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posted on May, 27 2005 @ 02:37 PM
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Originally posted by centurion1211
Why do you keep defending what any reader with an ounce (a couple grams) of brains can tell is indefensible? Did you help write it, or something?


- Why tell the truth about it?

Becaue I thoought the point of this place was to deny ignorance, of which there is plenty on this topic here.


Regarding your '50 years of rationalization" comment, reminds me of that old saying about a camel being a horse that was designed by a committee (after making all their rationalizations).


- That's the kind of smart a$$ dumb comment I'm talking about.

The fact is the EU has grown out of a series of stages dating back 50yrs and there are several treaties designed for a much smaller union.


Any reader with an ounce (a couple grams) of brains can also see that while you could certainly do worse than using the U.S. Constitution as a model, it would be hard to find a better model.


- Anyone with an ounce of sense would be able to see by now that the US constitution is absolutely not what is required here.

The issues addressed by the US constitution have nothing to do with this treaty.


And can you imagine if the U.S. Constitution started out with "The Governor of Alabama, the Governor of Arkansas, ..., instead of "We the People"? Those two different opening sentences really do create a different sense of what the documents are about and who they are really for./quote]

- Yeah, very interesting.

Anyhoo, like I said we have a union of nations (several centuries old), not an undefined single country.

Your insistance that the US constitution is what is required and superior to the proposed EU 'constitution' merely indicates you haven't the first idea about the EU's document and it's purpose.




posted on May, 27 2005 @ 03:23 PM
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Originally posted by sminkeypinkey

Originally posted by StarBreather
Actually, they are.

- No they are not.

Yes, they are! You YES supporters are shamelessly promoting the notion that the YES is because of the constitution, but the NO is not because of the constitution. According to you, the NO is because of primal feelings, like fear. While these feelings are legitimate and may serve as a guide in the right direction, here they are not even needed. One just has to read the constitution to see that it is bureaucratic glop that will increase the overclass of self-appointed officials in Brussels.




An overlong text that gives free rein to bureaucrats is reason for suspicion, even on formal grounds. Even without reading 400 pages, something that starts with "His majesty XYZ" must be crap.

- This is ridiculous.
The document is a rationalisation of 50 or so years worth of treaties and agreements between sovereign nation states.
It is a highly legal and complex document.

It is the result of 50 years of good life at the public expense. Ask the French and the Germans: they pay the taxes. These funds are siphoned off to other countries so that their economies can "converge", but usually end up in the pockets of local politicians and well-connected "capitalists". Their economies would have converged anyway, with no friendly help from Europe, the funds only distort the market.


- This so-called 'constitution' is a hugely complex document and to pretend it might have an easy populist appeal is just ludicrous.

Ok, this constitution doesn't have the easy populist appeal. But it has the difficult populist appeal. There is a class of people that is irresistibly attracted to that style of writing.



posted on May, 27 2005 @ 04:05 PM
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Originally posted by StarBreather

Yes, they are!


- No they are not.

Europe is not 'up in arms' about this document as has been implied here.


You YES supporters are shamelessly promoting the notion that the YES is because of the constitution, but the NO is not because of the constitution. According to you, the NO is because of primal feelings, like fear.


- Nonsense; what are you on about?
Where have I said this, hmm?

I have said all along that France is a closely fought battle because they think this 'constitution' promotes business practices that are far too close to the 'Anglo-Saxon' model (ie Anglo-US business practice).
They vote on Sunday so we shall see.


One just has to read the constitution to see that it is bureaucratic glop that will increase the overclass of self-appointed officials in Brussels.


- I'm looking forward to the international document (never mind one appropriate to 25+ countries) you can produce that is not full of highly precise 'legal-ese' and "glop".
The idea is pretty detached from reality IMO.

I would also bet heavily fewer than 3 people contributing to this debate have given the document even the most superficial of glances.

Had they done so one would easily see just how ridiculous these attempts to compare this wioth the USA's constitution is.

You'll also find that these so-called "self appointed officials in Brussels" are nothing of the sort. Those with any actual clout are either appointed by the national governments or are delegates from the national governments or are the Ministers or Prime Ministers/Presidents of the national governments.


It is the result of 50 years of good life at the public expense.


- Oh dear.
Yet another broad brush swipe at this document which manages to utterly avoid the real point.

Tell me how would you rationalise, update and integrate the Treaty of Paris, the Treaty of Rome, the single Market Act etc etc?


Ask the French and the Germans: they pay the taxes. These funds are siphoned off to other countries so that their economies can "converge", but usually end up in the pockets of local politicians and well-connected "capitalists". Their economies would have converged anyway, with no friendly help from Europe, the funds only distort the market.


- Yeah anyway back to the point, hmmm?

