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Calling a chair ‘a cow’ will not make it go ‘Moo’

With Orwellian double-think, the preamble to the European Convention begins with a quote from Thucydides:

Our Constitution is called a democracy because power is in the hands not of a minority but of the whole people

So should we not vote on it?

It is�about as ‘democratic’ as the Warsaw Pact Treaty.

Paul Staines

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15 comments to Calling a chair ‘a cow’ will not make it go ‘Moo’

  • Susan

    Personally, I see nothing to get too scared of in the draft constitution and I really don’t understand why you people are getting so hysterical about. But I agree that there should be a referendum on it. If Blair was willing to put his premiership on the line over Iraq, I don’t see why he shouldn’t over the EU. If a referendum were seen as a plebiscite on Britain’s membership of the EU, I think the ‘yes’ vote would win easily enough.

    However, I don’t think you can impugn the democratic intentions of the new constitution on the grounds that Britain is not having a referendum on it. The Council has left it up to a sovereign government to make a decision on that issue. It has imposed nothing. Criticise Tony Blair for his lack of a sense of democracy in this case, and not the EU. Or would you prefer that the EU lay down the law on when to have referenda as well?

  • S. Weasel

    The most fitting symbol of EU falseness is one they thought up themselves — it’s those make-believe architectural dealies they’ve engraved on the money. As in, “these things don’t actually exist, but we didn’t want to offend anyone or flatter anyone by choosing actual, physical monuments to depict on our currency, so this is what we think it might look like if you made a big sloppy mash of all our cultures and sculpted a triumphal arch out of it.”

    When people become this irony-blind, there’s nothing for it but to put them down. Kindest thing, really.

    (For irony-blindness on my side of the Atlantic, see the original Total Information Awareness logo).

  • Susan: Warsaw Pact read just fine as well and so did the Constitution of the USSR. Do you actually know anything about how the EU functions and what all the Big Words in its Consititution mean?

    What about all the lies we heard since the beginning of the EU project? What about all the money squandered? What about all the bureaucracy? What about…? I could go on, but it seems pointless sometimes, especially after one reads a comment like yours…

  • Susan

    Weasel, if you’re now reduced to criticising the pictures on euro notes, I think that says it all.

  • Sorry but it can only be called a ‘cow’ if it meets the criteria set out in Directive 2387/98 on Ruminant Classification.

  • Susan

    Gabriel, “you don’t know nuffink” is about the lowest form of criticism that exists. I’m no expert but I’m reasonably well-informed thanks very much. I read the British, American, Australian, Brazilian and French press. I have a subscription to The Economist and the TLS. If you want to take issue with my post, come up with some reasoned argument, for God’s sake.

  • Susan

    “Sorry but it can only be called a ‘cow’ if it meets the criteria set out in Directive 2387/98 on Ruminant Classification.”

    Sidesplitting, David! And have you heard the one about the straight bananas, by any chance?

  • “Personally, I see nothing to get too scared of in the draft constitution..”

    So you think there is something to a bit scared of?

    “…I really don’t understand why you people are getting so hysterical about.”

    It is you that is getting hysterical, madam. We are just getting militant.

    And, for the record, I don’t want a referendum (which will be rigged anyway). I want out!

  • S. Weasel

    Ah, Susan, it is not my only complaint. It’s just my personal favorite.

    The symbols and trappings with which an organization surrounds itself are telling. Indeed, it is their very purpose to be telling. They are carefully and thoughtfully crafted to communicate something. (Spend a minute in James Lileks’ gallery of curious international currency for more on the theme).

    The EU chose to represent itself with fantasy engravings of monuments that never were.

    Could I have extra irony on that, please?

  • Susan

    “So you think there is something to be a bit scared of?”

    Yes, I do. I’m not an uncritical supporter of the EU by any means. I think continual scrutiny is necessary.

    So you don’t want a referendum, you want out. Fair enough. We live in a democratic society, and you’re free to vote for a party that pledges withdrawal. The UK Independence party, for instance. Funny how that gets only about 1 percent of the vote, though, if that. Seems like your fellow citizens (subjects actually, the French, Germans etc. are citizens but we’re subjects) aren’t very keen on withdrawal. That being the case, just what exactly do you propose? Armed rebellion? I’d seriously like to know.

  • Liberty Belle

    Susan – We are not subjects. You’re 40 years out of date. Our passports state that we are citizens of the United Kingdom.

  • “Armed rebellion”??!! Madam, your imagination has quite run away with you.

    No, I intend to keep doing what I have been doing all along i.e. simply put my case for British withdrawal from the EU. If that prospect is as universally unpopular as you claim, then you have nothing to worry about, do you.

  • Susan, you want an argument. Read samizdata.net category on EU, if you have nothing better to do. Do not expect me to rise every time to someone’s uninformed and uninformative statements.

    I did not respond with an argument as I failed to see any in your comments.

    I am surprised that reading all these newpapers and the Economist as well (!) you find the time to read the grubby samizdata.net (all that foul and puerile language, oh dear me!). We are flattered…

  • Guy Herbert

    There are some scary bits hidden under all the bureaucratic language. A lot of the older treaties were and are pretty awful, but maybe we are only entitled to worry about newer things now… that’s what Jack Straw thinks, so it must be true.

    Isn’t II – 54 (Union doesn’t have to let you campaign to change the Charter if it doesn’t feel like it) just a little bit frightening?

    Scares me.

    Just a teensy bit scary too, that this is still a constitution as directed process, pending completion by an awful lot of laws, and explicitly not complete in itself.

  • Sandy P.

    Our Constitution is called a democracy??


    Can someone tell me how an inantimate object can be called a democracy? Seems to be you’re wrong out of the gate.

    BTW, is france still getting 80% of Scotland’s fishing catch?

    Beware, if you join, you will be paying tribute to frankenreich and the monster will bleed you dry.