Wednesday, June 01, 2005

The Thing Part 2

European Commission President Jose Barroso asked individual countries not to draw premature conclusions from the Dutch rejection of the European draft constitution.

Late last night European Commission president Jose Manual Barroso pleaded with Britain and the rest to avoid any “unilateral decisions” about referendums and let the dust settle until an EU summit on June 16 which is now a full blown crisis management meeting. ... Mr Barroso carefully avoided insisting that ratification had to go on beyond the summit, but Luxembourg prime minister Jean-Claude Juncker, who will host the summit meeting, was adamant, declaring: "The show must go on".

But the injunction against unilateral action went unheeded -- or did not apply -- to German Chanceller Schroeder, who proposed opening the old show in a different theater even while the cast of the current production was being pelted with tomatoes.

German chancellor Gerard Schroeder made a bold bid to form a new "inner circle" of fast-track European Union member states. He used the EU treaty crisis to revive efforts to establish a close-knit core group of nations forging ahead with key policies regardless of the rest. ... The offer on the table was said to be a new deal in which the original six EU member states – Germany, France, the Netherlands, Italy, Belgium and Luxembourg – would re-establish their founding-father status in the EU driving seat.

The International Herald Tribune describes the forced gaiety in Brussels as it looked forward to other opening nights.

"The debate must continue," said Jean-Claude Juncker, prime minister of Luxembourg and the current holder of the rotating EU presidency. ... The ratification process should continue in other member states, Juncker said, because "we want other member states to have the opportunity to tackle the same debate." ... "The overwhelming majority of countries will want to continue the process of ratification," said John Palmer, political director of the European Policy Center in Brussels. "They want to give everyone the right to hear their opinion."

Some Dutch commentators, on the other hand, argued that opinions were precisely what Brussels did not want to hear. "The Dutch were never asked about the introduction of the euro, enlargement, Turkey," said Rob Boudewegm, senior fellow at the Clingendael Institute of International Relations in The Hague. "This is the first time they can give their opinion and it is no."


Blogger Vercingetorix said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/01/2005 07:28:00 PM  
Blogger Vercingetorix said...

Hmmmm...The debate must continue... I like the Beating's will stop when Morale improves...errrr.

Let's face it, the EU is the same socialist mileu that passes for the last survivor of the Cold War. It was inaugurated by the EEC formulated for a world that was between two Superpowers, and now when one Superpower (ahem) is gone, it naturally seeks a multipolar world. It, like the UN, is a suspension bridge too far and to nowhere in particular. The Cold War is over and we have to watch the remnants destroy themselves; Islamism as the last of the hated -ism's, the EU, UN, and all of the industrial-era contrivances (read unions) which no longer make sense.

Different pieces, different periods, same school of artists and all of it rotten to their core.

Do you really think that a period that descended so rapidly past Picasso's absurdities into numbing emotionalism would be worthy of inspiring the institutions to end history?

6/01/2005 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Euro took a dive on the 'no' votes but it's set to bounce back:

The dollar fell from near an eight- month high against the euro in Asia as a technical chart traders use to predict price changes suggested the rally was set to end.

The euro's relative strength index against the dollar, which measures momentum in a given period, indicated it may halt its 3.2 percent, three-day drop. Europe's common currency slumped after French and Dutch voters this week rejected the European Union constitution. The dollar also weakened before a U.S. government report tomorrow that may show slowing job growth.

6/01/2005 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger Meme chose said...

Both of the Black Knight's arms have at this point been cut off, and blood is spurting comically from the sockets, but he carries on shouting defiantly: "Come on! 'Tis but a flesh wound..."

6/01/2005 08:09:00 PM  
Blogger fjelehjifel said...

As the European Union gets wrapped tighter and tighter around its own technocratic axle, NATO is once again becoming a useful institution.

NATO's Rapid Reaction Force looks like it's becoming a force to be reckoned with. And the alliance is also assuming security responsibility for western Afghanistan in addition to Kabul.

6/01/2005 08:15:00 PM  
Blogger Vercingetorix said...

The EU, and the Euro, especially, and the UN for that matter, are valuable to some degree. But the EU and its miserable fiscal policies and shameless protectionism must be reformed dramatically. Its like the Soviet Union, we wanted them destroyed as a political entity, but we couldn't care less about the Russian Empire it was built upon.

