Friday the 21st of September
From 18.00 – Get-together at the People’s Movement against the EU office (Tordenskjoldsgade 21, st.th. – close to Kongens Nytorv metro station).
Saturday the 22nd of September
12.30-16.00 – Euro crisis and alternatives for a better European cooperation
TEAM and EUD public meeting at Drop Inn, Kompagnistræde 34 in central Copenhagen.
12.30-12.40 Welcome by Patricia McKenna, coordinator of TEAM (Ireland) and president of the EUD
12.40-12.50 Welcome by Jesper Morville, chairman for the international committee of the People’s Movement against the EU (Denmark)
12.50-13.10 Will Britain have a referendum on the EU membership? Speaker: Representative from People’s Pledge.
14.00-14.45 The euro crises and how European cooperation be built without the European Union
Kjell Dahle, former Secretary general of the Centre Party (Norway) (confirmed) Søren Søndergaard, Member of the EU Parliament for the Danish People’s Movement against the EU (to be confirmed). Another speaker from an EU country (to be confirmed).
14.45-15.35 Debate and questions
15.35- 15.50 Update on current situation regarding Art. 136 Amendment and position of ECJ and status of ESM Treaty (Anthony Coughlan, National Platform - tbc)
15.50-16.00 Closing words by Patricia McKenna, coordinator of TEAM (Ireland) and president of the EUD
City walk in Copenhagen from 16.15 to 18.15 – for those who do not need a rest – we will walk and look at different sights in Copenhagen.
From 18.30 – Dinner at a restaurant in central Copenhagen
Sunday the 23rd of September
9.00-14.00 TEAM AGM probably in the Red Green Alliance office in central Copenhagen (to be confirmed) Only for TEAM affiliated organizations.
Agenda: 1: Apologies 2: Minutes of 2011 AGM and matters arising 3: Financial report 4: Report of work over the past year 5: Endorsement of new affiliates to TEAM 6: Programme of work for 2012/13 7: Report of Nominations Committee - recommendations for board-members and coordinator (chairman) 8: Election of board, treasurer and coordinator 9: Amendments to TEAM-constitution (suggestion to stop having a nomination committee) 10: Election of Nominations Committee 11: Discussion on future operation of TEAM and TEAM board 12: written reports from affiliates and delegates
35.410 signatures handed over to the European Affairs Committee.
The signatures are not just about a referendum, but they also reflect the need for a broad discussion on the matter, said MEP Søren Søndergaard from the Danish People´s Movement against the EU, when the signatures were handed over to the Danish Parliament’s European Affairs Committee yesterday by a delegation of organizations, which have supported the petition actively.
In a short period a total of 35.410 signatures were collected online, in workplaces, on the streets and others places from Danes, who wants to vote on the new Euro Treaty, the so called Fiscal Treaty.
“We see it as symbolic that the Fiscal Treaty is being debated on the same day as the Irish referendum takes place. I have recently been in Ireland twice and I have been very impressed by the great debate they have had. We too have previously experienced a massive public debate during referenda,” said Søndergaard as he handing over the signatures.
“The purpose of the signatures was, of course, to underline what the opinion polls have shown: a desire for a referendum, but it has also been a desire to have a debate instead of a simple parliamentary resolution. Whether you are an EU supporter, sceptic or EU opponent, it is dangerous if people are being excluded from crucial decisions!”
On Thursday May 31th, at the same time as our Parliament is debating the Fiscal Treaty the Danish People’s Movement will have an event for a referendum between 11.00 and 12.00 in front of the Christiansborg Palace (The Danish Parliament).
For further information or comments, please contact: Søren Søndergaard, MEP on mobile +45 40 45 38 39 or Ib Roslund CIO on mobile + 45 20 16 65 67 or Lave K. Broch, campaign coordinator on mobile +45 28 92 21 27
The Danish People’s Movement against the EU secretariat at telephone + 45 35 36 37 40 or e-mail: email@example.com
Croatia will have a referendum concerning EU membership the 22nd of January.
The Danish People’s Movement against the EU’s believes that it is the worst time ever for Croatia to join the European Union.
First of all the EU is becoming a more and more centralized union and Croatia’s influence will be marginal.
Secondly the EU is in its worst crisis ever and Croatia does not have an opt out from the euro as e.g. Denmark. This means that Croatia will be bound to a currency union in great trouble. The welfare risks for the Croatian citizen are great.
The Danish People’s Movement suggests that Croatia should join the EFTA, the European Free Trade Association, instead of the European Union. Membership of EFTA will give the Croatian citizens possibilities to work, study, live and travel, trade in all EFTA and EU countries just like the citizens of the EU. However Croatians citizens will be able to have more democratic influence. And the Croatian economy does not have to be connected to the failing EU Monetary Union and the euro.
For further information please contact:
Jesper Morville, chairman of the international committee of the Danish People’s Movement against the EU phone: 0045-23633537 and e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
or Lave K. Broch, campaign coordinator of the Danish People’s Movement against the EU phone: 0045-28922127/0045-35363740 and e-mail: email@example.com
The Peoples’s Movement against the EU: www.folkebevaegelsen.dk
The Danish People’s Movement against the EU is a cross political movement working on a democratic and non-racist platform for democracy, the Nordic welfare system, sustainable environment and international solidarity. The main goal for the movement is Danish withdrawal from the EU. The People’s Movement has been represented in the EU parliament since the first direct election in 1979 and our current MEP is Søren Søndergaard. The People’s Movement has around 100 local branches across Denmark and around 3000 individual members.
A new poll published today (Nov. 17, 2011) in Iceland by the Icelandic polling company MMR for the local think tank Andriki.
50.5 percent of Icelanders want to withdraw the application, 35.3 percent want to carry on with it and 14.2 percent have not made up their minds.
