Yesterday Bulgarian parliament ratified the Renamed EU Constitution with another exemplary display of democratic discipline.
Out of 240 seats in the parliament 195 MPs decided the ratification is the way to go 15 MPs mainly from the ATAKA party were against and one MP abstained from the vote.
Here is new graph representing the level of support to the REUC in the parliaments:
Recent news from Poland and Ireland suggest that instead on focusing primarily on basic question of a loss of member state’s sovereignty as such public debate tends to bend towards rather unexpected issues such as abortion in Ireland or “gay-marriages” in Poland.
As we have been reporting through the last months in Slovenia there have been measurable actions by the civil society to ensure the referendum on the Renamed EU Constitution through a collection of signatures. NGO Hervardi have organised a network which succeeded in gathering approximately 2.700 signatures “in the street” in less than 7 days whereas 2.500 were needed (2nd step requires 40.000 signatures).
4th of March 2008
“France was just ahead of all the other countries in voting No. It would happen in all Member States if they have a referendum. There is a cleavage between people and governments…There will be no Treaty if we had a referendum in France, which would again be followed by a referendum in the UK.”
- French President Nicolas Sarkozy, at meeting of MEP Group leaders, EUobserver, 14 Nov. 2007
Statement from TEAM AGM ‘08 made in Copenhagen, 9th of March 2008:
Quotation from the EurActiv.com article:
In a vote on 20th February, 525 MEPs voted in favour of the EU’s ‘Reform Treaty’ and 115, mainly from the far left and the far right, voted against it.
After watching following video you might be left speechless as well:
Please forward this link to your friends and relatives!
Help them understand the direction in which the European Parliament and the EU in general are heading.
According to EUobserver Danish opposition wants additional explanation and guarantees on legal and political status of Danish collective bargaining rights before the renamed EU constitution receives green light for ratification in the parliament.
The call came from the opposition Social Democrats, who have been on alert since the EU’s highest court in December ruled in the Vaxholm case that a Swedish trade union picket against cheap Latvian labour was illegal. Call received support from members of the two leftist opposition parties and also by the right-wing eurocritical Danish People’s Party. Together, the parties make up a majority in Danish parliament.
Friday 7th March, from 17.00 on:
Get-together and registration at The People´s Movement (Folkebevaegelsen mod EU) Tordenskjoldsgade 21, Copenhagen K (Centre), close to the Kings New Market (Kongens Nytorv) and The Royal Theatre.
Thanks to the web-memory we can read in The Sunday Telegraph, 29th April 2007 that Mr. Barroso gets easily astonished:
Interviewed in today’s Sunday Telegraph, the president of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, rejected this argument. “I am astonished that people in the UK think that ratification by Parliament is ratification by the back door,” he said. “Your Parliament is not the equivalent of a back door - it is the mother of all Parliaments. This is the country which invented Parliamentary democracy. You cut off your King’s head to establish the sovereignty of Parliament.” “To say your Parliament is the back door is to say it is not representative - and I have to say, I personally find that rather incredible.”
Report from Slovenia:
As it was expected today the Parliament voted against another call for a referendum from Slovenian National Party (SNS). This time result was 54 against and 7 in favour. Another blow to democracy came from the president of the Parliament, who announced that the Ministry of Interior checked 2700 signatures from NGO Hervardi and found out that more than 200 “were not correct”. This elementary trick has been used many times before and it primarily proved once more that the Law on Referendum and Initiative has many unconstitutional elements. In this case Ministry as a body of Government (executive branch) has followed interests of the Government. NGO Hervardi will file a case at the Constitutional Court demanding revision of the signatures. Battle lost so what else is new.
EUobserver reports: Last week, a poll by French left-wing newspaper Liberation said that 59% of French voters favoured a referendum on the treaty and 33% approved of its adoption by parliament.
If you look closer at the previous article this is similar ratio to one in a Norway poll on joining EU with the difference that up north politicians don’t dare to ignore their voters so blatantly. Finally French we-are-actors-not-spectators MPs voted in favour of amending their country’s constitution to allow adoption of the EU Lisbon Treaty through the Chamber of Deputies and Senate without consulting their people.
Many parallel stories were revealing in front of us in the first month of the Year of the Rat-e-fecation (by the way - rat is not the only correct translation for Chinese horoscope sign so we could drop our little joke from now on… but we won’t).
EU-critical MEPs Farage and Bonde were warning us through all of January of a vivid decay of democracy in Europe. It came in various forms:
In an unanimous vote and boasting they were there to take the 2nd place in the “Rat-e-fecation Race” Maltese MPs only reached 3rd place, overtaken by blind Hungary and ambitious Slovenia.
Tomorrow Slovenian political class will try to impose Lisbon “Treason” Treaty upon Slovenian voters.
While in Great Britain democratically-aware public is raising voices against shortening of the Parliamentary debate from 25 do 12 days in Slovenia debate in the Parliament is planned to run for approximately 7 hours.
