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 FF gives reasons to vote YES

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PostSubject: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:17 pm

FF gives reasons to vote Yes

The Lisbon Reform Treaty will deliver important
benefits for Ireland:
•It secures Ireland as a centre for Foreign Investment and
Job Creation and retains our Tax Veto. (Article 93 & 113)
• It allows the EU work for us in ensuring vital Energy
Supplies in the years ahead. (Article 194)
• It provides the strongest ever protection for our Neutrality.
(Article 11 & 28 )
• It provides for greater EU involvement in UN-sanctioned
peacekeeping in line with Ireland’s proud tradition.
(Article 28 )
• It introduces a new Charter of Rights to promote the
interests of all citizens such as ensuring a high level of
employment, education and social protection. (Article 2 & 6)
• It ensures that the Irish people alone will decide on laws to
protect the unborn. (Maastricht Protocol and Article 6)
• It gives Ireland and small countries full equality in the
European Commission with even the largest countries like
Germany and Britain. (Article 244)
• It increases Your Say in Decisions by expanding the role of
democratically elected parliaments (Article 8C) including
giving the European Parliament an extra role in 40 new
policy areas. (Article 233)
• It allows police forces to work together against Cross
Border Crime, like drug and people trafficking. (Article 77)
• It introduces a Citizens’ Initiative which gives you the right
to help set the agenda of the EU. (Article 8B)


Last edited by Zhou_Enlai on Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:16 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:35 pm

Good man Zhou - that's more like it from the Yes crowd... a case of too little too late though..?
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:44 pm

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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:12 pm

I would be cautious even about UN-sanctionned peace-keeping.

In Yugoslavia we had soldiers, more or less pathetically impotent, but still they performed chores like watch from time to time.

Because they were shot like birds without the possibilty to shoot back, they asked for sandbags in order to at least protect their watchposts. And the UN refused, because... the sandbags were not in renewable tissue.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:53 pm

“If we are to avoid institutional gridlock, the EU must implement improved methods of decision making - it cannot continue ‘business as usual”.
Bishops’ Pastoral Reflection on the
Lisbon Treaty

Am I alone in finding the language and the message corporate rather than spiritual ?
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Mon Jun 09, 2008 11:34 pm

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
FF gives reasons to vote Yes

The Lisbon Reform Treaty will deliver important
benefits for Ireland:
•It secures Ireland as a centre for Foreign Investment and
Job Creation and retains our Tax Veto. (Article 93 & 113)
• It allows the EU work for us in ensuring vital Energy
Supplies in the years ahead. (Article 194)
• It provides the strongest ever protection for our Neutrality.
(Article 11 & 28)
• It provides for greater EU involvement in UN-sanctioned
peacekeeping in line with Ireland’s proud tradition.
(Article 28)
• It introduces a new Charter of Rights to promote the
interests of all citizens such as ensuring a high level of
employment, education and social protection. (Article 2 & 6)
• It ensures that the Irish people alone will decide on laws to
protect the unborn. (Maastricht Protocol and Article 6)
• It gives Ireland and small countries full equality in the
European Commission with even the largest countries like
Germany and Britain. (Article 244)
• It increases Your Say in Decisions by expanding the role of
democratically elected parliaments (Article 8C) including
giving the European Parliament an extra role in 40 new
policy areas. (Article 233)
• It allows police forces to work together against Cross
Border Crime, like drug and people trafficking. (Article 77)
• It introduces a Citizens’ Initiative which gives you the right
to help set the agenda of the EU. (Article 8B)

This all sounds rousingly impressive Zhou - but without the actual wording of the provisions which you claim are providing all of these benefits - and without reference to the provisions which they are replacing, where that is the case, it is yet again merely another another set of unsubstantiated claims. You have parceled up a enormous amount of revision and change into a shortlist of all encompassing soundbites - and it isn't representative of the scale and depth of revision of the basis and purpose of the EU which this Treaty is about.

Why not include the wording of the provisions/amendments that you refer to - to make it a properly scientific/objective discussion? I'm passing your claims to an MEP acquaintance of mine to see what they have to say about them.

