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 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge

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PostSubject: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Fri Mar 14, 2008 11:54 pm

Kate P wrote
Quote :
When Margot Wallstrom spoke at the Forum on Europe Plenary Session at Dublin Castle a couple of weeks ago, she said that the big countries were only starting to realise that they too would be without a commissioner (!!!??) She herself had not been in favour of the proposed diminution of the commission under Lisbon because she said it might create efficiency but would do so at the expense of credibility

Patricia McKenna said the other night in Ennis that d'Estaing pushed his way through on that particular proposal, despite the disagreement of others.

I cannot, for the life of me understand how any country, big or small, can think it will be of benefit to be absent from the table where legislation is proposed. Five years is a long time.

Then Edo wrote
Quote :
Kate – as regards having a commissioner or not – or not all of the time,is irrelevant. 250 years ago you might have had a point – given the 3 weeks of so it took to get to Brussels from Ireland and the only means of communication was the Pony Express. In this age of mass communications and given that any legislation proposed by the commissioner will only be enacted by the EU parliament and signed off the Council of Ministers – can’t say it really matters who comes up with the proposal – just whether its good or bad.

I want good qualified and able persons with a good intellect and interest as commissioners – period – I couldn’t give a monkeys where they are from. Thank god that it is changing from the political patronage lottery we have used it for so far – a reward for past political favours, a good place to top up the pension and place to park political rivals and awkward colleagues who might be politically out of fashion at a particular moment in Time. Yes we have had good ones – Sutherland,MacSharry and McCreevy spring to mind, but we also had O’Kennedy and P Flynn aswell. If the new system will force nations to think long and hard and take the appointment seriously – bring it on. Also as this treaty will usher in increased powers of scrutiny and oversight for the EU parliament and national parliaments over the commission – even better. Yes we had some individuals of high calibre who have contributed quite a lot to the EU and its citizens , but we have also had a considerable number of corrupt useless wasters aswell. If Wallstrom really did say that thing about govs only realising about the commissioner issue only now as you reported – well she is a bit of a wally too – then again I don’t believe for a moment that governments weren’t aware of this issue – arrant nonsense – c’mon FFS!

I think this view that its vital to have “one of our own” as a commissioner – a friend in high places ,so to speak – is probably reflective of the parish pump politics we are enmeshed in here domestically and thus we are conditioned to believe that we need an irish commissioner. It also shows a great deal of ignorance as to how legislation is drawn up and proposed by the EU Commission. I have daily dealings with the EU structures in my daily working life – as an exporter and manufacturer – I deal quite a lot with Customs & Taxation, Justice, Trade and External relations – and like everything the more you give – the more you get out. I fill in the surveys and questionnaires that they send out – instead of throwing them in the bin – thus I get more expansive surveys and my opinion is solicited as a regular correspondent and I get mailed daily and even called a few times a year – I have participated in 2 projects regarding improving the administration and standard of service from EU Customs and taxation and would like to think I have contributed in some way to the drawing up and proposing of new legislation in this area which is coming to effect. This is the way the EU works – The commissioner doesn’t propose legislation on the basis of a dream he had the night before – it comes from the collective action and correspondence of thousands of individuals, organisations, lobby and pressure groups and from the national governments themselves – the commission only draws up legislation based on the correspondence and interaction with all these different and diverse interests – once again he who shouts loudest, works hardest, contributes well and is a good team player will find that their opinion will count at decision time – be it your local GAA Club or the EU Commission.

I gave up bitching from the sidelines a long time ago – I got involved in politics ,industry groups and other areas of interest to me and you know – its amazing how few people do this – I have a personal life too and it’s a commitment – life isn’t handed to you on a plate – but I also understand if you are not in- you cant win – and that its best to be involved and even if you win some (10% of the time) , you lose some (10% of the time) and get a scoredraw (80% of the time) – that’s life . I have no fear of the EU –because I got involved in it and made it work for me and I can see the point in it – I have plenty of issues with how its run and the direction some areas are going in – but the EU and its flaws are a mirror image the people and states it represents.

