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Lisbon Treaty: Three Strikes, You’re Out

category international | eu | feature author Wednesday August 12, 2009 19:37author by Harry Van Bommel - Dutch Socialist Party Report this post to the editors

An Article Written Especially for Indymedia.ie by Harry Van Bommel, European Affairs Spokesman of the Dutch Socialist Party

featured image
Harry Van Bommel

In 2005 the Dutch people overwhelmingly said ‘no’ to the constitutional treaty, just as the French had done some days before. In contrast to the Irish, this was the first time the Dutch people had been allowed a say about the future of Europe; and they made it clear that they didn’t like the way it was heading. Did they want to get out of the EU? No - the Dutch are big supporters of EU membership, just like the Irish, but they don’t want Europe to develop into a federal superstate.

Instead of changing the EU’s direction, our government [the Dutch government] insisted on changing the appearance of the treaty, which was blamed for the ‘misunderstanding’ by the Dutch people. All the governments of the European Union’s member states pitched in to offer to help the Dutch and others to avoid new referenda. Our government took the unilateral decision that no new referendum was needed, because now, stripped of its symbols and re-baptised as the ‘Lisbon Treaty’, the treaty was no longer deemed ‘constitutional’. My own parliamentary initiative for a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty was stranded by a blockade of the governing coalition parties.

Luckily the Irish constitution is better at protecting its citizens against the giving away of their country’s sovereign power by its politicians than is ours, in that it makes a referendum on the treaty obligatory. Sovereignty is not something to be given and taken away by politicians, but belongs to the people. Even the recent ruling of the German Federal Supreme Court forces the German Government to make arrangements to secure the power of the country’s parliament against the changes made by the Lisbon Treaty. As it rightly states, the European Parliament is no substitute for the national parliaments, which are the primary representatives of their people. Handing the European Parliament more powers is no excuse for taking them away from national parliaments.

But the EU doesn’t take ‘no’ for an answer - not from the French, not from the Dutch and not from the Irish. So, after you wisely said ‘no’ to the treaty, a new scam was organised. On all the justifiable worries of the Irish people - on the threat of a European influence on taxation, abortion law, social provision, and neutrality in time of war, texts have now been produced which say bluntly that the Irish people should not worry and were wrong all the time. When I asked our prime minister what these guarantees would change in the Lisbon Treaty, his reply was that the Irish government had agreed that "all guarantees would be in keeping with the Lisbon Treaty." The demand from other member states was, in so many words, "no special status for Ireland when it comes to the question of neutrality." But how can Ireland be neutral while at the same time troops operate abroad under an EU flag and therefore also in the name of Ireland, a practice that will increase should the Lisbon Treaty be adopted?

To win over the Irish people, the European Commission has also launched this year a multimillion dollar ‘information’ campaign. This is nothing but one-sided propaganda at the expense of the taxpayer.

So again the Irish people may vote - on exactly the same treaty. On the last occasion the Irish people voted in the name of all other European peoples, including the Dutch, who were deemed by their own politicians unfit to judge the treaty. Now, the Irish may not only vote on the Lisbon Treaty a.k.a. the Constitutional Treaty, but also have the chance to send a message to all the European leaders: that power belongs to the people, and when they say ‘no’ it means ‘no’. After the rejection of the treaty by the French and Dutch, and last year by the Irish people, this third time I have trust that the Irish will say, in relation to the Lisbon Treaty: three strikes - you’re out.

Related Link: http://international.sp.nl/
author by pasapublication date Wed Aug 12, 2009 15:06author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Very well written.
Makes you think what the fate of Lisbon would be, had it been put to a referendum is a few other countries.
----
www.talktoeu.ie

author by Quintpublication date Wed Aug 12, 2009 23:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

1970's film reference

lisbon_referendum.jpg

author by Edward Horgan - Shannonwatch, PANApublication date Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:48author email edward_horgan at hotmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Shannonwatch.org has now established that at least 1082 aircraft associated with the US military were refuelled at Shannon airport over the 12 month period from 1 Aug 08 to 31 July 09. This includes US airforce and Navy warplanes and chartered aircraft carrying US troops. In addition we have flight logs of over 6,000 aircraft associated with the US military that passed through Irish airspace. The total number of such overflights is likely to be over 10,000 over this 12 month period.