How would you configure out of date treaties which were designed when Europe was 7, 9, 12 or 15 nations in cooperation as opposed to todays 25 (soon to be 27).

(By the way, where are you guys getting this ridiculous nonsense that the EU is setting taxation rates in the nation states?)


Ok, this constitution doesn't have the easy populist appeal. But it has the difficult populist appeal.


- .......and how does that work, anywhere?
Show me the "difficult populist appeal" of any piece of legislation anywhere.


There is a class of people that is irresistibly attracted to that style of writing.


- It's called law.
It's not easy, it is very precise (and rightly so) and hence lengthy and many people find it hard to see the point of (until they need it or are subject to or of it themselves of course).

Yet again we have someone attempting to use non-specific criticism of this so-called 'constitution' and yet again we have the laughable attempt to compare it with that of the USA, a highly inappropriate concept.



[edit on 27-5-2005 by sminkeypinkey]



posted on May, 27 2005 @ 05:09 PM
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Originally posted by sminkeypinkey
- I'm looking forward to the international document (never mind one appropriate to 25+ countries) you can produce that is not full of highly precise 'legal-ese' and "glop".
The idea is pretty detached from reality IMO.

The need to make the document very lengthy and precise arises from the ambition to set up anchors for future control of every facet of the citizens' lives. Were the European construction not in the hands of fanatics, we would have a more sensible text, grounded on generally accepted principles and consonant with the lessons of history. As it is, the constitution is a manifestation of euro-radicalism.



You'll also find that these so-called "self appointed officials in Brussels" are nothing of the sort. Those with any actual clout are either appointed by the national governments or are delegates from the national governments or are the Ministers or Prime Ministers/Presidents of the national governments.

This is exactly what I meant. The appointments are a closed system. After putting your vote in the ballot, there is no democratic control, and no balance of powers. There may be balance of powers horizontally (like, between the parliament and the comission), but there is no balance vertically (politicians are appointed by their peers within the professional political elite). In France, they even have a special university to produce politicians (the École Nationale d' Administration).




It is the result of 50 years of good life at the public expense.

- Oh dear.
Yet another broad brush swipe at this document which manages to utterly avoid the real point.
Tell me how would you rationalise, update and integrate the Treaty of Paris, the Treaty of Rome, the single Market Act etc etc?

The real point, being that there is this militant duty to build the great Europe!
At the very beginning, Robert Schuman said: "France accomplishes the first decisive act of the European construction". To me, this irrational belief borders on cultism.



(By the way, where are you guys getting this ridiculous nonsense that the EU is setting taxation rates in the nation states?)

A big ambition of some European states is to have no fiscal competition from the new entrants. The present constitution gives the EU the powers to harmonise the tax rates of member states (only by unanimous vote, for now). But do you think they will stop here? There are already calls for new EU-wide taxes. The drive and the tendency is to create an autonomous entity with its own taxation base, not one that depends from the member states, but one who only commands.



- It's called law.
It's not easy, it is very precise (and rightly so) and hence lengthy and many people find it hard to see the point of (until they need it or are subject to or of it themselves of course).

Witness the coldness, the cynicism, the contempt of the people that is patent in these words. Napoleon said "la France, c'est moi". He had the arrogance of thinking that he was an equal to millions of people, just because he was able to hide behind laws of his own authorship. Europe must be rescued from these luminaries, before it is too late.



posted on May, 27 2005 @ 06:27 PM
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Originally posted by sminkeypinkey
We don't call the French people exercising the democratic right to disagree a "stab in the back" or any such childishly melodramatic nonsense.

They are a free people and if they reject the 'constitution' (as it is their right to do) then we will all have to re-examine the thing.

You are however speaking volumes about you own (American) mentality.


God knows as a Canadian, I know how Americans like SIRR think. Anything other than embracing American policy without question is a stab in the back, and national interest or exercising free will is NO excuse. We saw that when we rejected participation in the U.S. Missile Defense system and suddenly, we were depicted as spineless and useless.

As for France... I guess some people are now projecting their hatred of anything French to any decision France makes about anything - including Europe.



posted on May, 27 2005 @ 07:20 PM
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Originally posted by StarBreather
The need to make the document very lengthy and precise arises from the ambition to set up anchors for future control of every facet of the citizens' lives.


- Nonsense.

The need to have a precise and lengthy document reflects only it's scope.

It is the rationalisation and modernisation of umteen large and precise existant documents.

How on earth could this possibly be done otherwise?


Were the European construction not in the hands of fanatics, we would have a more sensible text, grounded on generally accepted principles and consonant with the lessons of history.


- This is just ridiculous propaganda and in any event utterly missing the point.

This 'constitution' is to update existant treaties, some dating back 50yrs and many dating long before the 25 (soon to be 27) nation EU (in fact some pre-dating the EU itself).

