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 The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?

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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:05 am

ibis wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
The US needed a buffer against the Soviet Union, and couldn't afford the political risk of a disintegrating Europe.

And indeed, were foremost in supporting a European political union at the time (Ganley/CIA/General America-phobes note)...

Please Ibis note. The USSR is gone.

Wait...what? Why me? Toxic makes the point that the US needed a buffer against the USSR - and therefore supported the EEC (based around the US protectorate Germany and later the US ally Britain) - but now the USSR has gone, and the EU is a competitor for global influence much more than the mirror-image and helpmate that people like Ganley would like to make it.

Reely reely sorry Ibis. I did you an injustice. Embarassed
I'm not sure if that is what Toxic meant.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:08 am

cactus flower wrote:
ibis wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
The US needed a buffer against the Soviet Union, and couldn't afford the political risk of a disintegrating Europe.

And indeed, were foremost in supporting a European political union at the time (Ganley/CIA/General America-phobes note)...

Please Ibis note. The USSR is gone.

Wait...what? Why me? Toxic makes the point that the US needed a buffer against the USSR - and therefore supported the EEC (based around the US protectorate Germany and later the US ally Britain) - but now the USSR has gone, and the EU is a competitor for global influence much more than the mirror-image and helpmate that people like Ganley would like to make it.

Reely reely sorry Ibis. I did you an injustice. Embarassed
I'm not sure if that is what Toxic meant.

Well, only he can clarify that...still, I think he's assuming the post-war European setup would have lasted without the EU. Without a handy alternate universe, we can't really check that!
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:08 am

cactus flower wrote:


Reely reely sorry Ibis. I did you an injustice. Embarassed
I'm not sure if that is what Toxic meant.

I'm not sure what you meant you think I meant... or something...
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:11 am

Sorry lads. I'm only fit for the x-factor tonight, and better go back and continue to get a slagging on that thread.

cheers! Surprised
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 5:39 am

ibis wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
ibis wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
ibis wrote:
cactus flower wrote:


Thanks toxic avenger, that's very clear.

If entirely wrong, at least in my view.

I haven't had the pleasure of EU Re-Education Camp yet, grant me your indulgence...

Ah yeah, I forgot. Next year's holiday will be on the Costa del Gulags for you, sunny jim.

Hey, why not compare someone to Mugabe while you're at it?

I was joking, touchy. Although, now that you mention it, I've never seen Mugabe and Barroso in the same room together, have you?...
Hmm...or Cowen. Actually I'd already seen your robust criticism of Cael over the way.

Still, there's an implication in the term 'eurosceptic' that brands anyone who is pro-EU as unsceptical. I'm not unsceptical. The EU is extremely imperfect, and suffers from the double whammy of national government reflexes and bureaucratic reflexes.

However, yes, I think it's a reasonable response to modern issues - indeed, to quite a lot of historical issues. Primarily, I see it as a very reasonable extension of the historical European trend towards a pan-European free market. The political -and indeed, military - integration I accept as being a logical response to a history of intra-European warfare, and a continuing reality of virulent nationalism and inter-ethnic conflict. The Brits still hate the French, still don't trust the Germans, the Hungarians detest the Rumanians - do I think it's better, and even more realistic - to have the all in the one tent squabbling than each pitched in their separate tents arming? Yes, I do. Do I think European wars are a thing of the past, and unthinkable? Not without effort. If the EU did not exist, it would be necessary to invent it.

Of course, this is easy for me, because I find nationalism entirely unappealing. Much of Europe consisted for much of its history of multi-ethnic polities which worked in the same clumsy but mostly benevolent way as the EU. Our experience in Ireland was different, because we were under the direct hegemony of a nationalist neighbour.
As I read it, Ibis is in favour of Lisbon not for the treatyís sake but because it advances what he sees as his eventual preferred outcome, a united states of Europe. I believe he and others who think along the same lines, fundamentally, do not trust Irish politicians, do not like the way Ireland is run and prefer & hope the more, as they see it, progressive European political influence will drag Ireland to where they wish it to be.