There is so much daylight between those two examples I could power the Midwest with Solar power for years...BUT the Euro's contradictions do not make for happy investing. Let's face it, if you wanted to create a union of European states, you wouldn't go about it like this. There is no unity in language but maybe that isn't completely neccessary, yet there is no unity in politics which is, economics, defense, nor really interests, or anything else of consequence. Some of the differences are stark, as the difference between Scandinavians and Polish and British, across language family groups and even civilizational lines (one tracing heritage back to Rome, another with Slavic, and the other Norse).

Could Turkey, a secular muslim country of Turkoman persuasion form an ever closer union with Iran an Persian Shia Islamicist state with Saudi Arabia, a dynastic monarchy, Sunni and Arab? If Europe has few of the Middle East's problems, it still doesn't mean that she has the appropriate solutions to her vast sub-civilizational differences. There is precious little acculturation in the European States to meld Europeans out of ethnic French and Germans, much less foreigners to French and Germans...lots of little problems all from the same problem set.

Unless the Stability and Growth Treaty is revised, the Euro is likely to be either scrapped as it is injurious to its members [hat tip: Zacht Ei or the EU itself will suffer greater pain.

6/01/2005 08:23:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

It would appear that the Eurocrats such as, Jose Barroso, Jean-Claude Juncker, Chirac and Schroeder need more "surfs" to regulate and tax. Unfortunately, the "surfs" don't want anymore regulation or taxation. This could leave Eurocrats with no real function - and possibly no job.

Yes, the debate must continue! All of the man-hours that were spent of scribing the hefty Constitution may just be a waste money (not to mention all of the meetings, travel, and other expenses). In fact, the cost of the actually ballots and the nasty "no" votes may also be going down the drain. It's no wonder why the Euro took a drubbing today. The whole Euro-monstrosity is crumbling. There must be some clever bookie making odds on this thing. Anyone know where I can find him?

6/01/2005 09:22:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...


Not sure but Amsterdam might be a good place to start.

6/01/2005 10:08:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Mr. Chirac indicated that he thought the judgment of history would go against the Iraq war and vindicate those who opposed it. ...
"We have another choice," Mr. Chirac told an audience at the International Institute of Strategic Studies
"That of an order based on respect for international law and the empowerment of the world's new poles by fully and wholly involving them in the decision-making mechanisms. "Only this path," he added, "is likely to establish a stable, legitimate and accepted order in the long run." The new "poles" he spoke of are the emerging regional powers of the new century, including Europe, China, India and Brazil.

Bricoleur said...
The core of Chirac's otherwise puzzling positions was illuminated in an article by Janet Daley in the Daily Telegraph this week:
"The European Union is creating what it hopes will be a benign oligarchy. Real political power will reside once again within elite circles (as it does already in France) which will conduct their business in the corridors rather than in the assemblies...
Meanwhile, the United States will persevere with the belief, which Europe regards as crass, that giving ordinary people power over their governing class is the only hope for peace and security.
Democracy, and what it entails, is not what unites us... it is what divides us." What the EU's entrenched, country by country, elites believe is that "the political instincts of the people are far too inflammable and mercurial to be trusted. Better leave the serious business of law-making and governance to a professional class of administrators, an enlightened elite who will not be subject to the whims and volatile passions of the mob..."
. Two different visions of the future of the world

6/02/2005 12:46:00 AM  
Blogger Karridine said...

I am... better than you so I will tell you what is good for you, because I know best what's good for you, and you don't know because I'm better than you, and know better than you.

This "We, The People, in order to..." garbage is racist, and homophobic, and xenophobic, proving that I know better than you because I AM better than you- Wait! Come back! I haven't finished dictating your rights, yet... come back!

6/02/2005 12:51:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

Thanks sam. But, I don't know where in Hamsterdam ... oh, I meant Amsterdam... to find him.

6/02/2005 01:33:00 AM  
Blogger Don Black said...

I perhaps have a weird view of the EU constitution. It seems to me that the nations of EU elected people too lazy to be interested in governing their own countries. These “collectives” attempting to be governments are willing to give up their individual sovereign governments. I wondered when they named it the European Union. It is almost a need to replace the Soviet Union, as if the member states of EU think they could become a super power. It makes me wonder when the bulk of their military defense is the military of the United States. Our forces prop up local economies as well as the governments. Do they think our troops will support them against the other super power, the USA?

The official language of the USSR was Russian. What is the official language of the EU? I think it was going to be French.

