PDA

View Full Version : Irish reject EU Reform Treaty



Maciamo
13-06-08, 17:36
The Treaty of Lisbon was supposed to replaced the EU Constitution signed in 2004 but rejected by the French and the Dutch in a similar referendum. The ratification of the new Treaty was already well under way, with 18 national parliaments having already ratified it - including France and Germany.

Negotiations took years to be sure that the new treaty had nothing in it to displease any member state. We still remember vividly how Poland try to blackmail other EU members (http://www.eupedia.com/forum/showthread.php?t=24541) last June at the summit where EU heads of states gave their green light to the EU Reform Treaty (aka Lisbon Treaty).

Eventually, even Poland's radical right-wing president, Lech Kaczynski, understood that it was not in Poland's best interest to veto the treaty, as it would have meant a condemnation and probably retaliations from all Europe (e.g. German companies threatened to shift investments to other countries).

The EU Reform Treaty (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Lisbon) is of vital importance for the EU (and each of its member state). Its aim is to reform the way the EU institutions function. The present system was designed to accommodate the 6 original members, and was working well with up to 15 members, but had become seriously unwieldly and costly with 27 members. The main purpose of the Lisbon Treaty was to simplify things for the sake of efficiency, both in terms of cost and decision-making.

No-voters could only be people who would want to sabotage the very functioning of the EU and want EU citizens to pay more taxes than they should to support the excess bureaucracy (I mean, why else would they, in all conscience, vote no otherwise ?).

Another aim of the Treaty was to have a EU president and an EU Foreign Minister elected each for two and a half years. This, among others, would have significantly strengthened Europe's voice in world affairs.

It wouldn't be surprising if some anti-European Americans had a role in the "vote no" campaign in Ireland, as all the Irish political parties asked to vote "yes", except the Sinn Fein, the political arm of the IRA terrorist group.

It is a very sad day for Europe indeed. How could the Irish have been so easily manipulated by terrorists in voting for their own doom ? What kind of suicidal behaviour is that ?

In Poland, the Kaczynski brothers lost massively in the elections following their stunt that scared all Europe. In this case, ousting a few politicians won't help, as the main political parties supported the treaty. It is (half of) the country's population itself that was thickheaded (reminds me of some other votes where half of a country's population acted in a asinine manner, electing a certain G.W. Bush).

If a majority of Irish feel that they do not need Europe, then they should leave it. It's too bad that they did not realise that their country only became so prosperous since it joined the EU in 1973. Before that, Ireland was one of Europe's poorest countries, a nation of impoverished farmers that sent wave after wave of emigrants to North America and Australia. It now has the second highest GDP per capita in the EU.

Needless to say that if Ireland leaves the EU, foreign investors will have to move their offices to a country that actually belongs to the common market. It's not like Ireland has enough natural resources or major companies of its own to act all cocky and bite the hand that feeds it.

Maciamo
13-06-08, 18:58
EU politicians should now consider a plan that would consist in imposing on Irish tax-payers to support all the extra costs that the EU Reform Treaty was supposed to alleviate.

Considering Ireland's tiny population within the EU, this would probably more than double the tax-rate of all Irish citizens. Although it would not solve the problems regarding decision-making or the EU's role in international affairs, this could be a way to console other Europeans until the Irish change their minds.

Mycernius
14-06-08, 18:50
The constitution was rejected by the voters of two countries and most likely by the UK as well if Blair hadn't have back out of a referendum because he knew exactly which way the UK would have gone. Instead they try and sneak it in via this treaty. I say good for the Irish. The EU is supposed to be a democracy not a dictatorship. If the people don't want it then the EU should take the hint and not try and sneak it in via a backdoor. I notice that the Fench and the Dutch didn't even get a choice this time around for the treaty, probably because their repective governments knew the people would reject it. So good for the Irish for showing how a democracy is supposed to work, unlike the rest of the EU governments.

Sensuikan San
15-06-08, 01:38
Hello Mac! …and the top o’ the mornin’ to ye, sor!

It’s bin a log toim – but it’s noice ta see dat yer Eurocentric attitood, mixed wid a tad o’ racial hatred is still hangin’ in dere ….
So, mi boyo, let’s have a peek at yer post …



The Treaty of Lisbon was supposed to replaced the EU Constitution signed in 2004 but rejected by the French and the Dutch in a similar referendum. The ratification of the new Treaty was already well under way, with 18 national parliaments having already ratified it - including France and Germany.
Negotiations took years to be sure that the new treaty had nothing in it to displease any member state. We still remember vividly how Poland try to blackmail other EU members last June at the summit where EU heads of states gave their green light to the EU Reform Treaty (aka Lisbon Treaty).
No problem with that so far … simply facts. (Note how I have corrected your spelling of “negotiations” however – you once scolded me with the fact that you are an English teacher.)


Eventually, even Poland's radical right-wing president, Lech Kaczynski, understood that it was not in Poland's best interest to veto the treaty, as it would have meant a condemnation and probably retaliations from all Europe (e.g. German companies threatened to shift investments to other countries).


…And we know what happens when Poland doesn’t respond to German threats!


The EU Reform Treaty is of vital importance for the EU (and each of its member state). Its aim is to reform the way the EU institutions function. The present system was designed to accommodate the 6 original members, and was working well with up to 15 members, but had become seriously unwieldly and costly with 27 members. The main purpose of the Lisbon Treaty was to simplify things for the sake of efficiency, both in terms of cost and decision-making.

No problem with the statement … but some folks may well see other ramifications within the document, and have reserve …


No-voters could only be people who would want to sabotage the very functioning of the EU and want EU citizens to pay more taxes than they should to support the excess bureaucracy.

Now, that is an opinion, not fact!


Another aim of the Treaty was to have a EU president and an EU Foreign Minister elected each for two and a half years. This, among others, would have significantly strenghened Europe's voice in world affairs.

Mac, please check your spelling and proof-read your posts more carefully. As an English teacher, you should be aware of this … however, I digress; this, again, is your opinion. It is not a fact, per se.


It wouldn't be surprising if some anti-European Americans had a role in the "vote no" campaign in Ireland, as all the Irish political parties asked to vote "yes", except the Sinn Fein, the political arm of the IRA terrorist group.
It is a very sad day for Europe indeed. How could the Irish have been so easily manipulated by terrorists in voting for their own doom ? What kind of suicidal behaviour is that ?

Vraiment? Not only is this merely an opinion (again! … but, OK you’re entitled to it … I suppose …) but it is entirely inflammatory, highly unbelievable, and totally insulting to an entire nation! The voting took place in Eire, not Belfast!


One thing is sure is that our duty now is to punish Irish voters by banning and boycotting anyting coming from their country. Voting no for Europe will have consequence.


Well! There’s democracy for you! (However – I am pleased that you seem to have adopted ‘colloquial Irish spelling' for “anything” – that’s a good start!)


The Kaczynski brothers lost massively in the elections following their stunt that scared all Europe. In this case, ousting a few harebrained politicians won't do the trick. It is the country's population itself that was thickheaded, and therefore the chastisement must come from outside.

I am sure that the Irish are more than familiar with the concept of being regarded a “thickheaded’. I think your comment will roll off them like water off a duck’s back! I think that, in the past, they have had to worry about far more than one, ranting, small-time Belgian!