If you think that just because you turn up at the AGM once a year to cast your vote makes you as influential as those who actively participate in the club on a weekly or daily basis – think again. The EU and every institution is like that – I feel in a way that this coming treaty is being used as a proxy for domestic issues about the direction the country is going – as the treaty makes explicitly clear – on the hot issues of taxation and military affairs for example – it’s the Irish government and the Irish government only – who will have the final say on what we do – not anybody else – the Irish government is appointed by the Dail, which is elected democratically by the Irish electorate. If you have a problem about Irish troops going to Chad – well ask Willy O’Dea or your local gov representative– they’re the ones who have sent them there – no duress from Brussels over this – totally our decision. If you have a problem I would respectfully suggest that you rally together enough voters to elect enough likeminded individuals to the Dail to recall the troops – that’s representative democracy for ya – Tyranny of the majority and life’s a bitch etc etc. I know its not as sexy as some underhand devious conspiracy plot – but real life and real decisions rarely are.
This panic about the need for a native commissoner shows either a lack of knowledge as to how the EU operates or a deepseated fear and anxiety over our democracy and the way it operates - probably a combination of both.

I could go on and on but I have a salary to earn!
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 12:51 am

Commissioners
Yes it matters where they come from. Firstly because, unless something has changed without my knowing it, the EU is still a community of member states. The Commission is made up of representatives from member states - we could by your logic just as easily hire in outside help from the Americas, Asia or Africa to sit on the commission - but we don't.

The role of the EC is, according to its own website: "The European Commission was created to represent the European interest common to all Member States of the Union." I'm curious as to how the European interest common to all member states can be represented when all member states aren't represented. Even assuming that 'common interest' is some grand notion that supercedes all states its very commonality means that really for it to be valid at all it should have a representative from every state all the time.

Under QMV and with the loss of the veto our influence in decision making has deteriorated - that's indisputable. Our vote has reduced by 55% to .8%. It may not matter to you who comes up with the proposal,but it would seem to me that losing our whole cabinet as well as our commissioner means that we are constantly on the back foot in terms of dealing with legislation. Furthermore I would think that if we're looking for efficiency in the EU then the efficient thing to do is create the best, most inclusive legislation in the first place.

You see, regardless of how impartial, eurocentric and a-national the commissioner and cabinet are supposed to be, unless you know something more about psychology than I do, it's likely that they take their own context into the discussion with them - even if it's only in the most unconscious of ways. On a simple level, can you imagine a commission where Malta, Ireland and Britain are all absent at once: who is at the table who has an island background and some underlying if unconsciously articulated sense of what that means?

Quote :
The commissioner doesn’t propose legislation on the basis of a dream he had the night before – it comes from the collective action and correspondence of thousands of individuals, organisations, lobby and pressure groups and from the national governments themselves
By the way, when we have no commissioner and cabinet, where are the Irish lobby groups going to lobby? Do you think the German or Maltese commisioners and cabinet will be happy to see the itinerant Irish - the IFA or some other interest group on their doorsteps looking for their time and resources with proposals that may be diametrically opposed to their own? Where will the national government contribute and correspond with the Commission when there is no commissioner and no cabinet?

Logistically, I'd appreciate if you'd explain how that will work post Lisbon.

I have never argued, nor will I, that having a friend in high places is a justification for retaining our commissioner.
I have never expressed a personal opinion on Irish soldiers in Chad - not on this site and not anywhere else because I haven't made up my mind yet about it.

Quote :
once again he who shouts loudest, works hardest, contributes well and is a good team player will find that their opinion will count at decision time

I think it will be difficult for any nation to find that their opinion will count when they're not at the table, not on the team.

Quote :
If Wallstrom really did say that thing about govs only realising about the commissioner issue only now as you reported – well she is a bit of a wally too – then again I don’t believe for a moment that governments weren’t aware of this issue – arrant nonsense – c’mon FFS!