Once again I ask, how do you modernise and rationalise these existant documents without producing a lengthy and precise document?


As it is, the constitution is a manifestation of euro-radicalism.


- Then you'll be able to cite examples and references to them won't you?

I'll come back and see what you have been able to google later shall I?



This is exactly what I meant. The appointments are a closed system.


- Er, you mean the democratically elected representitives of all Europe are from a "closed" system.......even the new democracies?!

Wow, that's some conspiracy everyone is keeping quiet about.



After putting your vote in the ballot, there is no democratic control, and no balance of powers.


- Oh riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. The elective dictatorship. All across Europe too. OK.

......any other ideas you wish to sling in here with this collage of dictatorship you think you see?



There may be balance of powers horizontally (like, between the parliament and the comission), but there is no balance vertically (politicians are appointed by their peers within the professional political elite).


- Let's get real here.
The EU 'democratic deficit' exists purely because the national governments want it that way.
It exists explicitly because the national govs do not want a controlling EU with any more power than they are prepared to cede to it.


In France, they even have a special university to produce politicians (the École Nationale d' Administration).


- ....and. so. what?


The real point, being that there is this militant duty to build the great Europe!


- No.
The real point is Europe has developed well beyond those original treaties and needs them renewed and updated to cope for circumstances well beyond anything originally intended.

The rest is you desparately ignoring those facts and trying to keep up the broad brush propagandising.



At the very beginning, Robert Schuman said: "France accomplishes the first decisive act of the European construction". To me, this irrational belief borders on cultism.


- I know where I see fanaticism and this imagined fascist Europe and it resides solely within the imaginative ideas of the anti-EU mob.


A big ambition of some European states is to have no fiscal competition from the new entrants.


- Care to give any basis for this assertion?
Care to point to the EU dictating fiscal policy anywhere in any national Parliament? Ever?

Cos you'll find that fiscal competition is exactly what is going on across eastern Europe right now.

Cos even if your view was to be correct they kind of totally missed the boat on that one, huh?
What with the largest bit of EU enlargement having already just happened, right?



The present constitution gives the EU the powers to harmonise the tax rates of member states (only by unanimous vote, for now).


- I'll take that as a no then, shall I?

You can speculate all you like about the ideas some have for harmonisation, it may come (in some places) eventually but for now this is pure speculation and has never happened and has certainly never been dictated to anyone by the EU.

(By the way, you will find that to change from a situation requiring a unanamous vote itself requires unamimity.

In other words your attempt to dismiss the current bar on an EU dictating tax rates across Europe as "only by unanimous vote, for now" is ridiculous.

Which European states do you imagine are going to vote to remove these powers from their national Parliament?
As if. Wise up.
:lol



But do you think they will stop here? There are already calls for new EU-wide taxes.


- Lots of people have speculated many things about the possible direction the EU might take. And what? They are mere speculation.

They also have nothing to do with the matter in hand either, namely this document.


The drive and the tendency is to create an autonomous entity with its own taxation base, not one that depends from the member states, but one who only commands.


- Yeah so the anti-EU mob are at pains to always tell us.
The fact remains it has not happened yet, it is not proposed anywhere serious yet and it is no part of what is currently before us.

You can spend your life fretting over maybes and the bogeyman some - constantly - want to hold up over the EU if you like but I'll stick to considering the concrete and real that is actually before me.


Witness the coldness, the cynicism, the contempt of the people that is patent in these words.


-
Very funny.
What is this, can't attack the statment so attack the person?!
The law should be dispassionate, it should also be extremely precise. That is a hallmark of sound a-political law not open to petty (or serious) conflict or confusion - anywhere in the world.

(By the way feel free to point out any actual cynicism there and any actual "contempt of the people" if they are that "patent" - if you think you can.)


Napoleon said "la France, c'est moi". He had the arrogance of thinking that he was an equal to millions of people, just because he was able to hide behind laws of his own authorship.


- Jayzuss we're getting them wheeled out tonight, eh?
Napoleon and Hitler.
What on earth has that to do with a free and democratic Europe of cooperating nation states, huh?


[ Europe must be rescued from these luminaries, before it is too late.


- No.
Europe will move on much as before, slowly and deliberately deepening the cooperation and interconnections we already have.


What "we" don't need are ludicrous drama queens who see Adolf or Napoleon at every turn and whos' mindset instantly attempts to translate everything into some approximation of an old failed empire, thank you very much.

Fortunately that is not what is happening.
The French if they do vote "no" are most likely to be simply giving their national gov a little kicking.
Ditto if the Dutch say "no".

I'd bet significant amounts of cash that if there is a no vote on the continent that they will be offered a revised draft and have changed their minds within 2 or 3yrs of it.