If Ireland doesn't need Europe, then they should leave it. It's too bad that they did not realise that their country only became so prosperous since it joined the EU in 1973. Before that, Ireland was one of Europe's poorest countries, a nation of impoverished farmers that sent wave after wave of emigrants to North America and Australia.

Bullfeathers! A nation of impoverished farmers my backside!


I challenge you, right now, on this forum to present a list of Belgian (Not bloody “European”) names of people who have contributed to the arts, medicine, science, and entertainment etc. etc. – and I will match it and outnumber it with Irish names, personalities, and prominent figures!


I challenge you! It could make a good new thread for this rather lackluster forum!


It now has the second highest GDP per capita in the EU.

Jolly good too! Is that, Maciamo, because they were a member of the EU? …or could it be because they are Irish?


Needless to say that once Ireland will have been voted out of the EU in retaliation by other member states, foreign investors will have to move their offices to a country that actually belongs to the EU.

I would suggest that most foreign investors will move, or keep their money … in countries that have a proven track record! That’s the way that $$$$$$ work!


It's not like Ireland has enough natural resources or major companies of its own to act all cocky and bite the hand that feeds it.

This is the sort of comment that I would expect to come from the befuddled ‘man in the street’ from a small, divided (by language), not particularly influential country that straddles and blocks the Franco-Dutch frontier!

Ireland, my friend, has already bitten one hand that ‘fed’ it (read “starved” it) – and done quite well – even prior to 1973!
Maciamo. I think you should be ashamed of yourself. It does not surprise me that you rant like a fascist – but it still disappoints me. You can do better than this.

Sure, as a European you feel that the result is not what you want – but we can’t always have what we want, we have to go with the majority. It’s called DEMOCRACY!

It is nice to see however, that you’re not reticent in describing the Irish, pretty much as you see them, in your mind, to really be …

The ni**ers of Europe. (and I must admit – I have strong Irish roots … I am proud to be one!)

"Éireann go Brách"!

Maciamo
17-06-08, 13:36
Hello Mac! …and the top o’ the mornin’ to ye, sor!

It’s bin a log toim – but it’s noice ta see dat yer Eurocentric attitood, mixed wid a tad o’ racial hatred is still hangin’ in dere ….
So, mi boyo, let’s have a peek at yer post …

Are you complaining that the admin of a forum about Europe has a Eurocentric attitude ? :D

I don't understand why you are talking about racial hatred. It's not because you disagree with political decisions made in a country that you are a racist. This was very cheap of you. Just so you know, I would have been just as angry if Belgium had held a referendum and over 50% of Belgians had voted against the treaty.

Besides, you couldn't have chosen a worse example of "racial hatred", as the Belgians and the Irish both have a mixed Celtic and Germanic heritage (alongside the Brits, the Germans and the northern French). If you look back at history, some ancient Belgic tribes settled in Britain and Ireland. For example, the Luaighni tribe, an offshoot of the Menapians, settled in County Meath, Leinster, Ireland. Both Belgium and Ireland had a few Viking settlements. The numerous English people who intermarried with the Irish also brought north German (Anglo-Saxon, Frankish) blood into Ireland. In other words, a Belgian and an Irish have high chances of being genetically closer together than compared to the average French.



No problem with that so far … simply facts. (Note how I have corrected your spelling of “negotiations” however – you once scolded me with the fact that you are an English teacher.)

I did not have a spell check installed on my browser like you, otherwise it would have been underlined and I would have noticed it. But your comment made me think of installing one, as I rarely bother to re-read my posts on forums. Thanks for that.





…And we know what happens when Poland doesn’t respond to German threats!

I know you are a WWII veteran. But it's time to turn the page with your insinuations. I could just as well have said French or British threats. Or I could have used the word "pressure". In any case, that was uncalled for.




No problem with the statement … but some folks may well see other ramifications within the document, and have reserve …

Please mention some examples. The media reported that the "no vote" was due to people not knowing what was in the document. I haven't heard anybody mention that some parts of the treaty were bad for Ireland. Well, actually the Sinn Fein and other "no vote" propaganda group did come up with some wild statements to scare people. But they obviously didn't know what the treaty was about, as they were wrong on all the line. For example, some said that the treaty was going to raise taxes, which isn't true. On the contrary, it will make the EU more cost-efficient.




Now, that is an opinion, not fact!

It's neither. It's just my way of showing my discontent at people who are afraid to vote for something they don't know and end up doing more harm to themselves that if they had accepted the reforms. So, it's more a supposition than a fact or an opinion. In any case, I don't think any of the no voter would be conscious of their mistake while voting.



Mac, please check your spelling and proof-read your posts more carefully. As an English teacher, you should be aware of this … however, I digress; this, again, is your opinion. It is not a fact, per se.

You really don't find more interesting criticism than my spelling, do you ? Very cheap considering I was writing quickly and in anger. They are not even spelling mistake, but just typing mistakes. Happens to everybody. Don't be such a jackass.



Vraiment? Not only is this merely an opinion (again! … but, OK you’re entitled to it … I suppose …) but it is entirely inflammatory, highly unbelievable, and totally insulting to an entire nation! The voting took place in Eire, not Belfast!

Oh man, you are so touchy ! Which nation was I insulting ? Was it Ireland because I said that Sinn Fein, the only party that campaigned for the no, was associated with the terrorist group IRA ? (this is not an opinion but a well recognised fact).

Or was it the USA because I said that it wouldn't be surprising if some anti-European Americans had a role in the "vote no" ? Please understand that only a portion (small, I hope) of the Americans are anti-European, and among them I said that only some might have wanted to influence the Irish to reject the Lisbon Treaty (maybe through Irish relatives ?). This would be logical, as the Lisbon Treaty will give more influence to the EU in world politics, and Americans may feel threatened by this. In fact, various media (e.g. France 24) have pointed out that American-owned tabloids in Ireland consistently campaigned for the no.





Well! There’s democracy for you!

Democracy only works if the people making political decisions understand what they are voting for. That's why people can't vote under the age of 18. This is also why we have a system of representative democracy, as not everybody is interested in politics or has time to analyse and discuss all the current affairs.

National referendums are only useful for issues with which the population is familiar and understand well, like death penalty, abortion, or whether to join a war. In this case, complex political and economic issues were at stake.

The referendum was a mistake, but it was compulsory according to the Irish constitution. We could throw the ball at the politicians, who didn't try hard enough to inform the population. They just recommended to vote "yes", but apparently that's not enough, as people like to know what the "yes" means.

Personally, I think that the main reason for the no winning were the tabloids and the Sinn Fein (the BBC also mentioned the Catholic Church).




I am sure that the Irish are more than familiar with the concept of being regarded a “thickheaded’. I think your comment will roll off them like water off a duck’s back!

Why is that ? Who else has called the Irish "thickheaded" and for what reasons ? In Belgium, I would say that the Irish have generally a very good reputation. I am pretty sure they would rank high if we asked the population to rank other European nationalities in terms of affinities or image. But don't do the poll just now, as maybe people are now upset at them like me after the referendum.




Bullfeathers! A nation of impoverished farmers my backside!