If she said it? If the Forum has uploaded the Q&A section of proceedings you can hear it yourself.

Will Wallstrom be on the of the wallies who will be creating legislation on our behalf?

Interestingly Wallstrom said that big countries - not big governments - were only realising the significance of losing a commissioner. There has been nothing like the Irish level of discussion in any European country about the Lisbon treaty. It may be that there is disquiet among the people who feel that they have lost what they would rather have kept.

Quote :
This panic about the need for a native commissoner shows either a lack of knowledge as to how the EU operates or a deepseated fear and anxiety over our democracy and the way it operates - probably a combination of both.

Or it could be that there are more reasons than are dreamt of in your philosophy, Edo.

I think that the formulation and implementation of legislation is spectacularly important - since 80% of Irish legislation comes from Europe. I think a commission that doesn't include every member state cannot have credibility.


Last edited by Kate P on Sat Mar 15, 2008 7:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 1:12 am

Quote :
If you think that just because you turn up at the AGM once a year to cast your vote makes you as influential as those who actively participate in the club on a weekly or daily basis – think again.

I have never claimed to be an expert on Lisbon or the EU. I know that many, many people will not have done the kind of research I have done. Yet our votes all count in the same way.
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 3:14 am

The front page story by Jamie Smyth in IT casts an interesting light on the relationship between Ireland and the Commission:

The Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has lobbied the commission about Ireland's climate targets, arguing that GDP per capita does not accurately reflect the Irish economy because of the high level of profits repatriated by multinational companies. Barroso is not impressed.

Smyth reports José Manuel Barroso as saying that Ireland would not be able to alter its climate change targets because it can afford the cost of cutting C02 emissions.
"Our proposal is equitable, fair and technically sound - we will not change it," said Mr Barroso.The commission handed Ireland the toughest target in Europe for cutting emissions under a burden-sharing agreement drawn up in January based on relative wealth. Meeting the target is likely to cost the economy up to €1 billion per year by 2020.
The Government has raised concerns about the way the target was apportioned by Brussels.
"We believe that GDP per capita is the best way of representing fairness in terms of EU," said Mr Barroso.
"Ireland has benefited so much from structural aid from the EU because it was much lower than the average and now it is higher than the average."
He also warned that leaders who signalled now that they were not willing to meet the targets would have a "level of credibility close to zero".

Imagine that - a level of credibility close to zero! What kind of a national leader would that be?
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 7:57 am

Quote :
[quote="Kate P"]That post is only marginally less patronising, Edo than the performance of the man who called to my door yesterday to sell us hedging and first explained what a whitethorn was and then stepped out a yard - just in case I didn't know.

Please Please do not bring "patronising" into this conversation - It demeans me and it demeans you - Its a standard ,off the shelf reply ,of anybody who doesnt want to debate the issues in hand - I dont put you in that bracket and neither would I place myself in that - We've been having a very civilised ,but pointed ,conversation on these matters on P.ie and the subsquent forums - and Im aware that there will matters upon which there will be no agreement and sharp and clear divergence of views - "patronising" can be very much in the eye of the beholder - if I have appeared to to do so - I apologise for appearing to have done so - but it was not my intention -but a debate is a debate - if you cant stand the heat......................................
Quote :

Commissioners
Yes it matters where they come from. Firstly because, unless something has changed without my knowing it, the EU is still a community of member states. The Commission is made up of representatives from member states - we could by your logic just as easily hire in outside help from the Americas, Asia or Africa to sit on the commission - but we don't.