I think the mistake they make is to believe that they alone see Lisbon as a means to an end, in my opinion a large proportion of the no voters see Lisbon in the same way, a means to the same end and it is for this reason and not for anything contained in Lisbon itself, that they vote against it.

For this reason I believe it is a waste of time to argue what is or is not in Lisbon, what these no voters want to hear is that this is as far as Europe is going and no further, but theyíre not going to hear that, are they, because we all know in this regard Ibis is right, Lisbon is a means to an end.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 6:25 am

tonys wrote:
ibis wrote:
Still, there's an implication in the term 'eurosceptic' that brands anyone who is pro-EU as unsceptical. I'm not unsceptical. The EU is extremely imperfect, and suffers from the double whammy of national government reflexes and bureaucratic reflexes.

However, yes, I think it's a reasonable response to modern issues - indeed, to quite a lot of historical issues. Primarily, I see it as a very reasonable extension of the historical European trend towards a pan-European free market. The political -and indeed, military - integration I accept as being a logical response to a history of intra-European warfare, and a continuing reality of virulent nationalism and inter-ethnic conflict. The Brits still hate the French, still don't trust the Germans, the Hungarians detest the Rumanians - do I think it's better, and even more realistic - to have the all in the one tent squabbling than each pitched in their separate tents arming? Yes, I do. Do I think European wars are a thing of the past, and unthinkable? Not without effort. If the EU did not exist, it would be necessary to invent it.

Of course, this is easy for me, because I find nationalism entirely unappealing. Much of Europe consisted for much of its history of multi-ethnic polities which worked in the same clumsy but mostly benevolent way as the EU. Our experience in Ireland was different, because we were under the direct hegemony of a nationalist neighbour.

As I read it, Ibis is in favour of Lisbon not for the treatyís sake but because it advances what he sees as his eventual preferred outcome, a united states of Europe.

Absolutely not.

tonys wrote:
I believe he and others who think along the same lines, fundamentally, do not trust Irish politicians, do not like the way Ireland is run and prefer & hope the more, as they see it, progressive European political influence will drag Ireland to where they wish it to be.

Again, no.

tonys wrote:
I think the mistake they make is to believe that they alone see Lisbon as a means to an end, in my opinion a large proportion of the no voters see Lisbon in the same way, a means to the same end and it is for this reason and not for anything contained in Lisbon itself, that they vote against it.

For this reason I believe it is a waste of time to argue what is or is not in Lisbon, what these no voters want to hear is that this is as far as Europe is going and no further, but theyíre not going to hear that, are they, because we all know in this regard Ibis is right, Lisbon is a means to an end.

I think most No voters are completely wrong about the end goal of the EU - or indeed that there necessarily is an end goal of the EU.

The EU is a permanent intergovernmental framework for joint action, with a supranational commission that is tasked with producing common rules without favouring any particular nation, an intergovernmental council that decides whether those common rules are acceptable to each nation, and a directly elected parliament to which the commission is accountable and which can reject the other institutions' initiatives.

It is, therefore, a work in permanent progress, because it is not an end in itself, but a consistent and convenient lightweight mechanism for joint action. It is used only for those areas of action where joint action is considered appropriate (somewhere that Lisbon would have introduced more checks).

Toxic would accept certain international/intergovernmental groups for limited purposes, based each time on presumably a separate set of treaties, a different set of institutions. To me, the EU is simply a permanent set of treaties, institutions, and personnel which can handle any such set of tasks (to be honest, I probably see that as efficient partly as a result of doing a lot of programming), and which exists to do so.

This is largely why I reject Ganley's vision of an "exciting" EU. I don't want an exciting EU, an EU that inspires the people of Europe, an EU of values. I want an efficient machine, that gives us the maximum possible benefit out of any shared goal, while never being attractive enough in itself to become an end in itself - a servant, not a goal. That means I disagree strongly with ardent euro-federalists, just as much as I disagree with nationalists who would rather fail alone than share their sacred sovereignty to succeed. Both those extremes are dangerous - one because it would create a vast new monster, the other because it would revert to the old brutishness of nationalistic rivalry. They are the EU's Scylla and Charybdis, and every wobble in one direction provokes gasps of outrage from the people who want the other. Their regular and near-simultaneous gasps of outrage are music to my pragmatic ears.