Of those who favour withdrawal of the application 38.8 percent strongly favour withdrawal while 23.8 percent strongly oppose it.
The poll was produced November 10-14, 879 people were asked.
Sources: http://www.mbl.is/frettir/innlent/2011/11/16/fleiri_vilja_haetta_vid_umsokn/ http://andriki.is/post/12898554715
Hjörtur Jónas Guðmundsson”, firstname.lastname@example.org
A fresh poll reveals a clear majority for keeping the EU Opt-Outs. ”This shows how wrong it is to hand over power to the EU without asking the people,” according to Søren Søndergaard, MEP for the Danish People’s Movement Against the EU, calling for a referendum on the surrender of sovereignty in the area of finance.
Today (Nov. 15, 2011) Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten, a Danish daily, is publishing a poll made by the Rambøll institute. This poll shows a clear majority for keeping not only the Euro Opt-Out, but also the Opt-Outs on Justice and Home Affairs and on Defence, which the Government are planning to abolish after referenda.
63.2 per cent of the respondents want to keep the Euro Opt-Out, while only 25.8 per cent want to abolish it. 47.5 per cent want to keep the Opt-Out on Defence, while 31.1 per cent want to abolish it. 45.1 per cent want to keep the Opt-Out on Justice and Home Affairs, while 33.7 want to abolish it.
”These figures mirror a deep and widespread anxiety about the entire EU project. They show how wrong it is to hand over power to the EU without asking the people. At the background of this poll it would in a democratic sense be irresponsible to hand over more power over financial policies,” according to Søren Søndergaard, MEP for the Danish People’s Movement Against the EU, calling for a referendum on the surrender of sovereignty in the area of finance (including the Euro Plus Pact and the six Directives on Financial Governance).
Further information from, and comments to: Søren Søndergaard, MEP, +45 40 45 38 49, e-mail: email@example.com or Ib Roslund, Information Officer, +45 33 36 37 40, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
FRIDAY, September 30th
For TEAM Board members only:
16.00-18.00 - Board meeting at the office of People’s Pledge, 83 Victoria Street, London SW1H OHW
For all participants in the TEAM Annual General Meeting:
19.00: We are invited to a celebration of the Jubilee of Get Britain Out, including a buffet supper. The Venue will be in central London and will be announced as soon as possible.
SATURDAY, October 1st
For all TEAM organisation members:
10.00-13.00 - Official TEAM AGM Venue: Overseas House (Royal Overseas League), London, Park Pl, London SW1A 1 LR
2. Minutes of 2010 AGM and matters arising
3. Financial report
4. Report of work over the past year
5. Endorsement of new TEAM affiliates
6. Work Programme for 2011/12
7. Report of the Nominations Committee – recommendations for Board members and coordinator (chairman)
8. Election of board, treasurer and coordinator
9. Amendments to the TEAM constitution
10. Election of the Nominations Committee
11. Discussion on the futute operation of TEAM and the TEAM board
12. Written reports from affiliates and delegates
13.00-14.00 - Lunch break
Venue:Overseas House (Royal Overseas League), Lomdon, Park Pl, London SW1A 1 LR
Official organizers : TEAM and EUD (Eudemocrats)
14.15-14.30: Welcome by TEAM coordinator Patricia McKenna
14.30-15.00: THE FINANCIAL CRISIS AND THE EURO Anthony Coughlan, Senior Lecturer Emeritus in Social Policy of Trinity College, Dublin, and a British Trade Unionist – name not confirmed
IS THERE A FUTURE OUTSIDE THE EU?
16.00-17.00 Edward Spalton, chair of CIB, and Sigrid Heiberg, board member of No to EU, Norway
18.00-18.15 Closing of the meeting
On his blog, TEAM board member Alain Bournazel, points out that the very measure of the EU member countries ”helping” each other out of the crisis with gap-stopping loans actually sharpens the crisis.
He also points out the that crisis has hit only members of the Eurozone, whereas Switzerland, Denmark, Norway and Sweden, countries that have kept their national currency, have not been hit.
The article follows here in the original French.
La crise - La tentation du pire
Ce qu’on appelle communément la crise est en fait la conjonction de plusieurs crises qui éclatent simultanément en plusieurs points du globe. Avec des économies largement mondialisées, les crises s’entretiennent mutuellement, ce qui rend leur règlement plus difficile. Mais il faut savoir sérier les problèmes. Les Etats-Unis sont confrontés à un réel problème d’équilibre de leurs finances publiques (ce qui n’est pas nouveau). Mais l’économie américaine a suffisamment de ressources et le dollar reste malgré tout suffisamment fort pour que les Etats-Unis s’en sortent sans trop de difficultés.
Le problème de la zone euro est beaucoup plus préoccupant. Les pays de la zone – l’Allemagne mise à part – sont asphyxiés par des déficits publics de plus en plus difficiles à combler du fait que leur économie est complètement anémiée par l’euro. On constatera d’ailleurs que la crise financière en Europe frappe presque exclusivement les pays de la zone euro. Personne ne parle de crise pour la Suisse, le Danemark, la Suède, la Norvège qui ont conservé leur monnaie nationale. Cette réalité met à nu le bobard de l’euro qui devait nous apporter la stabilité et la croissance.
Si la Grèce, l’Espagne, l’Italie et le Portugal n’étaient pas dans la zone euro, ils pourraient s’en sortir par une dévaluation qui leur permettrait de remettre leur économie à un niveau compétitif. Enfermés dans la zone euro, ils n’ont d’autres solutions que d’attendre une aide massive venant des autres pays de la zone. Mais cette aide fragilise les pays donateurs qui sont eux-mêmes fortement endettés ce qui est le cas de la France. La mutualisation des dettes au niveau européen que d’aucuns présentent comme le remède est en réalité la pire car elle ébranle l’ensemble. La faiblesse des uns devient la faiblesse de tous.