Well Kate - if you truely believe the above - then you and I must part ways - comissioners are appointed - not elected - any legislation they propose (which is formulated and drawn up by the commission in which there are many Irish and I can guarantee you there are Irish members in every other social and economic lobby group in Brussels - just because somebody else has a different nationality than me does not mean that I have nothing in common with them - in a lot of cases - its probably the exact opposite) must be passed by the European Parliament(of which there are Irish representatives) and signed off by the European council - which in a purely technical matter - conditonal on the passing on the lisbon treaty - in a QMV majority on 60% of matters (excluding those in which Ireland has already negotiated an opt out) and by concensus in 40% of matters - again in an assembly where consent is prized above all else - if you think Ireland is going to be completely isolated on those issues - Im must respectfully disagree and refer you to a map of Europe and the decisions which all these 27 countries have taken since joining the EU and also to the high regard Ireland is held within the EU - if you dismiss all our politicians and civil servants have built up in one foul swoop - Well then - your mind is already made up and you should save yourself the journeys and the expense of going to any more debates because your commentary has been so blatantly one-sided as to make it irrelvant except to those ears who hear what you want them to hear.



Quote :
The role of the EC is, according to its own website: "The European Commission was created to represent the European interest common to all Member States of the Union." I'm curious as to how the European interest common to all member states can be represented when all member states aren't represented. Even assuming that 'common interest' is some grand notion that supercedes all states its very commonality means that really for it to be valid at all it should have a representative from every state all the time.

Ah cmon Kate -lets look at the 4 (arguably-because all are important) most important commissionserships that concern Ireland- Agriculture, Competition trade and external relations - when is the last time an Irishman held, if ever, any of those portfolios? - Ag - 1992 Ray McSharry - and the farmers haven't done have badly since then (given the absolutely ludicrous nature of the CAP) - you dont hear the IFA or the ICMSA giving out about the nationality of the commissioner do you? - of course not - because they are in the trenchs with their French, Danish, Italian,Spanish, Polish and farmers of every other state in the EU who have the same concerns as themselves - do you think that Irish farmers are an entity upon themselves - wake up and smell the coffee! - Competition - the commissionership which has loosened up free trade within the EU and has benifited us massively with the ending of continental european monopolies and has allowed Irish firms and EX-EU multinationals exploit that to Irelands massive gain - we've never had a Competition commissioner - But Pascal Lamy(a frenchman) and his predecessors did more for the Celtic tiger and its success than anybody on this island will ever realise. External relations and Trade- we've never held either commissionership - but again both have had more bearing on our economic and diplomatic success than any other factor in since we joined - why because we are very effective lobbyists and our industrial,commerical and social organisations are very good at making allies and putting up a joint front and getting their message across collectively- (if you think that the EU commission cabinet sits down once a week together and bounces ideas off each other to come to a consensus - you are deluding yourself - if you think the Irish Cabinet does the same - you are on cloud cookoo land)

Sorry Kate - IMO - you have an extremely primitive, parochial , and naive (If Im patronising - sue me!) view of how the European Commission and the EU in general operates if you are really sincere in what you have pontificated about above.

Im give a reply to the rest later today - my aplogies for the delay but Im only human.
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 9:08 am

Firstly, I had edited the patronising reference almost an hour before your reply came in because, awake and wakeful, I realised it was out of line.

Secondly, as I've said umpteen times before, I'm no expert on the EU or on Lisbon. If it seems I'm pontificating, apologies; I'm actually trying to understand.

In terms of 'ears who hear what I want them to hear' I discuss Lisbon here and follow what's going on at the meetings. I'm not involved in any campaign personal or political to change anybody's mind because I know that I don't know enough to do that. I intially thought that I should get behind a campaign but I am under no illusions about the depth of knowledge that I don't have to support the views I've formed so far.

I've repeatedly said that I'm looking for reasons to vote yes and ibis, so far is the only person (including all of the yes politicians I've heard) who has offered any solid logic. Thankfully he hasn't laughed me off the stage yet. Without exception (and including people like Alan Dukes and Garrett Fitzgerald whom I respect on many levels) the Yes side haven't done that. I've heard a million reasons why the EU is marvellous and haven't taken issue with them anymore than anyone else who accepts that the EU has done a lot of good but is imperfect. If my commentary is so one sided as to be irrelevant, it's possibly because I haven't been discussing issues that haven't come up as issues for me in what I've heard.

