The Union of Soviet Socialist Europe
Poland may soon join Ireland as the only EU members to hold referendums on the new Lisbon Treaty, the latest attempt to ram through a European "Constitution." If it does, euroskeptics will cheer and europhiles howl.
Plebiscites are rarely justified or necessary. Governments routinely sign treaties and make other decisions on behalf of citizens. Yet the Lisbon Treaty is a case apart because of the way it has been presented. Born as the EU's Constitution, the original document was put up for a vote in various EU countries, where it was roundly rejected by the French and the Dutch.
Anywhere else, that would be the end of the story. Not in Europe, which decided it would be stuck in "crisis" without the document's key provisions. So a new "reform treaty" was drawn up and signed last year in Lisbon. Though the failed Constitution's most overtly state-like elements such as an EU anthem were dropped, it remains a transformative treaty. It establishes the EU as a legal personality for the first time, creates new or enhanced offices to represent the bloc globally and significantly changes the ways decisions are made.
Only this time around, the voters are to be shut out. Britain promised and then withheld a referendum. The French and the Dutch won't get a second chance to vote "no," as they did in 2005, or yes. Only the Irish are being given a chance to express their views at the ballot box.
And now, possibly, the Poles. A referendum in Poland, however, would have far more to do with domestic political gamesmanship than with the EU. The opposition Law and Justice Party led by former Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski is threatening to block approval in Parliament -- likely leading to a popular vote on the treaty -- if certain conditions are not met regarding Poland's sovereignty. A parliamentary vote is expected within the next week....
With all the effort put into avoiding referendums, it's hard to escape the conclusion that EU politicians are trying to pull a fast one on their voters. On the one hand, they're selling Lisbon as a grand reform treaty that propels Europe out of the malaise that followed the French and Dutch no votes. On the other, they say the treaty is a small tightening-up exercise that doesn't require a return to the ballot box. Which is it?... Should Lisbon be rejected in Ireland or Poland, EU leaders and Brussels insiders will proclaim yet another crisis for Europe. It couldn't happen to a more deserving bunch.
Brookes News Update
A monetary storm hits US economy: America is experiencing a monetary crisis that the Fed's loose monetary policy generated. Unfortunately this simple fact has yet to be recognized. The result is that the symptoms of monetary disorder are being mistaken for the cause. One can only hope that Bismarck got it right when he said: 'God looks after fools, drunkards and the United States of America'
Is monetary policy destroying the country's manufacturing base?: The Institute of Public Affairs sponsored a paper that argued - with providing any proof - that there is nothing wrong with the current ratio of manufacturing to GDP and that the market working. We argue that there exists the possibility that monetary policy has artificially reduced our manufacturing base and created severe economic imbalances
Only savings can create wealth: Mainstream economists who advocate monetary pumping and the artificial lowering of interest rates in order to counter recessions, totally misconceive that the interest rate is just an indicator. It is just a manifestation of the demand versus the supply of savings. Manipulating it distorts the production structure
Economic growth is the only way to raise living standards and conserve resources: Regardless of what the greens say economic growth is a self-sustaining process that raises living standards. The world's present population owes its existence to economic growth. Stopping growth would literally be a sentence of death for several billion people. But as Dr Van den Bosch, another greenie, said they're only 'little brown people in poor countries'
Global warming is big business: Looks like big business is jumping into bed with the global warming fanatics with the excuse that electricity costs will be lowered. But how can costs be lowered if a new expense is added to the cost of producing electricity which is then passed onto the customer? That's a damned good question
General Confusion About Obama: Why would 10 retired generals and admirals endorse Obama after he accused US troops of being war criminals? Why would they support a Party that publicly slandered the troops as Nazis and slimed General Petraus as a liar. And why do the names Marshall Petain and Benedict Arnold spring to mind. Whatever happened to 'Duty, Honor, Country'?
Obama's supporters say: "Viva Che!": Obama election volunteers decorate their offices with the picture of an America-hating sadistic killer and all he can say is that it was 'inappropriate'. Yet shortly afterwards he accused US troops of committing war crimes. This is the same guy who gives every US-hating dictator the benefit of the doubt while slandering US troops. No wonder the media love him
Obama's mentor's mentor: That Obama's 'spiritual' advisors of 20 years standing are white-hating racists who despise America is bad enough. Obama's refusal to denounce their bigotry and distance himself from their hate-mongering is even worse. But what can we expect when Obama's wife made her hatred of America a public issue that the media are trying to overlook, just as they overlook Obama's racist link
More Muslim garbage: "An Arab billionaire's son listed as a Facebook friend of a murdered socialite has been named by police as a prime suspect in the blonde's death. Yemen born Farooq Abdulhak, 26, was allegedly the last person to see Martine Vik Magnussen alive after leaving the exclusive Maddox Club with her early Friday morning. The Norwegian socialite's body was found two days later, partially buried under a pile of rubble in the basement of an exclusive London apartment building where Mr Abdulhak was reportedly living. The Daily Mail reported that Magnussen was believed to have been strangled, although investigators told the newspaper that further scientific analysis was being carried out on her body. Mr Abdulhak and the 23-year-old blonde studied business together at the prestigious Regent's College in London. They were listed as friends on Magnussen's Facebook page, but Mr Abdulhak has since deleted his online profile. Associates of Mr Abdulhak tried to contact him over the weekend but he did not reply to calls or texts. Mr Abdulhak's father Shaher, a Yemeni billionaire, is a major hotelier and Pepsi-Cola executive. Farooq was born in Yemen, but has lived in London since he was a child. The Sun reported that flight records show Farooq left Britain "shortly after the time of Martine's death". Police now believe the billionaire's son has fled to Yemen - which has no extradition treaty with Britain".
The absurd Andrew Sullivan takes sycophancy to a new low in discussing Obama's speech: "Alas, I cannot give a more considered response right now as I have to get on the road. But I do want to say that this searing, nuanced, gut-wrenching, loyal, and deeply, deeply Christian speech is the most honest speech on race in America in my adult lifetime. It is a speech we have all been waiting for for a generation. Its ability to embrace both the legitimate fears and resentments of whites and the understandable anger and dashed hopes of many blacks was, in my view, unique in recent American history. And it was a reflection of faith - deep, hopeful, transcending faith in the promises of the Gospels."
China Hand has just blogged on the disturbances in Tibet. He sees little hope for the Tibetans. Mirror site here for any readers in China.
For more postings from me, see OBAMA WATCH, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN.
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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.
The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)