Pour empêcher cette fragilisation, les tenants de la cause européenne préconisent une politique de rigueur. Certes, il est souhaitable que les finances publiques soient en équilibre. Ce serait possible pour la France si elle mettait un terme au gaspillage insensé des deniers publics dilapidés par des opérations douteuses et des causes stupides. Mais la rigueur en soi n’est pas une solution car elle accroît des problèmes qui n’ont nullement besoin de l’être, en particulier celui du chômage.
Bref au lieu des interminables palabres, nous avons besoin aujourd’hui d’une politique de redressement national conduite avec vigueur. Le nouveau gouvernement qui a pris la direction des affaires au mois de juin en Finlande à la suite des dernières élections législatives a pris des mesures pour remettre en ordre les comptes publics. Le traitement des ministres a été réduit de 5%. Exemple à méditer.
On August 11, a new opinion poll was published in Iceland, produced by Capacent Gallup for Heimssýn, the Icelandic No movement. According to it 64,5 percent oppose joining the European Union while 35,5 per cent favour it, measuring only those who either said yes or no.
In a similar poll, produced by Capacent Gallup for Heimssýn in June 57,3 percent rejected EU membership while 42,7 percent favoured it. According to that opposition to joining the EU has increased this summer while support for membership has declined.
For more than two years every single opinion poll in Iceland has shown a vast majority of Icelanders opposed to EU membership.
64 percent of Norway’s voters would vote No to Norwegian EU membership, according to the latest Sentio poll from July. It is a slight decrease from the June record of 66,4 per cent.
Despite the fact that Iceland’s government has applied officially for EU membership, 57,3 per cent of the voters would vote NO in a referendum. 51 per cent would have the government retract the application for EU membership.
Tuesday 19 July 2011
“Apart from that, Mrs Lincoln, did you enjoy the play? “
“The member states whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole. The granting of any required financial assistance under the mechanism will be made subject to strict conditionality.”
The National Platform EU Research and Information Centre
24 Crawford Avenue
Support is below 50 %. What will happen with the EU referendum?
Despite of an increase of optimistic announcements about Croatia entering the European Union, more and more Croatians oppose the idea of Croatia joining the Union, according to an opinion poll made by CRO Demoskop.
The results of the monthly opinion poll on the political preferences of Croatian citizens regarding Croatia joining the EU show that even 40,3 % of the citizens oppose this idea.
All together 49,4 % give support to the EU membership which is an increase by 0,3 % compared to January 2011 (when there was a 49,1 % support). Nevertheless, comparing the actual results with those in February 2010, there is a decrease of the support to join the EU from 49,7 % to 49,4 %, while there is an increase by 1,45 % of those against an EU membership.
The figures of those who hadn’t made a decision yet concerning this topic, increased up to 10,2 %, compared to 10 % last month. What is surprising about the poll done this month is a change of opinions on both sides. Due to the strong media campaign some changed their mind in favour of EU membership, while others became sceptical as a result of several events during the negotiation process and therefore declared themselves as undecided, awaiting the results of the development in the next months (or years).
Romano Sole, “Volim Hrvatsku – Ne u EU”, Croatia
A public inquiry is needed into how the Irish people have been turned into indentured debtors of the EU, the European Central Bank and the IMF, as a result of joining the Eurozone
Irish people need to know this if they are ever to recover their economic prosperity,not to mind their democracy and politic independence.
They need to know who was ultimately responsible for the disastrous situation they now find ourselves in, trapped inside the Eurozone when they did not need to join it in the first place.
EU Member States outside the Eurozone like Britain, Denmark, Sweden, Poland and the Czech Republic are not caught up in the current torments of the Euro. They can weather the economic recession better because they have kept their national currencies and with it control of their rate of interest or exchange rate.
Most Irish economists, this organisation and several non-governmental groups warned at the time of Ireland´s 1992 Maastricht Treaty referendum that abolishing the Irish pound would be the biggest mistake the Irish State ever made. The second biggest mistake ? largely a consequence of the first - was the 2008 blanket Government guarantee of all the debts of Ireland´s private banks
The period 1993 to 2000 was the only period in the history of the Irish State when it followed an independent exchange rate policy and effectively floated the Irish currency. That gave it a highly competitive exchange rate and with it the ?Celtic Tiger? growth rates of over 7% a year.
It is impossible to have a lasting monetary union that is not also a fiscal union, part of one State, with common taxes and a common budget. However Ireland?s Euro-fanatics pushed the country into the Eurozone against all the economic arguments.
They were impelled by their zeal to help build an EU superstate led by Germany and France, without any national democratic control. Such a construct would inevitably lack the mutual identification and solidarity between its members which would sustain transfers from the rich countries to the poorer ones sufficient to compensate the latter for loss of their capacity to run independent budgetary policies or restore their economic competitiveness through currency devaluation.
It was profoundly irresponsible to abolish the Irish pound in order to join a monetary union with States with which Ireland did only one-third of its foreign trade, while simultaneously halving interest rates at the height of an economic boom. That made things ?boomier?, as Ireland´s then Prime Minister, Bertie Ahern put it. It set the country on the borrowing binge that followed, and the catastrophic course Ireland?s Government has since taken with its Banks.
It is the grand panjandrums of Irish Euro-fanaticism: Peter Sutherland of Goldman Sachs, Garret FitzGerald, Alan Dukes, Pat Cox, Brigid Laffan, Brendan Halligan, Ruairi Quinn and David Begg, who ultimately impelled the Republic of Ireland to surrender its political independence and democracy in the Eurozone.
