From Apostate Windbag:
"There is an insufferable smugness with which the liberal (in the Anglophone sense of the word) encouragers of a Oui vote in France's referendum on the European Constitutional Treaty tomorrow present their argument."
"However, I wonder whether these liberal Ouistes have actually themselves read the very document they champion. Today's leader on the referendum in the same paper calling for a Yes, contains this howler:
'[T]he constitution does not warrant the opposition it has generated. For all the anger about liberal Anglo-Saxon economics, the text does not include economic prescriptions that are any different from those in the Treaty of Rome in 1957'
Just quickly, here are a handful of the key examples (which I already discussed in an earlier post) of how the ECT remains not merely neo-liberal through and through, but is additionally aggressively militarist, (incidentally undermining the traditions of neutrality of Ireland and Austria):
1. Articles 111-69, 70, 77, 144 and 180 all identically repeat that the Union will act 'in conformity with the respect for the principles of an open economic market where competition is free.'
2. There are numerous clauses that specifically correspond to demands made by certain employer organisations.
3. The ECT demands unanimous voting for any measures that might go against corporate interests. This is the certainly case for measures against tax fraud, or taxation of companies. Such legislative movement in this regard requires a unanimous vote as, above all, "[it is] necessary for the functioning of the internal market and to avoid distortion of competition." (111-63). Thus, any future proposed duty imposed on corporations would be subject to unanimous voting - something the Ouistes regularly trot out as being reduced under the ECT.
4. Shockingly, the ECT demands all states' subservience to NATO: '[M]ember states shall undertake progressively to improve their military capacities.' (1-40-3). Article 1-40-2 says that European defence policy shall be compatible with members' NATO obligations, a direct recognition of the superior judicial status of that military organisation. Furthermore, the article continues with even greater precision that "participating member states shall work in close collaboration with NATO". Even in situations of "internal serious disturbances affecting public order, in cases of war or of [...] the threat of war", member states are obliged to work together in order to avoid "affecting" the functioning of the "internal market"! (III-16)'
5. Perhaps most disturbing in the ECT is clause 17 of the third section, regarding the question of the break-up of public services: It is permitted that a member state can be in favour of maintaining a public service. But public services have: "the effect of distorting the conditions of competition in the internal market, [and] the Commission shall, together with the state concerned, examine how these steps can be adjusted to the rules laid dawn in the Constitution. By derogation of common law procedure, the Commission or any member state can apply directly to the Court of Justice which will sit in secret..." (III-17)' Thus the constitution from the start commits member states to the ultimate elimination of public services.
I find it remarkable that the Guardian leader writers are not aware that the ECT explicitly codifies the dismantling of social services and expansion of European military capablilities. "
I too find it remarkable: it's not as though the SWP and others haven't been banging on about this for years. It's simple: ratify the proposed constitution and public services are gone - dissappeared, nullified, privatised, gone. This has been the planned outcome since the start: to put it crudely, the funnelling of the taxes we pay directly into the pockets of corporations. Cut out the middleman, and if democratic accountability goes in the process, well, what the hell, what do the voters know anyhow?
This alleged constitution legitimises the corporate robbery of countries under the guise of spreading a spurious democracy. Remind you of anyone?
(crossposted to Progressive Gold