Tackling the EU Empire: basic critical facts on EU/Eurozone – a handbook for European Democrats

TACKLING THE EU EMPIRE    

Basic critical facts on the EU/Eurozone

handbook for Europe’s democrats, whether politically Left, Right or Centre                

“Sometimes I like to compare the EU as a creation to the organization of empire. We have the dimension of empire.”   –  EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, 2007

Readers are invited to use or adapt this document in whole or in part for their own purposes, including changing its title if desired, and to circulate it to others without any need of reference to or acknowledgement of its source.

Contents

  • The EU’s myth of origin
  • EU ideology: supranationalism v. internationalism
  • A spin-off of the Cold War
  • The euro as a response to German reunification
  • The intoxication of Big Powerdom
  • EU expansion from six to 28; “Brexit”
  • The economic basis of the EU
  • The succession of EU treaties: the 1957 Treaty ofRome
  • The 1987 Single European Act (SEA)
  • The 1992 Maastricht Treaty on European Union
  • The 1998 Amsterdam Treaty
  • The 2001 Nice Treaty
  • The 2009 Lisbon Treaty: the EU’s Constitution
  • EU Powers and National Powers
  • The “doctrine of the occupied field”; Subsidiarity
  • More voting power for the Big States under the Lisbon Treaty
  • How the EU is run: the Brussels Commission
  • The Council of Ministers
  • The European Council
  • The European Parliament
  • The Court of Justice (ECJ) as a Constitution-maker
  • The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights
  • The extent of EU laws
  • Is Another Europe, a Social Europe, possible?
  • How the EU is financed
  • Why national politicians surrender powers to the EU
  • The EU’s assault on national democracy
  • EU Justice, “Home Affairs” and Crime; Migration, Schengen
  • The Common Foreign and Security policy: EU militarization
  • The euro: from EU to Eurozone federalism
  • The euro, the bank crisis and the sovereign debt crisis
  • Two treaties for the Eurozone: The Fiscal Compact and the ESM Treaty
  • No European people or demos to provide a basis for an EU democracy
  • How the Eurozone prevents the “PIIGS” countries overcoming the economic crisis
  • The benefits of restoring national currencies
  • Contrast Iceland
  • Tackling the EU Leviathan
  • Democrats on Centre, Left and Right for national independence and democracy
  • Conclusion: Europe’s Future
  • Ireland’s EU membership
  • Abolishing the punt and adopting the euro
  • Ireland’s experience of an independent currency 1993-1999
  • The 2008 bank guarantee and the 2010 Eurozone bailout
  • Reestablishing an independent Irish currency
  • Some political consequences of Ireland’s EU membership
  • An independent democratic future
  • Useful sources of information on the EU
  • Reference Notes
  • An invitation

 

THE EU’S MYTH OF ORIGIN:  All States and aspiring States have their “myth of origin” – that is, a story, true or false, of how they came into being. The myth of origin of the European Union is that it is essentially a peace project to prevent wars between Germany and France, as if a collective tendency to go to war were somehow genetically inherited.  In reality the EU’s origins lie in war preparations – at the start of the Cold War which followed the end of World War 2 and the possibility of that developing into a “hot war”, a real military conflict between the two victorious post-war superpowers, the USA and USSR.

Tuilleadh

Irish Referendum Practice from McKenna (1995) to McCrystal (2012): How Irish Governments behaved unconstitutionally in serving the EU agenda

By Anthony Coughlan

We will fix that Stalinist body” … Comment by the late Brian Lenihan TD on the then Referendum Commission, Autumn 2001, in the lead-up to the second Nice Treaty referendum.

And How They Fixed It:
In December 2001 the Fianna Fail Government then in office put a Bill through the Oireachtas (Legislature) amending the 1998 Referendum Act so as to remove from the statutory Referendum Commission its function of setting out in a fair and neutral manner the relevant arguments for and against any proposed constitutional amendment. This was done on the last day before the Oireachtas rose for the Christmas holidays that year, when all stages of the relevant Bill were pushed through the Dail and Seanad in one day, with two days notice to the Opposition. Because of these circumstances this move went virtually unnoticed by the Irish media at the time.

