Thursday 19 June 2008

Second vote would be a farce too far.

"The Irish government has been given four months to devise a strategy resurrecting Europe's grand reform project, with President Nicolas Sarkozy of France suggesting that the Irish may have to stage a second referendum on the incendiary issue." - The Guardian, 20 June 2008
It cannot happen again. Following Denmark having two bites at Maastricht and Ireland having two votes on Nice, we are now in a situation where the EU is likely to be undermined, by a policy of 'we'll keep asking until you say yes'.

The Irish political parties have a responsibility for the result, as do the people, but maybe it 's time (and this is controversial I know) to take EU treaties away form ratification by referendum. While I have reservations about this myself, at least it would remove the ability of groups to spin the treaties into things they're not and boost the 'no' vote with scare tactics and half-truths.
The lack of trust in politicians and the political process, and the impact it had on the treaty, has been well documented over on Dossing Times and it certainly played its part in the no vote. It's also a major obstacle to people accepting parliamentary decisions on such issues.

But when it comes down to it, who thinks we'd really be better off without Europe? Who thinks we'd have had the Celtic Tiger or the half decent road network that now exists? Who thinks the lowly Punt with its over reliance on FDI in the form of the $USD and £stg could have fared better in this slow economy than the support and relative stability of the Euro?
If you still think Ireland should be better off without Europe then the EU is entitled to a refund on the investment it made in Ireland over the past 35 years.

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