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Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty

by : Declan Ganley
Saturday February 9, 2008 - 22:12
10 comments

Declan Ganley writes in The Irish Daily Mail’s Saturday Essay on why Ireland must reject The Lisbon Treaty.

On this past Thursday morning at 11 am Irish time, a group of 27 European political leaders signed their names to the Treaty of Lisbon. As they wielded their pens, further empowering an unaccountable Brussels elite, one has to wonder if any of them felt the weight of betrayal of the citizens they were supposed to be representing. When was it that the 27 lost their belief in the morality and principle of democracy? Only days before the signing, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said that if the people of Europe had their say on this treaty it would fail. Spanish foreign minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said there was an “unwritten agreement” among EU leaders not to have any further referenda on the EU because public consultation was being used as “a political instrument against the EU”. At least Gordon Brown had the decency to hide away in shame as he signed the Treaty on his own separately from everyone else. When was it that these people forgot precisely who they work for? When was it that they decided to ride roughshod over the will of the people, producing Thursday morning’s debacle of legislative arrogance in the signing of the Treaty?

So what is in this Treaty that is so objectionable?

It grants extensive powers to Brussels with no real means of holding accountable those taking over the power. Under this Treaty, Brussels will have extensive power over the following key areas Irish life. In some of these they are even granted exclusive control and in others they will have the ability to write Irish legislation. The list, which is not exhaustive, includes commercial policy, monetary policy, foreign policy, defence policy, education, youth, health, industry, culture, tourism, research, technology, energy, transport, environment, agriculture, fisheries, discrimination, some areas of taxation, data protection, employment, customs, sport, immigration, security and justice, media and other areas. In fact, it is hard to think of any major function of a state which the new European Union would not have power over if the Lisbon Treaty is ratified. When one takes the considerable time required to actually read the Treaty and see in black and white the power it surrenders to a democratically unaccountable Brussels, one is left with a sense of disbelief. It is a fact that if anybody takes the time to read the Treaty, they will not need any advice on which way to vote – it will become abundantly clear.

Additionally, the treaty creates a President of Europe with the power to represent the European Union on the global stage. It will also create a Minister “High Representative for Foreign, Security and Defence Policy”, again with the power to represent the Union (that’s you and me) on the international stage. The President has the power to sack EU commissioners. He or she will be much more than a figurehead. The powers they are granted – democratically unaccountable as they are – are unarguably dangerous. In point of fact, the citizens of Ireland and of Europe will never have the ability to vote for or against this President or his or her Cabinet. This subjugates the states to an unelected elite in a way that betrays the very principles upon which the European Union was founded and the historic roots of European civilisation which brought forth democracy, faith and reason to the world.

Former President of Germany, Roman Herzog put it well this March when he said “People have an ever-increasing feeling that something is going wrong; that an untransparent, complex, mammoth institution has evolved: divorced from practical problems and national traditions; grabbing ever greater competences and areas of power; that the democratic control mechanisms are failing – in brief, that it cannot go on like this.” If this treaty is passed and once the people of Ireland come to realise what is in it, trust in EU may be irrevocably undermined – there would be a destruction of trust in the European project.

Earlier this week, Charlie McCreevy said that if we say no to the Treaty, Ireland will be the “laughing stock of Europe”. Perhaps he is confusing the Europe of the gilded unaccountable Brussels elite with the 500 million citizens of Europe who are being given no say in this matter and, if they were, would reject this treaty out of hand. I say to Mr. McCreevy, if Ireland says no, the Brussels elite will be the laughing stock of the half billion people of Europe who, along with the Irish people, have had enough of their arrogance and contempt for democracy.

If Ireland said yes (and we probably won’t) then we would end up being the laughing stock of history but no Irish man or woman of conviction will be bullied into subjugation to unaccountable leaders who only seek to increase their power to our detriment. We must break the cycle of anti-democratic unaccountability at the heart of Europe because democracy is the oxygen that liberty and law need to survive and only a fully democratic Europe can ensure true freedom. That is why if we believe in the European Union and have self-respect as Irish citizens, we owe it to ourselves and Europe to save half a billion people from this cynical power grab. This unaccountable elite is drunk on power and now they are asking us to hand over the master key to the brewery while saying “just trust us, we’re reforming” all the while displaying the signs of increasing intoxication.

As this Treaty debate progresses here in Ireland and as Brussels’ Yes men here in Ireland start to see the prospects of letting a yes vote slip away, they will resort to calling those of us on the other side of the debate “anti-European”. Libertas www.Libertas.org will be pointing out that the Yes men are the anti-Europeans. They are acting against the will of the people, if they were not anti-European they would have had the decency to hold referenda across Europe rather than insinuate that the people are too simple to understand. We understand very well the feathering of Brussels nests that this Treaty calls for, that is why this Treaty won’t be able to stand the light of day, that’s why only Ireland is having a referendum and this is only because the drafters of our own constitution were familiar with the unending greed of those who would assert power over the will of the people.

Now we need to talk about the blank cheque that Bertie Ahern signed when he put his pen to the Treaty on Thursday morning. Hidden within the Treaty is Article 48. You’ll be hearing more about Article 48 because this is where the Treaty makes itself self-amending. That is to say, it can be changed significantly without further need for referenda. When I challenged Minister of State, Dick Roche on this point in a debate on Thursday morning, he waffled implying that this was not the case. Unfortunately for Dick Roche, the Spanish foreign minister spilled the beans when he let it slip that there is an unwritten agreement among EU leaders not to have any further referenda.

