QUOTE (tumetuestumefaisdubien @ Apr 12 2008, 05:43 PM)
... Just for the information: We also still struggle here and behind the scenes against the ratification of the outrageous Lisboa Treaty - imagine a (EU) "Constitution", of which the half is something like "federal reserve act" (European central bank and Europen investment bank statutes) and the rest legaly taking most of the soveregnity from the national states, legaly abolishing the state borders, even creating the EU citizenship (completely without any consent of the people - how could anyone vote for me becoming a citizen of a foreign empire?) + president of EU, secretary of state, new "EU governement" (so called "Commission") - with almost despotic authorities...etc.(and yet "they" still insist it is "NOT a constitution") , imagine a document comprising of 200 pages + another 300 pages of "protocols" and former EU treaty + a crazy "Bill of Rights" in style a la "Universal declaration of human rights" (almost no civil rights included - no 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th Amendments..) + unknown amount of secret "appendixes" (the US Constitution has 15 pages including all Amendments, is clear, unambiquous, and one can read it in half an hour - and still is quite hard to enforce it...apparently...) The whole Lisboa Treaty (just a renamed version of the "EU Constitution" - as Czech president Klaus put it up) looks - much more than like a "Constitution" - like a charter of a monstrous corporation ...closing the ring and all of us here into a 1984 empire. ...
While I completely agree with the opening statement of this topic, I have to take distance from unrelated discussion about the European Union and the Lisbon Treaty. Nevertheless some qualifications are partially right, e.g. the Treaty isn't a European "Constitution." It is in fact a bundled treaty, because it summarizes all the former treaties, adding some new and more democratic controls, especially empowering the European parliament. The members of this parliament are chosen by direct elections in all the member-states and represent the supreme power of the European people over the European Commission - they can send the Commission, appointed by the gathering of heads of states and approved by the parliament, home by a single majority. My statement here will reject the Brave New World conspiracy and the virtual New World Order with the proper information.
You have to understand, that the commissioners are not and can't be despotic rulers, because they are first not despotic and second they execute the existing rules and laws that are agreed on in the democratic process by the European parliament and the parliaments of all the member states. The procedure is more a look alike the constitutional procedure in the USA, that needs agreement of the 50 states to become the law of the land, like the Amendments of the Constitution. All national parliaments have the right to veto. That is meant to secure that only the necessary rules become invoked. So, to call the European Commission a European government is not correct, because the Commission is not a legislative body, but an executive administration. It's only executing existing laws and rules, as found in the existing treaties, we all agreed on by majorities of the voters and, in some cases, by national referendums. The legislative procedure is a very complicated and deeply rooted in the will of the people. While the Lisbon Treaty is confusing by its nature of a bundle the underlying rules and laws are not ambiguous, but clear texts. If you have to bundle all that texts it becomes somewhat fuzzy and that's why you can't call it a Constitution like the Dutch and American constitutions, that are as short as clip and clear in themselves. It has made the whole concept an example of bad communications, hard to oversee and understand, but that doesn't effect the rightness of tits meaning and content. As a Dutchman and an European I have to apologize for that.
In historic order you had first the European Coal-and-Steel Community (ECC) that became later on the European Economic Community (EEC) (with by then until now also Norway as a full member). Furthermore evolved the European (Economic) Monetary Union (EMU) and by the Lisbon Treaty the European Union (EU). Since 1992 the Eurozone came in shape within the European Union, with the common euro as its currency, effected 1999 and in full practice since 2001. The euro is used by 500 million Europeans but not by all of them because the United Kingdom, Denmark, Sweden and some new member-states did (until now) not participate in the final Eurozone. They are free to do that, but in the meantime still participating in the EMU, so all the European currencies are coupled. Also all the Central National Banks are unified under the European Central Bank (ECB), that is a politically independent institute. Central banks serve the interests, liability and safety of all the private banks in their territories and the European Central bank is coordinating that. But unlike the Federal Reserve the ECB is not owned by private banks. It is not owned by any entity. Apart from that, most member-states also do have a financial authority, an institute that protects the interests of consumers. That kind of functions with anti-trust rules are also integrated in the European Commission and it is comparable with the American Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
The growing European unity is based on bargaining treaties between sovereign states under the democratic control of the parliaments of those states or by people's referendum. There is no and will not be treaties without consensus, but as usual, all treaties in history and the world are actions of give and take, that effect the sovereignty of the states involved, just like the results of bargain at the kitchen table at home. The results and agreements are binding for all sides. It is a good custom to act according those agreements, you are obliged too by free will, even when it turns out to be not in your interest at a certain moment. It shapes stability and security as a main goal for all and regarding economic issues that's a huge benefit. So the EU and especially the Eurozone, did very well, but, as you know, trust is beautiful, but control is better and a lack of control led first to the banking-crisis and lastly to the current debt-crisis in the Eurozone. France opposed that control of an European financial authority to guard the agreement that no member-state should have a larger national debt than 60% of their GDP and no larger budget-deficit than 3% of their GDP. By now France gave up this opposition against guarding the financial agreements and that will lead tot the new institution of a independent European Budget Authority. It doesn't change the rules of the game but it delivers the effective arbitration we need.
This does not mean that the Budget Authority has the power to direct how member-states have to furnish their budgets, because that is regarding the political process and relations inside that sovereign state and there are of course different ways to keep national debts and national deficits within the agreed borders.
In the same time we see the growing globalization teaching us that we are all close together on a small sphere and all the people on it share the same desire of freedom and prosperity, some (the 1%) focused on their greed and most (the 99%) focused on their need. That's not new, but not all of us could see that during the times of the past. That changed since pilots ship us around over the globe in their planes. So we contact and see each other to learn that we are all more divided than different. So instead of fighting each other by war, nations are more and more grouping together, founding democratic controlled institutions that serve us all. It's not a coordinated plan of action of the few "elites" and it can't be something like that, because that "elites" of the 1% are divided too with conflicting interests and with all the small steps we count the votes. Our game of European unity will be a standard for a better world, still different people but not divided anymore.
But as long as people believe to belong to the one and only country, blessed under a virtual supreme being, God, Allah or JHW, there will always remain a motive to destruction. Perhaps some time all humans will understand that religion and ideology are the forces to divide the world. Building European unity has nothing to do with that.