I believe in your sincerity and appreciate the attention to specifics that you have brought into focus. Maybe we can yet establish some shared understanding here.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:31 am

cactus flower wrote:
“If we are to avoid institutional gridlock, the EU must implement improved methods of decision making - it cannot continue ‘business as usual”.
Bishops’ Pastoral Reflection on the
Lisbon Treaty

Am I alone in finding the language and the message corporate rather than spiritual ?

I'm sorry, I'm being lazy but really have to log off now. Is there a weblink to this "Reflection"? And yes, the language is rather corporate but what is the Church if not corporate? ... sorry but true.
Actually that sentence is quite extraordinary from a Church, unless there are more substantial sentences surrounding it. I'll google tomorrow if no link.


Last edited by Atticus on Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:32 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling and tiredness!)
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:39 am

Sleep well Atticus. The quote was from the leaflet linked further up this thread.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:03 am

Atticus wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
“If we are to avoid institutional gridlock, the EU must implement improved methods of decision making - it cannot continue ‘business as usual”.
Bishops’ Pastoral Reflection on the
Lisbon Treaty

Am I alone in finding the language and the message corporate rather than spiritual ?

I'm sorry, I'm being lazy but really have to log off now. Is there a weblink to this "Reflection"? And yes, the language is rather corporate but what is the Church if not corporate? ... sorry but true.
Actually that sentence is quite extraordinary from a Church, unless there are more substantial sentences surrounding it. I'll google tomorrow if no link.

It's quite good stuff, actually - here's the link, and a chunk of quote:

Quote :
Conscious of the significance for Irish citizens
and indeed for all those living in the EU of the impending referendum
on the Treaty of Lisbon, we welcome and associate ourselves with the
call from the leadership of the other main Christian Churches on the
island of Ireland for ‘all Christians to take the time and to make the
effort to study and reflect prayerfully on the contents of the Treaty …
[and] to vote, which is their right and privilege.’ We are both Irish
citizens and Europeans, and on matters of important public policy such
as that reflected in the Treaty of Lisbon, there is a responsibility on
all of us to exercise our franchise by casting our ballot (1).

Conscious of the pressure from powerful interest groups in Ireland
and in other parts of the EU to influence the outcome of the
referendum, we ask also that the right of people to exercise their
franchise freely be respected. People have the right to cast their
vote without feeling unduly pressurised. Furthermore, we condemn
unreservedly those who would seek to influence the outcome of the
referendum either by offering misleading or even patently incorrect
advice or by introducing extraneous factors into the debate. In this
context, it should be stressed that this is a referendum on the merits
of a particular treaty; it is not a referendum to assess our views on
membership of the European Union or to register a protest vote on an
issue unrelated to the merits or otherwise of the Treaty of Lisbon.


In deciding how to exercise one’s vote one should do so in the light
of an acknowledgement of the distinctive roles of politics and religion
and an acceptance of the legitimate autonomy of the political order.
As Pope Benedict XVI states: “The just ordering of society and the
State is a central responsibility of politics…”(2).


The Treaty of Lisbon has been drawn up in the light of the
enlargement of the EU from a community of fifteen states at the turn of
the millennium to one of twenty seven states today. An enlargement of
this scale poses significant challenges at both an administrative and
at a political level that call for appropriate institutional reform
which the Treaty of Lisbon attempts to address. If we are to avoid
institutional gridlock, the EU must implement improved methods of
decision making – it cannot continue ‘business as usual.’


In addition, the Treaty of Lisbon is prompted by the need for
institutional reform that will equip the EU to continue to play a
positive role in a rapidly changing world. The importance of this
issue is highlighted by the increasing impact of globalisation on all
areas of economic life.

Finally, there is a growing recognition of the difficulties
experienced by citizens in all the member states in identifying with
and engaging in the European project, something reflected in the low
turnout for European elections. In consequence, there is a need for
institutional reform that both promotes democracy and contributes to a
greater transparency and accountability on the part of EU
institutions. The Treaty of Lisbon attempts to address this democratic
deficit and to promote a culture of engagement that fosters the ideal
of active citizenship.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:07 am

Again, the Bishops make many claims for both the rationale and substance of the Treaty without once providing proof for what they say.