As influential, although their names are unknown to the public, are the “career federalists” of Ireland’s Foreign Affairs Department in Iveagh House, Dublin, who form the policy and write the speeches of successive Foreign Ministers. They are keeping their heads down these days and are happy to let the country´s Department of Finance take the rap for its current economic debacle. However it is they more than any other element in Ireland’s civil service who have steered its ship of state on to the rocks. Cheering them on throughout have been uncritical elements in our media, above all in the editorial office of the Irish Times.
There is deep irony in the fact that their zeal for ever more EU integration has turned Ireland into a bomb inside the “infernal machine” of the Euro-currency, hastening its inevitable demise, and in the process possibly plunging much of the world into the second phase of a W-shaped recession.
Henceforth Irish voters will be more critical of what these people say when they enthuse for ever “more Europe”.
The National Platform EU Research and Information Centre
24 Crawford Avenue
On 1 January 2011, the Republic of Estonia will adopt the euro by abandoning its national currency, which has functioned successfully for 18 years. As the culmination of their “Save the Estonian Kroon” campaign, Estonia’s euro opponents will light candles across the country on december 31st in order to protest the liquidation of the Estonian kroon. The euro critics are also distributing their successful posters entitled, “Estonia! Welcome to the Titanic” and “Stop the Euro-rouble”. One poster depicts a sinking Titanic, with stacks emitting clouds of smoke that signify Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Spain.
Lawyer and historian Anti Poolamets, who is the leader of “Save the Estonian Kroon” campaign and designer of the poster, explains, “Estonia is like a passenger that got the last ticket for the Titanic. The party is continuing on the upper decks of the ship that was thought to be unsinkable, but the iceberg has already appeared on the horizon. Since the ship does not have sufficient watertight partitions and lifeboats, all the passengers will not be able to escape in case of a collision. I hope that Estonia will be among those that find a lifeboat.”
“Estonia has managed very well for 18 years with its national currency. The euro will not bring stability like the politicians have suggested. For years, Estonia has conducted a principled fiscal policy – do not live beyond your means. As a result our country has the lowest government debt in Europe – 7% of GDP. Bailout projects in the eurozone make Estonia’s no-debt policy absurd – Estonians will have to pay the bills of banking machinations in other countries” says Poolamets.
“I think that national currencies work better for the welfare of European countries because they better reflect the economic realities and differences therein. The “one-size-fits-all” ideology of the eurozone is more of a reflection of the dreams of the European bureaucracy for a federal Europe than based on economic reasons. When 23 non-elected officials at the European Central Bank Governing Council make uncontrollable decisions about the common interest rates of the eurozone countries with 330 million people, which can lead to the economic downfall of the member states – this is like the fulfillment of the dreams of the former Soviet hyper-centralist bureaucracy,” Poolamets believes.
Poolamets asks, “How can one trust a system where almost nobody follows their own rules that were set up by the Maastricht criteria and the Stability and Growth Pact?”
In October 2010, 1,524 people were surveyed by Estonia’s leading social and market research provider Saar Poll. In answer to the question, “Do you support the transition from the Estonian kroon to euro?” 53% of the respondents said no to euro, only 34% said yes, and 13% didn’t have an opinion. Little has changed in the last months, as only 25 percent of Estonians support their country’s adoption of the euro, a fresh survey (29.12.2010) by the Estonian Institute of Economic Research finds. The Estonian Institute of Economic Research is owned by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the country’s largest business association.
Press release sent by: Peeter Proos
Press officer of the “Save the Estonian kroon” campaign
Further information: Anti Poolamets
Phone: +372-56 91 43 74
About public opinion polls:
Saar Poll OÜ
The Estonian Institute of Economic Research
TEAM, the umbrella organization for 32 EU critical organizations from different parts of Europe can not understand the logic behind the Estonian Government´s decision to replace the Estonian Kroon with the Euro.
Estonia will switch to the Euro during the worst crisis in the history of the Euro - and by joining the euro without a referendum, the Estonian government is not only gambling with the Baltic nation´s economy and welfare but also with its democracy and right to self-determination.
Opinion polls have consistently shown that a majority of Estonians are not only against the Euro but also want a referendum on the issue. However, Estonia´s government has chosen not to follow the democratic example of its Nordic neighbour countries - Denmark and Sweden - who allowed their citizens to have a free and open vote and the final say on whether or not to join the euro.
Instead, the Estonian Government is following the example of those less democratic states in Europe that neglect the political will of the people and refuse to let them have a say on their own future destiny. The tragedy is that the Estonian Government is allowing itself to be used as a propaganda stunt to give credit to the Euro´s future.
The TEAM board believes that the 1st of January 2011 is a sad day not only for Estonia but for all of Europe. The voice of the people is a fundamental element of true democracy, and any power that suppressed the voice of its people does a disservice to all nations that have fought hard to promote and protect democracy.
For more information contact:
TEAM coordinator Patricia McKenna (Ireland) phone: 00353 87 2427049 and e-mail: email@example.com
Board member Lave K. Broch (Dennmark) phone 0045 2892 2127 and e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
By Søren Søndergaard, MEP for The Danish People’s Movement Against the EU
There is cause for anxiety as the Danish Government has already accepted the notion of the EU having new revenues from taxation.
The Government wants to use the Danish EU presidency during the first six months of 2012 to work for new EU taxes, it appears from a letter from Foreign Secretary Lene Espersen to Søren Søndergaard, MEP for the Danish People’s Movement Against the EU.
After having rejected direct EU taxation the foreign secretary’s letter says that Denmark will not reject ”the introduction of sources of income following from EU legislation”. And the letter ends with the following passage: ”As we are to hold the Presidency it will of course be our responsibility to further a compromise in the negotiations on the future financial perspectives, which will undoubtedly be very difficult, and in that connection we shall among other things have to consider various models for financing the EU budget.”