Finally, and in complete contradiction of the "USE end goal" idea, the supranational element of the EU - the Commission - has been steadily weakened, not strengthened.


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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 6:37 am

Ibis - you bet me to it again.

Yeesh Tonys - If you had read anything that Ibis , and to a lesser degree myself, have been saying about Lisbon and our views on Europe and and the EU - you would know that neither of us are in a favour of a full on Federal United States of Europe - to cast all of those of us who have "actually read" the Lisbon treaty , and on balance , have come down in favour of it, as total federal nuts and in a way, traitorous quislings - as this , which says a fuck lot more about you than you probably wish, that we would use this as a way around FF- our quasi permament government - shows a complete ignorance of the wide number of opinions as to what the EU is, can be and might be , and more seriously IMO , shows a total ignorance of what the Lisbon Treaty actually proposes.

In a way Im slowly coming around to Ibis' theory that maybe its about time we had a debate and referendum on the Lisbon treaty itself - the last referendum was totally about other issues regarding our engagement with the EU - but, with certain honourable exceptions, fuck all about the Lisbon Treaty ltself - as the ignorance displayed in regard to what it proposed, and didn't propose is now quite simply astounding to me - I think Ibis and I must be in within that 0.0001% of the population who actually read the text - it wasn't that hard! - its in English - Its a wideranging Treaty between 27 different Independent Sovereign nationstates , and caters for all their different interests,priorites,delusions and follies - of course its going to be long and in legalistic language - personally I found Peig Sayers more of a challenge.


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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 6:43 am

Edo wrote:
...personally I found Peig Sayers more of a challenge.

I've not read it myself - sure you'd have to be mad to read it.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 6:48 am

ibis wrote:
Edo wrote:
...personally I found Peig Sayers more of a challenge.

I've not read it myself - sure you'd have to be mad to read it.

Had no choice at the time ( for the leaving) - but I went back recently and read the uncensored version - with the aid of a dictionary - its not bad as a primary source document of the times.

Was just using this hated text of 2 -3 generations of Irish people as an example - if you really wanted to know about Lisbon - particularly all these wiseasses who are commenting on it on line - it was accessible and in straightforward English.

That said and maybe Tonys is indirectly commenting on the staggering incompetence of his own lot at the moment, the organisation behind the promotion of the Lisbon Treaty here must go down in the Guinness book of records as one of the most incompetent ,totally useless campaigns ever undertaken.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 8:23 am

Edo wrote:
ibis wrote:
Edo wrote:
...personally I found Peig Sayers more of a challenge.

I've not read it myself - sure you'd have to be mad to read it.

Had no choice at the time ( for the leaving) - but I went back recently and read the uncensored version - with the aid of a dictionary - its not bad as a primary source document of the times.

Was just using this hated text of 2 -3 generations of Irish people as an example - if you really wanted to know about Lisbon - particularly all these wiseasses who are commenting on it on line - it was accessible and in straightforward English.

That said and maybe Tonys is indirectly commenting on the staggering incompetence of his own lot at the moment, the organisation behind the promotion of the Lisbon Treaty here must go down in the Guinness book of records as one of the most incompetent ,totally useless campaigns ever undertaken.

I have to agree that the government's campaign was one of the most imcompetent totally useless campaigns ever undertaken. The fact that it was outspent by the main opposition party speaks volumes. I cannot think of a single time in Irish history where both the government and the opposition were on the same side and it was the opposition who put more time, effort, manpower and money into the campaign than the government. It isn't the opposition's job to get a government proposal through, but they ended up having to give the campaign some leadership when faced with the comically incompetent government campaign.

There were so many classic examples of the government's sheer incompetence.