1. Irish Citizens as Legislators: Tuilleadh

Deputy Thomas Pringle’s Constitutional Challenge in Ireland to the ESM Treaty

Friday 15  June 2012

“We need more Europe, not just a currency union but also a so-called fiscal union – in the area of budget policy. Above all else we need a political union. That means that step-by-step in the future we have to give up more powers to Europe and grant Europe more oversight responsibilities. . .   We cannot stand still because one or other [member state] does not want to.

–  German Chancellor Angela Merkel, ARD TV, EUobserver, Open Europe, 7 June 2012
* * *

The most effective way for Ireland to get relief on its Stat and banking debts is for the Supreme Court to concede the validity of Deputy Thomas Pringle’s claim that a referendum is constitutionally necessary on the ESM Treaty which sets up a permanent bailout fund for the Eurozone and  on the Article 136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties which authorises that.

If the Government wishes to obtain real bargaining power vis-à-vis the Eurozone, Ministers should be secretly praying for the success of Deputy Pringle’s constitutional challenge, which  opens in the High Court on Tuesday 19 June… Even if it is impossible for Ministers to indicate any such desire publicly for fear of annoying  the German, French and other Eurozone Governments.

Ireland has a veto on the Article 136 TFEU amendment  to the EU Treaties under which the 27 EU Member States authorize the 17 Eurozone States to establish a “Stability Mechanism”  if that is needed to safeguard the stability of the euro area  as a whole.

The Government is afraid to use that veto however and is anxious that the media and general public are not aware of its timidity.

By his public-spirited and patriotic action Deputy Pringle and his legal team are inviting the Courts to order that this veto be used  and that a referendum be held on the ESM Treaty and the Article 136 authorisation  before Ireland can permit a permanent Eurozone bailout fund to be set up lawfully under the EU Treaties and  to be constitutionally permissible under Bunreacht na hEireann.

By his action  moreover Deputy Pringle and his legal team are seeking to defend the integrity of EU law and the EU Treaties in face of the manifest attempt by Germany, supported by France, to use the ESM Treaty to make the Eurozone captive to Franco-German State interests and to carve out a legal-political way  to what French President Nicolas Sarkozy called for last November: ”A Federation for the Eurozone and a Confederation for the rest of the EU”.

The Irish Government has been pushing three hugely important matters through the Dail and Seanad in June, with minimal attention by RTE, the news media  or print media, taken up as they are with the fortunes and misfortunes of  Deputy Mick Wallace and the Irish soccer team in Poland.

These three matters, which are being pushed through the the Oireachtas by means of guillotined debates with  virtually no local media coverage are:

(a) Ireland’s approval of the Article 136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties authorising the establishment of a Stability Mechanism for the Eurozone;

(b) Ireland’s ratification of the ESM Treaty setting up a permanent bailout fund for the Eurozone  as this Stability Mechanism, to which the State must contribute €1.3 billion down-payment in five tranches over the next 18 months and €9 billion in callable capital thereafter;  and (c)  The ESM Bill 2012  which bring the provisions of the ESM Treaty into domestic law so that taxpayers can be made finance Ireland’s future contributions to the ESM over the years and decades ahead.

For those interested,  the Tale of Two Treaties by Cork solicitors Joe Noonan and Mary Linehan [taleoftwotreaties.tumblr.com]  describes accurately and objectively the relation between the ESM Treaty,  the Fiscal Stability Treaty on which we voted in the recent referendum, and the Article 136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties which authorizes the ESM Treaty and on which Ireland has a constitutional veto because all changes to the EU Treaties  must be by unanimity.