The UK is a slightly different possibility, since we have been subjected to a running anti-EU propaganda campaign since 1989......

.....but even there the possibilities are far from clear.



posted on May, 27 2005 @ 07:46 PM
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Don't take any notice of these people , the French never followed any European Union rules they just looked after their own people, they break the rules all the time. I hope that the EU disintegrates as its political corrupt and a waste of money.



posted on May, 28 2005 @ 08:28 AM
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Originally posted by Bulldog 52
Don't take any notice of these people , the French never followed any European Union rules they just looked after their own people


- This is just the typical anti-EU mythology.


they break the rules all the time.


- If it's "all the time" and so blatent perhaps you could give, say, a dozen examples of it them, hmmm?

The fact is everybody has been in contravention of the rules they themselves agreed at some point or another; we don't live in a perfect world.
Nevertheless the EU progresses over time.

If you want to make mountains out of molehills you can but it is undeniable that Europe is far more than not working to the agreed regulations and systems we have devised and agreed together.


I hope that the EU disintegrates


- Dream on. Ain't going to happen.


as its political corrupt and a waste of money.


- Any facts to back this assertion?

Did you know that the auditors reports on EU spending show waste and fraud at a lower level than that found in many of the national governemnts for instance?



posted on May, 29 2005 @ 03:41 PM
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Result:
"With about 83 percent of the votes counted, the referendum was rejected by 57.26 percent of voters, the Interior Ministry said. The treaty was supported by 42.74 percent, the ministry said."
What this means: no more monkeying around, solve the problems at home before venturing on large-scale socialist projects.
Sminkeypinkey, have anything to say?



posted on May, 29 2005 @ 06:50 PM
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Originally posted by StarBreather
Result:
"With about 83 percent of the votes counted, the referendum was rejected by 57.26 percent of voters, the Interior Ministry said. The treaty was supported by 42.74 percent, the ministry said."
What this means: no more monkeying around, solve the problems at home before venturing on large-scale socialist projects.
Sminkeypinkey, have anything to say?


- Ask a silly question?


As anyone who has been following French politics over this vote knows, the French public have given Chriac and their Prime Minister a boot in the backside.
It happens.

This is all about French anxiety over their pensions, working hours and their fears over this (as they see it) 'Anglo Saxon-isation' of the EU.

Also of huge amusement in this (and indicative of the level of cynicism attached to this) is the convergence of right and left on the "no" side.

The right as always on about competing (ie bidding down to the lowest possible level) and the left worrying about the threat they see to the French social model. Strange companions.

Basically many many people in France didn't vote on the issue at hand and were voting the way they did over other concerns.......as has been reported repeatedly in the lead up to the vote.

Expect to see Holland follow suit now (on wednesday) and the Ministers and Prime Ministers spend the next few months working out their next moves and revisions they think are required.

.......and anyone forecasting doom for the EU over this is simply fooling themselves.



posted on May, 29 2005 @ 10:03 PM
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I dont suppose there is any chance that the French just plain did not want to sign up to a constitution that would lead them into being part of a Federal Europe?

Wonder what reason the Euro luvies will give if the Neterlands reject it or even (perish the thoughtg) the Brits
:



posted on May, 30 2005 @ 02:14 AM
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It appears that France and the U.S. might not be that different after all:









posted on May, 30 2005 @ 02:52 AM
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Viva la France!!

Wednesday, I'm also gonna vote against this 'constitution', which isn't even a constitution in the first place.
For years our gov't didn't inform us on what the EU is all about, only in the last couple of weeks they gave us leaflets, which a normal person just cant understand, vaguely discribing what the constitution is all about.
Last week, we have been bombarded with propaganda, pure propaganda!

Our minister of internal affairs told us that we should vote Yes, otherwise there will be a war in Europe again.

We have been bombarded with propaganda even Josef Goebbels coulnd't have come up with!

Only the burocrats in Brussels benefit from this. Individual countries will lose many of their veto's, lose the control of their own country.

NON, NEIN, NO, NEE !!!


[edit on 5-30-2005 by Zion Mainframe]



posted on May, 30 2005 @ 07:00 AM
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Originally posted by vengalen
I dont suppose there is any chance that the French just plain did not want to sign up to a constitution that would lead them into being part of a Federal Europe?


- Why not read about why the French rejected this instead of attempting to squeeze the result to fit your own version, hmmm?

There was an unholy alliance in France. The right wanted to do all this "they'll stop you being French and make 'themselves' into a superstate" rubbish and the left (by far the more numerous part of it all there) were worried about the impact this 'Britainique' Teaty would have on their social system.


Almost 55% of people voted "No", with 45% in favour. Turnout was high, at about 70%.

news.bbc.co.uk..." target="_blank" class="postlink" rel="nofollow"> news.bbc.co.uk...