They argue, for example, that there is a need for improved decision making particularly because of the enlargement of the EU. Nobody would object to the idea of improving and streamlining decision making processes PROVIDED the alleged improvements are in reality improvements and do not encroach on what little democracy there is at the EU - and are open, fair and transparent.

Reading the Treaty on its own, prayerfully or otherwise, doesn't even begin to answer those questions. In addition to your prayers, you need to have the full text of two other Treaties to hand and an expert on international and administrative law. How is that an improvement in the decision making processes, if the very legislation by which the decision-making is governed is impossible to understand - even for the elected representatives of our countries, who are the ones who are supposed to be making the decisions?

I have a degree in law and have studied EU law. While I would not claim to be any kind of expert in this area, having read many sections of the the treaty, it is the most incomprehensibly drafted legal document I've ever read - and I'm including the driest and furthest reaches of trust law in that assessment, which if anyone has ever studied it, then you will know what I'm talking about. Either that incomprehensibility is deliberate or it is a result of trying to do too much too quickly - very likely both.

Our politicians - even Brian Cowen - are regularly embarassing themselves by exposing a lack of knowledge of the Treaty. I feel sorry for them: being mere mortals themselves, they are having as much difficulty as the rest of us understanding WTF the wretched thing actually says. In fact it would be nigh on impossible for Cowen to find the necessary time to be able to understand it properly, without taking a six month sabbatical, which I don't think he has done. But he is so desperate to make us vote yes anyway, he has had to get the guys in dresses in on the act. (Such is the credibility of Fianna Fail, nowadays!)

JP Bonde is probably the person who knows most about this Treaty. He knows every line of it - has read it through several times - necessary because the drafters kept changing the paragraph numbers of the provisions of the treaties to which the Lisbon treaty cross-referred, so that it was a devastatingly difficult task to keep pace with what was being proposed. But he has managed it. At the end of his researches, he identified 700 vital questions about how it was going to work in reality - and even what the hell a lot of it actually meant - because in so many parts of the draft it is unintelligible. Naturally, the Bishops are indifferent to this sort of concern, speaking as they are from within a Church that requires unquestioning obedience to authority and is ferociously undemocratic.

Bonde was asking things like who would be responsible for what, how would relevant decisions be made, what time frames there would be, what the exact scope of the provisions would be - and so forth - all directly pertinent to a basic understanding of what is being proposed - reagardless of a yes or no perspective - in fact an essential prior enquiry for anyone to make before it would even be possible to arrive at a definite position. In order to respond to his questions, they were parceled up in to 23 bundles of issues - and the possibility of discussion or debate on their substance, was subsequently voted down. In other words, he was told to fuck off with his questions.

In so far as the Treaty is intelligible, it raises extremely serious questions about increased military spending, for example, which yes-orientated politicians are quite simply lying their heads off about. It is written in black and white that member states will be obliged to increase spending on military capability. It's absurd and insulting to ask us to ignore the evidence of our own eyes.

The EU and the Bishops have a lot in common: to vote yes is to vote for the main part in blind, unreasoning faith in a set of unproven promises of jam tomorrow and all things wonderful materialising on some future higher plane of European existence, which will render life for us all a rapture and delight, only we don't know why or how and are sure as hell not going to be told. We must trust in the High Priests of the EU and cede our intelligence and self-determination to them alone.

Frankly, the yes camp are in la la land on this. Even if you desperately wanted to believe in this Treaty, logically, legally, politcally and morally speaking, it has been made impossible to do so.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:03 pm

Aragon, the list of positives was from the FF website. There is a link to their garish PDF at the top of my post. They give the article numbers so people can check them themselves [ although "8 )" turns into a smiley!]. I posted it because the Yes side have not been able to deliver snappy reasons to vote yet to date. This simple list is an improvement from the Yes side.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:49 pm

Thanks Zhou. I have re-read the list and only find in favour to a limited extent to the "increased right in say" - and Charter of Rights. all the other points only remind me of reasons to vote no. Maybe they would have done better to point them all at smileys Very Happy

I am still not finding it easy or straightforward to vote in this Referendum. I don't think that either a Yes or a No vote will solve any of the problems the Treaty was meant to address.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:26 pm

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
Aragon, the list of positives was from the FF website. There is a link to their garish PDF at the top of my post. They give the article numbers so people can check them themselves [ although "8 )" turns into a smiley!]. I posted it because the Yes side have not been able to deliver snappy reasons to vote yet to date. This simple list is an improvement from the Yes side.