This figures give the lie to any pretence that Irish neutrality will be protected by so-called legally binding guarantees claimed to have been negotiated by the Irish Government as a carrot to get the Irish people. This is a rotten carrot if there ever was one. The Irish Government, and by default the Irish people have been complicit in the deaths of over one millin people in Iraq and Afghansitan, including about 250,000 children, by inviting and allowing over one million US troops and large amounts of munitions and other war materials to pass through Shannon airport over the past 7 years. But this is not just a matter of history. This abuse of Irish neutrality is ongoing every day. At least 500 US armed troops pass through Shannon each day, and an unknow quantity of munitions are also passing through Shannon on US warplanes and chartered cargo airlines such as Murray Air and Evergreen International.

We urge all peace activists to come to Shannon airport over the weekend 5/6 September and as often as possible thereafter until 5 October to establish temporary peace camps to highlight this ongoing abuse of Irish neutrality and abuse of international law that is happening at Shannon, and to reinforce the link between US military abuse of Shannon and the false Government claims that Lisbon will protect Irish neutrality.
For additional information please see www.pana.ie, and www.iawm.ie

Related Link: http://www.shannonwatch.org
author by Joanpublication date Sat Aug 15, 2009 20:34author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Last year in a polling centre in North Dublin twelve ballot boxes were loaded up for dispatch at the end of voting.

When a young man who was with the People's Movement and was in the centre, returned from using the lavatory, there was an additional ballot box in the mix, making it thirteen boxes. The young man asked the garda on duty as to where the extra ballot box came from and pointed out that there was only 12 boxes and not 13. The Garda told the man to "mind your own f.....g business, if you know what's good for you".

That is a cold fact passed on by a very undramatic Labour Party supporter.

International Monitiors for the vote this year ?

author by NoAgain - The A nti-Organisationpublication date Sun Aug 16, 2009 08:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Lisbon Treaty is an administrative and legal text that has absolutely not a single proposal to help Ireland, or any other E.U. State in the current Depression environment of cuts, levies, mass unemplotyment and the widespread desperation of the newly impoverished and dispossessed.

The Lisbon Treaty does not offer one single word of hope, of aid, of assistance, help or planning against the current Recession.

If anything it could be viewed as the biggest Red Herring of all in the midst of this Recession. It does nothing for anybody anywhere in Europe, least of all for Ireland, for us it offers no hope at all.

It is an outmoded and outdated relic, it is useless, in all its convoluted language not offering a single solution to the current Recession, despite the claims of our major political parties it offers nothing to Ireland, nothing to any other country either, it is not relevant to our times.

As such it should be dismissed for the charade that it is .

The Lisbon Treaty is a waste of space, time, energy and money, as such it must be massively rejected as a message to the E.U. to get their fingers out and do something real against the current Recession.

author by FictionFighterpublication date Tue Aug 18, 2009 12:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

That's simply not true.

The French and Dutch peoples elected political parties to government that had the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty as one of the major policies of their manifestos.

Thus giving their newly elected governments enormous mandates to ratify the Lisbon Treaty.

Regardless,

This is about what we think of the Lisbon Treaty, not what the other European member states who have ratified the treaty in their own fashion (through referenda, through their Supreme Courts, through electing representatives to do so on their behalf etc.) think of the Treaty.

Vote No to keep the rules of Nice and to loose our commissioner at the end of the current term (2009).

Vote Yes to make the EU more transparent, democratic and representative and to keep our Commissioner.

author by Idiocracypublication date Tue Aug 18, 2009 15:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You know very well that 60% of the population are pretty stupid and self centred. They probably don't have the attention span to follow a complex argument and are easily swayed by soundbites. They don't cross reference the lies they are fed by the MSM with several other sources on the internet. (they probably don't know how!).. We don't trust these people to drive a car without passing a test. We don't consider them capable of having sex until they are 18.(although we consider them ready to join the army and die at 16, but I digress), or viewing a porno movie / violent movie / video game, without going out and trying to act out what they see in fantasy on real people. We consider them too sensitive to see real blood and gore in news footage.