Below is an outline of the principal constitutional  and legal reasons why ratification of  the ESM Treaty and the Article 136 TFEU amendment require a referendum in Ireland.

_____

WHY RATIFICATION  OF THE ESM TREATY AND THE ARTICLE 136 TFEU AMENDMENT WHICH AUTHORISES THAT TREATY UNDER EU LAW  REQUIRE A REFERENDUM IN IRELAND

1.)   Article 3 TFEU of the EU Treaties, which have been constitutionally agreed by all 27 EU Member States,  provides that monetary policy for the countries using the euro is a matter of “exclusive competence” of the EU as a whole.

It is not therefore open to the 17 Member States of the Eurozone to attempt effectively to diminish the competence of the Union by establishing among themselves a Stability Mechanism entailing a net €500-billion permanent bailout fund to lend to Eurozone governments as envisaged in the ESM Treaty.    This ESM fund, to which Ireland would have to make heavy contributions for the indefinite future, would trench significantly on monetary policy for the euro area.

The Stability Mechanism envisaged in the ESM Treaty is effectively an attempt to find a way round the “no bailouts” provision of Article 125 TFEU, whereby it is forbidden for the EU to take on the debt of Member States or for Member States to take on the debt of other Member States.   It also breaches other EU Treaty articles.

The ESM Treaty if ratified as it stands would effectively amount to an attempt to open a legal-political path to what France’s President Nicolas Sarkozy called for last November, namely,  “A Federation for the Eurozone and a Confederation for the rest of the EU”.

The banking union, fiscal union and political union which Chancellor Angela Merkel and others have recently called for to help save the Monetary Union are envisaged as being for the 17 Eurozone countries  rather than for the 27-Member EU as a whole.

If successfully brought about, they would be erected  on the basis of or in parallel with the ESM Treaty  and the Fiscal Stability Treaty.

A radical step of the kind envisaged in the ESM Treaty, which would henceforth run the Economic and Monetary Union on the basis of quite a different set of rules from those of the current EU Treaties, may only lawfully be taken by means of the “ordinary”  EU treaty amendment procedure of Art.48.2 TEU.

It cannot lawfully be done by means of a mere “Decision” of the European Council of Prime Ministers and Presidents under the “simplified” EU treaty amendment procedure of Art.48.6 TEU.  The latter procedure is meant to deal with minor technical amendments to the EU Treaties, but it is currently being used by the governments of the 17 Eurozone countries in an attempt to alter radically the character of the EMU by ratifying the ESM Treaty as it stands.

2.)  How can it be lawful for the ESM Treaty to permit a permanent bailout fund to be established for the 17 Eurozone countries when the express terms of the Article 136 TFEU amendment, agreed by all 27 EU Governments, authorises a Stability Mechanism only if that is established unanimously by the Eurozone States, as the general provisions of EU law require, viz: “THE Member States whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area AS A WHOLE ” (emphasis added).

The Art.136 amendment to the EU Treaties does not say that “Member States”, meaning SOME of them, may establish a Stability Mechanism, but rather “THE Member States”, namely ALL  of them (In French “Les” Membres rather than “Des” Membres).

Yet the ESM Treaty which has been concluded among the 17 provides that the Stability Mechanism which  it seeks to establish may come into being once States contributing 90% of the capital of the proposed fund have ratified the treaty. The eight largest Eurozone States, a minority of the 17, can therefore establish this Stability Mechanism, while other Eurozone States which may badly need assistance from it are excluded.

How then can this be a Stability Mechanism “for the euro area AS A WHOLE”, as Article 136 TFEU, which still has to be constitutionally approved by all 27 EU Member States, requires?

Likewise the Fiscal Stability Treaty – the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the EMU – on which Irish voters voted on 31 May  and which cross-refers to the ESM Treaty, provides that it can come into force when it is ratified by 12 Eurozone Members.  Does not this treaty also require unanimous ratification by all 17 Eurozone Members before it can lawfully bind them under EU law?

