Greenman's Occasional Organ

Ecosocialist. Syndicalist. Critical Techno-Progressive.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Demand a Referendum!

The recent TUC and Green Party conferences both put forward the demand that there should be a referendum on the new European "Reform Treaty" - the rebranded neo-liberal European Constitution.
At the time of writing the petition on the "I Want A Referendum" website had over 19,800 signatures.
The case for a referendum is put here.

For those who believe the pro-treaty arguments about the aims and substance of the constitution being dropped (rather than just the window dressing of Euro-State language and symbols) and it being just a "tidying up exercise", here are some telling quotes :

"Public opinion will be led to adopt, without knowing it, the proposals that we dare not present to them directly"
"All the earlier proposals will be in the new text, but will be hidden and disguised in some way." - V. Giscard D'Estaing, (Chairman of the Convention which wrote the European Constitution) June 2007

"What was (already) difficult to understand will become utterly incomprehensible, but the substance has been retained...Why not have a single text? The only reason is that this would look too much like the constitutional treaty. Making cosmetic changes would make the text more easy to swallow" - D'Estaing again, July 2007

"We have not let a single substantial point of the Constitutional Treaty go… It is, without a doubt, much more than a treaty. This is a project of foundational character, a treaty for a new Europe." - Spanish Prime Minister, Jose Zapatero.

"The substance of the Constitution is preserved. That is a fact." - Angela Merkel, German Chancellor.

" The substance of what was agreed in 2004 has been retained. What is gone is the term 'constitution'." - Dermot Ahern, Irish Foreign Minister, June 2007

"Britain is different. Of course there will be transfers of sovereignty. But would I be intelligent to draw the attention of public opinion to this fact?" Jean Claude Juncker, Prime Minister of Luxembourg (obviously not expecting to be translated and reported in Britain!)

"The aim of the Constitutional Treaty was to be more readable; the aim of this treaty is to be unreadable...the Constitution aimed to be clear, whereas this treaty had to be unclear. It is a success" - Karel de Gucht, Belgian Foreign Minister.

"The good thing is...that all the symbolic elements are gone, and that which really matters, the core - is left" - Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Danish Prime Minister, June 2007.

Trade Unionists Against The EU Constitution (TUAEUC) published a very good pamphlet that helped sway views at the TUC - "The Big EU Con Trick - Why trade unionists should demand a referendum on the EU's Renamed Constitution"
This is available on request from TUAEUC, PO Box 46295, London W5 2UG.

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At 10:26 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amaze your friends. Vote YES or NO to Free Europe Constitution at!


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