Sorry Zhou, I misunderstood and misread that post - will check out the info at the links you provided.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:46 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Thanks Zhou. I have re-read the list and only find in favour to a limited extent to the "increased right in say" - and Charter of Rights. all the other points only remind me of reasons to vote no. Maybe they would have done better to point them all at smileys Very Happy

I am still not finding it easy or straightforward to vote in this Referendum. I don't think that either a Yes or a No vote will solve any of the problems the Treaty was meant to address.

Me neither. I may end up taking some Prozac and playing eeny meeny miney mo on the day.
I was a YES until I heard Professor Gwyn Prins on the radio yesterday, and then fell into NO territory, then I spoke with a Labour Councillor about it and edged back into YES.
FFS, I've never been so bloody indecisive about anything. Evil or Very Mad
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:50 pm

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
Thanks Zhou. I have re-read the list and only find in favour to a limited extent to the "increased right in say" - and Charter of Rights. all the other points only remind me of reasons to vote no. Maybe they would have done better to point them all at smileys Very Happy

I am still not finding it easy or straightforward to vote in this Referendum. I don't think that either a Yes or a No vote will solve any of the problems the Treaty was meant to address.

Me neither. I may end up taking some Prozac and playing eeny meeny miney mo on the day.
I was a YES until I heard Professor Gwyn Prins on the radio yesterday, and then fell into NO territory, then I spoke with a Labour Councillor about it and edged back into YES.
FFS, I've never been so bloody indecisive about anything. Evil or Very Mad

What did they say?
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:05 pm

Gwyn Prins (London School of economics) said lots of stuff -

Lisbon is 96% of the EU constitution rejected by France and Holland.
Lisbon provides for self-amendment by EU without approval of the people. This is irreversible
Brian Cowen's promise to the IFA over the WTO veto was false because he won't have a veto after Lisbon.
The EU have a military agenda.
The EU have a common tax base agenda.
etc. etc.
He sounded convincing due to his knowledge of the Articles etc, and the fact that (he said) he had been studying it for several years.

The Labour Cllr. said that the EU have never breached the spirit of a Treaty, and would not consider an attempt to amend the Treaty in the future which is outside the 'spirit' of the Treaty, as accepted by Ireland.
And some more level headed sounding stuff which tended to cancel out the hysterics of Prof. Prins.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:15 pm

There is a feeling about the EU becoming 'neo con' and business-oriented which is hitting me. Slowly the frog is getting boiled, perhaps. Privatisation etc, when there should be more of a community effort. Sometimes we literally need to make money not let it be made. Think Eircom if you want to consider the word 'irreversible' - a once nationally-owned company and infrastructure now on the books of Australian bankers. .. Do you think THEY want to improve and invest in it? It's experimental technomics and has social benefits immeasurable to investment banks, as has good clean water.

I think we need to get our own shit together first before we enter into bigger and bigger agreements with this body. There are a lot of positives with the EU but it would be helpful to know what they are and how our government and politicians deal with them. Education education education.

Of everybody.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:27 pm

I know what you mean, Auditor #9. The EU dream has been bought out.

I feel like I went to bed with Brad Pitt and woke up with Jack Palance. Crying or Very sad
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:48 pm

Why are the No side forever quoting these people we have never heard of. Surely the detail is in the Treaty not in other people's spin? These contextless quotes from foreigners unfamiliar with our laws, constitution and traditions cause nothing but confusion. It is the treaty and the constitution that count - that is the whole point of signing up to something in black and white.


Oftentimes, when Declan Ganley or a paid Rivada/Libertas employees is the person talking about statements by this or that foreigner, I suspect that the aim is to make everything sound more confusing than it really is.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:56 pm

Brad Pitt and Jack Palance are movie stars, Zhou. I would not ask their opinion of the Treaty. I am trying my best to read the texts and the Irish White Paper together.

