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Joined up thinking for the Irish Left
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When Joe Brolly Met Georg Lukács Mon Jan 19, 2015 11:22 | Rónán Burtenshaw
Time for the Left to Act Together Mon Jan 19, 2015 11:10 | Eddie Conlon
The New Fiscal Enemy Within: The Elderly Mon Jan 19, 2015 10:54 | Michael Taft
Health, Gender-Based Violence and the Right to Reparations in Ireland. Sat Jan 24, 2015 16:06 | Máiréad Enright
Mental Disorder and Punishment in Criminal Law ? Seminar Wed Jan 21, 2015 14:22 | Yvonne Daly
Protection against Cross-Examination by the Accused in Sexual Offence Trials ? The Criminal Law (Sex... Wed Jan 21, 2015 06:30 | Sinead Ring
Update on the Northern/Irish Feminist Judgments Project. Fri Jan 16, 2015 09:00 | admin
Seminar 5th Feb 2015 (Trans)Gender Recognition in Germany: The Role of the German Courts Thu Jan 15, 2015 08:30 | Liam Thornton
Farewell from NWL Sun May 19, 2013 14:00 | namawinelake
Happy 70th Birthday, Michael Sun May 19, 2013 14:00 | namawinelake
Of the Week? Sat May 18, 2013 00:02 | namawinelake
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Top Reasons to Vote NO to Lisbon Treaty
- summary and details
In agreement with and/or in addition to the reasons listed by the other NO to Lisbon Treaty campaigns, this article provides a list of the top reasons why a NO vote to the Lisbon Treaty is the reasonable decision.
The Lisbon Treaty:
1. Incomprehensible text
The Lisbon Treaty is an incomprehensible, unreadable and too complex constitution to read within a reasonable time frame. The fundamental constitutional provisions of the Lisbon Treaty are hidden in scattered fragments of complex, renumbered, incomprehensible amendments. It is against basic common sense and against the sense of responsibility to sign any treaty or contract without fully knowing its contents and understanding its consequences. This is especially true in the case of making a decision regarding a new constitution, which will ultimately determine our and our children’s future, with implications affecting all the relevant aspects of our life.
(Note: most of the advocates of the treaty admit that they have NOT read the text.)
2. Loss of national sovereignty
Since the Lisbon Treaty is a constitution that lays down the foundation of a new federal state of the European Union, ratifying the treaty implies the loss of national sovereignty of each EU-state, in legal, political and economical terms. Most of the main negative consequences, such as the tax harmonisation, will be secondary consequences following from the loss of national sovereignty.
3. A constitution to cheat us
The text of the Lisbon Treaty is the same as that of the former EU Constitution, under different name and with different presentation. Since the EU Constitution was meant to establish a new federal state, the Lisbon Treaty serves the very same purpose in a disguised form, thus depriving the nation states of their sovereignty. The European Commission and the national governments of the EU countries deny the loss of national sovereignty in order to avoid putting this Treaty on referendums. By the act of misleading and making the voters unknowingly give up their national sovereignty, the political class of Europe forcefully imposes new citizens’ rights and obligations onto nearly 500 million citizens and deprive the voters of Europe of their current voting competencies by a grand-scale deceit.
4. The undemocratic process of Lisbon
Propaganda of distorted facts and deceit are by definition methods of undemocratic forces rather than of democracies.
“Dictatorship is one of the two chief forms of government in use today. Modern dictators usually use force or fraud to gain power and then keep it through intimidation, terror, suppression of civil liberties, and control of the mass media.” (Encyclopædia Britannica)
The implementation of the Lisbon Treaty by means of deceit is the end of the nation states of Europe, end of political freedom and the end of democracy in Europe.
Because the Lisbon Treaty is a constitution the referendum on this treaty in all of the EU-states would be the absolute requirement of the democratic foundation of a new federal state. A new constitution is the fundamental set of laws defining the rights and obligations of the citizens and defining the type of the system (democratic or other) they will be governed by; therefore the citizens’ direct approval of the new system would be the a priori requirement to satisfy the principles of democracy in the process of constitutionalisation. However, in the case of Lisbon Treaty, the citizens of 26 EU countries out of 27 countries are not granted the democratic constitutional right for general elections to express their decision on the new federal constitution.