So, 54. something voted "no".

Not quite the "shout" some claimed either, hmmm?


Wonder what reason the Euro luvies


- What you mean those who actually want to debate the facts of what is going on and has happened as opposed to some ridiculous concept of 'sovereignty' which is permanently claimed to be under threat and which is not at all and never has been?

Yeah right, tell us about Hitler and Napoleon again, huh?



will give if the Neterlands reject it


- Similar things are going on there too. The gov is up to be given a booting by the public.

That is the problem with referenda, they are often tainted by people responding to something that has nothing to do with the question set.


or even (perish the thoughtg) the Brits
:


- IMO the UK will shelve the plans to have this vote.
As Ken Clarke said at the weekend what on earth would we go through the expense and fuss for?



posted on May, 30 2005 @ 07:02 AM
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Originally posted by djohnsto77
It appears that France and the U.S. might not be that different after all:


- So we can expect to see an end to the infantile anti-French rubbish then, right?

Yeah right.

; indeed
.



posted on May, 30 2005 @ 07:09 AM
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Originally posted by Zion Mainframe

For years our gov't didn't inform us on what the EU is all about, only in the last couple of weeks they gave us leaflets, which a normal person just cant understand, vaguely discribing what the constitution is all about.


- No one ever talked about the EU in Holland before this proposed Treaty?!

Pull the other one.
How old are you?


Last week, we have been bombarded with propaganda, pure propaganda!


- That'll be from both sides, right?


Our minister of internal affairs told us that we should vote Yes, otherwise there will be a war in Europe again.


- I think you'll find he was comparing and contrasting the track record and possibilities of a fragmented Europe of competing nation states and that of our cooperative united Europe.

Given our history that is a perfectly reasonable thing to point out.


Only the burocrats in Brussels benefit from this.


- You seriously think the tracj record of the EU is one that has not benefitted the general public in the European countries?!



Individual countries will lose many of their veto's, lose the control of their own country.


- So the anti side are desparate for everyone to believe.

It's a nonsense (as their claims have always been a nonsense).
The truth is the national Parliaments are actually strengthened by this Treaty.


NON, NEIN, NO, NEE !!!


- It hardly matters now France has said "no".



posted on May, 30 2005 @ 11:30 AM
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Originally posted by sminkeypinkey

- No one ever talked about the EU in Holland before this proposed Treaty?!

Pull the other one.
How old are you?

No, not in the media, nor the government paid much attention to the EU. My age has nothing to do with this.
Both the YES, and the NO camp admit the government didn't inform the people of Holland enough, last couple of years. Only when the polls showed the majority of the people were gonna vote against the constitution, the government woke up. They gave every voter a small booklet with 'objective' information about the constitution.




- That'll be from both sides, right?

No my friend, not from both sides. Both the YES and NO camp were given an equal ammount of money to inform us what to vote. When the polls indicated a NO vote, two weeks ago, the government cracked open a special 'war' savings pot, and started their own campaign. Suddenly they had 3.5 million euro's for their propaganda, while the NO camp got no extra money for support!! So there wasn't/isn't and equal ammount propaganda from both sides.


- I think you'll find he was comparing and contrasting the track record and possibilities of a fragmented Europe of competing nation states and that of our cooperative united Europe.

Given our history that is a perfectly reasonable thing to point out.

He sure was, but does a constitution prevent war in Europe? Is it necessary to have such a constitution, which nobody really understands, because it is over 400 pages long.

To my opinion a stronger EU parlement, will only increase the frustration of the people. More and more silly, irrelevent rules are layed upon us by the EU. The individual countries will have less to say about their own country, rules and laws. THe EU is so devided, so different in so many ways, creating a United States of Europe (which is probably inevitable) musn't be created too fast. It will take decades, if not centuries before the people of Europe will feel European, instead of Dutch, German or French. As long as there are major differences in the way people feel about Europe, there shouldn't be any overhasted attempts to create it.



- You seriously think the tracj record of the EU is one that has not benefitted the general public in the European countries?!


Did I say that? That was actually a quote of one of the major opponents of the EU constitution here in Holland. The necessity of a EU constitution just isn't there. How is it possible that almost the entire Dutch and French government (excluding a few parties) support the constitution, while more than half the people do not? Do you know how many people in Germany and Sweden are relieved that the French vote against it?

Really, I'm not against the EU, of course it's better for the individual countries, but this 'constitution' is just not right. It will give the burocrats in Brussels way to much power.



- So the anti side are desparate for everyone to believe.

It's a nonsense (as their claims have always been a nonsense).
The truth is the national Parliaments are actually strengthened by this Treaty.

