New Plan On The EU Constitution!

Discussion in 'Europe' started by Annie, May 29, 2006.

  1. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Change the name and marketing strategy. New and Improved? No, not looking for changes, they just had the name wrong. There's a winning ticket! :rolleyes:

    http://news.monstersandcritics.com/...split_on_constitution_EU_bids_to_rebrand_text

     
  2. ErikViking
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    ErikViking VIP Member

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    A bit off topic, but you seem to read alot about the EU.
    When you think of EU, do you think of it as the American union? I mean like our countries would be like states in a federation? I guess it is hard to express a feeling, but from my point of view America is 100% united and the different states are more an historical thing. The EU on the other hand seems more like a thin set of rules between countries with very different goals and standards. But some people compare EU with USA as a concept.

    I do think the world would benefit from a (quite) united europe for the balance of both economy, resources, military and cultural reasons. Does this somehow sounds intimidating in America? Is EU disliked over there, as an ambition?
     
  3. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    I don't think many here, I mean in the US, give thought to the EU. Personally, if they were to organize themselves along a model of the US, they might stand a chance, but that isn't going to happen, for all the differences you enumerated. These are nation states, not states, in the way we think of our states. I have no problem with however they were to join themselves, if they could. If they could actually lie down a federal system, with seperation of powers, and balance of power, they might stand a chance.

    I would suggest if you are interested to read the Federalist Papers, you will see how the framers came to recognize the concerns of the people, then explained how their concerns were addressed, often imperfectly, but certainly addressed. That's missing from the EU Constitution, to the best of my reading. If you read them, one of the major areas of contention was known to be the differences in population and size of the states. One doesn't need to be a lawyer in reading the EU Constitution, to see that the smaller states will not be equal, certainly newer members will be subordinate. I think the people got that.

    Problem as I see it here, totally not concerned with it, is to attempt such a plan, without true federalism. There is not equality amoungst the members, France and Germany play by different rules. Some of their 'smaller, aligned' neighbors, wonder if that won't help them. A country like England, even Ireland, would have to consider long and hard. Yet the English seemed more amenable to the constitution than the French, an interesting development indeed.

    Lord knows our country doesn't work perfectly, we had a very bloody war, yet it pales in length, hostility, and bad will with all of the European wars over a much longer length of time. For so many Europeans that pooh poohed the Civil War, I wonder if they have thought of the 100 Years or 30 Years wars as two instances of their own civil wars, for far more mercenary purposes than either side harbored in our Civil War?

    Now you have the main players saying that the whole problem was marketing? :shocked: Sorry, that doesn't fly. I read through quite a lot of the EU Constitution, massive sucker for sure. The writing is very convoluted, not impossible to make out, but very time consuming.

    Talk about 'Big Brother'! Unbelievable, marketing is not the problem, even given most Europeans comfort with a socialist system. I think people 'sensed' in the length the possible danger of a 'super government.'
     
  4. ErikViking
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    ErikViking VIP Member

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    Hey, this was a sound input!
    I think you cover some very important facts (as well as giving a general "feeling"). I don't know about the future, but an EU by American model seems, as you said, impossible. And the leight weight trade-only agreements doesn't cover things like culture and military areas. I think EU will reach a point where it might function to a degree and stability can be achieved, but not to the point where we define ourselves as Europeans before nationality. Like you do.

    Interesting about the civil war too. Not many people care to look more than 20 years back to see why we are what we are. But since what people did 300 years ago still affects us and should be taken in to consideration now and then. Especially in europe, where nationality was forced upon ethnical groups like 500 years ago and the scars are still visible.

    But as for EU, it is needed anyway. Single nations of europe can't be an effective partner in trade with neither America, China or any other major market. And not many nations of europe can act as an ally in times of war or unsecurity (like now) with any substance either.
     
  5. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Well thank you, I'm glad I didn't come off sounding 'condescending', sometimes that happens, when it's not meant.

    I think perhaps there could be an 'economic alliance' of Europe, to be 'one' in trade negotiations, joining us more often for free markets/open markets, etc. I think that would be a boon to all European states. Problem is 'your' troublemakers/crooks/whatever you wish to name them. France and Germany have to treat the others as equals, to me that has been the most significant problem faced within the EU.

    Military seems for the forseeable future, something EU and most member states do not wish to address, with the notable exception of UK. France under Chirac seems to assume nukes as their first and last defense. Germany has mostly gone totally pacificist, which may not be a bad thing. My guess is that if their was an EU 'military alliance' the citizens of most countries would really pitch fits, that made the marches of France look laid back. Eastern Europe I think, has the right mindset, but not the money-in an alliance or out of one.
     
  6. ErikViking
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    ErikViking VIP Member

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    You have insight, it shows. I think it is intressting to hear what people from the "outside" says. They usually have the horizon in the picture and not the head down in the mud, so to say. (Did that make sense!?!)
     
  7. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Perfect sense. Well I'm glad we discussed, I found it interesting. :cheers2:
     
  8. ErikViking
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    ErikViking VIP Member

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    Heh, cheers! :)
     
  9. aeromit
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    aeromit Rookie

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    It is not right to see EU as one federal union... even in the future. YOu know the union has been founded when European nations were in search of how to prevent another war. The integration passed a long way... more than 50 years. But member states are not ready to transfer more sovereignty to Brussels.

    The main objective of course is EU to have common foreign and defence policy. This however puts on discussion the future of NATO and Transatlantic relations. I believe it is good for US and EU to have very strong relations on security and defence issues.
     
  10. Matrixx8
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    The EU constitution is hardly new. Generally speaking, it is simply a collection of all the treaties that are currently in existence. It defines a confederation, not a federation, of nation-states. The individual states can opt out of certain provisions, such as currency, Social Charter and open borders, for example.

    This is why it is a question of marketing, not substance. I just watched the results of a poll on Dutch TV a year after the "nee" vote. Most people seem to feel the same way now. The reasons they gave for voting against the constitution had nothing to do with the contents of the document. It seemed to reflect a general fear of increased costs, increased bureaucracy, cheap labor crossing borders and similar perceived threats.

    The French street polls suggest that many rejected the constitution because it favored business interests over social interests -- not at all a "socialist" document, as you characterize it.

    In fact, if you look at the Heritage Foundation's. Economic Freedom Index, you will see that six of the top ten countries on the index are European. The U.S. is number 11.

    In the Netherlands, for example, even the post office has been privatized. This varies from country to country. However, the UK -- with socialized medicine -- is still number six on Heritage's list.

    In any case, the "marketing" talk is because the basic objections to the constitution in Holland and France are mainly perceived problems. Real issues such bureaucracy or specific market regulations can only be dealt with once the constitution has been ratified.

    The referendum in the Netherlands, by the way, is not binding. The NL could ratify despite the public sentiment, but I doubt that this will happen. I do think, however, that it will not be that difficult to change people's minds on this issue. Most other countries will ratify automatically without a referendum.

    Of course, if problems still persist, the EU could threaten to expel countries that do not ratify the constitution. Given the fact that the benefits of EU membership far outweigh non-membership, I suspect that such a "marketing" tool might be quite effective.

    And yes, I favor membership but, as a U.S. citizen, I am not allowed to vote. But my wife and three children are my proxies (if I market it properly)!
     

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