There is cause for anxiety as the Government has already accepted the notion of the EU having new revenues from taxation apart from what national parliaments approve. That will be yet another step towards making the EU system independent of the democratic decision making processes in the individual countries.
I shall urgently appeal to the Europe Committee of Folketinget, the Danish Parliament, to reject the Government’s plans for new taxes.
Søren Søndergaard, MEP, the Danish People’s Movement Against the EU
A copy of the letter (In Danish) from the Foreign Secretary to Søren Søndergaard can be order by e-mailing to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two polls made in July show an ever increasing majority against Norwegian EU membership.
The polls made by Sentio for newspapers Nationen and Klassekampen showed these figures (per cent) for June and July:
Only one party, Høyre (Cons.) can muster a small majority for Yes (47 per cent as against 44).
Source: Nationen 19.07.2010
According to another July poll, however, the Yes majority in Høyre has also vanished. The poll made by Nordstat for NRK (the public service TV and radio) only 42 per cent are positive, while 50 per cent are negative. This is the first time ever that Høyre is unable to muster a majority for EU membership among its members.
Source: Nationen 26.07.2010
Luise Hemmer Pihl, Team Board member
Polls in UK, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Estonia show a clear No to the Euro
21st of July 2010
In at least five EU countries there is a majority against the Euro. In referendums you can’t vote “unsure” – only Yes or No count. Therefore below “unsure” has been taken out of results.
In June 2010 polls have been carried out in Denmark, Sweden, Germany and Estonia all showing a clear No.
In Denmark, Danmarks Statistik made the poll for Danske Bank, showing that 56 per cent would vote No if there where a referendum today.
In Sweden, Statistiska centralbyrån SCB made it, showing that 68 per cent would vote No.
In Germany it was Ipsos who made it, showing that 63 per cent would vote No.
In Estonia, TNS Emor made it, showing that 56 per cent would vote No.
In the United Kingdom, the latest poll is from April 2010, made by YouGov, showed that 76 would vote No.
Out of these five EU countries only Germany has the Euro today. The German government has no intention of calling a referendum on the Euro. The EU has said finally Yes to admitting Estonia to the eurozone from January 2011, and the Estonian government has no intention of having any referendum. In Denmark, it is still the official goal of the government to call a referendum with the view of securing a Yes. The governments of the United Kingdom and Sweden have chosen the opposite position, shelving all plans of a referendum on this issue.
French think euro exacerbates crisis
So far we do not have any polls on Yes or No to the Euro from other EU countries. If anyone knows about recent polls, please send us a link about it to ib (at) folkebevaegelsen.dk. However we have found an interesting poll from France made in June 2010 by TNS Sofres for Europa 1, itélé and Le Monde. It shows that 68 per cent of the French think that euro will exacerbate the consequences of the crisis (read more in Le Figaro)
Source: Folkebevaegelsen mod EU, Denmark
Dear EU-critical organizations of TEAM
This is the first call for the TEAM AGM 2010, which will take place in Stockholm on May 7th-9th. Details will be forthcoming, but please reserve the weekend.
The year 2009 has been a dramatic one in the European Union, and after the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty there is more need for TEAM than ever.
The Yes to the Lisbon Treaty was a Pyrrhic victory for the EU elites. They gained the Lisbon Treaty but lost the hearts of the peoples because of the bullying that led to their victory.
With Lisbon the EU’s political centralization has reached new levels, making the struggle for democracy and true European cooperation more challenging than ever.
TEAM – our umbrella network of more than 40 EU-critical organizations in 18 countries – can challenge the new centralized EU. But only if the member organizations want to put it to use. And this is what the TEAM Board will aim to do. Four issues are high on the list of challenges to be met in the coming year:
If your organization wants to assist TEAM in this work or has ideas for the TEAM’s Action Program 2010, please send us an e-mail to TEAM coordinator Luise Hemmer Pihl, (e-mail email@example.com), or TEAM Secretary General (Blaž Babič, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org).
Do not hesitate, we are looking forward to hearing from you!
TEAM Board members
Luise Hemmer Pihl, Lea Launokari, Eli van den Eynden, Patricia McKenna, Alain Bournazel, Stuart Coster and Urs Schürch
From (Labour Movement) CAEF - Campaign against Euro-federalism (in Britain)
To our trade union colleagues in Greece. We express solidarity with the actions taken by trade unions in Greece against the draconian criteria of the EU’s Growth and Stability Pact, and the dictats of the European Central Bank.
It is clear that cuts in Public Expenditure are part of an EU wide onslaught by big capital, the European Round Table of Industrialists, European Commission and Germany in particular.
These interests want the working class to “tighten their belts” and pay for and resolve the ills of the fiscal and economic crisis. At the same time it is an attempt to hand everything to the private sector and remove democratic accountability without any regard for the social consequences.
It is clear that for Greece and other EU Member States, including Britain, in a similar situation that the only rational course is to fully recover the right to self-determination and national independence and democracy.
We wish you every strength in your actions in this crucial period.
CAEF is a member of TEAM
From 1 December you are a citizen of the European Union super-state. All of us in Britain will be ruled by a centralised Euro-federalist government in Brussels. Already four out of five laws emanate from Brussels rubber stamped by the elected government in Westminster. EU legislation is decided behind closed doors by unaccountable and unelected Commissioners -all done in conjunction with the various Councils of Ministers from the 27 Member States. They are now the Euro-federalist government who are responsible for and to the EU and no longer primarily to their national governments.