I challenge you, right now, on this forum to present a list of Belgian (Not bloody “European”) names of people who have contributed to the arts, medicine, science, and entertainment etc. etc. – and I will match it and outnumber it with Irish names, personalities, and prominent figures!


I challenge you! It could make a good new thread for this rather lackluster forum!

Seems like I touched a nerve. What do you care, you are not even European (hence not Irish either, except maybe in heritage).

It's a bit petty of yours to actually want to defy me on a game like "my ancestor's country is better than yours". But if you really want to indulge, we could compare the list of Irish people (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Irish_people) and the list of Belgian people (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Belgian_people) on Wikipedia. I think it's pretty pointless considering the hundreds of names on both sides. Maybe we should remove the "Irish" in the list that we not born in Ireland and never lived there, like Henry Ford.

I had made my own list of famous Belgians (http://www.eupedia.com/belgium/famous_people.shtml) a while ago. Just to prove it's not Belgium-centric, I also mentioned a few famous people of Irish descent in the page Interesting facts about Ireland (http://www.eupedia.com/ireland/trivia.shtml) on this website. But it is pointless to include Irish-Americans or Irish-Australians, otherwise we could also include all the Americans of Belgo-Dutch or German descent, and this would be endless.

If I compare the list of Belgium-born vs Ireland-born people, I notice that Ireland has more singers/bands, while Belgium has more painters. Ireland has more writers/playwrights and actors, while Belgium has more humorists, cartoonists and film-makers. Belgium has maybe more military figures, famous monarchs (that's inevitable, as it is the geographic part of Europe where medieval monarchy really started, with the Franks), and a bit more scientists or industrialists.

Anyway, in all fairness, we should consider that Ireland, although geographically 3 times bigger than Belgium, as less than half Belgium's population. So it's normal that there should be more famous Belgians.



Jolly good too! Is that, Maciamo, because they were a member of the EU? …or could it be because they are Irish?

Now this kind of comment actually sounds racist. Do you believe in the superiority of Irish people ? What does the modern Irish economy rely on if not foreign investment (mostly American high-tech companies, like Google, Microsoft, IBM, Dell, Intel, etc.) ? There aren't so many famous Irish industries or export products of their own right (unlike Belgium).




I would suggest that most foreign investors will move, or keep their money … in countries that have a proven track record! That’s the way that $$$$$$ work!

You are so naive. American companies invested in Ireland because it was an English-speaking country, and labour was cheaper than in the UK. Why do you think most big American and European companies are relocating their manufacturing, IT services, customer call centres, etc. to Eastern Europe, China or India ? Not because they have a proven track record !



This is the sort of comment that I would expect to come from the befuddled ‘man in the street’ from a small, divided (by language), not particularly influential country that straddles and blocks the Franco-Dutch frontier!

Your personal attacks on myself and Belgium are tiresome. If you can't deal with criticism of a political referendum's results, too bad for you. I cannot ask you to "grow up" at your age. Your behaviour is however childish and overly emotional. It actually bothers me that you claim some kind of connection with Ireland, as it tarnishes the good image I had of the country.

As for Belgium not being influential, it is after all a founding member of the EU, where most of the institutions are located. NATO is also Belgium-based. Belgium-born people have created the kingdoms that would later become France and Germany. They stopped the Muslim invasion of Europe (under Charles Martel (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Martel)) and led the first and fourth crusades, the two most successful of them (although it is not necessarily something to be proud of), which had a major influence on world politics up to this day. Thanks to its colonial past, Belgium is also one of the most influential country in Africa, alongside France and Britain. I don't know what it takes for you to consider a country "influential" ? Maybe that's just your very poor knowledge of history speaking.

Just so you know, I am not proud of these things (I didn't do them anyway, so how could I), but they do prove that people born and raised on the territory of modern Belgium did have a major impact on the world compared to the country's size.



Maciamo. I think you should be ashamed of yourself. It does not surprise me that you rant like a fascist – but it still disappoints me. You can do better than this.

Coming from you, I suppose I should take this as a compliment.



Sure, as a European you feel that the result is not what you want – but we can’t always have what we want, we have to go with the majority. It’s called DEMOCRACY!

Since when is 2 million "no voters" in Ireland (53% of the population) the majority out of 500 million EU citizens ? Tell me ! I wouldn't argue if the equivalent of 250 million voters EU-wide had rejected the treaty. But it's not the case. I am sure that the business and political establishment in Ireland is as dismayed as I am by the vote. That doesn't make them less Irish ! Most of the educated Irish people voted "yes". Why should it be that a bunch of ignorant representing about half of a small country's population should be able to compromise the projects of an entire continent ? This is wrong. This is NOT how democracy ought to be working.

Maciamo
23-06-08, 12:31
I think that the next move for Ireland will be to vote again, sooner or later. In any case, the Irish Constitution compels the Irish to vote on any EU treaty modifying their constitution, which means the the Irish will have to vote every time a new treaty comes up.

I believe that it was a mistake to just ask citizens to vote yes or no. In order to know exactly what they oppose or dislike in the new treaty, the referendum should be a list of questions addressing the main points of reform.

There should be at least 10 points listed, with a yes/no/don't know choice for each. The "yes" answers should not all coincide with accepting the treaty. The answers should be mixed up, so that voters who have not acquainted themselves with the most basic points of the treaty (http://europa.eu/lisbon_treaty/glance/index_en.htm) cannot just vote against it by principle.

This should be an electronic vote, if possible, to facilitate the counting. To know whether the treaty is accepted or not, the sum of all the answers should be made. If over 50% of people agreed with the majority of the reforms proposed by the treaty, then it should be declared that the treaty is accepted.

If it is still rejected, we could at least know with what particular points voters were uncomfortable, so that the EU could propose a revised version or a provision accommodating the specific needs/demands of the Irish.

One thing that irritates me is when people reject new ideas or change (progress) "because they don't know" or "because things are good as they are now". I don't just mean it for the Irish, or for EU-related referendums, but for everything in general.

Mycernius
23-06-08, 18:12
I think that the next move for Ireland will be to vote again, sooner or later. In any case, the Irish Constitution compels the Irish to vote on any EU treaty modifying their constitution, which means the the Irish will have to vote every time a new treaty comes up.

The French way, keep having referendums until then public gives us what we want. Was it 3 the French had to have for the Euro? A government should respect the choice the people make, they are, after all, supposed to be representing them. Just having vote after vote for the same thing is not respecting your people, it is treating them with disrespect and contempt. Just because you are a total europhile doesn't mean that everyone else in Europe is. I believe the Czech government have to still ratify the treaty and there is a good chance that they might reject it as well.

I believe that it was a mistake to just ask citizens to vote yes or no. In order to know exactly what they oppose or dislike in the new treaty, the referendum should be a list of questions addressing the main points of reform.
Not a good idea at all. your average citizen of any country cannot be bothered to deal with the inns and outs of such things, that is why we have politicians, to tell us the pros and cons. The more choice you put on a piece of paper the more apathy you'll get at the polls as people just can't be arsed with it all. They will get sick of it and then will vote no out of sheer bloody mindedness.

Maciamo
24-06-08, 13:37
The French way, keep having referendums until then public gives us what we want.