It seems to me the entire argument of the Yes side has been trust us we're your leaders, from day one to today.

Furthermore, interpretation imho will be almost as important as the actual words when it comes to a post-Treaty EU, should it be adopted. If we were only listening to one side, I would have agreed with your point.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:00 pm

Here is the text of an interesting paper just sent this morning. I have to include it in full because it came as an attachment - its not on the net:
A Lawyer’s look at the Lisbon Treaty
By Joe Noonan.




[Joe Noonan is a partner in Noonan Linehan Carroll Coffey, Solicitors, Cork. He was an expert witness on foreign and security policy in the landmark Crotty case (1987) in which the Supreme Court decided that the Single European Act should be put to the Irish people by way of referendum. The Crotty judgement is the reason Ireland is holding a referendum on the Lisbon treaty on June 12th.]



Introduction

The Treaty of Lisbon if ratified by all member states will transform the legal structure and operation of the European Union. At present there are two bodies, the European Community and the European Union. After Lisbon only one body will remain. Lisbon consolidates and amends the existing treaties – we will be left with two linked treaties, the Treaty on European Union (TEU) and the Treaty on the Functioning of the Union.



Lisbon contains over 90 percent of the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe, rejected by voters in France and the Netherlands in 2005. Following further negotiations the Lisbon treaty emerged in December 2007. None of the member states, except Ireland, now seek approval for ratification by referendum. This has attracted some comment.



"The most striking change [between the Lisbon treaty and the Constitution treaty] is perhaps that in order to enable some governments to reassure their electorates that the changes will have no constitutional implications, the idea of a new and simpler treaty containing all the provisions governing the Union has now been dropped in favour of a huge series of individual amendments to two existing treaties. Virtual incomprehensibility has thus replaced simplicity as the key approach to EU reform. As for the changes now proposed to be made to the constitutional treaty, most are presentational changes that have no practical effect. They have simply been designed to enable certain heads of government to sell to their people the idea of ratification by parliamentary action rather than by referendum."

[Dr Garret FitzGerald, Irish Times, 30 June 2007.]



Given the implications of Lisbon for our legal landscape, the lack of public debate among Irish lawyers is remarkable. In this article it is possible only to sketch some of the proposed changes. Nothing is a substitute for reading the treaty text. On its own it is virtually impenetrable. Fortunately, an excellent document showing the effect of the Lisbon changes on the existing treaties has been compiled by Peadar Ó Broin (google ‘peadar o broin annotated treaties’). The changes are colour coded, with new text shown in yellow or blue. Deleted text remains, struck through in red.



Scope of the Union

The Lisbon treaty is an important legal document. It proposes the abolition of the European Community and the reconstruction of the European Union as a new single body with its own legal identity separate from its member states. Lisbon will change the legal relationship between this new Union and the member states. Some changes have attracted public interest, such as the reduced number of Commissioners, changes in qualified majority voting, and the removal of various national vetoes. Of particular constitutional significance in Ireland however will be the changes to the objectives of the Union and its increased scope.



At present, the stated Tasks of the European Community focus on the promotion of economic development, social progress and economic and social cohesion and solidarity among member states (Article 2, Treaty establishing the European Community). The stated Task of the present European Union is the organisation of relations between the member states and between their peoples:



The Union shall be founded on the European Communities, supplemented by the policies and

forms of cooperation established by this Treaty. Its task shall be to organise, in a manner

demonstrating consistency and solidarity, relations between the Member states and between their peoples. (Article 1, TEU pre Lisbon)



These tasks render the present European Community and European Union the servants of the member states and of their citizens. This will change under Lisbon which removes these tasks, and provides no equivalent replacement tasks. Lisbon abolishes the European Community, folding its operations into the new Union. Instead of organising relations between member states and between their peoples, the new Union's aims and objectives will focus on identifying and asserting the Union’s own interests and the ‘wellbeing of its peoples’ (Article 3, TEU post Lisbon).



