politicians are adaptive.

The only positive aspect I see is that sometimes citizens have a better feeling on long-term developments than politicians. 20 or so years ago we had a referendum in Austria on the introduction of nuclear power. This is basically a valid question, but if it is done 2 weeks before the first nuclear power plant should go into operation, one may get the slight feeling of being black-mailed. In addition the Austrian chancellor Bruno Kreisky made a serious mistake by offering his demission in case of NO.

To make a long story short: Austria is the only country in the world featuring a fully operational 1:1 scale model of a nuclear power plant.

Of course there was a big howl and up-roar afterwards: one cannot ask "naive" citizens about such complicated matters, what a waste of money, the referendum was not about nuclear power, it was about Bruno Kreisky, etc.

Looking backwards today this was a very wise decision.

This gives me some hope that the "naive" citizens again have the feeling that something is currently going badly wrong in Europe, and we will say in another twenty years that this was a wise decision because it forced the EU to get on track again.

"The French and the Dutch said NO to the European Draft 'Constitution'. Of course they did not say NO to the Draft 'Constitution', they said NO to both their local politicians AND to the EU politicians, because they are fed-up by these morons."

You have not taken cheap Polish plumbers into account.
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