Friday, August 08, 2008

Fogh: Forget the Referendum

Denmark was scheduled to hold a referendum this fall on the pre-conditions for its integration into the EU. The Danish Parliament has already ratified the Lisbon Treaty, but the proposed referendum concerned the “opt-outs”, the parts of the EU’s laws and regulations which would not apply to Denmark.

Then the current constitutional crisis intervened. The ruling by the European Court of Justice concerning immigration laws ran up against the wall of Danish law and the will of the Danish people as expressed by their elected representatives (see the bottom of this post for links to previous articles on this topic).

The people at the summit of power in Denmark are in consternation. What is to be done? One thing is for sure — no one in power wants the people of Denmark to express their opinion.

The Prime Minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, returned from vacation and immediately began to say all the wrong things, much to the disgust of many Danes, including fellow members of his own ruling coalition.

But Fogh has hitched his wagon to the EU, so it’s no wonder he’s torn about what to do. He’s the leader of Denmark, but he’s also a satrap, a local authority representing his masters in Brussels. Henrik Ræder Clausen of Europe News has this to say about the Prime Minister:

When I look at the behaviour of Fogh, it looks distinctly as if he works as an administrator, and not a head of state. He’s an administrator facing possible rebellion in his province. He waddles between denial, repression and joining the rebel cause. If he stands for his country and his former ideals, his chances of promotion go poof.

So the referendum has to go. The ostensible reason is that the Irish vote against Lisbon requires a postponement, but that’s just a fig leaf. Listening publicly to the voice of the people is the last thing that Anders Fogh Rasmussen wants to do.

Our Danish correspondents have been working overtime doing translations for the last couple of weeks, so I asked our Norwegian correspondent The Observer to translate this article from yesterday’s Jyllands-Posten:

Fogh cancels EU referendum

Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen (V) is definitely ruling out plans for holding a referendum regarding the EU pre-conditions later on this year.

Anders Fogh RasmussenThe explanation for the prime minister’s decision on this issue concerns the uncertainties regarding the future of the Lisbon Treaty following the Irish no vote earlier this year.

“We had originally envisioned having a discussion about the EU, and perhaps even a referendum. But due to the Irish no vote, this is no longer the case,” the Prime minister told Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten in an interview.

Hopefully there will be a referendum within this political term
- - - - - - - - -
There were plans to hold a referendum later on in the year regarding several EU-related issues. This was more convenient than holding a referendum next year, because of the election to the EU Parliament in June, and the local Danish elections in November in 2009.

The Prime Minister is still optimistic about resolving these issues while he’s in office, but will not make any promises.

“We are of the opinion that the pre-conditions are harmful to Danish interests. The most honest way of resolving these issues would be to let the people have their say at some stage during this political term. But at the present time it’s to early to agree on a date, especially since the ‘Irish’ question hasn’t been resolved,” Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

Ah, but Mr. Rasmussen: the Irish question has been resolved. If you and the rest of your cohort in the lofty eyries of the European Union were honest, you’d acknowledge that, by the EU’s own rules, the Irish vote nullified the Lisbon Treaty. It’s time to deep-six that obnoxious document and start over from scratch.

But how likely is that to happen?

And the most honest way of resolving the issue would be to let the Danish people decide. It’s honest, and right, and a good thing to do, but Fogh won’t do it.

This is dissimulation at its finest.

EU discussion at summer camp

The Prime minister has decided to stick to the original plan to use Venstre’s summer camp this coming Saturday, to discuss the EU with both proponents and opponents of the organization. But it will not be the start of any EU campaigns.

No one can predict which path the EU will follow after the Irish no vote. The Irish Government will give a statement on the political situation in Ireland after the no vote earlier this year, but they are not obliged to come up with any solutions.

Social Democrats condoning postponement

The Social Democratic chairman for the European Committee, Svend Auken, agrees with the prime ministers decision.

“This is a correct decision. There is no logic in having a referendum before we know what’s happening with the Lisbon treaty,” Svend Auken says in an interview with TV 2 News.