The “enhanced cooperation” provisions of the EU Treaties (Art.20 TEU and Arts. 326-334 TFEU) provide a means whereby a sub-group of EU States which wish to cooperate more closely among themselves in areas of non-exclusive Union competence may do this under specific rules that are laid down in these Articles. The provisions of the ESM Treaty do not accord with these rules, but purport to authorize the Eurozone States to act outside the ambit of the treaties in relation to matters that are within the exclusive competence of the Union.

3.)   How can the ESM Treaty be lawfully ratified by July 2012, as is the stated intention of the 17 Eurozone governments involved, when the Decision of the European Council to amend Article 136 TFEU of the EU Treaties  to authorise a Stability Mechanism states that it  does not have legal effect, once it has been constitutionally approved by all 27 EU Member States, until 1 January 2013?

Does not this mean that any treaty purporting to establish an ESM before 2013 is legally void?  ESM Treaty No.1 which was signed by Eurozone Finance Ministers in July 2011 but was never sent round for ratification, conformed to the 2013 time-frame set by the Art.136 TFEU authorisation, whereas ESM Treaty No. 2 which was signed by EU Ambassadors on 2 February 2012 does not.

This is further evidence of how the exigencies of a political response to the financial crisis by some Eurozone States puts them in breach of the EU Treaties law and therefore of the Irish Constitution.

4.)    EU Member States may only sign international treaties which are compatible with EU law. The EU Court of Justice has made clear that intergovernmental agreements cannot affect the allocation of responsibilities defined in the EU Treaties. The provisions of the ESM Treaty and the Fiscal Stability Treaty which involve the EU Commission and Court of Justice in the detailed implementation of the proposed ESM go well beyond what is permissible under the current EU treaties and are therefore unlawful.

Last Post of Referendum: If you haven’t yet voted, please read this…

  • John Corcoran (ICTA) writes in an email: At 8.25 am yesterday morning Paul Krugman and John Corcoran spoke simultaneously on BBC radio and advised the Irish people to vote No in the Fiscal Treaty Referendum.  John spoke on BBC radio ulster and Paul on BBC radio 4.  Both are distinguished former students of the London School of Economics.   Please join with John and Paul and ensure a No vote today.  If you click on the podcast link… you can hear the interview.
    John Corcoran, M.Sc. Economics London School of Economics and Political Science.
    Spokesperson, Irish Commercial Tenants Association;
  • David McWilliams / Irish Independent – The fiscal treaty will only make things worse: The situation in the eurozone is not getting any better. The fiscal treaty, by imposing austerity on an already enfeebled economy, will make things worse, prompting more capital flight. Rolling the snowball down the hill is not an honest option.
    Mightn’t it be better to open the negotiations properly now?
  • Forpras Financial SolutionsWhy vote NO to the Fiscal Stability Treaty? Why are our Irish politicians telling us to vote YES? Are you aware that the ESM (European Stability Mechanism) isn’t even setup and yet Portugal, Spain and Greece need immediate bailing out? Where will all this funding come from? Well, more and more taxes will be needed to pay for all these bailouts and ofcourse the vicious circle of Ireland having to borrow to help bailout itself out and our partners. Every cent borrowed needs to be repaid with excessive interest rates. The government tells us not to worry as they have agreed with their collegues in the EU that we will be permitted to pay these loans over an extended timeframe. But nobody is agreeing to help reduce our debts or even write a portion off? Why? […] It looks like Ireland and the Irish public will be left with mountains of debt. More and more Irish will be required to pay higher taxes (VAT 23%, property tax, water charges, higher car taxes, higher fuel taxes and the list goes on) resulting in the standard of living in Ireland falling, rising debt and a massive increase in the number of Irish unable to pay off their debts whether they be mortgages, credit cards, etc.
  • Vincent Browne / Politico.ie – We owe it to ourselves to oppose a trajectory that will vandalise society: I will vote No to express indignation with the cavalier disregard of the procedures and protocols of the European Union itself of the sovereignty of its member states, in the conduct of the leaders of the EU institutions and of Germany and France, in their insolence in interfering with the internal affairs of Greece and Italy, in their disregard for “democratic” procedures of the Union – even in the way this Fiscal Treaty came about.
    I will vote No to defy the wishes of the German elite, which benefited so spectacularly from the emergence of the Eurozone and now makes modest redistribution of that generated wealth, conditional on adherence to its economic and budgetary diktats, diktats that disadvantage not only the mass of people throughout the rest of Europe but the mass of people in Germany itself. 
    I will vote No to give backbone to the government’s dealings with the EU on the promissory notes and the other bank debt. 
  • TEEU – the power unionTEEU Executive Committee Urges Members to Vote No to Austerity: The inevitable result would be a further contraction in the size of the economy – already decreased by over a quarter since 2008 – with an accompanying increase in unemployment and decrease in government revenue. As Nobel laureate Paul Krugman simply put it, austerity “pushes depressed economies deeper into depression”. We, and others, have pointed out that a fiscal stimulus is what is required and have suggested, to no avail, a means of applying it.