I've repeatedly said that the arguments from the No side have focussed on specific articles whereas those from the Yes side have been more general. The Yes side rarely gets involved in discussion of specific articles, even in rebuttal. I don't think that many who have been following the debate will argue that that is not the case. I think the treaty should stand on its merits and I wish, I really wish the Yes side would engage with some of that because, contrary to your belief, I do want to see both sides of the argument.

In the case of the discussion of the commission it might be more helpful to distinguish between the commission and the college of commissioners - something that neither side has done and which might clarify issues.

I'm reading the treaty and attending the meetings and there is lots that I still don't get. There many are voters who have far more context, knowledge and understanding of the EU and the treaty than I do and some who have considerably less. All of us are the same in the ballot box.

I don't think it's naive - though no doubt you will correct me - to believe that the college of commissioners is a group of glorified horsetraders who have the final say in the legislation that comes from their department and who do a lot more trading in the corridors than they ever do at the 'table'. Because as you say, consensus is important and at the end of the day, they have to sell their proposals. I don't think that the body that stands over the legislation proposed and stands over its implementation can have any credibility if all countries aren't at that horsetrading 'table', especially if at the highest level within that strata European interest common to all states isn't represented. It may be only optics (though I think it's a bit more than that) but even if it is, optics count for a lot.

I also think that there are trade offs to be gained in terms of the implementation of policy that depends on the willingness of the responsible commissioner to push individual countries. I do believe that commissioners are in a position to make political decisions in that sense - in the same way the a minister here can decide to focus a department's energies in a certain way if they deem it politically expedient. 9 countries at a time will be out of that loop and I find it hard to imagine that there cannot be a more credible and equitable way of dealing with this.

I also realise on reading your post that I seem to take a very simplified view of the commission's work. I'm married to a man who is on a specialist group that feeds into the commission's workings. I have a better understanding than my last post would suggest.

So if my views are naive, primitive and parochial. I can't disagree with that and I'd prefer it wasn't the case, but I'm working on it.
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 2:32 pm

This is the official line on the Fundamental Rights issue, as given by Dick Roche at a recent meeting of the Irish Society of European Law.


From Press Statement:
Reform Treaty involves no extension of EU law in relation to fundamental Rights

Speaking to the Irish Society for European Law this evening (4 March), Minister for European Affairs Dick Roche, TD, said the Charter of Fundamental Rights, which will be given legal force by the Lisbon Reform Treaty, does not extend the field of application of Union law or establish any new power or task for the Union .

The Minister noted that the recognition of the Charter was nevertheless a significant development for the Union, as it sets out, in a consolidated form, those rights that citizens already enjoy under:


  • the EU Treaties and related case law;
  • the European Convention on Human Rights;
  • the Social Charters of the Union and the Council of Europe; and
  • the constitutional traditions and international obligations common to the Member States.



Minister Roche added that the Charter makes clear that its provisions are addressed to the institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the Union, with due regard for the principle of subsidiarity, and to the Member States only when they are implementing Union law . Accordingly, existing [European] Court of Justice jurisprudence, whereby the Court refuses to look at matters falling within the exclusive competence of the Member States, will be retained. This means that, where purely domestic legal matters are concerned, the Court of Justice may not deal with fundamental rights issues that may arise.

Minister Roche also addressed changes in the Justice and Home Affairs area, observing that the Union's competence in the area of freedom, security and justice is shared with the Member States. The different legal systems and traditions of the Member States are respected.

Minister Roche concluded that Ireland's experience of EU membership has been wholly positive. It is certainly not time for Ireland to show any hesitancy in our commitment to the Union. To do so would send damaging signals to our neighbours and partners. We should continue to engage in Europe, to shape the policies of Union in the interests of ourselves and the wider world. To do so we need to ratify the Reform Treaty. Failure to ratify is likely to be damaging to Europe and to Ireland.