In his new Brief one of the most known EU-realists MEP Jens-Peter Bonde writes about additional aspects of the Renamed EU-Constitution.
Here are some quotes (are you sitting?):
In the existing treaties member states shall put forward their “proposals” for their commissioner. The Lisbon Treaty changes the word “proposals” into “suggestions” making it clear that the appointment is by the Commission President and a majority vote among the Prime Ministers.
“Wer fürchtet sich vorm Souverän?”
zur Durchsetzung einer Volksabstimmung
über den EU-Reformvertrag
So, 27. Jänner 2008, Linz, Österreich / Austria
Obwohl die Parteizentralen jegliche Debatte über eine Volksabstimmung ersticken wollen, beginnt der Beton der Demokratieverweigerung zu bröckeln. So hat sich die SPÖ Oberösterreich für eine Volksabstimmung ausgesprochen, ebenso die Sozialistische Jugend. SP-Landeschef Erich Haider fordert Kanzler Gusenbauer auf, “beim großen Demokraten Kreisky” zu lernen: “Auf dem Boden des Programms der österreichischen Sozialdemokratie bin ich als Politiker und als Staatsbürger zutiefst überzeugt davon, dass so weitreichende Reformen wie der Lissabon-Vertrag die Zustimmung der Bevölkerung haben müssen.
More and more politicians are raising their voices against parliament-only ratification of the renamed EU constitution. These surely are brave and honest steps towards true democracy exercised close to the people. On the other hand it reveals how far political elites have already strayed away in last decade or two which is also closely intertwined with the growth of the whole EU system.
Today politicians of Ireland and Great Britain displayed renewal of belief in basic democratic values.
After the 9 days of pressure from the NGO Association Hervardi one political group in the Parliament (Slovenian National Pary, SNS) has decided to file a demand for a debate and vote on calling a referendum in accordance with the Law on referendum, chapter on ratification of international treaties.
This move might delay the ratification planned on 29th of January since there will have to be at least one parliamentary debate before the ratification itself.
In many European countries much is going on. It seems as the ratification process will once for all create a razor sharp cut between political realists and political illusionists.
List has been refreshed on May 25th 2008
ratified in Parliament —————-Hungary (325 yes, 5 no, 14 abstained)
ratified in Parliament —————-Slovenia (74 yes, 6 no) - Constitutional Court case ratified in Parliament —————-Malta (unanimous…)
ratified in Parliament —————-Romania (387 yes, 1 no, 1 abstained)
ratified in Parliament —————-France (332 yes, 52 no)
ratified in Parliament —————-Bulgaria (195 yes, 15 no, 1 abstained)
ratified in Parliament —————-Poland (384 yes, 56 no, 12 abstained) - not signed by the President yet
ratified in Parliament —————-Austria (155 yes, 28 no)
ratified in Parliament —————-Slovakia (103 yes, 5 no, 1 abstained)
ratified in Parliament —————-Portugal (208 yes, 21 no)
ratified in Parliament —————-Denmark (90 yes, 25 no) Constitutional Court case
ratified in Parliament —————-Germany (515 yes, 58 no, 1 abstained) - not signed by the President yet
ratified in Parliament —————-Latvia (83 yes, 23 no)
ratified in Parliament —————-Lithuania (70 yes, 3 no, 1 abstained)
Estimated dates of ratification procedures:
on 12th of June —————————Ireland => RR **
The rest is up to the results of the Irish Referendum.
“After all the elected representatives have gathered together in the assembly room, the next step is to somehow produce results which express the collective will of the assembled representatives. This is the job of Parliamentary Procedure. A roomfull of people, ungoverned by Parliamentary Procedure, is not much better than a mob. Thomas Jefferson said that the particular details of the rules are not nearly as important as the fact that some sort of rules exist, and that everybody follows them.” About this and similar political wisdom you can read at The Institute For Democratic Procedures.
However according to the recent notice from MEP Jens Peter Bonde the European Parliament doesn’t follow these basic guidelines:
According to x09.eu referendum campaign website there are currently in total 24 initatives up and running across our continent.
ERC2 website reports on total of 18 campaigns from around Europe.
Exclusively for TEAM we are proud to report that yesterday a new initiative started this time in Slovenia where EU-critical thinking is gaining new grounds with current media overload on account of the presidency theater.
How far can one stray away from the basic lessons of history and from reality? Obviously quite a lot as the following article from Le Monde shows:
It has also been noticed and translated into English in The Brussels Journal:
This is very interesting news from another continent in face of all nationalism-is-passée europhiles.
Freedom! Lakota Sioux Indians Declare Sovereign Nation Status
Threaten Land Liens, Contested Real Estate Over Five State Area in U.S. West
Lakota Satisfies Treaty Council Mandate of 33 Years, Drafted by 97 Indigenous Nations
Dakota Territory Reverts back to Lakota Control According to U.S., International Law