UPDATE: Reply to Dr Gavin Barrett’s article on the Fiscal Treaty referendum in Friday 4/May Irish Times

“A Federation for the Eurozone and a Confederation for the rest of the EU”

(Note: The following replaces & corrects earlier version of 7/May)

TWO TREATIES FOR THE EUROZONE AND AN AMENDMENT TO  ONE OF THE EU TREATIES  – ALL RELATED TO EACH  OTHER!

Reply to Dr Gavin Barrett, Senior Lecturer in European Law, UCD, who wrote an article urging a Yes vote in the Fiscal Treaty referendum in the Irish Times on Friday 4 May, by Anthony Coughlan, Director, The National Platform EU Research and Information Centre, 24 Crawford Avenue, Dublin 9; Tel.: 01-8305792

Wednesday 9 May 2012

INTRODUCTION:

AMENDMENT TO ARTICLE 136,  TREATY ON THE FUNCTIONING OF THE EUROPEAN UNION (TFEU)  –

“The Member States whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole. The granting of any required financial assistance under the mechanism will be made subject to strict conditionality.”

– Proposed amendment to Article 136 TFEU of the EU Treaties by which the 27 EU Member States  authorize the 17 Member States of the Eurozone to establish a  Stability Mechanism

The above Art.136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties has still to be approved by Ireland in accordance with its constitutional requirements under the “simplified” EU treaty amendment procedure of Article 48.6 TEU.

The European Council “Decision” to insert this amendment into the EU Treaties comes into force on 1 January 2013 if  by that time it has been approved by all 27 EU Member States in accordance with their constitutional requirements.

The ESM Institution which the 17 Eurozone States seek to establish and which Ireland would become a Member of is to be set up by the ESM Treaty for the 17 on the basis of this  Art.136 TFEU authorization  by the 27.  The ESM Treaty states that it is “complementary” to the Fiscal Treaty on which we have a referendum vote on 31 May.

The Government has promised the other 16 Eurozone Governments that it will have the ESM Treaty ratified by July,  but without the necessary constitutional referendum being held on it and on the Art. 136 TFEU amendment which authorizes it.

Q.  BUT WHERE WILL WE GET THE MONEY?

A.   We will get the money by holding a referendum on the Article 136 TFEU amendment and the ESM Treaty that it authorizes. This is constitutionally required in Ireland in order to validate these proposals as they stand, but our supine Government wants to avoid such  a referendum at all costs.  The 16 other Eurozone States will have to persuade us to vote Yes in such a referendum if they are to establish the kind of Stability Mechanism which the ESM Treaty envisages.  They can do this by agreeing to forgive the private bank debt the ECB has insisted should be imposed on Irish taxpayers, plus the Anglo-Irish promissory notes etc.   An Irish referendum on Article 136 TFEU and the ESM Treaty would also be an opportunity to add the voice of the Irish people to the calls across  Europe for the Eurozone authorities to agree a growth strategy instead of the present failed austerity policies.

