Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Europe

Ok, straight question, do we want a referendum on the treaty, or not?

16 comments:

Tony said...

Yes!

Cllr David Green said...

They dont care Ken, get over it!

Q7 What would you say is the most important issue facing Britain today? (Spontaneous)
Q8 What do you see as other important issues facing Britain today? (Spontaneous)

Base: 1,037 British adults 18+

Q7 Q7/8
% %
Crime / law & order / violence / vandalism / anti-social (yob) behaviour 21 50
Race relations / immigration / immigrants 28 44
National Health Service / Hospitals / Health care 5 25
Economy / economic situation 7 18
Education / schools 3 17
Defence / foreign affairs / international terrorism 7 16
Housing 4 12
Morality / individual behaviour 2 10
Inflation / prices 2 9
Taxation 2 8
Drug abuse 1 8
Pollution / environment 3 7
Unemployment / factory closure / lack of industry 2 6
Pensions / social security / benefits 1 6
Poverty / inequality 1 5
Low pay / minimum wage / fair wages 1 4
Petrol prices / fuel * 4
Common Market / EU / Europe / EURO 1 3
Local government / council tax 1 3
Public services in general 1 3
Transport / public transport * 3
Animal welfare * 1
Countryside / rural life * 1
Nuclear weapons / nuclear war / disarmament * 1
AIDS 0 1
Pound / exchange rate / value of pound 0 1
Privatisation * *
Bird flu / Flu pandemic 0 *
Foot and mouth outbreak / farming crisis 0 *
GM / GM (Genetically Modified) foods 0 *
Scottish / Welsh Assembly / Devolution Constitutional reform 0 *
Trade unions / strikes 0 *
Northern Ireland 0 0
Other 2 6

Ken Gregory said...

No David I will not get over it.

You can quote all the polls you like, I do know that the people I talk to in my ward and elsewhere, are seriously hacked off that they did not get the referendum they thought they were promised.

This says two things, 1, people would like to express their opinion on how we are faring with Europe, and 2, Our political parties all gave the impression that we would have our say. Labour twisted the argument to get out of it, Lib Dems funked the issue, and the Conservatives held the line. That tells me one thing, Public trust in politicians will not be won by Labour.

As an aside, Assuming that Clegg is with the lib Dems, where do Compo and Foggy sit?

Tony said...

Cllr Green. I assume that is a no. Why not put that, instead of all the irrelevant and pointless figures and not even answer the question?

Cllr David Green said...

I have a distaste for referenda. They are a European invention and tend to be too simplistic. What I would favour, is once these ammendments have been given a chance to work. Say at the next General Election, then for the Parties to put a clear choice, "in "
on those terms
or "out"
I'd vote to stay in.

Tony said...

That's assuming, Cll Green, that the elected party would keep to it's manifesto. Strange how you would agree with voters on an election, but not not if they were to vote on other agenda.

fred said...

What do you think would be the outcome of the following referendum question:

"The UK should abolish income tax and increase public spending: Yes/No?"

In voting for political parties (or actually, their members) we make a choice between different groups of people with varying plans for the way they plan to run the country - complete with balances between taxation, public spending, legislation and various foreign policies.

Referenda have the problem that they typically address a single issue that the electorate are asked to decide on. Whatever the consequences are of the decision, its someone else's problem to sort it out. If there are problems, then we can just blame the politicians whom the referendum overuled.

Ken Gregory said...

Fred, I tend to agree with your logic, difference is that Labour and the Conservatives both promised a referendum on the EU constitution, Now the same words are called a Treaty, Labour has backed away. Having read both there is precious little to seperate them.

The worrying thing is we know why Labour will not let us vote on the issue, They know what the result will be!

fred said...

Despite the promises, it was pretty difficult to believe that Labour would *actually* have a referendum, because they would have trouble winning it.

It was pretty evident at the time the election that Labour was far more in favour of further European integration than the Conservative party.

Its my opinion that you need to take manifesto statements with a pinch of salt. Despite claims of just being more efficient, a Conservative government is likely to cut public spending in some way or other. A Labour government that has promised not to raise taxation will probably find some way to raise extra money - maybe calling it an 'environmental charge' or a 'congestion charge' or the like.

Fred

James Maskell said...

The manifesto pledged by the three main parties were specifically on the European Constitution. Since the two texts are not the same, either all three parties are ignoring their pledges or the pledges themselves are no longer valid. Its not the Constitution in front of Parliament. Yes it may be 95% or 98% the same, but the fact remains that with a Treaty which legally binds 27 countries, any differences are important. The Conservative line doesnt work.

However, if you look at the text of the Lisbon Treaty (easier if you just read the Consolidated Texts post-ratification which can be found on the FCO website) there are clearly large changes being made with substantial vetoes being given away. On that basis I think it should require a referendum.