  • The IFA began playing silly beggars over WTO. Bertie would have weighed up the damage losing the campaign would do, as opposed to losing face with the IFA, concluded the former would be much worse, called the IFA for a chat, given them a "ah lads. Will yiz cop on to yourself? Now lets all work out a way to get us off this hook" chat and come up with a solution. But not Bulldog Cowen, who cannot let sleeping dogs lie without having an uncontrollable urge to go over and give it a kick up the arse. He got stubborn and told the IFA to fuck off. They got stubborn. The result was weeks of stalemate as rural support for the treaty ebbed away. It was typical Cowen - stubborn, pig ignorant and counter-productive.
  • Fine Gael supporters were not in the mood to rally to help the government. Kenny and his Front Bench decided it was in the national interest to vote for the treaty. So they put massive effort into winning party members around. At the start barely one-third of FGers would have supported it. By near the end of the campaign Kenny had pushed and pulled that up to around 2/3, with some of the movement very hesitant. It would need another week or two of careful lobbying by Fine Gael to get them to become rock solid in their comment. And then Calamity Cowen struck. Firstly he repeatedly abused Kenny in the DŠil, pissing off Fine Gaelers who started grumbling "and we are expected to bail out this obnoxious c*** after he attacks us like that? No fucking way!" And if he hadn't done enough damage, he launched a full frontal attack of Fine Gael for supposedly not pulling its weight in the campaign, even though it had spent more money, published more ads, distributed more leaflets, held more meetings and had more canvassers than Fianna FŠil!!! The moment he opened his big mouth that way he drove away 20-25% of Fine Gaelers who were leaning towards the treaty. Their attitude was one of "he can go fuck himself if he thinks we are going to help him out after that attack he made on our party and party leader."
  • Just to do more damage to the prospects of getting the treaty passed, Cowen revealed that he had not read the thing. Coughlan showed chronic ignorance of the basics. McGreevy made a typical bull-in-a-china-shop intervention ridiculing anyone who had read the treaty.
So he and his government drove swing voters away through stupid comments like those of Cowen, Coughlan and McCreevy, drove around 20% of Fine Gaelers away through stupid attacks on Fine Gael, and alienated rural Ireland by not difusing a row with the IFA until the last minute.

The treaty itself was only lost by around 100,000 votes. Cowen personally alienated more than that during the campaign. If he had made his peace with the IFA at the start rather than stubbornly deciding not to compromise, and not made idiotically timed attacks on Fine Gael it probably would have scraped through. And that is before you look at the impact of stupid ministerial comments. It was Cowen's incompetence, and his unrivalled ability to pick fights and make enemies, that sunk the treaty eventually.

But true to form when it did go down he went out looking for scapegoats, blaming variously the IFA, Fine Gael, Libertas, the tabloid press, etc. If he had kept his mouth shut and stopped picking fights it would have got through. He has no-one to blame but himself. Ahern (whose policies I disagreed with) would have had the cop-on not to get stubborn, to lovebomb everyone he needed on side, etc. Cowen, as he is famous for doing, got stubborn, wouldn't listen to advice, wouldn't accept help, and seemed to go out of his way to provoke opponents who were trying to help him. And then he wonders why it all went wrong? pale Unless he changes his way of dealing with people, he will sink Lisbon II also.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 3:06 pm

toxic avenger wrote:

An example is the European Arrest Warrant. A list of offences for which extradition (actually, extradition within the EU is formally abolished, it is now internal housekeeping, a demand is all that is necessary, habeas corpus gone, a presumption of fairness granted to every single justice system within the EU without quibble) is compulsory now exists, a de facto pre-cursor to a European Criminal Code. There was nothing wrong or inadequate with the old system of extradition. But there is an ideological agenda at work here, in which effectiveness is cited as the reason for the need for the EAW, which is really a cover for a belief in the gradual transition towards a super-state. Effectiveness has not been increased, but individual rights suffer. Extradition now can happen for offences that don't exist in the country harbouring the alleged fugitive. A right to a court hearing of the extradition case does not exist any more. A presumption of unimpeachable integrity in the justice system demanding extradition is now compulsory, despite massive concern that many are the opposite. And none of this is necessary. But ideological zeal will gloss over these inconveniences, because the ultimate prize is all that matters, the vindication of the idealist 'one size fits all' agenda. A sledgehammer is used to crack a nut, and misses the nut altogether.
toxic - You'll be glad to learn that Lisbon addresses the point you make above (in bold). The EP is tasked with drawing up standard definitons of the various offences that the EAW covers - that way the courts in the member states can be sure that the definiton of† "terrorism" for the EAW in one member state is the same as the definition in another member state.In addition, there are existing mechanisms which seek to promote effective judicial and police cooperation between the member statesin the fight against crime. These are based on the simple recognition that criminals don't respect borders and that it is in the mutual interest of the member states and their citizens that the justice systems need to be able to respond effectively to such cross-border criminals.Hopefully, you can conceed that - for once - the politicans might actually be trying to make a decent effort to address the issue of crime.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 9:14 pm

