Monday, March 03, 2008

The Dude wants a referendum

Alien-voter he may be, but The Dude's generally a sound chap and he's spot on with this post.
Either we're a kafkaesque bureaucracy masquerading as a democracy, in which case, how long before we look like the Soviet Union? Or the will of the Demos actually counts for something, in which case just drop the Treaty of Lisbon, or at least give us a chance to kick it out.

It is up to the Liberal Democrats to find a shred of decency, along with about 40 Labour MPs. Is that a Flight of Old Tamworths I see flying past?

I don't want a revolution: I just want my promised referendum and If I don't get it, I will want to see that mendacious Presbyterian fucker, Brown dangling from a gibbet, alongside the revolting shower I am forced to call a Government, with crows feasting on their eyes...

Absolutely: go and read the whole thing. As I have pointed out, innumerable times, those who claim that we should not have a referendum because we live in a representative democracy are total cunts.

It is because we live in a representative democracy that we should have a referendum. Because, when 98% of those MPs represented themselves to the voters, they promised a referendum.

Oh, and for all of those bastards who say that this Treaty is different because we have those crucial "red lines", you are a lying sack of shit. First, we had those "red lines" in place in the original Constitution. Second, those red lines are absolutely worthless.

It's not a difficult concept to grasp, really.

UPDATE: EU Referendum reports on yet another referendum demonstration that has been largely ignored by the media.
Obviously taking a cue from the Greenie protesters last week, two demonstrators have scaled a large crane in Parliament Square overnight, to unfurl a banner demanding a referendum on the constitutional Lisbon treaty.

Compared with the coverage given to the Greenies, however, reports are few in number, the main source being this Reuters' report.
...

Anyhow, the demonstration makes the leader in The Daily Telegraph rather apposite. It comments on yesterday's mini referendum result, noting:
Not for the first time, the political class has been caught off guard. The consensus was that nobody much cared about the European Constitution (now the Lisbon Treaty). The campaign for a referendum went largely unreported. Ours was the only newspaper to cover last week's lobby of the House of Commons.

Elsewhere, five demonstrators on the roof of the building were considered more newsworthy than thousands of concerned citizens queuing politely beneath. Meanwhile, the fact that 10 constituencies were casting representative votes for the rest of us was chiefly ignored.

It seems to me that there can be absolutely no doubt that the media are colluding with the government in deliberately ignoring these protests. There is, if you like, a conspiracy of silence.
Well, it can be ignored – as will be today's demonstration. But what all these activities have done is put down a marker. The have exposed for all time that which we knew already – that the European Union, and this treaty, has not one shred of democratic legitimacy.

Furthermore, the mini referendum has confirmed that which we already knew: the main reason this government does not want a referendum is because, if it did allow one, it would lose it.

However, governments can ignore the wishes of the people for so long before they, the people, extract their revenge. We know not how we will do it, or when, so the only promise we can offer is that we will. There are few certain things in politics, but that is one of them.

Thus, the message could not be clearer: give us a referendum... or else!

That's right: it'll be crows and gibbets time...

6 comments:

Budgie said...

Instead of addressing the massive transfer of power to the EU and the undermining of the UK's constitution and democracy, Brown is burbling on about underage drinkers. The man is on planet luloo. What a plonker.

Nosemonkey said...

A couple of quickies:

1) The referendum protest was the lead politics story on the BBC news site for much of this morning (here it is: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/7274269.stm), and the fourth item on BBC Breakfast on the telly. The stories were short because there wasn't much info - and it was only a couple of people and they hadn't gained access to the roof of Parliament, so it was less of a big deal than the climate one. The Beeb also gave a fair bit of prominence to the mini-referendum result yesterday afternoon: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7273668.stm

2) Re: the treaty itself, how about those people who argue that there's no need for a referendum because the old constitution replaced all the previous EU treaties (and in so doing took on the form of a constitution, providing all the rules and regulations in one handy document), while the new one merely amends them (meaning it's, erm, not a constitution) - and who would also point out that there's no precedent for a referendum on such a thing in any case?

Nosemonkey said...

Oh, and forgot to mention - that mini-referendum only had a turnout of 36%. Which would tend to suggest that a good majority aren't interested in a referendum one way or the other... (Which, let's face it, was always going to be the most likely outcome - no one cares about the EU...)

Budgie said...

nosemonkey said:
'the new one merely amends them (meaning it's, erm, not a constitution)'

Lisbon adopts the same amending mechanism as previous treaties like Maastricht. But it is amending the EU's constitution - ie amending the set of rules that define how the EU operates. Also the amendments are lifted straight out of the EU Constitution.

and nosemonkey also said:
'there's no precedent for a referendum on such a thing in any case'

1975 referendum is a precedent, as are the constitutional referendums allowing devolution in Wales and Scotland. However a precedent is not required: Labour and LibDem promised a referendum in their manifestos. They obviously did not think a lack of precedence was important then.

Anonymous said...

"'the new one merely amends them (meaning it's, erm, not a constitution)'"

The logic of this is fundamentally flawed. The UK has never had a single piece of legislation that replaces previous legislation and forms its constitution. Nonetheless, the UK has a constitution. Clearly, therefore, the definition of a constitution is somewhat wider than has been suggested.

Harry Haddock said...

There are precedents here actually; the one that MP's are all liars, and that Europhile's will do anything to avoid giving the public a chance to de-rail their plans.

So, it's business as usual, really.