This is absolutely NOT true, losing the veto's (almost all of them) will give the national parlements less power. They can only oppose when they have the support of 8 other countries! Also, even after that, the EU parlement can still ignore than and pass the law (or whatever they came up with).



- It hardly matters now France has said "no".

Yup, but when the Dutch also vote against it, it shows the people of Europe just don't want it (yet).
We now have the oppertunity to say something about Europe and the constitution, hopefully they will listen now.

Au revoir



posted on May, 30 2005 @ 03:04 PM
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Originally posted by Zion Mainframe
No, not in the media


- I'm sorry but I find this difficult to believe to the point where I just cannot believe this.

You are seriously trying to say that with enlargement having just happened and in the run-up to this referendum vote no-one in the Netherlands in the media or government was talking about the EU?!

(maybe you don't follow the political goings on as much as you think?)


My age has nothing to do with this.


- Well actually it does.

If you are a young teenager then perhaps you will not be aware of the Maastricht Treaty (all of Europe was talking about it) of a little while back (1992) or maybe the periods of Dutch presidency was 'before your time' (mind you it was last between june to december 2004)?

It could be that you are too young to have engaged much in adult debate about it all.

Don't Dutch people talk about the Common Fisheries Policy and conservation (you do still have Dutch fishermen, hmm?) or how about the last reforming measures to the Common Agricultural Policy?
Are you seriously trying to say that a policy so important to so many in Holland was unremarked upon in these last few years!?

.....and with Holland so prominent in 'green' policies are you really trying to say the EU's agreed directives on recycling rates etc etc have passed by utterly without comment?!

I find this very hard to believe......and how come I'm aware of this stuff when I'm in the UK; probably the least pro-EU country in all of the EU!.


Both the YES, and the NO camp admit the government didn't inform the people of Holland enough, last couple of years.


- There is a world of difference to say the gov did not do enough and claiming they did nothing.


No my friend, not from both sides. Both the YES and NO camp were given an equal ammount of money to inform us what to vote.


- So, it was both sides afterall then.


So there wasn't/isn't and equal ammount propaganda from both sides.


- I didn't say it was either. 3.5 million Euro is hardly a huge fortune though......and I'd lay money that this idea (that the gov was adding to "yes" funds) is very much disputed.
Could it be that the gov information was denounced as "yes campaign propaganda" when all it was was additional information, hmmm?

In any case if your gov takes a view that a "yes" vote is it's preference then why should it not say so?
They are your freely elected representitives are they not?


does a constitution prevent war in Europe?


- Not in itself, no.

But then I doubt it would have been put so crudely.
A united and cooperative Europe prevents us warring and the development of Europe is a necessary part of that.


Is it necessary to have such a constitution, which nobody really understands, because it is over 400 pages long.


- That is what we are supposed to have specialists and full time gov for.

It is a lengthy document because of the issues it addresses (ie things like reforming and rationalising 50+yrs of old Treaty).

The fact that this is - necessarily - so complicated is because international affairs (especially over a time-frame of 50yrs worth of change) are complicated.
As well as the EU etc being totally unique....

....and anyone trying to pretend otherwise is either attempting to manipulate those who do not know or simply doesn't know themselves.


To my opinion a stronger EU parlement, will only increase the frustration of the people. More and more silly, irrelevent rules are layed upon us by the EU.


- ....and yet the EU Parliament has blocked and stopped more than a few of these "silly and irrelvant" rules, has it not, hmmm?

Anyway, how come at one moment you want to complain about an unresponsive EU and the next you want to rid it of it's directly elected component?


The individual countries will have less to say about their own country, rules and laws.


- I simply do not believe this to be true.

Quite how anyone can try to to paint the EU as some sort of dictatorial force attempting to force anything on the peoples of Europe after this exercise is beyond me.

This is just another proof of what a nonsense all that anti-EU propaganda is IMO.


THe EU is so devided, so different in so many ways, creating a United States of Europe (which is probably inevitable) musn't be created too fast. It will take decades, if not centuries before the people of Europe will feel European, instead of Dutch, German or French.


- I do not believe we are going for that kind of idea.

I do not believe the peoples of Europe will ever feel 'European' (which they are anyway) without also feeling French, Dutch, German etc etc.


The necessity of a EU constitution just isn't there.


- Others beg to differ.
If only on the issue of updating and making more relevant the Treaties (some dating back to the 1950's).


How is it possible that almost the entire Dutch and French government (excluding a few parties) support the constitution, while more than half the people do not?


- I do not believe that the 54.xx% of French voters who voted "no" (not exactly a massive majority against) all voted on the basis of the constitution.
It is widely reported that many voted against the state of France and their governemnt, and nothing to do with the EU proposals.

I suspect similar will also be happening in Holland.
Not every vote will actually be about the question put before the people, sadly.


Do you know how many people in Germany and Sweden are relieved that the French vote against it?


