Treaty of Lisbon: Endgame

Today is a key inflection point in determining whether the EU will be looking forwards or backwards over the next few months.  Irish voters will have had their second run at approving the Lisbon Treaty by referendum.  The count begins at 0800 GMT and it’ll be worth checking the Irish Election blog for early word of the “tallies” (informal survey of ballots as they are sorted) as well as general reaction to the result.  There’s some possibility of anti-climactic process if the tallies or a reliable exit poll signal a clear Yes margin early on but there have probably been a few sleepless nights in government circles nonetheless.   Assuming a Yes vote, there will be 3 issues worth watching:

(1) the immediate pressure that will be brought to bear on Prague to expedite Czech ratification, (2) whether the confidently sourced stories that Tony Blair has the inside track on the Council presidency job result in a backlash, and (3) the story that got buried in Ireland while the country was busy voting (or abstaining): the 2 billion euro hole in its 2009 budget that has emerged since a supplemental budget in April.  One thing on the back of the minds of a few voters is that the country could be back looking for favours from EU institutions quite quickly.  Memo to the finance ministers and central bank governors gathering in Istanbul: don’t congratulate yourselves on the worst of the crisis being over just yet.  Some of the EU’s potential landmines haven’t been defused.

13 thoughts on “Treaty of Lisbon: Endgame

  1. Aye, if Irelands votes no, Europe will go forward, and if Ireland votes yes, Europe will go backwards.

    Of course, if Irelands votes “Yes” they won’t be asked to vote again in 6 months to reverse the decision, but then this whole affair is just loaded in favour of the demos-hating EU.

  2. Now can anybody comment on the likely and maximum life expectancies of Gordon Brown’s government?

  3. Was there anything wrong with the first Irish voting results from last year?

    Why not just practice plain simple election fraud? It’s far more honest. It would suit Brussels far better.

    Thank God in Brussels heavens for the collapsed Irish economy and for having their useless Franco/German currency, the euro, packed inside the holy grail of THE German private eurozone export market monetary politics. THATs what I call a powerful strategy.

    All voting result which outcome proves the be against transferring more powers over to Brussels, are always – by Brussels standard democracy rules – considered as being only temporary voting results. All voting results that confirm the transfer of increased power over to Brussels, are the true and only final irreversible voting results. Of course!

    This is just another European utopia in the making. Another top down European revolution

    Congratulation you old shit European continent!

  4. In the US the federal government also has the final say in major decisions, like economic and foreign policy with one MAJOR and HUGE difference: It is unthinkable that the federal government will side AGAINST a state and (especially) in favor of a third country. This has happened before in the EU and since the EU(at least Brussels) does not(yet?) feel that it is one country, it is outright stupid to give up national policy to Brussels. The fact that now all countries have agreed to Lisbon, most of them without a referendum tells you a lot about the politicians.

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  6. It sure does. It tells me that the politicians have no desire to subject their people to the populism-strewn idiocy that is a referendum. It tells me that they actually want to get things done.

  7. To get even more things done, they should then abolish that other populism-strewn idiocy that is called elections.

  8. Nice try in misrepresenting what I said.

    Electing representatives to tackle the complicated issues of law is more sound than referenda, which are usually based on simplistic talking points.

    But once again, good try, even if you did fail.

  9. Ok, I see. So citizens are smart enough to recognize the geniuses who can tackle these problems, but too dumm to understand these issues themselves. So, how do they judge the competence of the geniuses they will elect?
    The fact is that if you look at the composition of say the EP or local parliaments, you will find a lot of ex-tv anchorpersons, models, actors, sports figures and other such mental geniuses, not to mention the perrenial party member-applauders who should be rewarded with an MEP position. Plus, the notorious block-voting. If your block says something is good, what the heck, your alliances are with your block, not the stupid voter who sent you there.

    I agree with scot here, the issues with Lisbon is not one of law(this is indeed a technical issue), but one of direction: If we do not (yet) feel like one country, why should be try to act like one? We should try to act like one when we do, not before.

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