It isn't the French way, but the Irish way. Ireland is the only country where a referendum must be held for such issues. That's why I said that the Irish will have to vote again, be it for this treaty or another. If the Irish don't like referendums, they should ask their politicians to change their constitution. What's the point of having compulsory referendums if the population get bothered by them and don't give a damn about political issues ? If they are going to reject any reform just "out of sheer bloody mindedness", nothing will ever change in Ireland. That's their problem for national matters, but they shouldn't play this game when 500 million other people are concerned.


A government should respect the choice the people make, they are, after all, supposed to be representing them. Just having vote after vote for the same thing is not respecting your people, it is treating them with disrespect and contempt.

I don't see why. Democracy is a privilege that most of our ancestors did not enjoy. People should take it seriously. My opinion is that if they don't care or just vote "out of sheer bloody mindedness", they should stay at home. I don't think that citizens are legally obligated to vote at referendums in Ireland, are they ?


Not a good idea at all. your average citizen of any country cannot be bothered to deal with the inns and outs of such things, that is why we have politicians, to tell us the pros and cons.

The Lisbon Treaty is a complex treaty. It does not involve just one change for Europe, but quite a few major ones. The role of politicians is to negotiate the terms of the treaty, and deal with the details. The role of the population summoned at a referendum is to approve or reject the changes involved by the new treaty.

Let's take an example. If you can have a referendum to change a country's currency, another referendum for an open-border agreement, and yet another referendum to join a free-trade zone, why can't you just have a single referendum with three questions ? This way people only have to go out once. It doesn't take much more time to select three answers than one.

For the Lisbon Treaty, I propose that people vote yes/no to the following questions (each part of the treaty) :

1) should a member state be able to withdraw from the European Union if they wish to ?

2) should a group of citizens from any EU country (as opposed to a group of citizens of the same member state) be able to to bring forward new policy proposals to the EU Commission ?

3) should national parliaments be more involved in the work of the EU (and therefore have more say) ?

4) should more power be transferred from the Council of Ministers to the directly elected European Parliament (e.g. in terms of EU legislation, the EU budget and international agreements) ?

5) in order to make the decision-making more efficient, should more decisions at the Council of Ministers be taken by qualified majority voting instead of the current absolute majority ?

6) should the positions of President of the European Commission and President of the European Council be merged ?

7) should the new President be elected for two and a half years instead of the present 6-month rotating presidency ?

8) should there be a new position of High Representative for the Union in Foreign Affairs and Security Policy in order for the EU to speak of a strong voice in international affairs ?

9) should we improve the EU's ability to act in such policy areas as freedom, security and justice, energy policy, public health, civil protection, climate change, services of general interest, research, space, territorial cohesion, commercial policy, humanitarian aid, sport, tourism and administrative cooperation ?

10) should the EU guarantee the freedoms and principles set out in the Charter of Fundamental Rights, so that all EU citizens enjoy the same minimum rights in any EU country ?

11) should EU Member States act jointly in a spirit of solidarity if a Member State is the subject of a terrorist attack or the victim of a natural or man-made disaster ?

12) should the EU have a single legal personality, in order to make it a more effective and more visible partner for third countries and international organisations ?

13) should the European Security and Defence Police reinforce cooperation between Member States ?


The way of formulating the question need some improvement. I have asked the questions in a way that all the "yes" answer correspond to a "yes" for the Lisbon Treaty, but it's probably better to rephrase it so that the answer should be sometimes "yes" sometimes "no". This way, people who don't care to read the question cannot just vote "no" out of bloody-mindedness.

Maciamo
24-06-08, 15:18
The advantage of a multiple question referendum is that the EU will know exactly which points cause a problem among voters. For instance, the UK was going to veto the Lisbon Treaty because of point 10 (the Charter of Fundamental Rights), which could have forced it to revise its labour laws (British workers are among the least well protected in Europe, for the benefit of big companies). So the EU granted an exemption to the UK about this particular point.

I can certainly understand that the Sinn Fein and the Catholic Church in Ireland would want to Lisbon Treaty to be rejected, because of points 9 and 13. They do not want the Irish government to get more help from the EU to fight terrorism. This would be bad for the I.R.A., and therefore for its main supporters, the Sinn Fein and the Catholic Church.

Ireland also has very liberal labour laws, so it may want to get the same exemption as the UK on point 10, and adding also 9 and 13 if a majority of the population wishes to give a chance to the I.R.A. If, on the other hand, most Irish are against the I.R.A., then they have been manipulated by a few extremists to reject the Lisbon Treaty.

I do not see what other point they could object to. All the others either give more power and rights to citizens (2, 4, 10 and 11) and national governments (1 and 3), or do not concern individual countries but the internal functioning of the EU (5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12 and 13).

Maciamo
26-06-08, 22:12
The EU published a post-referendum survey in Ireland (http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/flash/fl_245_en.pdf).

The polls confirm my suspicions. 52% of the people who voted against the Lisbon Treaty did so because they did not fully understand the issues raised by the referendum. 30 to 50% of the no-voters also explained that they were too busy, not interested in politics or believed that voting in this referendum would not change anything. Ignorance and laziness was the main motive behind the no-vote.

68% of all voters thought that the "no" campaign was the most convincing. Even the majority (57%) of those who voted "yes" admitted that the "no" campaign was better conducted than the "yes" campaign. In other words, Sinn Fein, the IRA and the Catholic Church did their job well. After all, they had strong reasons to be afraid of the Lisbon Treaty, and their eagerness was obvious from the images shown on TV.

There is no difference in the way of voting between cities and the country. However, the "no" vote correlated with lower education levels and manual jobs. Only 26% of manual workers voted "yes", as opposed to 60% of self-employed people.

Most of the “yes” voters said that the treaty was in Ireland’s best interest. Most of the “no” voters did not understand the issues at stake. This comparison speaks by itself. Either people knew what the treaty is about (more likely if you have a higher educational background) and they voted "yes". Or they had no idea and voted "no" out of fear or under the influence of the Sinn Fein's "no" campaign.

Only 1% of respondents said that they voted "no" because they thought that the EU works fine as it is and does not need any fixing.

Mycernius
29-06-08, 22:44
It isn't the French way, but the Irish way. Ireland is the only country where a referendum must be held for such issues.
You missed the point. The French had three, THREE, referendums for the government to finally have its way. It is a case of ignoring what the people want and just grind them down to what the government want. Dictatorship under the guise of democracy. My point is that the governemnt want this result, so no matter what the people want they will get what they want. It is ignoring the will of the people and just grinding them down under tons and tons of bullshit so that the electorate will finally give in. It is treating the democratic way with contempt and the will of the people with contempt. Your method is just another way of adding more bullshit that the people don't want to know about, Wear them down, they will conform, 1984 was not just fiction.
Also the Lisbon treaty is a backdoor way to get the constitution that was flatly refused by the French and the Dutch. Once again it is dictatorship under the guise of democracy. They will get their way, sod the public.