- I don't doubt there is an 'anti-EU' element in Germany & Sweden.



This is absolutely NOT true, losing the veto's (almost all of them) will give the national parlements less power.


- Actually the opposite is true.

With a veto system the smallest country can impose it's will on all the others whereas with qualified majority voting a colleagiate system of agreement must be sought.

.....and not all vetos will be going anyway. Especially in the economic sphere.

Derrogation and subsidiarity are prime in this document, the constitution actually imposes limits and areas of competitence on the EU, a first formal position in law for the EU.


Also, even after that, the EU parlement can still ignore than and pass the law (or whatever they came up with).


- The EU Parliament has been vital in stopping daft law and forcing revison (witness the software copyright saga).


Yup, but when the Dutch also vote against it, it shows the people of Europe just don't want it (yet).


- Not necessarily.
It could just as much be telling everyone that the people of Holland are, like the French, very unhappy with their government, the current rate of unemployment etc etc.


We now have the oppertunity to say something about Europe and the constitution, hopefully they will listen now.


- Well besides saying "no" what is it you want them to do?

How would you rationalise and update the various Treaties?
How would you codify the EU's place vis á vis the sovereign national Parliaments?

I'm all ears for some constructive ideas besides saying the word "no".



[edit on 30-5-2005 by sminkeypinkey]



posted on May, 31 2005 @ 04:21 AM
link   

Originally posted by sminkeypinkey
- I'm sorry but I find this difficult to believe to the point where I just cannot believe this.

You are seriously trying to say that with enlargement having just happened and in the run-up to this referendum vote no-one in the Netherlands in the media or government was talking about the EU?!

(maybe you don't follow the political goings on as much as you think?)

For many years we haven't been informed by the media and the government, that was my point. As long as the EU exists, we haven't been albe to say something about it. Now, for the first time in 50 years, we can finally say something, et voila! A NO-vote in France, and tomorrow also in Holland.




It could be that you are too young to have engaged much in adult debate about it all.

Don't Dutch people talk about the Common Fisheries Policy and conservation (you do still have Dutch fishermen, hmm?)

I find this very hard to believe......and how come I'm aware of this stuff when I'm in the UK; probably the least pro-EU country in all of the EU!.

Interesting you bring up fishery. Dutch fisherman have to struggle with quota last couple of years, and with a reletively low financial support by the EU. The Spanish fishermen get hundreds of millions of euro's each year, have totally different quota. The Spanish deliberately scaring away Dutch fisherman in their waters. No wonder the Spanish are for the EU, they benefit from it, while we pay more and more. The Dutch actually pay more money to the EU than any other nation, even France and Germany.




- There is a world of difference to say the gov did not do enough and claiming they did nothing.


They lacked to inform us for many years, never held a referenda about the EU before. Now for the first time they ask the people, and the people say NO.


So, it was both sides afterall then.

At first, yes. Later the no camp got an extra 3.5M (OUR TAX MONEY) for extra propaganda.



- I didn't say it was either. 3.5 million Euro is hardly a huge fortune though......and I'd lay money that this idea (that the gov was adding to "yes" funds) is very much disputed.
Could it be that the gov information was denounced as "yes campaign propaganda" when all it was was additional information, hmmm?

They got the 3.5M extra, less than two weeks ago, so that's 3.5M euro's for two weeks! It is very much a fortune, since the NO-camp gets nothing extra.
Additional information, yes. But not the truth.

THe information we get from the government and the 'independent' media is as 'fair and balanced' as FoxNews.




- Not in itself, no.

But then I doubt it would have been put so crudely.
A united and cooperative Europe prevents us warring and the development of Europe is a necessary part of that.

Our Ministerof Justice informed us that a no-vote will lead to an instable Europe where a war is very likely to erupt. This is absolutely not true, or has Gernamy already got their tanks lined up at the French border


A NO-vote indicated the people do not support the EU the way it is right now. Dont you agree a United Europe will only be succesfull when the people of Europe themselves want it?




- That is what we are supposed to have specialists and full time gov for.

Thats very democratic, a constitution which only political experts can understand. How an you vote YES for such a 'constitution' ???!!!




- ....and yet the EU Parliament has blocked and stopped more than a few of these "silly and irrelvant" rules, has it not, hmmm?

Anyway, how come at one moment you want to complain about an unresponsive EU and the next you want to rid it of it's directly elected component?

Yes they have, but they also passes many of them. The EU just has/gets too much control. They get involved into issues which are really none of their business. It frustrates the people, so the people vote NO.



- I simply do not believe this to be true.

Quite how anyone can try to to paint the EU as some sort of dictatorial force attempting to force anything on the peoples of Europe after this exercise is beyond me.