Auken emphasizes that the social democrats supports a cancellation of the preconditions, but that he doesn’t expect a referendum until next year.

K [Conservative Party] agrees

Europe Chairman, Helle Sjelle (K), agrees with the postponement.

“I am of the opinion that Fogh’s decision is the correct one. The decision to postpone has always been in the cards,” she says.

“The conditions regarding the EU cooperation needs to be established. At the present time it’s not, and as a result we shouldn’t be sending people to the ballots,” she says.

Helle Sjelle confirms that K would like to resolve these issues.

“Fogh can’t afford to lose”

Søren Søndergaard, member of the EU-parliament and an EU-skeptic, praises Fogh’s decision, but casts doubts on the reasons behind this decision. He doesn’t share the view that this decision was a direct result of the Prime Minister’s concerns regarding the future of the Lisbon Treaty following the Irish no vote earlier this year.

“Anders Fogh seems to me to be a man that ‘can’t afford to lose’,” says Søren Søndergaard to Ritzau, and goes on to say that:

“The Government owes the people a referendum on this issue. It’s completely undemocratic that the Danish Government, and a majority within the Danish Parliament can hand over such a large proportion of Danish sovereignty to the EU without consulting the Danish people first.”

These people all agree with the Prime Minister, and they all have one thing in common: they are part of a stable, settled, secure, and comfortable power structure, one that depends on the rich web of connections between Denmark and the European Union. With the exception of the Danish People’s Party, all the mainstream parties face an uncertain future if the EU plug is pulled.

The constitutional crisis in Denmark is a dagger pointed at the soft underbelly of the European Union. Even if the general public is slumbering blissfully through the whole affair, you can bet that the mandarins of the EU and their satraps in the “regions” are well aware of the danger.

Previous posts about the Danish Constitutional Crisis:

2008 Jul 29 The EU Lays Down the Law
    31 Denmark’s Answer to the EU
  Aug 1 The No Longer Forbidden Debate in Denmark
    4 Who Rules in Denmark?
    6 Danish Immigration Policy Capsized
    7 The EU Puts Denmark on Trial

Hat tip: TB.


ZZMike said...

I remember the Old Days, when a country could decide its policies on its own.

Anonymous said...

I find the doublespeak grating. In fact, it's remarkably similar to the kind of doublespeak used by Muslims when they use phrases like "dialogue of nations".

Fjordman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fjordman said...

Mr. Rasmussen is a great example of how the European Union slowly destroys the democratic system and is deliberately designed to do so. He is supposed to follow the will of and interests of his people, but his actual loyalty lies with the rest of the EU oligarchy. And he's not the worst person, so this isn't about his personal flaws, it's about the EU and how it corrupts even otherwise decent individuals.

I think I recall the same thing happening in Portugal, where the PM responded to calls from the leaders of Germany and France, not his own electorate. The EU is thus a slow-motion coup d’état conducted against dozens of countries simultaneously. It is deliberately designed to empty all organs subjected to the popular will of any real power and transfer it into the hands of an unelected oligarchy. In fact, it's worse than a coup d’état because this traditionally implied that an unelected band of people seized control over a country. The EU doesn't just want to seize control over nation states, it wants to crush and abolish them. Which by definition means that the EU, and everybody involved in the EU system, is currently at a state of war with all the peoples of Europe.

As this example shows, it is meaningless to have referendums if they only come when the elites want them to, and they can ignore the result if they dislike it. Switzerland is currently the freest country in Europe, and the Swiss can force a referendum on any issue if they gather a certain number of signatures. We need that system.

The EU elites react as one when faced with challenges to their power base from the people. MEPs in the European Parliament, as well as members of every level of the EU system, get very well-paid jobs for participating in the system, which means that their pragmatic interests lie with maintaining it. Their loyalty has been bought - with our own tax money - and transferred from their people, where it theoretically should be, to the EU. The EU is their pension plan, so to speak. When you challenge the EU in any way, you thus constitute a threat to their personal financial interests, and they will react accordingly.

