This week, our Irish neighbors are voting for a second time on the Lisbon Treaty. Their choice goes well beyond the borders of Ireland, as it will decide the future of our Union.
So far, polls are looking positive. Thanks to a terrible financial crisis, the Irish realized that they might still need the EU. I have not heard of a plan B yet and do hope that it won't be necessary.
Honestly, I do agree that the Treaty is complicated, it recycles most of the EU Convention project rejected by the French and the Dutch. But I stick to its driving forces: more power to the Euro-Parliament (the real democratic player in the game) and simplified procedures to take decisions. For me, it is more than enough to vote for it. There is also the cherry on the top that is the accelerated procedures, i.e. when a set of countries want to go further in their integration while the unconvinced can seat and watch and catch up later.
Their are lot of critics on the treaty being complicated and undemocratic. Well, it was negotiated by elected governments, so I don't really understand the last point. Complication? Well, we are talking about 27 countries in the 21st century... After all we are not in the 18th century where a bunch of guys, called the forefathers, could write a constitution with 7 articles.
What really bothered me in the French, Dutch and Irish rejection is that I am pretty sure that most of the people who voted against really voted to sanction their governments... To pick on the Irish, I find utterly ridiculous that a people who enjoyed so much European Funds just bite the hand that had been feeding them for so many years. I hope that with the financial crisis they understand that the Union is for the best and for the worst.
So Irish folks: no boozing this Friday and make sure to vote with what remains of your brain... rather than you guts!