......
FWIW I agree with what he says on the absence of any extension of EU law in this area. His final para repeats the familiar formula. Taking this together with the oft repeated mantra of how well regarded we are in the EU corridors of power prompts the question: Are we only well regarded as long as we go quietly? Or is his warning a form of scaremongering. If so the No campaign, alleged to have cornered the market in that tactic, must be Evil or Very Mad
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 3:20 pm

Well, it appears I can post a reply in either of the threads you've put this in - or should I reply identically in both, I wonder?

Yes, the EU Charter is applicable only to the EU institutions and directives. It doesn't give the EU any new judicial powers in national courts, but gives the national courts new judicial powers against the EU. I'm not sure why people appear to be against this?
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 4:11 pm

ibis wrote:
Well, it appears I can post a reply in either of the threads you've put this in - or should I reply identically in both, I wonder?


Sorry? What other thread is it in?
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 4:23 pm

Helium Three wrote:
ibis wrote:
Well, it appears I can post a reply in either of the threads you've put this in - or should I reply identically in both, I wonder?


Sorry? What other thread is it in?

Dear me - I'd swear I saw the same post in the other Lisbon thread, but now I look again I see it is a quite different post. Perhaps the new forum is confusing me - it's hard for an old dog to learn new tricks!

Hmm...we now have twice as many Lisbon threads as are allowed on boards.ie.
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 5:03 pm

Helium Three wrote:
The front page story by Jamie Smyth in IT casts an interesting light on the relationship between Ireland and the Commission:

The Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has lobbied the commission about Ireland's climate targets, arguing that GDP per capita does not accurately reflect the Irish economy because of the high level of profits repatriated by multinational companies. Barroso is not impressed.

Smyth reports José Manuel Barroso as saying that Ireland would not be able to alter its climate change targets because it can afford the cost of cutting C02 emissions.
"Our proposal is equitable, fair and technically sound - we will not change it," said Mr Barroso.The commission handed Ireland the toughest target in Europe for cutting emissions under a burden-sharing agreement drawn up in January based on relative wealth. Meeting the target is likely to cost the economy up to €1 billion per year by 2020.
The Government has raised concerns about the way the target was apportioned by Brussels.
"We believe that GDP per capita is the best way of representing fairness in terms of EU," said Mr Barroso.
"Ireland has benefited so much from structural aid from the EU because it was much lower than the average and now it is higher than the average."
He also warned that leaders who signalled now that they were not willing to meet the targets would have a "level of credibility close to zero".

Imagine that - a level of credibility close to zero! What kind of a national leader would that be?

Amazing how we have to jump to order yet Germany can get off the hook:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/mar/15/germany.climatechange

Under intense pressure from German industrial lobbies the chancellor, Angela Merkel, won changes to the wording of the summit statement ordering the European commission to spell out how "energy-intensive industries" could be granted special treatment in the climate change package.

Yesterday's summit was about how to deliver on those targets and how to convert the aims into binding national and European law by next year.
"Mrs Merkel was completely different from last year when she chaired the summit," said a participant and senior European government figure. "This time she was the chancellor of German industry."
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 5:47 pm

Brandubh wrote:
Helium Three wrote:
The front page story by Jamie Smyth in IT casts an interesting light on the relationship between Ireland and the Commission:

The Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has lobbied the commission about Ireland's climate targets, arguing that GDP per capita does not accurately reflect the Irish economy because of the high level of profits repatriated by multinational companies. Barroso is not impressed.

Smyth reports José Manuel Barroso as saying that Ireland would not be able to alter its climate change targets because it can afford the cost of cutting C02 emissions.
"Our proposal is equitable, fair and technically sound - we will not change it," said Mr Barroso.The commission handed Ireland the toughest target in Europe for cutting emissions under a burden-sharing agreement drawn up in January based on relative wealth. Meeting the target is likely to cost the economy up to €1 billion per year by 2020.
The Government has raised concerns about the way the target was apportioned by Brussels.
"We believe that GDP per capita is the best way of representing fairness in terms of EU," said Mr Barroso.
"Ireland has benefited so much from structural aid from the EU because it was much lower than the average and now it is higher than the average."
He also warned that leaders who signalled now that they were not willing to meet the targets would have a "level of credibility close to zero".