Paul R wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:

An example is the European Arrest Warrant. A list of offences for which extradition (actually, extradition within the EU is formally abolished, it is now internal housekeeping, a demand is all that is necessary, habeas corpus gone, a presumption of fairness granted to every single justice system within the EU without quibble) is compulsory now exists, a de facto pre-cursor to a European Criminal Code. There was nothing wrong or inadequate with the old system of extradition. But there is an ideological agenda at work here, in which effectiveness is cited as the reason for the need for the EAW, which is really a cover for a belief in the gradual transition towards a super-state. Effectiveness has not been increased, but individual rights suffer. Extradition now can happen for offences that don't exist in the country harbouring the alleged fugitive. A right to a court hearing of the extradition case does not exist any more. A presumption of unimpeachable integrity in the justice system demanding extradition is now compulsory, despite massive concern that many are the opposite. And none of this is necessary. But ideological zeal will gloss over these inconveniences, because the ultimate prize is all that matters, the vindication of the idealist 'one size fits all' agenda. A sledgehammer is used to crack a nut, and misses the nut altogether.
toxic - You'll be glad to learn that Lisbon addresses the point you make above (in bold). The EP is tasked with drawing up standard definitons of the various offences that the EAW covers - that way the courts in the member states can be sure that the definiton of "terrorism" for the EAW in one member state is the same as the definition in another member state.In addition, there are existing mechanisms which seek to promote effective judicial and police cooperation between the member statesin the fight against crime. These are based on the simple recognition that criminals don't respect borders and that it is in the mutual interest of the member states and their citizens that the justice systems need to be able to respond effectively to such cross-border criminals.Hopefully, you can conceed that - for once - the politicans might actually be trying to make a decent effort to address the issue of crime.

The problem is that no workable agreed definition of 'terrorism' is possible without it being watered down to pointlessness, as happened with previous attempts (the 1977 Convention suffered from this same problem). A list of proscribed offences is possible, though it certainly won't be all-encompassing, but a definition of 'terrorism' is, in my view, unnecessary and probably unachievable. As to the rest of your post about the lack of respect for borders among criminals, this is nothing new, and nothing that can't be dealt with effectively at the bilateral and multilateral level. You, in fact, illustrate the very point I was making before, it is this misplaced notion that an 'idealist' transcending of sovereignty is the only way to deal with things that have been, and can continue to be, dealt with effectively at the sovereign co-operative level. It is an International Relations ideology that is being pursued, and one that puts individual rights at a distant second to the goal of political union.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:36 pm

I should add that the 'drawing up' of standard definitions of offences to be applied in each member-state is in itself a massive expansion of the integration agenda, a de facto European Criminal Code, which goes further than even the list of compulsarily extraditable offences that already exists. The very act of definition is a role that was traditionally definitive of sovereign law-making power, one that, if you're correct, will be bulldozed away without regard to the subtleties, nuances, and subjective preferences of each nation. So my fears are not allayed by such a move, merely confirmed.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:59 pm

toxic avenger wrote:
I should add that the 'drawing up' of standard definitions of offences to be applied in each member-state is in itself a massive expansion of the integration agenda, a de facto European Criminal Code, which goes further than even the list of compulsarily extraditable offences that already exists. The very act of definition is a role that was traditionally definitive of sovereign law-making power, one that, if you're correct, will be bulldozed away without regard to the subtleties, nuances, and subjective preferences of each nation. So my fears are not allayed by such a move, merely confirmed.