Q.  WHERE WILL WE GET THE MONEY IF WE VOTE NO TO THE FISCAL TREATY?

A.   Where will the Government get the money to pay the €11 billion the ESM Treaty will require from us –  €1.3 billion up front and €250 million of that this July! –  with an open-ended treaty commitment to pay further sums thereafter without limit?

Tuilleadh

We need to postpone ratifying the ESM Treaty until After the the Fiscal Treaty referendum

The relation between two different treaties we are asked to ratify, which people Need to understand

The Government’s announcement of a referendum on the so-called “Fiscal Compact Treaty” (properly titled the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union/TSCG) calls in question its original intention to introduce the quite different European Stability Mechanism Treaty (ESM) to the Dáil for approval of its ratification on Tuesday or Wednesday next, or else sometime in the present pre-Easter Dáil term, as the Taoiseach recently announced.

The ESM Treaty would set up a permanent Eurozone bailout fund of at least €500 billion form this July – an economic firewall against sovereign debt “contagion” spreading to Spain and Italy. It has to be ratified by all 17 Eurozone States by their appropriate constitutional procedures. The ESM Treaty would commit Ireland to contributing €11 billion to the permanent Eurozone fund – so much money up front and so much in guarantees called “callable” capital later if required. There is already talk of boosting this fund by another few hundred billion once it is established, to which Ireland would naturally have to make a contribution also.

The Preamble to the ESM Treaty, which can be easily downloaded from the Internet, states (Recital 5): “It is acknowledged and agreed that the granting of fonancial assistance in the framework of the new programmes under the ESM will be conditional, as of March 2013, on the ratification of the TSCG [that is, the “Fiscal Treaty”] by the ESM Member concerned…”

This means that if the ESM Treaty, is ratified by Ireland sometime this month – we will be committing ourselves to contributing €11 billion to a fund from which we can receive no benefit or advantage whatever if voters should vote No to the Fiscal Treaty referendum that will presumably be held sometime in May or early June, although the Fiscal Treaty need not be ratified until the end of this year. The ESM Treaty was signed on2 February, the Fiscal Treaty/TSCG was signed on Friday last.

Would the Government not be acting in a very foolish fashion to lay the country open to such a possibility?

Would not the Irish State appear to be acting really bizarrely in the eyes of international public opinion if the ratification of these two quite different treaties was put the wrong way round in this way – very much against the Irish People’s interests?

Or has the Government in mind to introduce and ratify the ESM Treaty during March, as the Taoiseach said,

  • thereby binding the State to contribute €11 billion plus to this permanent Eurozone Fund,
  • and then use that as a moral bludgeon with which to browbeat a bamboozled electorate into voting Yes to the “Fiscal Treaty” – on the ground that if they should vote No to it, they will be depriving themselves of possible access to the permanent Eurozone fund at some time in the future?

Could our leaders really be so cynical?

Surely it becomes imperative in these circumstances that the Government should postpone ratification of the ESM Treaty until after the referendum on the Fiscal Treaty has been held?

The 17 Eurozone Prime Ministers and Presidents have agreed that they would try to bring the ESM Treaty into force by July. The original intention with this treaty’s predecessor, ESM Treaty No.1, which Michael Noonan and the other Eurozone Finance Ministers signed last year, in July 2011, had been to bring the permanent ESM fund into being in 2013, although ESM Treaty No.1 was never sent around for ratification. The date of next July would still give Ireland plenty of time in which to hold its “Fiscal Treaty” referendum in May or early June and thereafter ratify the ESM Treaty (No.2) to come into force by July if the people should vote for it.