One of the great joys of democracy is that these same people are allowed to vote freely on complex issues they will never understand with long term consequences for their freedom and the control of their society and natural resources and which may indirectly lead to the deaths of lots of people they will never meet. These are people I personally wouldn't trust to sit the right way up on a toilet, (but thats just loveable 'ole me!) So much for democracy. All that is required to sway public opinion and get your way is to control the media and find that one soundbite that wins over the brain of the idiot. It's all about selling things to idiots.

Right now, I'm afraid the sheeple are frightened and confused by the "economic crisis" (ha!) and will vote the way their masters and the MSM tell them to this time. It's got nothing to do with rational debate on the issues.The current polls bear me out on this.

Alas, I guarantee you it will be a yes this time.

author by Ocean waves Lisbon - No to Lisbonpublication date Tue Aug 18, 2009 17:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Excellent site ... As the Lisbon Treaty Vote approaches we need a distillation of the facts and numbers. We need to inter-relate with our European counterparts who are saying NO to the Treaty and look to the reasons they put forward.

I was alarmed to hear Joe Higgins comment on the 1 p.m. news today - RTE FM1. Could it be so that the Broadcasting Authority has agreed that it is not its intention to give equal distribution of air-time to the Yes and No sides? Where is the democratic representation or does this in effect prove the democratic deficit?

Lisbon and the vote is our last chance. The last referendum, the vote was NO. This time round, it is hoped that people will be persuaded by way of apathy and humility combined to vote FOR LISBON.

Before we commit, let us be informed. The EU office is opened daily in Nassau Street. All facilities are available and there is a myriad of literature covering all aspects of agriculture, ocean and seas, science, demographics, social sciences etc. and even brochures for young family members. There is no excuse for the people of Ireland to be ignorant in relation to this vote. We are after all moving into the Knowledge economy as projected in the 3 Pillars component of the EU criteria.

Ocean waves Lisbon (EU brochure on Ocean states that GDP 40% for EU is derived from the sea).

author by Cassandrapublication date Tue Aug 18, 2009 18:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thats just cover for letting all our manufacturing, fisheries and agriculture go to shit and selling off our natural resources. This country is not equipped to compete with places like india or china or korea in information technology. All that lies in our future is being a source of cheap labour in a few years when we wake up and realise thanks to an idiot government and globalisation and the liberalisation of our financial institutions, we are now 2 paychecks away from the street and meanwhile we allowed them to eviscerate our social programs to pay off the banks and speculators so we no longer have a safety net.We'll all be a little more flexible about our paychecks then.

You see we watched this process in third world countries from afar for years but we always thought "it could never happen to us". Wrong!. We're just a bunch of stupid paddies who were running a convenient us tax scam and a property bubble and thinking we were playing in the big league. The laughing stock of europe. The sooner we cop on and start producing real tangible things like food for our own people and start supporting local industry and kicking out the big supermarkets and replacing them with local co-ops the better. Otherwise it's going to get really ugly. You can't eat bullshit and thats all politicians and our sad version of the knowledge economy is producing right now. And emigration is no longer an option like before.

Have you met any Irish students lately? All they want to do is get pissed. Kids work 14 hours a day in india and korea.Thats what globalisation and the race to the bottom means. Basket cases like Ireland cannot currently go toe to toe with this kind of single mindedness. We don't have the mindset. Perhaps the hunger will do it for us in a few years. Thats what did it for some of these other countries. Lean and mean. We're still too fat and stupid to smell the coffee.

Knowledge economy my hole!

author by Miriampublication date Wed Sep 02, 2009 15:37author email polgara01 at gmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

I would like to take this opportunity to be the first to say i have NO IDEA what way to vote. And to be honest, I don’t know what im voting for....