Any agreement to cooperate on an international issue will necessarily involve the drawing up of exactly such agreed definitions. If they were drawn up by a theoretical International European Intergovernmental Working Group on Terrorism, they would be exactly the same in form, in scope, and probably in substance as those that are being done through the EU.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 11:01 pm

At the moment is the Irish government not involved in trying, along with the UK to exceed the EU Data Retention proposals ?
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 11:15 pm

ibis wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
I should add that the 'drawing up' of standard definitions of offences to be applied in each member-state is in itself a massive expansion of the integration agenda, a de facto European Criminal Code, which goes further than even the list of compulsarily extraditable offences that already exists. The very act of definition is a role that was traditionally definitive of sovereign law-making power, one that, if you're correct, will be bulldozed away without regard to the subtleties, nuances, and subjective preferences of each nation. So my fears are not allayed by such a move, merely confirmed.

Any agreement to cooperate on an international issue will necessarily involve the drawing up of exactly such agreed definitions. If they were drawn up by a theoretical International European Intergovernmental Working Group on Terrorism, they would be exactly the same in form, in scope, and probably in substance as those that are being done through the EU.

So why the need to do it from the centre, rather than agree multilateral arrangements? It's a further extension of the scope of the powers of the European centre, and a de facto European criminal code, a further transfer of powers that were traditionally definitive of national sovereignty.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Sun Dec 14, 2008 11:33 pm

toxic avenger wrote:
ibis wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
I should add that the 'drawing up' of standard definitions of offences to be applied in each member-state is in itself a massive expansion of the integration agenda, a de facto European Criminal Code, which goes further than even the list of compulsarily extraditable offences that already exists. The very act of definition is a role that was traditionally definitive of sovereign law-making power, one that, if you're correct, will be bulldozed away without regard to the subtleties, nuances, and subjective preferences of each nation. So my fears are not allayed by such a move, merely confirmed.

Any agreement to cooperate on an international issue will necessarily involve the drawing up of exactly such agreed definitions. If they were drawn up by a theoretical International European Intergovernmental Working Group on Terrorism, they would be exactly the same in form, in scope, and probably in substance as those that are being done through the EU.

So why the need to do it from the centre, rather than agree multilateral arrangements? It's a further extension of the scope of the powers of the European centre, and a de facto European criminal code, a further transfer of powers that were traditionally definitive of national sovereignty.

Well, that's the purpose of the EU. It's not centralised - it's a permanent multilateral arrangement with a body in the form of the Commission whose task it is to cast proposals in a neutral form.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:07 am

ibis wrote:

Well, that's the purpose of the EU. It's not centralised - it's a permanent multilateral arrangement with a body in the form of the Commission whose task it is to cast proposals in a neutral form.

Well, again, we could go back and forth on this one too, but I would argue that the EU is a good deal more than that. It might well have started as selfish selflessness, multilateral cooperation among sovereign entities, but it has transcended that, indeed contained the seeds of that transcension from the very outset. There is a historical train in motion here, and it is clearly heading in only one direction.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:52 am

toxic avenger wrote:
ibis wrote:

Well, that's the purpose of the EU. It's not centralised - it's a permanent multilateral arrangement with a body in the form of the Commission whose task it is to cast proposals in a neutral form.

Well, again, we could go back and forth on this one too, but I would argue that the EU is a good deal more than that. It might well have started as selfish selflessness, multilateral cooperation among sovereign entities, but it has transcended that, indeed contained the seeds of that transcension from the very outset. There is a historical train in motion here, and it is clearly heading in only one direction.

Indeed we could - I'd argue that the EU started as an almost entirely supranational body (run entirely by the Commission) with a purely political aim (preventing war between Germany and France), and has moved further and further away from that.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:00 am

The thoughts of wading through what looks like almost a year of Lisbon II posts is depressing enough without what is now a flood of negative posts on damn near every other subject, whether from blind left or hysterical right.