Maciamo
30-06-08, 10:21
You missed the point. The French had three, THREE, referendums for the government to finally have its way. It is a case of ignoring what the people want and just grind them down to what the government want. Dictatorship under the guise of democracy. My point is that the governemnt want this result, so no matter what the people want they will get what they want. It is ignoring the will of the people and just grinding them down under tons and tons of bullshit so that the electorate will finally give in. It is treating the democratic way with contempt and the will of the people with contempt. Your method is just another way of adding more bullshit that the people don't want to know about, Wear them down, they will conform, 1984 was not just fiction.
Also the Lisbon treaty is a backdoor way to get the constitution that was flatly refused by the French and the Dutch. Once again it is dictatorship under the guise of democracy. They will get their way, sod the public.


I am sorry, but I completely disagree with you. If the people knew what they wanted, they'd vote the same way at each referendum, be it two, three or one hundred. It proves that a good deal of the electorate does not understand what they are voting for. In France it is especially common for the population to confuse referendums with elections (because they have to vote) and use it to sanction the current government when they are dissatisfied.

A majority of the people are emotional and capricious by nature, and many more just don't take politics (or about anything) seriously. When you are serious about it, how could you not treat the electorate with contempt ?

Just imagine that all the major decisions in your life had to be approved by a group of one thousand people taken haphazardly from the population to be allowed to happen. Your promotions at work, the mortgage from the bank to buy a house, where you go on holiday, what you do with your money, your love life, the number of children you are allowed to have... everything must be decided through a mini referendum.

To decide whether you are allowed to get married with the person you are dating now, these 1000 people, who don't know you and may not give a damn about you, must vote "yes" or "no". It would be natural to think that most people would agree in order to make you happy. To justify their decision, overzealous people will try to learn as much as possible about you and your partner, have a psychological analysis to determine whether you are right for each others and your marriage will last. Others will just annoyed by this duty vote and vote "no" in protest to having to vote. Others will just have a bad day or be generally unhappy about their life and will vote against just so that you don't have what you want. Others will be completely indifferent and vote without reading the question.

This is how democracy works, unfortunately.

Forcing people to vote is never a good idea. Asking them to decide for something they don't understand is an even worse idea.

I am in favour of referendums in general, but I think that they should be totally voluntary, so that only people who care enough will bother to vote. That's why I am against the minimum percentage of the population voting for the referendum to be valid. I think that referendums should be held much more frequently (about once a week or once a month), but that the government shouldn't advertise them, so that only people who are interested in politics will try to find out by themselves (e.g. through a government website) when and where each referendum is to be held.

I also think that only people who can prove that they understand the topic of the referendum should be allowed to vote. That's why I proposed a multi-question referendum in which the total and average of all questions is taken into account, rather than a overly simplistic "accept" or "reject" treaty.

This is how democracy should work. What we are seeing now is a dangerous, demagogic, propaganda-weakened pseudo-democracy. At present, big media groups hold the real power to influence the results of elections and referendums, because the majority of the voters only get their information and make their decisions based on the opinion of (tabloid) newspapers or TV.

Starship
01-07-08, 13:43
Well I voted yes as did most of the people I know. I argued continually with people in the no camp on many a blog but to no avail, I was left feeling angry, embarrassed and dismayed.

Its difficult to pin point what took the mood of the voters, there are a percentage of people who are opposed to every referendum no matter what the topic so usually a high turn out is in favour of the Government but that was not the case this time. Basically a lot of pro Europe people voted no to Lisbon.

The No camp ran a very good campaign where as the lack lustre Yes camp started late emphasized all the benefits Ireland has received from Europe and assumed this would be enough. The treaty is complicated enough (by necessity to cover the legal requirements of 27 states) to allow any number of interpretations to be drawn from it, which the many political shades and lobbyists of the no camp umbrella did with a plum. This left the main political parties constantly on the back foot trying to defend, explain or simply deny the lies being thrown about.

1. A yes vote will lead to conscription to a European army.
2. A yes vote will lead to abortion being legalised in Ireland.
3. A yes vote will lead to tax harmonisation across Europe.

And so on and so on.

The main concern (and this is only my opinion having argued ferociously on numerous occasions) was that by passing this treaty it removed the need for future referendums in Ireland on new Eu treaties. And that this in effect through majority voting at a later stage could introduce any of the above.

There were a lot of other half truths and pure lies told and even people who took the time to read the treaty were still left confused as to its implications and this played straight into the hands of the scare mongers.

The French foreign ministers threats before hand were not only unhelpful but pure lunacy all the posters came out (Don’t be bullied) your talking about a post colonial psyche here, it was like a red rag to a bull, the damned fool should have kept his big nose out.

But as was pointed out to me several times this is a democracy, the people voted No you may not like it but as a democrat you must accept it, the alternative is unthinkable.

There was also the rather arrogant argument that as the other 26 members were refused a referendum that we should say no for their benefit. I argued other countries democracy were their own business and if the people in these countries were unhappy with the direction their governments were following it was up to them to sort it out for themselves.
But I believe Sarkozy has recently stated that if a referendum was carried out in France at the moment, the French would also reject Lisbon, I wonder how many states if it was left to the people would actually vote yes.

O and on an aside the IRA had absolutely no input or impact on the referendum, sure Sinn Fein took the No side but that was mainly a tactical decision to get more media coverage and raise their profile south of the border.

And I don’t believe the Church has much influence one way or the other those days are over.

And really M you should never write anything in anger, or any strong emotion, Winston Churchill in the flush of victory at the end of the war delivered a scathing speech against Eire for not joining in the war effort, and basically said we were lucky not to have been invaded by the allies. De Velera in response queried if Britain had gone to war in defence of small countries then how could our neutrality be of any less importance. So you see being bullied by bigger neighbours is nothing new, its quite ironic that Britain is now our staunchest defender.

Interesting times

Maciamo
01-07-08, 17:57
But I believe Sarkozy has recently stated that if a referendum was carried out in France at the moment, the French would also reject Lisbon, I wonder how many states if it was left to the people would actually vote yes.

If you had to let the people take all the major political decisions it would be anarchy because they would never agree to take any reasonable and rational decision.


And really M you should never write anything in anger, or any strong emotion.

I know that I should refrain from posting in anger. I actually started this thread about one hour before the main media announced the results, as I had been waiting anxiously. This may explain (although to justify) my strong reaction.


Winston Churchill in the flush of victory at the end of the war delivered a scathing speech against Eire for not joining in the war effort, and basically said we were lucky not to have been invaded by the allies. De Velera in response queried if Britain had gone to war in defence of small countries then how could our neutrality be of any less importance. So you see being bullied by bigger neighbours is nothing new, its quite ironic that Britain is now our staunchest defender.

It's a bit easy to claim that because Ireland is small it is easily bullied by bigger neighbours. After all, it only has one big neighbour, the UK, and I really should be saying England, as Wales and Scotland are a bit in the same lot as Ireland in this regard.

Belgium is actually smaller in size than Ireland (but not in population, nowadays at least) and has many big neighbours. The biggest bully Belgium ever got in its history was Spain, which was not even a direct neighbour. But I haven't heard anybody here complain that Belgium is being bullied by France, Germany or Britain. Ireland should get along better with Britain, partly thanks to their common language. French-speaking Belgians certainly feel closer to French people than Dutch-speaking Belgians.

Starship
01-07-08, 21:17
If you had to let the people take all the major political decisions it would be anarchy because they would never agree to take any reasonable and rational decision.