6/02/2005 04:50:00 AM  
Blogger Rune said...

Danish politicians most enamoured with the EU are saying one solution could be to extend beyond 2006 the deadline for ratifying the constitution. In other words; don’t change a letter – just close your eyes and pretend everything is fine and dandy and surely the masses will come around eventually, or be worn down.

It was very interesting to see that during the internal European disagreements over the Iraq war, a new British/Spanish/Italian block arose to counter the influence of the German/French axis. Of course the Spanish later bailed out (the damn cowards) but perhaps there’s still a chance for a strong group of more economic liberal minded and US positive countries led by Britain. Eastern Europe, Italy, Denmark, The Dutch, Britain.

I say, lets split the whole damn shebang in two. Let the commies have it their way by themselves. Then we can have a reasonable free market to spur the economic progress with those countries that can say "capitalism" withoug gnasing their teeth. Everybod gets what they want. Of course socialists should beware what they wish for - lest it comes true.

6/02/2005 06:48:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Try the king of money speculation George Soros. Wherever he lurks, surely economies will crumble.

6/02/2005 08:21:00 AM  
Blogger Rune said...

Well now Britain seems to have dropped their voting – at least for now (Neil Kinnock: “What treaty?! There is no treaty. The treaty is dead!”) Luxemburg is next in June. After that Denmark in November. Luxemburg has always been very pro-EU, it would surprise me greatly were they to vote it down – it’s also too small to matter. Denmark has until the French No been on course to vote Yes. But now a poll taken after the French voting (but before the Dutch) says 39.5% of Danes would vote No – an increase of 50% since the last poll in Mai, 30.8% would vote Yes – the last survey had that at 34.3% (the remaining 29.7% are undecided). 65.3% still think the voting should take place. Apparently Danes want to be asked, so they can say No.

6/02/2005 01:13:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

What the EU's entrenched, country by country, elites believe is that "the political instincts of the people are far too inflammable and mercurial to be trusted. Better leave the serious business of law-making and governance to a professional class of administrators, an enlightened elite who will not be subject to the whims and volatile passions of the mob..."
remember this essentially the chinese position.

6/02/2005 01:37:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

While you're at it, you might as well split NATO in 2, also.
The only change necessary would be for the Germans to switch all their US Military equipment for French versions of same (where available).

6/02/2005 02:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

don black said,
"Do they think our troops will support them against the other super power, the USA?"
With a Clinton in the White House, and a new Democrat Senate, it could happen.
Does Maddie Albright have any younger relatives to be Sec State?
Maybe Jamie Gorelick for CIA head,
and Richard Ben-Veniste SecDef.

6/02/2005 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger M G said...

Answer for Rune:

Dear Rune, I'm from Spain and damn proud of being cowards as you named us. Damn proud of got out of the shaming group of bastards whom went to Iraq war. My president at that time was a man whom didn't listen to 90% of the spanish people. A man who went to a war that nobody supported and that still today it's an illegal war (ask to the british). I still wonder where the hell are those dangerous weapons that Bush swears were there. And over all of the all problem is that the UN didn't approve the stupid war.
This president we had broke the natural European agreement, and instead of listening the Union we were in, he listened the American "Damn" president Bush (I still wonder why and what we got out of it in favours). Our normal way was to discuss it inside the European Union and to give an answer together with Europe. But Britain, Spain and US went together to say to the world that they rule the world and that they can decide to make the war to who they want...

The thing that our next president got out our troops from Iraq it wasnt because of the 11 of March (but it was painful, really painful). He said already before the blast that he would do it because the war was moraly incorrect (again with the support of 90% of our population). It was because if you send your kids to die for you at least it has to be in something you belive.

And Europe was broken...

Perhaps it has been the smartest movement of US in many years. They divide what was made to be the opposite power in this world, to equalize the power balance and to present another type of society with more social care. Here we live and here we will die.

Probably this "no" to the constitution comes from all the shit we have been forced to face since Iraq war. Before that we were proud of the Union and everything were good wishes and good words. Now we are more concern about what kind of Europe we want for us and for our kids. The no to the constitution is not the end of Europe, it's just an advice to our politics to make constitution better for the people and not just as liberal as it is. In fact it's to say "hey, we don't like capitalism because of the social part is not cover with it. So please make it better and come back again"

6/04/2005 07:53:00 AM  

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