Europe as an issue is like the Lib Dems. Its poll ratings go up only when it gets publicity. There are far more important issues which only get to see the light of day when a crisis involving it appears.

As for the Conservatives holding the line, thats not entirely true is it? They cant decide whether they would hold a referendum post ratification and that "they would not let things stand" without any explanation at all as to what that implied threat will mean.

Ken Gregory said...

James,

I was under the impression that the Conservatives were going to hold a referendum what ever happened. If we are undecided, then we need to say 'YES' and then 'NON'

Rick said...

Yes Fred makes a good point.

Add to that the concept introduced by the Romans

What did the Romans do for us ?

We gave you education and we wrote the "curriculum"

(tailored to make education part of British servitude)

Rick said...

If I were setting questions I would ask

"if you watched the Professionals on TV. George Cowley, Bodey and Doyle. Did you spot a constitutional flaw in the plot ?"

"if you watch "New Tricks" in which the Det Supt exercises police powers and former police officers are merely civlian employees with no police powers. Do you spot a constitutional flaw ?"

"if you watched Minder and the inimitable George Cole getting arrested as Arfur Daley. Going stir crazy after 15 minutes in a cell. Then being interviewed by an Interpol officer from Europe. "Am I to understand I am being interviewed by a German police officer ?" asked indignant Arfur. "Voz is daz right scallyvag meaning ?" do you think you'd find it funny if it happened for real"



One day if we carry on the European road there will be Hun police. Their goosestep will be indistinguishable from our British police who have already been slowly changed by the recruitment of malleable people trained into servitude.

James Maskell said...

The Tory policy is that while the Treaty is not in force the Tories pledge is to hold a referendum (in the 2005 manifesto it was to hold one within 6 months of a Tory Government being elected). Once the Treaty comes into effect (cant remember exactly but its something like 1st January 2009 or once the final ratification occurs, whichever comes first) the Tories have said they wont "let things stand" but havent indicated what that actually means, much to the chagrin of many grassroots supporters who in most surveys on the issue are calling for a referendum whatever happens. Its a delaying tactic by Cameron and Hague and one that is just delaying the inevitable decision the Tories will have to make. There isnt a lot the Tories can do once the Treaty comes into effect.

Rick said...

James

Recently the Archbishop of Canterbury (he who one day will wed Prince Chalres to his people and swaer him as sole source of authority for justice in mercy in the land) raised a furore about whether there will be Sharia Law in Britain.

If you consider the discontent in this country be it miners against whom Maggie Thatcher unlawfully deployed servants of the Crown (Police). or be it Countryside Alliance. Or be it the armed forces community who rightly want assurance and clarification re the legality of the wars they fought on our behalf. Or be it those sick to the gills of the politically correct society and nanny state.

For whatever reason these factions would unite in a Common cause. That of Common Law, Common Rights, Common Liberties, Common Freedoms, Common Sense, Common Humanity.

Those people (of whatever "ethnicity") can use power which is beyond the jurisdiction of parliament to repeal.

The people can elect and deploy their own constabularies. They can create a judiciary. They can enforce the Common Law.

So I do not foresee a Civil War in the Cromwell sense.

But I foresee a country in which the Common Law Courts will rule against arrests and rulings of Code Napoleon (European type) law. That persons incarcerated by Napoelon law courts will be released at point of arms by Englishmen upholding Common Law. So I foresee skirmishes.

Since it is treason to undermine the monarch as sole fount of justice then the English Law courts, created by the people for the people upholding their rights isnce Magna Carta, can sentence the Prime Minister to death. And I think that would be a good move upon proper conviction.

Where I think David is wrong is in his interpretation of data.

It is not that people are not interested. It is that people feel that are powerless to resist the inertia gripping this country as more and more madness stalks the land.

A simple example is "Human Rights". These are of course no such thing. They are predefined situations in which people can feel offence in exchange for a burgeoning comepnsation and privilege culture. So these are not rights but channels to remedies offered by govt.

Anotherr simple example is "Community". is there really such a thing as a "Gay community" or a "Black community" or an "Asian Community" or a "Muslim community". These are no more realities than the concept of "Institutional Racism". The idea of community and institutionalized racism started life on a social theorist drawing board.

In fact when research was first carried out (1971) to establish institutionalized racism in police I got a Home Office commendation for exposing the sociologists flawed research technique (the cunning multichoice trick of pretty much pre-determining his results).

Where I think you may be wrong James is that

(1) There is nothing we can do about things

(2) That even if there is something to do the country has been sufficiently educated into servitude that the people will do nothing

Ken Gregory said...

Well David, I think the numbers prove it, many people are still concerned with Europe. Me , I said years ago, give me commercial unity, but no political unity