This is just another proof of what a nonsense all that anti-EU propaganda is IMO.

let me give an example; The EU wanted to arrest coffe-shop holders and put them on trail in Germany, because they sold soft-drugs (cannabis/weed/pot). The Dutch government prevented this at the very last minute with a VETO. With this constitution, we lose the veto. So whatever they come up with, we have to agree with it, or start a very difficult and lenghty precedure, a sort of emergency brake. This is something no government wants to do, especially the Dutch, we always want to be 'best boy in the class'.

Also, when the people want to change something, they have to come up with 1 million other people to sign a petition. That petition is then only an advising petition, meaning the EU can simple put it in hte trash bin. Very democratic





- I do not believe we are going for that kind of idea.

I do not believe the peoples of Europe will ever feel 'European' (which they are anyway) without also feeling French, Dutch, German etc etc.

THen how will the EU ever work, why get a European "constitution" when you claim the people of Europe will never feel European?


- I don't doubt there is an 'anti-EU' element in Germany & Sweden.

Vote NO, also for the Swedish (In Dutch)

Remember the Swedish voted against the Euro.



- Actually the opposite is true.

With a veto system the smallest country can impose it's will on all the others whereas with qualified majority voting a colleagiate system of agreement must be sought.

THat "qualified majority " can then impose its will on the small countries, which is what has been happening for decades already. Wothout a veto, the small countries will have almost nothing to 'defend' with. (A VETO usually is a defensive tool, not a tool to impose a will on other countries.




- The EU Parliament has been vital in stopping daft law and forcing revison (witness the software copyright saga).

Indeed they are, fortunately in that case. but in many others they were not.


- Not necessarily.
It could just as much be telling everyone that the people of Holland are, like the French, very unhappy with their government, the current rate of unemployment etc etc.

YOu are right about that, national politics play a major role in this as well. But as I said before, this is the first time the people can have something to say about the EU. So many people use this vote to protest against the Euro. You are lucky not to have the Euro (yet) and I urge you to look and read the stories of people who are against the Euro. Here in Holland, in many cases, prices increased dramatically just before, and just after the introduction of the Euro. In some cases they just changed the Guilder sign with the Euro, making it more than twice as expansive.

A normal pin of beer, for example, used to cost something like 1,80 Guilders. Nowadays, its 1.60 Euros.

1 Euro = 2.20 Guilders

So the price of beer went up by 1,70 Guilders! ((2.2 x 1.6) - 1,80 = 3,5 Guilders )

This is just one example, of many.



- Well besides saying "no" what is it you want them to do?


I'm all ears for some constructive ideas besides saying the word "no".

A Belguim politicain said the following: First clean up you own house, before you invite others.

They simple expanded the EU way to fast, without the support of the people. Now they also started nagotioations with Turkey. It's just going way too fast for people. He said, it will take at least two decaded to 'integrate' the 10 new countries into the EU succesfully.

The trade treaties are of course very good for the individual countries. Are you aware of the plans Bolkenstein came up with? Polish workman can apply for a job anywhere in the EU. We can compete to the Polish in terms of salary rates, we shouldn't want to in the first place. It will be disasterous for our own laborman, who paint, construct plumm etc...

Now that the burocrats know the people don't want such idiotic plans, they have the oppertunity to come up with something better, something more democratic and more solidar.

Oh btw, latest poll in Holland:

Yes: 29%
No: 61%



posted on May, 31 2005 @ 08:28 AM
link   
Glen Reynolds says it best:

article on MSNBC

Excerpt:

Europe's problem is that it wants two inconsistent things. Some Europeans -- the ruling classes, basically -- care about prestige, and want Europe to be a superpower that can compete with the United States, returning to Europe some of the world-dominating glory that it lost in the 20th Century's world wars. Others -- the working classes, basically -- want the kind of easy life, low workload, and overarching social safety net, developed when Europe was an American protectorate, whose enormous and growing cost makes any sort of superpower status a pipedream. To be a superpower like America, Europe would have to become more like America in other ways: Harder-working, more capitalistic, less cushioned. After decades of being told that Europe's superiority was to be found in generous welfare benefits and short work-weeks, Europeans chose those over their leaders' geopolitical ambitions.

In the long run, of course, they will probably have neither. Europe's welfare state is probably unsustainable anyway, even without the additional burdens imposed by superpower status.

and ...

The question is what comes next. I'm actually rather worried about Europe, which faces major challenges over the coming decades from economic stagnation, out-of-control immigration, and a rather high degree of corruption and crony-capitalism. Given Europe's demonstrated historical tendency to produce poor politicians, and then to plunge the world into bloody chaos when those politicians fail, I think those worries are justified. Let's hope that things turn out better in this century than they did in the last.




[edit on 5/31/2005 by centurion1211]



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