Ireland is a TINY country, that, with the help of the European Union has come on leaps and bounds, our roads were paid with by the EU for example. Now in reversionary times, the Celtic tiger well and truly dead, do we really shoot ourselves in the foot and tell the EU to stick their treaty where the sun doesn’t shine?

A couple of questions come to mind instantly when the Treaty comes to mind.

Is Europe trying to be another America? If so, wouldn’t that mean Ireland and a lot of other small countries may as well be Alabama in America (or Tibet in China) trying to get their voices heard.

Why can’t we get information instead of scare mongering from ether campaign?

And most of all, and most importantly what does the rest of Europe actually want us to do?

and, Who gave Brian Cowen, a man NEVER elected to his position, authority to persue this in the first place?

author by No voterpublication date Wed Sep 02, 2009 15:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We had a referendum to decide this last year. If you needed a reason to vote against this thing, ask yourself if we have had a second referendum if we'd voted Yes to it last year.

The contempt that the establishment shows to the views of the people is enough for me to vote No again.

author by Jakepublication date Thu Sep 03, 2009 19:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The vast majority of the people of Europe will NEVER forgive the Republic of Ireland if our voters vote in favour of the Lisbon Treaty (or "The Bullies Charter" as some see it).

We are the ONLY hope left now for saving genuine democracy: for ourselves, for the people of Europe, and for the rest of the world.

Tell the BULLIES where to go: and vote NO on election day.

Not content with the almighty financial mess they've already got us all into, they now want to take us much deeper into the shit with all their additional and unwanted advice and guidance on how we should vote on October 2nd -- as if we didn't have any minds of our own, and as if we cannot see through all their greed-ridden and self-centred lies.

Just who exactly I wonder do the arrogant and ignorant bastards who are dishing out all this advice, often carried on the back of completely fraudulent threats, think they are exactly?

Fuck them!!

author by rjppublication date Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

All this talk about neutrality. Why not admit it's gone, it was never anything to be proud of anyway and the fact that we are participating in NATO led missions reinforces the fact that we should join NATO, which we should have done years ago.

Anyway, good luck with your campiagning but I'll be voting a YES myself.

author by ConcernedGermanpublication date Sat Sep 05, 2009 20:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

According to Karl Albrecht Schachtschneider the Lisbon Treaty allows governments to put down riots by executing protesters.
There are several premises that need to be fulfilled before any protester can be shot. But to be honest - a man like Tony Blair is going to be the first president of the EU. A man who lied to the public about the true reasons for invading Iraq. A man who sentenced thousands of soldiers and Iraqis to death.
Who else believes these kind of men would dare to raise their hand against their "own people"? They would find more lies to justify anything.
Don't vote for the Lisbon Treaty.
Vote NO!

You Irish have the power to stop the madmen that rule our world.

author by Fame97 - Fame97publication date Sun Sep 06, 2009 18:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The United Nations, powerless as it is, issued a commentary on the G20 summit recently. Reading the article I came across a word they had had to invent, that word is "Kleptocrat" the origin of which is Greek, "Kleptos" meaning thief, and "cratos" meaning power. The word is used to describe, generally, those people in positions of immunity from inquiry, who abuse their positions to raid the rest of us, ie the massive bank bonuses to the MPs fraudulent claims etc. So the logical progression from "Kleptocrat" is "Kleptocracy" or government by thieves! Now if the UN can see what is going on why the hell don't they do something about it? We have been pointing the way for over 30 years and have been expecting the financial crash to come earlier than it did, but Gordon Brown sold off all the gold reserves to stave it off for as long as possible. The Bernie Madoff affair is not such a new con, back in the late 1960s a similar scheme was doing the rounds run by another "Bernie", Bernie Caulfield and it was called Overseas Investment Services or OIS. That too came out of America!
One thing for sure, those greedy pillocks don't have the nouse or the money to put right what they started a long time ago. atb fame97

Related Link: http://www.nireland.com/fame97
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