Anthony Coughlan (Director)

“We Are Treated Like Mushrooms – Kept in the Dark and Fed Shit!”: Did you know…?

DO YOU KNOW that Ireland could hold the Eurozone at our mercy regarding our national debt, the Anglo-Irish promissory notes and the terms of the Troika’s Memorandum of Understanding? This can be done by requiring a referendum instead of Oireachtas approval of the “Decision” of the EU 27 to amend Art.136 of the EU Treaties so as to authorize the establishment of a permanent €500 billion fund for the Eurozone, the “European Stability Mechanism Fund”, to which Ireland must contribute €11 billion?

DO YOU KNOW that approval of this “Decision” is the only thing on which Ireland has the power of veto? This is because if a referendum on approval of this “Decision” were found to be constitutionally necessary, it would put the State in a position to insist on major concessions on all these vital financial matters. Why should the Government throw away Ireland’s best bargaining card in this way? It is the only chance we have to get rapid radical relief for our ongoing economic pain.

DO YOU KNOW that the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) Treaty for the Euro area was signed by the ambassadors of the 17 Eurozone countries to the EU on 2 February 2012? This looks like being brought before the Dáil for ratification on Tuesday or Wednesday of next week, when the Taoiseach reports back from next Friday’s EU/Eurozone summit. It must be dealt with in this Dail session because the 17 Eurozone States have agreed to rat-ify the ESM Treaty by July.

DO YOU KNOW that this is ESM Treaty No 2? It replaces ESM Treaty No 1 which Finance Minister Michael Noonan signed along with other Eurozone Finance Ministers last summer but which was never sent around for ratification. Unlike its earlier version, ESM Treaty No 2 states in its preamble (Recital No. 5) that it is agreed that no Eurozone State will be able to obtain money from the permanent ESM fund which the treaty would establish unless they have first ratified the separate “Fiscal Compact Treaty” which has been pushed by Chancellor Merkel since Christmas. This requires a permanent balanced budget provision or “debt brake” in national constitutions or their equivalent. This Fiscal Compact Treaty, which will probably be signed by the 17 Eurozone States next Friday and which many people here have criticized, does not need to be ratified until the end of this year.

DO YOU KNOW that the Government has invited submissions from the public on this Fiscal Compact Treaty – a most unusual development? This will distract attention from the Government’s failure to insist that the amendment it has agreed to make to Art.136 of the EU treaties requires a referendum in Ireland because it makes a radical change to the scope, objectives and character of the Economic and Monetary Union which the Irish people agreed to sign up to under the Maastricht and Lisbon Treaties?

DO YOU KNOW that a motion to approve the “Decision” of the European Council to amend Art.136 of the EU Treaties + A motion to approve ratification of the European Stability Mechanism Treaty + A European Communities Amendment Bill to bring the provisions of the latter into Irish domestic law, will all be put before the Oireachtas probably on Tuesday or Wednesday week? This is even though there has been absolutely no public discussion on any of these vital matters, and media attention has been concentrated exclusively on the Fiscal Compact Treaty on which Ireland does not have a veto. At a minimum the people deserve a White Paper.

DO YOU KNOW that by holding a referendum in Ireland on the Art.136 amendment to the EU treaties – without which the €500 billion ESM fund cannot be established – we could not only insist on our sovereign debt situation being transformed, but that a better solution to the whole Eurozone economic crisis could be adopted?

If you would like to find out what is really going on, please read the detailed explanation in the analysis on this site entitled “Two Steps to a Fiscal Union for the Eurozone… & A Third Step to Distract Attention from the First Two“.

The European Stability Mechanism Treaty and the Fiscal Compact Treaty can each be Googled on the Internet.

 
 
Anthony Coughlan
Director
National Platform EU Research and Information Centre

February 27, 2012
janthonycoughlan at gmail dot com
24 Crawford Ave. Dublin 9 01-8305792
First published online @ http://www.indymedia.ie/article/101441
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