Let’s be under no illusion: only a united Europe can have a say in history and in its own future. The solidarity of the people of Europe is paramount to the future success of the EU and that solidarity can only be nurtured and re-enforced by real democratic accountability. A vote against this treaty is a vote for Europe and for Ireland. Not for the first time in history is Ireland being called upon to save European civilisation. During the dark ages, the values and principles of Europe were re-ignited by Irish missionaries across the continent. The Court of Charlemagne relied on the courage and intellect of Irish thinkers to rebuild Europe out of the disintegration of the Roman Empire. With this Treaty, Ireland is once again thrust into the driving seat of history. We are the only thing standing between this unaccountable Brussels elite and the power they crave. Half a billion people who are being ignored by their leaders are gazing west to this island of hope. This is where we will make a stand. This noble island, this ancient people, we who have always had the courage to stand up for what is right. Let’s bury this power-grabbing treaty in the spot marked X on the ballot and hand Europe back to its citizens for Europe’s people to decide Europe’s vision and how Europe can lead the world to a place worth going to.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk



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Commentaires de l'article
 

Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Thursday February 28 - 17:13 - Posted by Kuytrider - 7c74e4e23b02fe11...

A brilliant, thought provoking argument. I already knew of the dangers this treaty possessed, and will be voting against it. Well done Declan!




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Saturday April 26 - 20:52 - Posted by keith - ab6e586ab63dc1cb...

Great article Declan. If only the majority of the ’don’t know’ brigade were able to have access to this, it would make minds up. I’m doing my best to convince all my family and friends to vote NO.




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Monday May 5 - 17:19 - Posted by Jupiter - 177670417bdb45e5...

Thankyou Declan,

Wonderful passionate and clear.

Being a true European with family members,who speak several

languages and live in 4 different countries ,but who love Ireland best

because she has a courage to stand for the higher principle against

the moral bullywho thinks we are sheep.

I urge her to vote NO and again NO to LISBON.




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Tuesday July 22 - 08:01 - Posted by Atholl Rushforth - a5305335434a1833...

I so delighted to see that Ireland is taking a stand not only for the Irish people but for those of us that never had the opportunity of a referendum, George Brown should be ashamed of what he is encumbering the Brittish people with, we should have at least had the Lisbon Treaty explained as to what it will mean to us, before he signed, If not Ireland, who is to protect us for these autocratic state we call Brittan and Europe
Well done Ireland




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Wednesday February 25 - 06:50 - Posted by Brendan - 7bf6c381e9e5441f...

Dia duit Declan,

I will most definitely be passing this on to all of my friends. I do not currently live in Ireland, but am planning on moving back and would hate to see a situation where the Irish people are put back under an oppressive thumb. Your writing is extremely clear, well written, and inspirational. Fair play to ya Declan. Keep leaning, don’t give up. God Bless.

Go raibh maith agat,
Brendan Mulcahy
Seattle, WA




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Monday March 23 - 18:56 - Posted by 47a0c475dbc9b2ca...

Well done Declan.

Just listened you on radio yesterday for 5 minutes. Very impressed. Am tired of foolish politicians thinking we are foolish. It is very dangerous what is happening in Euro politics.

Glad you can see through it. More importantly glad you are willing to take the slander and abuse in making a stand.

I do not consider myself a European, I do not want to be and I do not want to see a united polictical Europe. But if it came the lesser of two evils would be to see it run Democratically.

I have had no thoughts in recent years of voting but after listening to you yesterday I think I may vote for you.

R. Malcomson - Ireland




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Tuesday April 7 - 17:59 - Posted by John Mann - 4bd450fe58cdc2dc...

It was a famous Nobel Prize winner in that said,

"The world has two types of people.
Stupid ones and Clever ones.
That 98% of the world’s population are stupid.

So you must choose which group you want to belong to."

Declan you are in the 2% group
and though I am Irish by some 3 generations ago
and live in Cape Town, South Africa, I am proud that you have stood tall and stated what is the truth
and exposed a totalitarian concpet
that has become the despot called the EU.




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Thursday April 23 - 18:39 - Posted by Peter Hamilton - 639bfb6777a90fe1...

The creepie crawlies* will now use the recession to try to terrify the Irish electorate into voting for the treaty! We need Declan’s leadership, vision and eloquence. Something is being played out here in our Inis Fáil upon which the destiny and freedom of Europe depends. Declan is exceptional in taking to heart the reality that the price of liberty is perpetual vigilance.

*ideologues who use covert means to subvert democracy and freedom so that they can impose their policies on everyone else.




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Monday September 28 - 02:09 - Posted by neechee.net - 30bf7fdf1f3c1537...

Check out this little song I rewrote to inspire some No votes on the treaty:

Give Ireland Back to the Irish:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EE48...




Why Ireland Must Reject the Lisbon Treaty
Saturday November 20 - 07:40 - Posted by midnight rider - 9b907ce8a3c4a1ca...

so what are all you no voters saying now, yas are all a bunch a dummies, ya never bite the hand that try to feed ya, and now ya want a bail out from europe.wake up and stay of the guinnes






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