As the Rasmussen example clearly demonstrates, the EU system is so evil that it corrupts everybody who comes close to it. It cannot be reformed, it can only be destroyed.

Proud Infidel said...

Then it sounds like the PM isn't going to stand with his people on this issue. Now what do the Danes do? Will they stand by as their inmigration laws are tossed aside?

I'm also interested in what's going to happen in Italy. Their new goverment was elected partly on a mandate to control the inmigration problem. Will they stand up for their laws or go quietly into the EU night?

Henrik R Clausen said...

it's about the EU and how it corrupts even otherwise decent individuals.

It is.

It is deliberately designed to empty all organs subjected to the popular will of any real power.

That, too. 'Appointed', not 'elected', is what the System wants. 'Oligarchy' is an apt description of how the system works.

The 'purchased loyalty' is central to this. When I read A Throne in Brussels, that concept was one of the points I took with me home, and I see it over and over in the European Union. It is like kind of whoring, albeit at a more subtle level. One might also compare it to the effects of cocaine, which also discreetly carves talent and integrity out of great people.

In an interview to Jyllands-Posten, Fogh explains briefly about the EU situation, adding nothing major to the substance of this post. He then proceeds quickly to internal matters - which in a way is good, for we need him and others to pay attention to this instead of the EU fluff - and the journalists actually writes the obvious, that Fogh is doing a diversion from things he cannot come up with a proper response to.

At the moment, the crisis is unresolved. It might stall here. It might trigger early elections. It might escalate with another scandal. I really have no idea where this is headed.

Henrik R Clausen said...

Here's the latest opinion poll on the issue in Jyllands-Posten.

It's too late here (midnight) for me to translate this long article, but the core result is:

57.4 % of the respondents demand that Denmark sets its immigration policy herself. 33.3 % would rather leave it to the System.

While not as large a majority as I'd like (it's less than 100 :), it's a solid and workable majority.

Κοινότητα Εκάλης said...

i am in favour of Europe's political integration. The key problem with Lisbon treaty is that, like the constitution, it is made to serve only capitalism and corporations. Things like the 65 hours week, the right to strike and protection of MNC instead of the worker and the small-medium entrepreneur is the key problem, along with the lack of democracy on decision making processes of EU. Though the co-decision process in the lisbon treaty is move forward, there is still a lack of democracy.

EU did not ask the people and the workers' unions about the treaty. Of course EU can develop a free market economy, but this must not be an mean to an end. First priority must be the social state and to protect our values like 35-40/hours per week, our holidays, our healthcare system and etc. Otherwise we will end up like the Turks who do not have any labour legislation and they are working 24/7 even on holidays.

A final thing, some elements in EU are trying to "illegalise" communist, which is an undemocratic act and disrepect for communist voters and citizens in europe, there is already one member state of EU that has a communist government and is doing fine for the mo, and a second country may have a combination of a communist, extreme right in a coalition with a socialist government.

Zonka said...

politics and free thinking,

The problem with youyr approach to the EU is that you're looking at individual problems and overlooking the systemic problems, and the problem with the EU is systemic. And looking at the individual problems is counter-productive unless you're also looking at the big picture and the underlying reasons for the specifics, namely a gigantic democratic deficit a lack of transparancy in the EU laws and guidelines as well as the decision process.

Otherwise we have people opposing the EU for all different things and not seeing the fundamental flaws, and worse quibbling amongst each other because they agree with some aspects of the EU but not others... And this is a divide and conquer game that plays into the hands of the EU bureacracy.

Anonymous said...

fjordman: Direct referenda are not the answer either. We have them in California, but if the voters vote the "wrong" way on any issue, the courts and the powerful NGOs like the ACLU step in and nullify them. This happened in 1994 when voters overwhelmingly voted in favor of a referendum that would have terminated welfare benefits, "free" education and other publicly financed freebies for illegal immigrants. This vote was nullified by the courts as "unconstitional." Calif. voters also passed a referendum against gay marrige in 2000 -- this again, was nullified by the courts. The whole system is rotten and the checks and balances no longer work, because powerful people don't want them to work.