That's democracy sport warts and all.



It's a bit easy to claim that because Ireland is small it is easily bullied by bigger neighbours. After all, it only has one big neighbour, the UK, and I really should be saying England, as Wales and Scotland are a bit in the same lot as Ireland in this regard.

The English were actually in favour of granting home rule it was the pro Empire Scots who opposed it.

Belgium is actually smaller in size than Ireland (but not in population, nowadays at least) and has many big neighbours. The biggest bully Belgium ever got in its history was Spain, which was not even a direct neighbour. But I haven't heard anybody here complain that Belgium is being bullied by France, Germany or Britain. Ireland should get along better with Britain, partly thanks to their common language. French-speaking Belgians certainly feel closer to French people than Dutch-speaking Belgians.

I would have thought the Belgium's might have a grievance with the Germans having been invaded twice in the last century, while neutral and suffering severe atrocities.

Actually Ireland and Britain have never been on better terms than they are now and I put a lot of this down to the positive influence of the EU.

I see the Polish president has put a stop to ratification for the moment, France have a tough presidency ahead.

Starship
16-07-08, 10:02
Sarkozy is due in Ireland on the 21st July to discuss the No vote to Lisbon, he has already stirred things up by saying the Irish will have to vote again, the phone lines on the chat shows were hopping yesterday with outrage and indignation at the interference. Cant wait for him to arrive, I hope he brings his beautiful wife, should be a hell of a show.

Maciamo
17-07-08, 18:14
I would have thought the Belgians might have a grievance with the Germans having been invaded twice in the last century, while neutral and suffering severe atrocities.

Older people do, but what's the point ? After all Belgians are genetically (Rhineland) Germans. Shared history and ethnicity. Even politically and economically* Belgium is probably more similar to Germany than any other country. Even the Belgian monarchy is of German origins (House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha). Not so many people nowadays might realise it (due to nationalist indoctrination) but the Benelux is just a historical extension of Germany that became independent from the Reich.

* Export-oriented economy, heavy industries, car manufacturing, pharmaceutical industry... Both countries are federal and have strong green parties.

Maciamo
24-07-08, 00:19
Here is an excellent summary of the situation on the Irish rejection of the Lisbon Treaty :

Euractiv : EU Treaty: What Next? (http://www.euractiv.com/en/future-eu/eu-treaty/article-174339)

It confirms what I explained here, in a more professional writing style.

I had difficulties finding online data supporting my claim that Ireland was quite poor before joining the EU. It's easy to find GDP comparison for the last few years, but not for the early 1970's. Sensuikan thought that I was completely wrong. However Euractiv confirms what I said :


The Treaty of Lisbon's rejection was all the more incomprehensible to 'yes' campaigners considering the economic benefits that EU membership has brought to Ireland. When the country joined the EU in 1973, it was the poorest in the Community; now it is the second richest in GDP terms.

Apparently lawyers and lawmakers in Ireland do not agree on whether a referendum is really required in the case of the Lisbon Treaty.


Ireland was the only EU country to require that the Lisbon Treaty be ratified through a nationwide referendum. In all other EU member states, national parliaments are dealing with ratification.

This is due to a 1987 ruling by the country's Supreme Court (Crotty case) which stipulates that significant changes to the European Union treaties require an amendment to the Irish Constitution - which is always changed by means of a referendum - before being ratified by the State.

Legal opinion is divided on whether the Crotty ruling obliges the government to systematically defer to the Irish people whenever there is a significant new development in the EU legal setting. But because of this legal precedent, Ireland has always held a referendum on every new EU treaty.

If Irish lawmakers do not find a way to bypass a new referendum (which the people clearly do not want), the only two solutions I see are the 3 and 4 in the Euractiv article.

3. the creation of a new union of 26 member states. Ireland would be outside the EU itself, but partly integrated, like Norway and Iceland, which are members of the EEC and Schengen, but not of the political EU. Ireland would be half-way. In other terms, it would still send representatives to the EU parliament, but they would not benefit from the new power envisaged by the Lisbon Treaty. Ireland would also lose its EU Commissioner, and will not be eligible for the position of EU President and EU Foreign High Representative. The Charter of Fundamental Rights would also not apply to Ireland (just like the UK, which has a exemption clause).

4. a multi-speed Europe based on differentiated integration. That's basically the same, but imagining that Poland and/or the Czech Republic also decide to stay out of Lisbon.

In either case member states that do not ratify Lisbon now could still be able to do it later, hence the term "multi-speed Europe".

Gael
24-07-08, 13:17
You seem convinced we want to blow EU up and leave a note saying "DE OIRA DID ET". If you took the time to look at other surveys, you would find we're actually one of the most pro-EU countries out there, but we're rapidly becoming more disenchanted when fools like Sarcozy open their big mouths. If you want to see the EU survive this, reprimanding everyone who doesn't agree with your views is something to avoid.

ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/archives/eb/eb69/eb_69_first_en.pdf (put in http: and two /)



We are bloody well aware of what we have gained from the EU, suggesting otherwise is not going to help your case.


Our government failed, on a massive scale, to inform the electorate as to why the Treaty was necessary, and as a result many voted No because of a lack of trust with the government, or because they wouldn't support somthing that couldn't be explained. Most simply didn't bother turning up as they didn't see the point at all.

However, forcing a second referendum is only going to strengthen the No side, which the government has actually realised.

Starship
24-07-08, 14:29
[
I]Quote:Originally Posted by Euractiv
The Treaty of Lisbon's rejection was all the more incomprehensible to 'yes' campaigners considering the economic benefits that EU membership has brought to Ireland. When the country joined the EU in 1973, it was the poorest in the Community; now it is the second richest in GDP terms. [/I]
I dont think you'll find many to argue with you on this Ireland was an economic basket case for several decades after ww2. But as one French minister put it to Sarkozy after the Lisbon rejection "Is Ireland a whore, she has been bought and now she must stay bought".
[
I]Apparently lawyers and lawmakers in Ireland do not agree on whether a referendum is really required in the case of the Lisbon Treaty. [/I]
Seemingly the government got legal advice from the Attorney General I think and they were advised that a referendum would be required. They could have ploughed ahead regardless and ratified the treaty in the Dail (Parliament) and then faced a legal challenge at a later stage but how much more messy would that have been?
There are politicians in the opposition parties who are suggesting that perhaps not all aspects of the treaty need to be passed by referendum, perhaps much of it could be ratified by the politicians and a slimmed down portion put to the people again. Sarkozy on his recent visit was suggesting certain caveats could be included to cover areas of main concern - neutrality, taxation and commissioners.
Sarkozy has accepted that even if we do have another vote and its not definite it wont be for another 12 to 18 months. Economists are estimating that the recession we are now facing into will last about 2 years before we start coming out the other side of it. Im sure the politicians are allowing for this in their calculations, an electorate with 7% unemployment, negative equity on their homes constrained wage increases and the ever increasing inflationary pressures of oil may get back to basics when considering Ireland's future in Europe.