The Lisbon Treaty, or more properly the EU Constitution, has ditched the inter-governmental arrangements which have been in force since the Common Market was set up in 1957 and has turned the EU into a super-state. This qualitative change has been brought about by stealth over half a century and without changing the name European Union. Totally absent was any democratic procedure, agreement or consultation over the Lisbon Treaty by and amongst 500 million people across the 27 nation-states within the EU bar one, Ireland. The electorates of France and the Netherlands threw out the EU Constitution and then Ireland rejected the deliberately scrambled Lisbon Treaty. This rejection was unacceptable to the political elites so Ireland was according to Irish and EU law illegally made to vote again. Money without limit was poured in to the Yes! camp to set up unrelated arguments which were crafted to frighten and mislead the electorate. With the misinformation and saturated one sided media put before them they understandably voted for the Lisbon Treaty and sacrificed what national independence and democracy they still held and had literally fought for over the centuries.
No other member state was given the opportunity to fully discuss and voice opposition to the Lisbon Treaty. All three major political parties in Britain fell into line and reneged on promises to hold a referendum on Lisbon. The EU Constitution has been imposed from the top downwards and does not have any support from the will of the peoples across the EU. It is a serious blow to democracy and the right to self-determination of nation-states. In historical terms it undoes both the American and French revolutions.
All the EU’s institutions have been strengthened by the Treaty to consolidate this centralised government and the neo-liberal free market initiated by the Thatcher Government. Sixty new areas normally dealt with by national governments have passed to the centralised government. Not one area has been passed back down from Brussels to national capitals. An unelected EU President and de facto EU Foreign Secretary, misnamed High Representative, are part of this Union’s government.
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg is the supreme court of the EU which overrides the courts and Parliament in Britain. That includes the recently formed Supreme Court which sits in the Middlesex Guildhall in Parliament Square. The ECJ has made rulings on four important cases which affect the labour and trade union movements and all those who work for their living within the EU. The Viking, Laval, Ruffert and Luxembourg cases have sought to turn the clock back to the 19th Century by undermining trade union rights. This includes collective bargaining, using the free movement of labour around the EU to the detriment of wages, conditions and welfare protection. These impinge on the right to strike and other fundamental trade union and workers’ rights in what has been aptly coined the “race to the bottom”.* A major purpose of the ECJ is to see the objectives of the “free movement of capital, services, goods and labour” of the Single European Market are strictly adhered to. In other words to give big capital free reign and damn the social consequences. The EU Constitution has specified that capitalism shall be the economic system of the Union. This is contrary to every other constitution across the world and specifically blocks the right to legislate for socialist measures let alone a socialist economic system.
Big capital is no longer prepared to tolerate national democracy or be inhibited by the powers of the nation-state. The only institution in existence able to curb the ever growing transnational corporations and banks, and movement of big capital are the governments of nation-states. Just because we have elected governments who do not exercise that power but instead hang on to the coat tails and cow tow to big capital does not negate such powers. However, what does remove the powers of nation-states is the formation of the EU superstate where the real government, the Euro-federalist government, cannot be kicked out and policies and legislation is put in place.
We are all now both subjects in the monarchy of the United Kingdom and citizens of the EU super-state. We have responsibilities and duties to obey the laws and pay heed to all the EU institutions in addition to institutions in Britain. If we wish to resist this new arrangement then first we have to understand the qualitative change that has taken place without notice. Above all we have to understand this remains part of the class struggle between labour and big capital and that well tested and hard won rights have to be defended and used. The longer we dally the worse it will be to untangle this huge reactionary backward step which undermines all forms of democracy.
written by John Boyd, secretary of the CAEF (Campaign against Euro-federalism and editor of The Democrat.
The day when the Lisbon-Treaty enters into force:
A black day for Democracy in Europe
Statement by TEAM – The European Alliance of EU-critical Movements
(TEAM is an umbrella organization for 49 organizations from 18 European countries)
The undemocratic Treaty
On December 1st 2009 the Lisbon Treaty enters into force.
With the Lisbon Treaty the EU gets a President and a Minister of foreign Affairs (Articles 15 and 18).
In more than 50 areas powers are transferred from the member states to Brussels, and the Treaty states directly that EU-laws have precedence over national laws (Declaration 17).
The member states bind themselves to increase their military capacity permanently (Article 42,3), and the EU is recognized as a Legal Personality (Article 47).
On these and countless other areas the Lisbon Treaty is a huge step towards the United States of Europe, and undermines national sovereignty and the democratically elected national Parliaments of the individual member states.
The Alternative to this development is an extensive, open and democratic cooperation between sovereign states - in Europe and globally.
The undemocratic procedure
The procedure by which the Lisbon Treaty was finally carried through is as undemocratic as its content: The Lisbon Treaty is almost identical with the EU-Constitution that was rejected by the French and Dutch voters in 2005 – a fact emphasized by the former French President Giscard D´Estaing, the main architect behind the EU-Constitution. Ignoring the democratic decision of the French and Dutch voters, the renamed Constitution was signed by the EU-leaders in 2007, and then again rejected, now by the Irish voters, the Irish being the only people who were allowed a referendum this time. With yet another display of their arrogant contempt for Democracy, the EU-leaders forced the Irish to vote again, and only after a scare-mongering of unheard-of dimensions succeeded in obtaining a yes-majority. But the fact remains that the Lisbon Treaty has no democratic legitimacy whatsoever.
The undemocratic development
EU calls itself a “peace-project”; a postulate contradicted by the manifest demand for militarization in the Lisbon Treaty. EEC, the forerunner of the EU, was created in 1957 as a product and a part of the Cold War. In this situation it was accepted by the founding member countries that parts of their democratic rights were transferred to an unelected “High Authority”, outside democratic control. After the end of the Cold War in 1989 the EEC had the possibility to change this undemocratic structure and contribute to the establishment of a broad Europe-wide cooperation between sovereign states. But instead EEC went in the totally opposite direction: With the Maastricht Treaty in 1992 centralization took a huge leap forward and the EEC changed into the European Union. No wonder therefore that the Maastricht Treaty was rejected by the Danish voters.