The aims and objectives of the new Union are elaborated in that Article 3. This should be read in full as it is too long to reproduce here. Article 3 reflects the fact that the new Union will have more scope than the existing bodies. For example, Lisbon gives the Union greater competence in the justice and home affairs area. Ireland, along with the UK has opted out of this part of the treaty but will review the opt-out in three years. If Lisbon is ratified by Ireland, despite their intial opt-out, the government will have authority to opt in to these areas if and when it sees fit in the future.



Citizenship

Under Lisbon we are no longer referred to as ‘the peoples of the member states’ and are instead referred to for the first time as 'its peoples', ie the peoples of the new Union. Similarly, post Lisbon the Union will refer to us as ‘its citizens’; a subtle change from present references to us as citizens of member states. EU citizenship as a concept came into existence with Maastricht, which provided that EU citizenship ‘shall complement national citizenship and not replace it’. This changes with Lisbon which says that EU citizenship shall be ‘additional’ to national citizenship but shall not replace it. The full implications of this change for Irish citizens remain to be seen.



Similarly Members of the European Parliament, currently described as ‘representatives of the peoples of the member states brought together in the Community’, will become ‘representatives of the Union's citizens’ in the new Union.



Charter of Fundamental Rights

Article 6 of the new TEU makes reference to a Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU, which it says ‘shall have the same legal value as the Treaties’. The Guide to the Treaty issued through the Government Publications Office by the National Forum on Europe says that the Treaty status conferred on the Charter will ‘significantly increase the jurisdiction’ of the European Court of Justice.



The practical consequences for human rights law in Ireland are unclear. Gerard Hogan SC suggests that the Charter could amount to ‘the most profound change’ in relation to judicial review and the protection of fundamental rights since the adoption of the Constitution. [Irish Times. 24 April 2008. Charter ‘could eclipse’ Supreme Court. Dr Carol Coulter]



Ireland and the Wider World

The freedom to manage relations with other countries is a hallmark of statehood. That was at the heart of the Crotty judgement. The Supreme Court found that the Single European Act would be unconstitutional without a referendum, because it would commit the government to endeavour to coordinate foreign policy with other member states. Even though the commitments were expressed in soft language, the Court found that as a matter of international law, these commitments would bind the government. Lisbon similarly is a treaty written in the language of international law. It is important to remember this when considering the Lisbon Articles which impose new commitments on Ireland in the areas of EU common foreign and security policy (CFSP), including common security and defence policy (CSDP).



Commission President Barroso has acknowledged the significance of these changes: The new Treaty will turn the European Union into a full external political actor by giving the Union legal personality……….It will allow the emergence of a true common European defence. It will introduce a mutual defence clause and a solidarity clause.’ (4 December 2007 speaking at the European Parliament)



Military and Security Commitments

Among the new commitments are Art 28A.7 of the TEU (post Lisbon) which is a mutual defence clause, obliging all member states to come to the aid of any member state that is the victim of armed aggression in its territory. This resembles the defence pact in Article V of the NATO treaty. In the NATO pact, as in the new Lisbon defence clause, each country reserves a discretion as to the precise manner in which it may respond. Some have argued that the existence of a reservation of this kind in Lisbon allows Ireland to deny that it is a defence pact. By that logic NATO itself would not be a defence pact either.



Lisbon will also give proper treaty status to the European Defence Agency. The Agency was established by the EU Heads in 2004. Ireland was among the first to join when the government committed us to Agency membership which includes financial commitments. The Agency has a range of military and security goals that are not confined to the territory of the EU. Article 14 of the existing TEU, which relates to CFSP, allows the European Council to adopt ‘joint actions which shall address specific situations where operational action by the Union is deeemed to be required’. A citizen would be unlikely to have understood Article 14 as providing for the establishment of the Agency, but this became the purported treaty authority for the Agency in 2004.



Lisbon will oblige member states for the first time to ‘progressively improve’ their military capabilities. The Agency will monitor whether countries are making the necessary improvements.



Lisbon weakens the current limitation on EU military action, which in general terms confines such actions to humanitarian or peacekeeping operations. Lisbon will give the Union scope to deploy military force for such purposes, at such locations and in such circumstances as it sees fit. There is no obligation at present on the EU to seek UN sanction before deploying EU forces outside the Union. This will not change.