If Irish lawmakers do not find a way to bypass a new referendum (which the people clearly do not want), the only two solutions I see are the 3 and 4 in the Euractiv article.
3. the creation of a new union of 26 member states. Ireland would be outside the EU itself, but partly integrated, like Norway and Iceland, which are members of the EEC and Schengen, but not of the political EU. Ireland would be half-way. In other terms, it would still send representatives to the EU parliament, but they would not benefit from the new power envisaged by the Lisbon Treaty. Ireland would also lose its EU Commissioner, and will not be eligible for the position of EU President and EU Foreign High Representative. The Charter of Fundamental Rights would also not apply to Ireland (just like the UK, which has a exemption clause).
4. a multi-speed Europe based on differentiated integration. That's basically the same, but imagining that Poland and/or the Czech Republic also decide to stay out of Lisbon.
In either case member states that do not ratify Lisbon now could still be able to do it later, hence the term "multi-speed Europe".
The anti threaty side have argued that a no to Lisbon will mean 2 things.
1. If one country votes no then it is legally dead and buried and it does not matter if the other 26 ratify it.
2. We now default back to the Niece treaty which has no provisions for expelling any of the 27 members.
They are opposed to any futher political integration of Europe.
Basically all along they have been saying vote no and nothing will happen things will simply continue as they were before and to a certain extent they have, all the dire predictions from the Yes camp have come to nothing (so far).
The best thing now in my opinion would be for Sarkozy to instead of telling us when or how to vote but instead to lay it out clearly what the next steps are what is plan B. and if its a case that Ireland will be turfed out then fine say it then at least the people will know what exactly they are voting on.

Maciamo
24-07-08, 20:07
The anti treaty side have argued that a no to Lisbon will mean 2 things.
1. If one country votes no then it is legally dead and buried and it does not matter if the other 26 ratify it.
2. We now default back to the Nice treaty which has no provisions for expelling any of the 27 members.
They are opposed to any further political integration of Europe.
Basically all along they have been saying vote no and nothing will happen things will simply continue as they were before and to a certain extent they have, all the dire predictions from the Yes camp have come to nothing (so far).

Actually, contrarily to what many think, this is not true.

1. Nothing prevents the 26 countries from ratifying the treaty, leaving Ireland outside of it, and thus creating a new EU. Let's call it the Lisbon-zone (just like we already have a Schengen-zone and a euro-zone). Tha fact that Ireland is an island and lies at the fringe of the EU makes it all the easier to implement this solution. A Schengen-zone without France or Germany would be unthinkable, but without the UK and Ireland (as it is now), it works fine, justly because these are islands.

2. The Nice Treaty may not have provisions to expel a member state, but nothing prevent some countries to move ahead with deeper integration before the others. That's how the EU has worked so far (visas, euro, EEC...).

Indeed, if the Irish people rejects again Lisbon, nothing will change for them, but other countries will just move on with further integration, leaving Ireland with less political influence inside the EU.

Starship
25-07-08, 09:32
2. The Nice Treaty may not have provisions to expel a member state, but nothing prevent some countries to move ahead with deeper integration before the others. That's how the EU has worked so far (visas, euro, EEC...).

Indeed, if the Irish people rejects again Lisbon, nothing will change for them, but other countries will just move on with further integration, leaving Ireland with less political influence inside the EU.

Well if that is the alternative its needs to be publicly advertised in Ireland by the other heads of state and Eu bodies because it certainly isn't at the moment.

It may suit a certain percentage of the Irish people (in fact the same option might suit large numbers of people in the other 26) but it does not suit me.
It certainly doesn't suit the majority of Irish people I believe either, but I explained how a mismanaged referendum campaign, fear tactics and confusion won the day on the 12th of June. What we need now is clarity and not supposition and vague threats of isolationism, can not the European parliament or which ever relevant body (with complete credibility) not publicly spell out its intentions if all 27 countries don't ratify Lisbon.

At least then the Yes camp could hold this up to the electorate and say here is your choice clear and simple.

Maciamo
25-07-08, 10:49
Maybe the hidden agenda of the no-campaigner was justly that Ireland does not ratify the treaty so that it is left aside and loses influences within the EU... As I said there were some powerful international media groups (e.g. Murdoch) behind the no campaign, and these people may prefer to see Ireland have closer ties with the USA than the EU. Once deeper integration is achieved inside the EU, Ireland will feel all the more European and more distant from America or Australia. Why do you think most big American companies (Microsoft, Google, Intel, IBM...) have chosen their European headquarters specifically in Ireland ? It's not labour cost ; Ireland has some of the highest salaries and office rental cost in the EU.

Starship
25-07-08, 15:01
There are over 600 American companies in Ireland, they are here for a number of reasons, first and foremost to make a profit. The advantages of doing business in Ireland from an American point of view would be along the lines of low corporate tax rate, young highly educated work force, membership of the Eu, member of the euro club, English speaking, a lot of similarities and connections culturally and successive Governments and Government bodies courting big us companies.

The word coming back from America through different government ministers is the disbelief that we voted no. The American business community want further Eu integration as they see this as a benefit to them and the concern in Government circles is that an attitude might emerge around board room tables in the Us that Ireland is not committed to Europe and may be turning her back to the Eu. The recent visit by Brian Cowen (Our Prime Minister) to the US was to fly the flag and make it clear we are open for Business.
Among the No camp you have a wide variety stretching from the far left to the far right and some of these are as anti American, anti globalization as they are anti further EU integration.

Its a waste of time trying to appeal to them as they are hard core with their own specific agendas, its the pro Eu No voters who the Government need to convince if we are to move on from this impasse. A recent poll in the Irish times today claims that 10% of those who voted Yes to Lisbon have now moved over to the No side, why who knows. That's why the Government need to take their time and analyse the rejection before they attempt any new initiative.

But I'll repeat this again, a clear indication from a reputable Eu body clearly stating what road will be followed in the event that Ireland's No vote stands would I believe help the Yes camp.

Maciamo
20-09-08, 20:49
In their new article Who cares about Europe? (http://www.economist.com/world/europe/displaystory.cfm?story_id=12263166), the Economist argues that the EU is too complex for normal citizens to understand, illustrating their claim by the Irish rejection of the Reform Treaty.

First of all, the Economist admits that national health policies are as complex as EU treaties and that ordinary citizens should not be expected to understand every details of either. That's a stark contradiction with their main argumentation.

But it is the kind of comment, in their conclusion, that bugs me :


Ireland shows that most voters do not understand the EU, and do not really want to.

Then, why does the Economist think that the Irish are representative of the whole European population ? Ireland's case does not show anything other European countries. Awareness of EU institutions and enthusiasm about the EU varies greatly between member states. In Luxembourg or Belgium few people would dare to admit publicly being anti-European, and few would fall into the cheap traps of the anti-Treaty propaganda seen in Ireland (e.g. making people believe that there will be an EU-wide conscription or that taxes would be harmonised across Europe).

Ireland is probably one of the old EU-15 states with the lowest awareness levels about EU matters. The question is why ?

Euronews (http://www.eupedia.com/cgi-bin/dir/jump.cgi?ID=135498) has by far the largest audience of any news chanels in Europe. It reaches 177 million European households, twice more than BBC News. However I doubt that Irish people are responsible for that. If they watched it more often (at least once a week), so many of them couldn't be that unaware of how the EU works.