Since then each new EU treaty has continued the development towards an ever more undemocratic and centralized Union – and the popular opposition has grown accordingly. EU has to use more and more undemocratic methods in order to continue its march towards a centralized and militarized United States of Europe. How long can this continue? What forms will the disregard for elementary democratic principles take next time?
TEAM works for Democracy
In this situation the debate about democratic alternatives to the present-day EU is more necessary than ever. TEAM is a network of democratic organizations from 18 European countries. With information, cooperation among our popular organizations and with visions, TEAM will further this vital debate. And expose the shortcomings of the EU. We shall continue to fight for the survival of democracy in Europe in spite of the set-back that it suffers on December 1st 2009.
For further information please contact:
TEAM Coordinator Mrs. Luise Hemmer Pihl, email@example.com or
TEAM Secretary General Mr. Blaž Babič, firstname.lastname@example.org
Le blog d’Alain Bournazel
En quelques jours le paysage européen vient de subir une transformation brutale. Elle ne procède pas d’un miracle mais de la prise de conscience d’une réalité que l’on avait cherché à cacher.
Depuis des années, les responsables politiques de tous bords, droite et gauche confondues, de Paris, de Berlin, de Bruxelles et d’ailleurs serinent les peuples que l’Union européenne doit être dotée d’institutions lui permettant de fonctionner efficacement. Tous les moyens ont été utilisés pour imposer ces institutions : projet de Constitution Giscard, rebaptisée mini-traité par Nicolas Sarkozy, propagande à outrance, dérogations accordées (en parfaite violation du droit des traités) à la Pologne, l’Irlande, au Royaume-Uni, à la République Tchèque, etc., suffrage universel bafoué aux Pays-Bas et en France. Et que constatons-nous, après ce laborieux parcours ? Ces nouvelles institutions imposées plus qu’adoptées, subies plus qu’acceptées, non seulement n’apportent aucune simplification au fonctionnement de l’Union mais compliquent encore une machinerie d’une effroyable complexité.
Comme l’ont noté les observateurs politiques, en désignant comme président du conseil européen, M. Van Rompuy, Premier ministre d’une Belgique en voie de désintégration et la baronne travailliste, Catherine Ashton comme Haut représentant pour les Affaires étrangères, les chefs d’Etat et de gouvernement ont choisi des personnages qui ne leur feraient pas d’ombre. D’une certaine manière, ils reconnaissent que le pouvoir légitime est celui qui émane des Etats. C’est d’ailleurs ce que nous pensons. Mais on peut s’interroger sur les raisons qui ont poussé les dirigeants européens à mettre en place un système qui aujourd’hui les effraie. Constatons simplement – une fois de plus – que les plus belles sottises viennent souvent des gens intelligents et instruits.
Sottise institutionnelle certes, mais également lourde charge financière. M. Van Rompuy va recevoir à compter du 1er décembre 22.000€ nets par mois. Il aura droit à 22 collaborateurs permanents et à 10 agents de sécurité. Mme Ashton bénéficiera de 275.000 euros par an. Un service de 5000 personne est en cours de constitution pour assurer la représentation de l’Union dans tous les pays du monde, représentation qui doublera celle des Etats membres.
A Bruxelles comme à Paris, on dilapide les deniers publics, alors que la pauvreté progresse dans tous les pays européens.
With the EU’s drive for power over our democracy and everyday life continuing unabated the Bruges Group held this conference to oppose the surrendering of our freedoms to Brussels.
Speakers: Peter Davies, Christopher Booker, Richard Conquest, Professor Kenneth Minogue, Bruno Waterfield, John Mills, Ian Milne, Gerard Batten MEP, Dr Lee Rotherham.
DEMOCRACY MOVEMENT PRESS RELEASE
OCTOBER 22 2009
WHO ARE THE REAL AUTHORITARIANS TODAY IN EUROPE, MR MILIBAND?
Foreign Secretary and opponents of a Lisbon Referendum accused of being the new, real authoritarians in British and European politics. As the imposition of ‘President Blair’ becomes ever more likely, David Miliband is challenged to debate in public ‘anti-democratic politics in the EU today’.
David Miliband, the foreign secretary, has launched a typically New Labour, McCarthyite attack on the Conservative party for teaming up with some east European political parties in the European parliament who are alleged to hold anti-semitic, homophobic and ‘neo-Nazi’ views. However, since the European Parliament is clearly not where significant power lies in Brussels, the decision of the Tories to team up with East European centre-right parties is of little legislative consequence, regardless of whether or not the claims made against their new allies have been spun in some typically New Labour way by the foreign secretary.
New Labour, throughout its Peter Mandelson-orchestrated history, has frequently employed a McCarthyite ‘xenophobes under the bed’ tactic against political opponents - whether of the traditional left or right - in order to distract attention from the actual substance of the inconvenient political position or claim being advanced. The foreign secretary in making the attacks he has is merely continuing a long, disreputable tradition, characterised in relation to the European issue principally by former Europe minister Denis MacShane. David Miliband’s intention now is to draw attention away from his government’s anti-democratic breaking of its promise at the 2005 general election to let the British people vote on the Lisbon treaty (the cynically re-named European Constitution rejected by a large majority of French and Dutch voters in 2005). Nor does he want us to focus on the fundamentally undemocratic nature of the system of EU governance that citizens from all the member countries are being increasingly placed under the control of without their consent.