This place might well be a sight better (how could it be worse) than politics.ie, but it still has no balance worth speaking of and is more and more feeding off its self generated stream of negativity. When someone like sidewinder is quoted as a reliable source, itís time to pack your bags. Iím off, my head wasnít built to deal with this degree of constantly negative vibes and Iím not going to ask it to try.

To TA, when the report comes in, regardless of result, Iíll be raising a glass to you.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:06 am

tonys wrote:
The thoughts of wading through what looks like almost a year of Lisbon II posts is depressing enough without what is now a flood of negative posts on damn near every other subject, whether from blind left or hysterical right.

This place might well be a sight better (how could it be worse) than politics.ie, but it still has no balance worth speaking of and is more and more feeding off its self generated stream of negativity. When someone like sidewinder is quoted as a reliable source, itís time to pack your bags. Iím off, my head wasnít built to deal with this degree of constantly negative vibes and Iím not going to ask it to try.

To TA, when the report comes in, regardless of result, Iíll be raising a glass to you.

Ah stay, at least pop your head in now and again, the site will be poorer otherwise. Disagreements aside, you are a logical and civil poster, and I hate consensus anyway, no fun...
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:09 am

toxic avenger wrote:
tonys wrote:
The thoughts of wading through what looks like almost a year of Lisbon II posts is depressing enough without what is now a flood of negative posts on damn near every other subject, whether from blind left or hysterical right.

This place might well be a sight better (how could it be worse) than politics.ie, but it still has no balance worth speaking of and is more and more feeding off its self generated stream of negativity. When someone like sidewinder is quoted as a reliable source, itís time to pack your bags. Iím off, my head wasnít built to deal with this degree of constantly negative vibes and Iím not going to ask it to try.

To TA, when the report comes in, regardless of result, Iíll be raising a glass to you.

Ah stay, at least pop your head in now and again, the site will be poorer otherwise. Disagreements aside, you are a logical and civil poster, and I hate consensus anyway, no fun...

Not much likelihood of you getting it here, though, as long as I can reach a keyboard.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:20 am

ibis wrote:
toxic avenger wrote:
tonys wrote:
The thoughts of wading through what looks like almost a year of Lisbon II posts is depressing enough without what is now a flood of negative posts on damn near every other subject, whether from blind left or hysterical right.

This place might well be a sight better (how could it be worse) than politics.ie, but it still has no balance worth speaking of and is more and more feeding off its self generated stream of negativity. When someone like sidewinder is quoted as a reliable source, itís time to pack your bags. Iím off, my head wasnít built to deal with this degree of constantly negative vibes and Iím not going to ask it to try.

To TA, when the report comes in, regardless of result, Iíll be raising a glass to you.

Ah stay, at least pop your head in now and again, the site will be poorer otherwise. Disagreements aside, you are a logical and civil poster, and I hate consensus anyway, no fun...

Not much likelihood of you getting it here, though, as long as I can reach a keyboard.

True, but I have a good deal of regard for tonys, he put up a valiant and well-briefed fight on the Tribunal thingy, was always civil, and was even right on the odd occasion. Some of the posters on 'our' side were incapable of much better than vacant sloganeering, and apparently still think 'Zanu-FF' is hilarious after 700+ repetitions. I didn't agree with his banning, and it'd be sad to see him leave here too.
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:24 am

Well, he's very welcome to stay or come back any time he likes. These are trying times, and everyone is understandably restless.

We've just had "shock and awe" on The Week in Politics and people keep reminding us that 2009 probably isn't going to be nice.

To be honest, I wonder will Lisbon not seem less dominating an issue in the overall scheme of things in a few months time ?
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PostSubject: Re: The "Irish Guarantees" on Lisbon - are They Enough?   Mon Dec 15, 2008 5:26 am

cactus flower wrote:
Well, he's very welcome to stay or come back any time he likes. These are trying times, and everyone is understandably restless.

We've just had "shock and awe" on The Week in Politics and people keep reminding us that 2009 probably isn't going to be nice.

To be honest, I wonder will Lisbon not seem less dominating an issue in the overall scheme of things in a few months time ?

Immediately after Christmas, I fear. Still, it will still need to be discussed.
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