2008/5/20 James McCarthy <James.McCarthy at sun.com>:
>> There are good reasons for this - I'm told that one of the reasons
>> Germany doesn't have referenda is bad memories of referenda being used
>> in the 1930s.
> Good reasons perhaps for Germany, if the Germans so choose, everyone else
> however is another matter.
> Which highlights the problem with Lisbon (and Nice before it), either
> forcing our methods on the Germans or have their methods forced on us. The
The entire thrust of my original post was that other countries have
their own traditions for passing these laws - I used the German point
as an example. The UK for instance simply has never had the
tradition of holding referenda - and for you to complain about the
lack of referendum is in effect you as an Irish citizen attempting to
force "your method" on another country.
The decision about whether or not a referendum is held in any given EU
member state is the result of a combination of the constitutional
traditions of that state, the law of that member state and whatever
domestic political considerations are in play at the time.
> Our right to religious freedom is protected by our constitution, you
It's also protected by the European Convention on Human Rights. And
I was slightly taking the mickey out of how you phrased it in the
> Have you managed to find a single political party that represents all your
> views? I haven't and don't imagine you have either, which brings up a very
> good reason to have referendums in the first place, because a government
> won't represent the peoples views on all (possibly even most) issues.
Then kick the government out. If you can't persuade enough voters to
agree with you, then that's the problem with living in a
representative democracy. You don't always win.
Look, I agree there are a lot of problems with the EU, how it's
structured and the democratic accountability of the decision making
processes within the EU - to bring this vaguely back on topic, the
fact that the European Parliament's views on software patents was just
ignored by the European Commission being one of them. I just don't
think you're making your case at all well,
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