Since Mr Miliband has attempted to create this McCarthyite smokescreen, he should perhaps reflect that, as Dr Laughland’s book The Tainted Source: The undemocratic origins of the European idea (Little Brown & Company, 2000) demonstrates, the original project of creating a Pan-European political system was actually enthusiastically supported by fascist movements. The National Alliance in Italy, the successors to Mussolini’s party and partners in the Berlusconi coalition government, are firm supporters of greater European political union today. The British fascist leader, Oswald Mosley, campaigned post-war on the slogan of ‘Europe a nation’. The original plans for a single currency were drawn up by the Nazis. Former French presidents and drivers for European centralisation, Francois Mitterand, Giscard d’Estaing and Jacques Delors were all active for the Vichy government in various capacities. Mitterand even received the Francisc medal from Marshall Petain for his service to the fascist regime. Robert Schuman, one of the EU’s founding fathers, voted as a member of the French national assembly to give Petain dictatorial power, and then went on to serve as a Vichy minister. Paul-Henri Spaak, whose Spaak report laid the foundations for the creation of the European community, had been a member of the Belgium Nazi party. Fascists were attracted to the idea of a politically unified and regulated continent with a non-elected elite at its heart.
The Democracy Movement believes that the peoples of Europe today are confronted by a new and dangerous post-democratic elitism - Euro-Authoritarianism - of which New Labour and David Miliband are classic manifestations. Euro-Authoritarianism is self-evidently more subtle than Twentieth Century fascism, and it is not motivated by anti-semitism and racism. The Euro-Authoritarians do not seek to end multi-party elections, but rather to greatly restrict the parameters within which electorates can make meaningful collective choices by transferring ever more law-powers to appointed, non-accountable institutions in Brussels. The new Euro-Authoritarians are driven by a post-modernist, Third Way ideology. This represents a direct threat to the liberal, anti-colonialist legacy of the European Enlightenment and the idea that sovereignty should reside with national communities of people rather than unaccountable elites.
Mr Miliband and his associates in New Labour today are working to create a political system based in Brussels that does not accord with the rule of law and can by-pass parliamentary and public accountability. The Euro-Authoritarians fear the concept of popular democracy, hence their hysterical denunciations of the idea that voters should be allowed to directly determine important issues.
The New Euro-Authoritarians support…
…preventing the peoples of the EU member states having a direct democratic say regarding whether or not new law-making powers should be centralised in Brussels. When the French and Dutch voters overwhelmingly rejected the Lisbon treaty (then named the European Constitution) their wishes were ignored. When the Irish rejected both the Nice and Lisbon treaties they were forced to vote again within a year in rigged referenda so that these treaties could be forced through.
…the centralisation of more law-making powers in Brussels. Once directives are passed, no national elected government or parliament can opt to reject or reverse them as the unelected Commission retains the monopoly right to initiate new legislation. Because of the volume of laws emanating from Brussels, most of the measures are passed in Britain through the use of statutory instruments. MPs do not even get the chance to debate them, let alone vote to block them.
…the introduction of a raft of measures designed to increase state surveillance and control. Lisbon will lead to the creation of the Committee on Internal Security (COSI) which will share DNA, fingerprint, CCTV footage and internet surveillance material between security organisations. In May, the EU Data Retention Directive was passed. This enables state agencies to find out what all citizens - not just those suspected of committing criminal offences - have been downloading and who they have been contacting electronically. The Commission is already funding Project Indect which is a mass surveillance project dedicated to identifying “abnormal behaviour” through CCTV footage and a “continuous monitoring of websites, discussion forums, usernet groups… and individual computer systems”. The EU now has an embryonic police force, Europol, whose officers, like senior EU officials, enjoy, revealingly, immunity from prosecution in member states (Statutory Instrument 1997 No.2973). This body will gain powers of “implementation”of operational powers within the member states as a consequence of Lisbon. EU citizens can now under the European Arrest Warrant be deported automatically to another member country without any hard evidence having been provided by prosecuting authorities. The Commission has been for many years financing various projects designed to result in the introduction of ID cards, though their formal implementation is still a matter of national law.
…the current undemocratic structure of the EU. In addition to the unelected Commission’s monopoly right to introduce new legislation, the Council of Ministers meets in secret and votes are not recorded. In reality, the vast majority of its decisions are taken by civil servants representing the ministers from the member states in COREPER. European voters cannot hold these bodies collectively responsible through the ballot box. The executive and the key legislative body, therefore, are beyond democratic account. It is illegal under article 108 of the current treaty for elected representatives from the member states to in any way try to influence the deliberations of the European Central Bank. Under Lisbon, the political leaders, meeting behind closed doors in the European Council, will be able to appoint a full-time president and foreign minister to represent the Union on the World stage.
… an elitist, corporatist system of politics. The mindset of the EU political class is to concentrate power in the hands of elite bodies representing big business and the major trades unions. Hence, the Committee of the Social Partners which affords elite access to the European Round Table of Industrialists. The EU model of corporatist politics cuts out ordinary voters and gives a massive advantage to lobbyists from big financial interests, as was seen in the decision to outlaw 300 alternative health treatments following extensive lobbying by Pfizer, Boots and other big companies. Democracy Movement director Stuart Coster has written to the foreign secretary to challenge him to publicly debate the question of ‘anti-democratic politics in the EU today’ in the wake of Mr Miliband’s accusations that William Hague and the Tory party have consorted with ‘neo-Nazis’. In addition to discussing this question, Stuart Coster wants to investigate to what extent Mr Miliband’s government is helping to advance a fundamentally illiberal, non-democratic politics through its adherence to the Euro-Authoritarian characteristics identified above.
Stuart Coster comments: “New Labour have shown themselves to be notoriously cowardly in terms of openly debating the EU issue, as well as virtually every other issue. They prefer, as good authoritarians, to speak only at controlled, all-ticket party events with no or only planted questions from the floor. Hopefully, Mr Miliband will take me and a lot of other people hugely by surprise and agree to debate Dr Laughland. I gather the foreign secretary claims to be an intellectual so it might just be that he will relish the opportunity to justify, in a contested environment, his European political stance and his recent comments”.
CONTACT: Stuart Coster 020 7603 7796 email@example.com