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8. The EU Fails to Consult its Citizens and Insults Them When Doing So
The Irish referendum in 2008 on the proposed EU Constitution/ Lisbon Treaty is a powerful testimony to the evil nature of the European Union. Before the referendum, a number of EU leaders made it perfectly clear that the Lisbon Treaty was virtually identical to the European Constitution which had been rejected by Dutch and French voters in 2005, and which should then presumably have been dead.
Former French President Valéry Giscard d’Estaing (the chief drafter of the Constitution) said: “the proposals in the original constitutional treaty are practically unchanged. They have simply been dispersed through old treaties in the form of amendments. Why this subtle change? Above all, to head off any threat of referenda by avoiding any form of constitutional vocabulary.” D’Estaing also said: “Public opinion will be led to adopt, without knowing it, the proposals that we dare not present to them directly… All the earlier proposals will be in the new text, but will be hidden and disguised in some way.” Spanish PM José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero said: “We have not let a single substantial point of the Constitutional Treaty go…” Italian President Giorgio Napolitano said: “Those who are anti-EU are terrorists. It is psychological terrorism to suggest the specter of a European superstate.”
Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen admitted that he had not read the Lisbon Treaty in full, but nonetheless assured his people that it was good and that Irishmen should vote “yes” based on this assurance. He said that voters were being asked to give the EU a “more effective and efficient decision-making process.”
If a dictator decides to ignore the opinion of everybody else and implement policies as he sees fit without consulting anybody, this could be seen as a “more efficient” decision-making process from a certain point of view. Is it this kind of “efficiency” the EU is promoting? Mr. Cowen doesn’t say, but it’s tempting to speculate that the answer is “yes.” According to the words and actions of the EU elites, the will of the people is merely an annoying speed bump which slows down the implementation of their supremely enlightened policies.
After the referendum, when it was clear that the Irish would have none of this trick, the Irish EU Commissioner Charlie McCreevy revealed that he had not read the Lisbon Treaty himself: “I would predict that there won’t be 250 people in the whole of the 4.2 million population of Ireland that have read the treaties cover-to-cover. I further predict that there is not 10 percent of that 250 that will understand every section and subsection,” he said. “But is there anything different about that?” said the Commissioner, adding: “Does anyone read the finance act?” referring to the lengthy documents he drew up when he was finance minister in Ireland.
Let us repeat this again. This man stated — probably correctly — that not more than a couple of dozen people among millions of citizens actually understood the document they were supposed to vote over, yet he saw nothing inherently wrong with this. The EU Constitution/ Lisbon Treaty would finalise the transfer of authority to a new pan-European superstate with almost unlimited powers to direct the affairs and lives of half a billion people in dozens of countries, from Finland to France and from Ireland to Poland. The Irish responded in the only sensible manner, but European leaders made it perfectly clear that they would press on with the project of dismantling European nation states regardless of popular resistance.
French President Sarkozy and German Chancellor Merkel issued a joint statement saying they “hope that the other member states will continue the process of ratification.” The German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said: “The ratification process must continue. I am still convinced that we need this treaty.” The British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said the UK would press on with ratification: “It’s right that we continue with our own process.”
The President of the European Parliament Hans-Gert Pöttering stated: “The ratification process must continue” because “the reform of the European Union is important for citizens, for democracy and for transparency.” In other words: The reason the EU is tossing aside the verdict of the Irish people, as well as the French and Dutch people and numerous others who never got the chance to voice their opinion at all, is for “democracy.”
According to writer Martin Helme, it was always clear that the power elites were not going to accept an Irish “no.” After the first shock they would simply continue carrying out plan A:
“One of the most disgusting and outrageous talking points already being peddled by the Eurocrats and their friends in the liberal mainstream media is that 862,415 Irish voters have no right to block the desired goal of some 450 million Europeans. This distortion of truth should never go unchallenged. First of all, those few million Irish were actually the only citizens in Europe who were asked for their opinion. The rest of the 446 or so millions were never consulted. How can any politician claim that their voters want the ratification of EU constitution/Lisbon Treaty when the entire political class emphatically insisted on not asking the people? In fact, in many countries politicians openly admit that their voters would have done the same as Irish did, i.e. vote against the rotten thing. So it is not the few million Irish voters blocking the will of hundreds of millions of other European voters but very clearly a mass of Irish voters against a few thousand politicians and bureaucrats who make up the European power elite. Secondly, what happened to those 20 million French and Dutch voters who said no to the same document three years ago?”
The European Commission in April 2008 presented a new plan aimed at increasing EU citizens’ involvement in the decision-making process of the 27-nation bloc, as well as making it more popular. “We must consult citizens,” said the Swedish Commissioner Margot Wallström then. She is famous for her remark in 2005 that Europeans needed to approve of the proposed EU constitution or risk a new Holocaust. Three years after the Constitution was first rejected, and still with no Holocaust in sight, the EU no longer pretends to care about the will of the people. When Eurocrats talk about “consulting” citizens, they mean insulting them.
In April 2008, a demonstration comprising people from all walks of life and from most political parties convened in front of the famous and beautiful Staatsoper (State Opera) in the center of Vienna to demonstrate against the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty in the Austrian Parliament, which later occurred without holding a referendum. Opinion polls showed that a majority of Austrians were convinced, as they should be, that policy is determined almost exclusively by Brussels. They see local politicians as largely deprived of any power, and many of them were reluctant to grant even more power to the unaccountable EU.
Opinion polls from mid-2008 showed that a strong majority of the Dutch were still against the Lisbon Treaty, which is virtually identical to the Constitution that Dutch voters rejected by 62 to 38 percent in the 2005 referendum. Nevertheless, the Netherlands is going ahead with the ratification of the Treaty even after the Irish rejected it, said Premier Jan Peter Balkenende. The political elites are determined to continue a process which will essentially dismantle their country and reduce it to just another province in an emerging Eurabian superstate, and openly ignore their own people in order to implement this.
As Helme states, “Governments have willfully and knowingly gone against the will of the people, trashed their own constitutions, corrupted their courts to go along with it (thus trashing the rule of law) and started to govern without the consent of the people or the rule of law….This is the path that leads to revolution. Good! As Thomas Jefferson said ‘The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.’ I have a feeling that more and more people around Europe are ready for it. How about the politicians?”