Rather than following the democratic process of constitutionalisation, the leaders of Europe have utterly contradicted the voters’ voice expressed via the former French and Dutch referendums. With the European Parliament having ratified the Lisbon Treaty long before the results of the Irish referendum on the Treaty, the EU has revealed its utter disrespect for the voice of the Irish voters as well.
It is a contradiction in terms to guarantee a region of democracy, security and rule of law, and to establish a new political system in the respective region by the very act of abolishing the voters’ ultimate right to have a say on the system to be implemented. While the EU and the national political class resort to totalitarian means to pursue their ambitions, they use derogatory labels like “nationalism”, “xenophobia”, and the false application of the terms “terrorism” and “racism”, etc. to suppress the voices of democracy, and to neutralise the European voters’ rightful and lawful self-defence against the undemocratic process of Lisbon.
5. Undemocratic constitution – wide gap between promises and realisation
The Lisbon Treaty itself and its supporters claim that the treaty's provisions will actually implement a democratic system, and the treaty will even “improve democracy”. However, based on the very text of the Lisbon Treaty, the exact opposite is true. So far only the “NO to Lisbon” groups could substantiate their claims by the actual text and by an objective analysis of the implications of the Treaty. As opposed to the statements of the advocates of Lisbon Treaty, this treaty is a profoundly undemocratic constitution designing a profoundly undemocratic political system, in which the essential legislative powers of the national parliaments are transferred to a distant, unaccountable and unelected group of bureaucrats, the European Commission. The Lisbon Treaty is a constitution with provisions protecting the new federal state against its citizens, rather than protecting the citizens against the abuse of powers by the state. The system the treaty designs is without effective checks and balances of powers, which would be required as per the principles of democracy.
6. Radical loss of actual influence of the voters on the political decisions
For all EU-countries, but especially for the smaller countries like Ireland, the loss of national sovereignty under Lisbon implies a further loss of democratic influence on the political decisions. As of today the voters of each EU-country delegate ALL of their representatives by general elections into their national parliament. The electorate is represented with 100% coverage of the decisions made by their respective national parliament. However, under the Lisbon Treaty the voters of each EU-country can delegate by general election only a fragmental representation into the European Parliament and the Council, the members of which will however exercise powers over ALL citizens of Europe. This fragment equals the percentage determined by the country size divided by the entire size of the EU. In the case of Ireland, this percentage will be 12/751 =1.6%. The Irish voters’ ability to influence the overall decisions made by their political lead will therefore be reduced from 100% to 1.6%.
7. Loss of permanent representation in the Commission
After 2014 the EU-states lose their right to a permanent Commissioner. In any 5 year term only two-third of the EU-countries will be represented in the Commission, in the ultimate decision-making body, which will shape the all-time strategies and the very direction of the EU. Because smaller countries like Ireland will not have significant say via other EU-institutions either, for Ireland the loss of permanent commissioner entails the absolute lack of influence on the decisions of the EU.
8. Voting NO to Lisbon Treaty does not mean rejecting alliance among the countries of Europe; it means a demand for restoring the voters’ rights and other guiding principles of democracy, rule of law and constitutionalism in Europe. It means asking for an accountable political lead, and for a transparent and truly democratic system established on a genuine debate and factual agreement between the leaders and voters of Europe. The optimal alternative of the Lisbon Treaty is to retain the sovereignty of the nation states and to design a truly democratic European system in which a strong yet free alliance among the countries of Europe is developed under the constitutional control of the voters over their own national governments and over the decisions of the EU. (See the EUDemocrats' website under the References.)
"Time for full facts on Lisbon Treaty"
"Voting No for a reason: Lisbon Treaty OR a Europe of democracy"
The research articles and references at:
"The Lisbon Treaty Blog: Facts about the Lisbon Treaty - what political science tells us"
"Summary of the Lisbon Treaty Research"
"Lisbon Treaty Irish Referendum Blog - National Platform"
EUDemocrats - the alternative of the current EU-leadership