Imagine that - a level of credibility close to zero! What kind of a national leader would that be?

Amazing how we have to jump to order yet Germany can get off the hook:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/mar/15/germany.climatechange

Under intense pressure from German industrial lobbies the chancellor, Angela Merkel, won changes to the wording of the summit statement ordering the European commission to spell out how "energy-intensive industries" could be granted special treatment in the climate change package.

Yesterday's summit was about how to deliver on those targets and how to convert the aims into binding national and European law by next year.
"Mrs Merkel was completely different from last year when she chaired the summit," said a participant and senior European government figure. "This time she was the chancellor of German industry."

Perhaps it's because these are about two completely different things....Germany managed to get a slight change in implementation towards the targets, we failed to get a wholesale change in the way targets are calculated. Amazing.
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 7:45 pm

ibis wrote:
Brandubh wrote:
Helium Three wrote:
The front page story by Jamie Smyth in IT casts an interesting light on the relationship between Ireland and the Commission:

The Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has lobbied the commission about Ireland's climate targets, arguing that GDP per capita does not accurately reflect the Irish economy because of the high level of profits repatriated by multinational companies. Barroso is not impressed.

Smyth reports José Manuel Barroso as saying that Ireland would not be able to alter its climate change targets because it can afford the cost of cutting C02 emissions.
"Our proposal is equitable, fair and technically sound - we will not change it," said Mr Barroso.The commission handed Ireland the toughest target in Europe for cutting emissions under a burden-sharing agreement drawn up in January based on relative wealth. Meeting the target is likely to cost the economy up to €1 billion per year by 2020.
The Government has raised concerns about the way the target was apportioned by Brussels.
"We believe that GDP per capita is the best way of representing fairness in terms of EU," said Mr Barroso.
"Ireland has benefited so much from structural aid from the EU because it was much lower than the average and now it is higher than the average."
He also warned that leaders who signalled now that they were not willing to meet the targets would have a "level of credibility close to zero".

Imagine that - a level of credibility close to zero! What kind of a national leader would that be?

Amazing how we have to jump to order yet Germany can get off the hook:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/mar/15/germany.climatechange

Under intense pressure from German industrial lobbies the chancellor, Angela Merkel, won changes to the wording of the summit statement ordering the European commission to spell out how "energy-intensive industries" could be granted special treatment in the climate change package.

Yesterday's summit was about how to deliver on those targets and how to convert the aims into binding national and European law by next year.
"Mrs Merkel was completely different from last year when she chaired the summit," said a participant and senior European government figure. "This time she was the chancellor of German industry."

Perhaps it's because these are about two completely different things....Germany managed to get a slight change in implementation towards the targets, we failed to get a wholesale change in the way targets are calculated. Amazing.

There is nothing really amazing about it at all - Germany has huge clout at this level and is a State that has pumped billions of DMs/Euros into the European Project for decades.

We are a minnow who has milked the system for all its worth and now its payback time... What a Face
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 8:07 pm

Brandubh wrote:
ibis wrote:
Brandubh wrote:
Helium Three wrote:
The front page story by Jamie Smyth in IT casts an interesting light on the relationship between Ireland and the Commission:

The Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has lobbied the commission about Ireland's climate targets, arguing that GDP per capita does not accurately reflect the Irish economy because of the high level of profits repatriated by multinational companies. Barroso is not impressed.