One of the purposes of Euronews is to keep Europeans informed about EU matters. That's why they have 24h/7d programmes like Parlamento, Europeans, Europa, Pass, and so on. And that is why I am amazed that only 18% of the voters in Ireland knew things that even the occasional Euronews audience would have known.

Starship
22-09-08, 12:20
I couldn't really comment on other Europeans attitude to Europe and its not like you get to many of them contributing comments to this thread in this forum, so far its been an Irish man, an English man and a Belgium (I'm sure there is a joke in there somewhere).

As for news I think most Irish get their updates from National Newspapers, local radio programmes and National news programmes such as RTE, TV3 and to some extent BBC and maybe UTV, (The last 2 being British) SKY had an Irish version for a while but it was dropped due to lack of interest.

After the referendum the EU did some research to see what was affecting Irish attitudes and apparently the British tabloids do a lot of Irish prints such as the "Irish Mail" and while these would have a lot local Irish news they would still toe the line on the British editorial stance on Europe basically Euro sceptic. These papers would be popular with the working class who came out as the most opposed to the Lisbon Treaty.

As for Euro News it can be got in Ireland but SKY have it on a news only channel platform, up with Sky news, Fox, China, France, India CNN and Russia and Aljazeera.

Really to attract and inform Irish audiences RTE should try and incorporate European News on the National Channel I think it would be fair to say most Irish people would have a better knowledge of American National News and British football than anything on the mainland.

Maciamo
06-05-09, 21:35
The Czechs have ratified the treaty today. This only leaves Ireland. We will see in autumn if the Irish population will join the rest of Europe or if they wants to foster enmity against them.

Starship
25-05-09, 15:29
I don't believe the majority of people who voted No were or are anti Europe, in fact in their minds they are probably more pro Europe but were afraid of being lost in a superstate, enough of that now its been discussed to death.

There seems to be a growing consensus here that a Yes vote will be passed next time and that's pretty much down to the (Economy Stupid) than any great shift of opinion as to the merits of Lisbon.

But lets not count our chickens just yet.

Starship
28-09-09, 13:25
Were on the final count down to Lisbon 2 just 5 days to go, so on the 2nd of October we vote again!

The Yes side are in the lead and there are far less undecided voters than last time, but its not a done deal the Yes side were in the lead last time as well, although not this close to the finish line.

The debate has been heated and passionate, Declan Ganley re entered the fray even though his Libertas party took a hammering in the European elections and he vowed not to get involved again. O'Leary the Ryan Air boss came in on the YES side and in his unpolitic best told Ganley to bugger off and implored people not to vote for the that bunch of losers.

People are better informed and less willing to believe the No side even though they make compelling arguments, Ireland has taken a hammering from the credit crunch and the banking crises and as much as the people want to punish the parties in Government it doesn't look like they will use this referendum to do it.

Cambrius (The Red)
28-09-09, 16:04
It would be quite foolish for Ireland to vote no again on the Treaty of Lisbon. Essentially, a no outcome would relegate Ireland to a "slower track" status in the E.U., something it can ill afford given the country's current state of affairs.

Starship
28-09-09, 16:25
I agree with you Cambria and that is the main argument of the Yes camp but the No camp aren't interested in the economy or jobs. Some are concerned with Ireland's independence and others I feel are more interested in giving as they call it the European ruling class elite a bloody nose. Who this elite are I couldn't tell you but we seem to be fertile ground for every conspiracy theory going and the main one is we are being hood winked into a superstate.

Both sides are using scare tactics on the voters but the biggest gun in the YES sides arsenal is the recession, with out it I don't think Lisbon would stand a chance, the whole thing has a bad reflection on democracy.

Any way I hope it is passed, for Irelands sake and simply because it seems to be a good treaty which is something no one seems to be focusing on at all. I also hope its the last we are asked to vote on for quiet some time I'm a bit sick of it all to be honest.

Maciamo
29-09-09, 11:13
Some are concerned with Ireland's independence and others I feel are more interested in giving as they call it the European ruling class elite a bloody nose. Who this elite are I couldn't tell you but we seem to be fertile ground for every conspiracy theory going and the main one is we are being hood winked into a superstate.

Don't tell anyone, but the credit crunch was actually a international conspiracy by our government elite to force the Irish to accept Lisbon, the Brits to join the Euro, the Icelandic to join the EU, and the Swiss to reveal the list of US and EU tax-evaders. :grin: Would make for a nice conspiracy story, huh ?

Starship
29-09-09, 13:57
Have you heard of the Corrs a Irish folk/pop band, Jim Corr a member has his own web site filled to the brim with just about every conspiracy theory you can imagine, from 9/11 to Lisbon and a new world order all of which he believes fervently.

www.jimcorr.com

And they gave this head banger air time on the radio to argue against Lisbon, but if you want a taste of some of the other argument's going on have a look at some of these articles, some are on the BBC others from the Irish Independent news papers.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8275265.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8274945.stm

http://www.independent.ie/national-news/lisbon-treaty/gormley-blasts-use-of-conscription-lies-1898886.html

http://www.independent.ie/national-news/lisbon-treaty/higgins-hits-out-over-vote-blackmail-campaign-1898857.html

http://www.independent.ie/national-news/lisbon-treaty/ganley-admits-backer-bet-on-irish-bank-shares-falling-1898844.html

Cambrius (The Red)
29-09-09, 17:46
Have you heard of the Corrs a Irish folk/pop band, Jim Corr a member has his own web site filled to the brim with just about every conspiracy theory you can imagine, from 9/11 to Lisbon and a new world order all of which he believes fervently.
www.jimcorr.com
And they gave this head banger air time on the radio to argue against Lisbon, but if you want a taste of some of the other argument's going on have a look at some of these articles, some are on the BBC others from the Irish Independent news papers.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8275265.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8274945.stm
http://www.independent.ie/national-news/lisbon-treaty/gormley-blasts-use-of-conscription-lies-1898886.html
http://www.independent.ie/national-news/lisbon-treaty/higgins-hits-out-over-vote-blackmail-campaign-1898857.html
http://www.independent.ie/national-news/lisbon-treaty/ganley-admits-backer-bet-on-irish-bank-shares-falling-1898844.html

Hey, different strokes for different folks. So many delusional souls out there these days. Sign of a deteriorating society...

Starship
03-10-09, 13:46
Hussar its a Yes

Maciamo
05-10-09, 12:53
It's a relief. Now let's hope that the Czech and Polish presidents won't wait too long to sign the treaty, as the new British government in 6 months might also want to hold a referendum.

Cambrius (The Red)
05-10-09, 17:25
A relief, indeed. I read today in the FT that it is now a given that Poland will sign and resistance from the Czech Republic has apparently weakened. The U.K. could present a problem if it holds a referendum.

Cambrius (The Red)
06-10-09, 14:54
Now, let us see if Iceland votes to join the E.U.

Maciamo
06-10-09, 17:54
Now, let us see if Iceland votes to join the E.U.

I think that they have already formally requested full admission to the EU. It should be fast since they are already member of the European Economic Area and Schengen zone.

Maciamo
04-11-09, 17:35
The Lisbon Treaty has finally been ratified by every member state. It will come into force on 1 December.