Law is ultimately about power and how it is to be exercised. The Lisbon referendum is about the redistribution of power between Irish citizen and the Irish government, between big and small states in the EU, and between member states and the EU. Lisbon will reshape the European Union with implications that will last for a long time. We cannot afford to underestimate the significance of this referendum.



End.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:01 pm

Sigh. Look, Prins is covering exactly the same ground as has been travelled repeatedly in this campaign:

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Lisbon is 96% of the EU constitution rejected by France and Holland.

What does that % figure mean? Changes were made, and some of them were made specifically to address the concerns of the French and Dutch. If those changes involved relatively little of the text, so what? What % change would be represented by leaving out the "solidarity" clause - 0.05%? Yet that would address the concerns of quite a lot of voters.

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Lisbon provides for self-amendment by EU without approval of the people. This is irreversible

This is bollocks. There is no mechanism in the Treaty that allows for amendment without ratificiation, and there is nothing in the Treaty that dictates how ratification happens. How Ireland ratifies amendments is up to Ireland. The Treaty is not "self-amending" - it is merely "amendable" like our Constitution.

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
Brian Cowen's promise to the IFA over the WTO veto was false because he won't have a veto after Lisbon.

Again, false. He will have no specific agriculture veto, but he will have a veto over the whole WTO deal including any agriculture package.

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
The EU have a military agenda.

The French certainly do, and have done for most of the EU's existence, but everyone else gets a vote too and it hasn't happened yet.

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
The EU have a common tax base agenda.

The French certainly do, and have done for most of the EU's existence,
but everyone else gets a vote too and it hasn't happened yet.

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
etc. etc.
He sounded convincing due to his knowledge of the Articles etc, and the fact that (he said) he had been studying it for several years.

Then it's absolutely amazing that he's managing to talk such complete rubbish.

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
The Labour Cllr. said that the EU have never breached the spirit of a Treaty, and would not consider an attempt to amend the Treaty in the future which is outside the 'spirit' of the Treaty, as accepted by Ireland.

It wouldn't matter if they did. The Treaty can only be amended if the amendment is ratified by every member state, just as happens now. Article 48 is the article in question, and it has this rather big rider:

"The amendments shall enter into force after being ratified by all the Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements."

What are the "constitutional requirement"? Well, have a look at what the notice on the front of the consolidated version of the Lisbon Treaty says:

"The Treaty of Lisbon is still in the process of being ratified by the Member States, in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements."

What are we having? A referendum. That's our "constitutional requirement". Does the Treaty change our "constitutional requirement"? NO, it doesn't.

Really, it gives me the Muttleys (rassenfressenrassenmussengrassenfrissenrassen). That and Aragon's claim, which essentially boils down to "the Bishops are either lying, or haven't really bothered to think about it". Yeah, yeah.
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:04 pm

As EVM described it as "hysterical", I think you were knocking at an open door Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:06 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Furthermore, interpretation imho will be almost as important as the actual words when it comes to a post-Treaty EU, should it be adopted. If we were only listening to one side, I would have agreed with your point.
Yes the Referendum Commission this morning on midlands 103 said so much when he was asked about tax and the Treaty. He was at pains to point out that the Referendum Commission could only give advice on matters directly concerning the Treaty and not on interpretations of it. Although he did say there is a high-court judge in the RefCom who is fairly sure there are no backdoors or scenarios where this or that tax can be introduced.

Why isn't there a feckin clause saying that if a loophole is found then the Treaty should be amended as to protect sovereignty? The hoors haven't worked out who should do what in Europe and by how much etc. have they?

In my view it might be useful that Denmark England etc. do not have the Euro because economic activity often works on differences otherwise you get stagnation; the cases or peripheral countries should be looked at too - we should have more tax flexibility than the Centre because of transport reasons.. That should be acknowledge and protected or at least debated...
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PostSubject: Re: FF gives reasons to vote YES   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:12 pm

deleted.


Last edited by Ard-Taoiseach on Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:53 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : to fix double post without affecting Auditor's post count.)
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