Smyth reports José Manuel Barroso as saying that Ireland would not be able to alter its climate change targets because it can afford the cost of cutting C02 emissions.
"Our proposal is equitable, fair and technically sound - we will not change it," said Mr Barroso.The commission handed Ireland the toughest target in Europe for cutting emissions under a burden-sharing agreement drawn up in January based on relative wealth. Meeting the target is likely to cost the economy up to €1 billion per year by 2020.
The Government has raised concerns about the way the target was apportioned by Brussels.
"We believe that GDP per capita is the best way of representing fairness in terms of EU," said Mr Barroso.
"Ireland has benefited so much from structural aid from the EU because it was much lower than the average and now it is higher than the average."
He also warned that leaders who signalled now that they were not willing to meet the targets would have a "level of credibility close to zero".

Imagine that - a level of credibility close to zero! What kind of a national leader would that be?

Amazing how we have to jump to order yet Germany can get off the hook:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/mar/15/germany.climatechange

Under intense pressure from German industrial lobbies the chancellor, Angela Merkel, won changes to the wording of the summit statement ordering the European commission to spell out how "energy-intensive industries" could be granted special treatment in the climate change package.

Yesterday's summit was about how to deliver on those targets and how to convert the aims into binding national and European law by next year.
"Mrs Merkel was completely different from last year when she chaired the summit," said a participant and senior European government figure. "This time she was the chancellor of German industry."

Perhaps it's because these are about two completely different things....Germany managed to get a slight change in implementation towards the targets, we failed to get a wholesale change in the way targets are calculated. Amazing.

There is nothing really amazing about it at all - Germany has huge clout at this level and is a State that has pumped billions of DMs/Euros into the European Project for decades.

We are a minnow who has milked the system for all its worth and now its payback time... What a Face

Hmm....did you ever hear the word "sarchasm"?
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PostSubject: Re: 'It's Only Words' - Continued from The Refuge   Sat Mar 15, 2008 8:58 pm

ibis wrote:
Brandubh wrote:
ibis wrote:
Brandubh wrote:
Helium Three wrote:
The front page story by Jamie Smyth in IT casts an interesting light on the relationship between Ireland and the Commission:

The Taoiseach Bertie Ahern has lobbied the commission about Ireland's climate targets, arguing that GDP per capita does not accurately reflect the Irish economy because of the high level of profits repatriated by multinational companies. Barroso is not impressed.

Smyth reports José Manuel Barroso as saying that Ireland would not be able to alter its climate change targets because it can afford the cost of cutting C02 emissions.
"Our proposal is equitable, fair and technically sound - we will not change it," said Mr Barroso.The commission handed Ireland the toughest target in Europe for cutting emissions under a burden-sharing agreement drawn up in January based on relative wealth. Meeting the target is likely to cost the economy up to €1 billion per year by 2020.
The Government has raised concerns about the way the target was apportioned by Brussels.
"We believe that GDP per capita is the best way of representing fairness in terms of EU," said Mr Barroso.
"Ireland has benefited so much from structural aid from the EU because it was much lower than the average and now it is higher than the average."
He also warned that leaders who signalled now that they were not willing to meet the targets would have a "level of credibility close to zero".

Imagine that - a level of credibility close to zero! What kind of a national leader would that be?

Amazing how we have to jump to order yet Germany can get off the hook:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/mar/15/germany.climatechange

Under intense pressure from German industrial lobbies the chancellor, Angela Merkel, won changes to the wording of the summit statement ordering the European commission to spell out how "energy-intensive industries" could be granted special treatment in the climate change package.

Yesterday's summit was about how to deliver on those targets and how to convert the aims into binding national and European law by next year.
"Mrs Merkel was completely different from last year when she chaired the summit," said a participant and senior European government figure. "This time she was the chancellor of German industry."

Perhaps it's because these are about two completely different things....Germany managed to get a slight change in implementation towards the targets, we failed to get a wholesale change in the way targets are calculated. Amazing.

There is nothing really amazing about it at all - Germany has huge clout at this level and is a State that has pumped billions of DMs/Euros into the European Project for decades.

We are a minnow who has milked the system for all its worth and now its payback time... What a Face

Hmm....did you ever hear the word "sarchasm"?

Is that the word for the French President's political philosophy? Suspect
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