Thursday, 1 October 2009

We thought, because we had power, we had wisdom.

Well we are here now again the tranquility before the storm, the Irish referendum. I know what I was doing this time last year, reading Dracula by Bram Stoker. Quite a fabulous book I must say, and what is more very appropriate for the time being. I hope you saw what I did there; drew a parallel between vampires trying to establish a new base in England but currently only having a place in Transylvania. Enough of these childish thoughts though, the EU is here and the best we can really do is to make fun out of them and marvel at the many contradictions that mire the entire project. And we shall.

We must ask what precisely do our masters in Brussels think will happen once the Irish vote 'yes' today and when they have beaten every other remaining nation in the EU into submission. They have the passerelle clause of course (A Passerelle Clause also known as an Escalator Clause is a clause within treaties of the European Union that allows the European Council to decide unanimously to replace unanimous voting in the Council of Ministers with qualified majority voting (QMV) in specified areas) which the House of Lords once called the "gangplank clause" there is still some bloodymindedness left in old Westminster I will give her that. They will never have to ask of our opinion again but that does not imply that we are incapable of forming one, that we need a nanny parliament to "represent" our wishes in Brussels. No, if anything this will produce the first true majority of EU rebels.

History always produces its blocks and they come and go like anything else; nothing lasts for ever there are no perpetual states of being. There cannot be any perpetual political states for it violates the second law of thermodynamics which forbids it completely. Perpetuum mobile is naught it cannot happen. We had three different reiches and a Weimar republic in the middle. British, German, French Empire and even a Japanese one. These symbols of power never last because they violate not only laws of nature but laws of man. When the powers themselves eventually realise this they try all sorts of things to extend their state of being, like curtailing human rights, imposing curfews, violently distorting facts even more so than now - and so on. But you cannot stop vox populi.

What are the British thoughts on the EU then you might ask? Well it looks like a very moribund project at grassroots level, but naturally that is not where the power lies until at the very end. All the data from the following polls except the last one can be found here at Democracy Movement (my emphasis).
  • Nov 06 - Power 100 Poll, Times:
81% of UK businesses believed that Britain should not reconsider membership of the Euro.
  • Harris Poll for the Financial Times, Jun 07:
A referendum on the new treaty is wanted by 69% of Britons, 75% of Spaniards, 71% of Germans, 68% of Italians, and 64% of French
  • Populous for Global Vision 8-10 June 07:
83% wanted a referendum before the constitutional treaty becomes law;

14% were against.
  • Ipsos Mori poll, 11/8/07:
81% of British people want a referendum on the new EU treaty. Only 17% agreed with Gordon Brown that Parliament should decide.
  • ICM Poll for Global Vision, Nov 9-11, 07
73% wanted a Referendum on the EU Treaty,

18% did not.

23% wanted to leave the EU;

47% wanted a looser arrangement with the EU, based on free trade;

24% wanted us to remain a full member
  • You-Gov Poll for Open Europe, June 08
Only 29% of Britons support full EU membership

In a YouGov poll commissioned by Open Europe, 24% said "the UK should leave the EU altogether" while a further 38% said that "The UK should stay in the single market but pull out of the other political elements of the EU", making a total of 62% opposed to membership of the EU as it stands.
  • Survey for Radio 4's The World at One. Jan 09:
71% against adopting the Euro, 15% in favour
  • ICM Poll for the Taxpayers Alliance, 22 May 09
69% want the Government to start ignoring EU rules

60% say that fines for disobedience to our Brussels masters should be ignored

75% want a referendum before any more powers are given to the EU

57% want to take back powers already given to the EU
  • Com Res Poll for BBC Daily Politics, 19 Mar 09
55% wanted to leave the EU but maintain close trading links

84% said that voters should decide whether any further powers should be transferred to the EU

51% did not think there was any benefit in trade or jobs from EU membership
  • Conservative Home poll of Conservative Parliamentary candidates, Aug 09
84% want Cameron to hold a referendum on Lisbon, even if it has already been ratified

60% want a complete renegotiation of Britain's relationship with the EU

Only 6% want to be "at the heart of Europe"
43% said the EU should leave the UK altogether

57% of those questioned believe that a future Conservative government should offer a referendum on the ratified treaty, with only 15 percent saying there should be no such vote.

These polls show a growing sector of the electorate who are exceedingly unhappy with the EU and want to withdraw altogether. At the same time, of course, voting turnout in European Elections have been falling steadily over the years.

Only 34.7% of eligible voters even bothered to turnout this year compared to 38.5% in 2004. Why is this then, well it simply does not matter who we elect for parliament they cannot propose laws anyway, they have no real power and cannot possibly express the wishes of the electorate without it. They can express the wishes of the British electorate even less because most of us do not want the UK in the EU at all. UKIP could get all the British MEPs but they still would not hold the power to withdraw the UK from the EU. That powers lies ultimately with Westminster, well at least until the Irish vote 'yes' then the EU has to be consulted if a nation wants to withdraw, a process which will take at least two years during which time of course the EU will do all in its power to reverse that decision, like they have done in Ireland and did in Denmark with the Maastricht Treaty. In the words of the timeless Václav Klaus who called whole system to be abolished. "It's pointless to have European elections," he said. "That's like holding semi-elections." Quite.

I was always told to end my 'essays' with a quote, something which would really ram in the message which I was trying to convey. And I will do this not because I was told to but because there are so many quotes that survive on this issue and it is beyond me why we always ignore ancient immortal wisdom, this has happened before and it will happen again yet we always turn a blind eye. 'Hate' is not mankind's foulest trait, 'ignorance' has that blessing.

"Those who seek absolute power, even though they seek it to do what they regard as good, are simply demanding the right to enforce their own version of heaven on earth. And let me remind you, they are the very ones who always create the most hellish tyrannies. Absolute power does corrupt, and those who seek it must be suspect and must be opposed." - Barry Goldwater

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