Fergus Finlay wins the prize for the most patronising, most dishonest and most insulting argument to come from the Yes side.
Writing in yesterday’s Irish Examiner, Finlay, who in a previous life was advisor to the Labour Party and always gave the impression that he was a democrat, glibly skips over the fact that only 1% of the EU population is being given the opportunity of deciding how the EU will operate in the future.
“I know it has been said there’s something undemocratic about that, and maybe there is.”
It gets worse, Finlay goes on to tell us that if we vote No we will damage the newer member states.
“We can, of course, say ‘I’m alright Jack’ and decide to leave things as they are by voting no…But it will damage the people who need Europe’s help to get their economies growing a bit like ours.”
This is just patronising nonsense, to Irish citizens and to the newer states. A No vote will not damage these countries and it is dishonest to state otherwise. In fact many of these countries have progressed more in the last two decades since throwing off the yoke of Soviet oppression than Ireland has since our independence in 1922.
For example, Polish citizens can vote in general elections no matter where they are in the world and I suspect the same applies for referendums. Irish citizens have no such freedom, if you’re not in the county – tough, no vote.
The infrastructure of many of these countries is decades ahead of ours especially in the areas of health, education and transport while we struggle to keep up with Third World standards. And many of the improvements in these countries are down to the efforts of their own politicians who are for the most part competent, hard working and honest.
To my knowledge, every one of these new countries has taken action against corruption, especially the white collar variety. Most of them have established well funded anti corruption agencies with real power to put people in jail. In Ireland, we don’t have a single agency with the power or competence to take on the corrupt. Instead, corrupt politicians and businessmen are bestowed with honours and given state funerals.
Finlay, like practically every Yes politician, reminds us how Ireland has benefited from the EU. Equal pay, anti discrimination laws, environmental laws consumer’s rights and so on – Irish people would never have these advantages if it wasn’t for the EU, they tell us. It apparently never enters their narrow minds how these claims reflect on their own intelligence and abilities.
I’m voting No in this referendum because I believe those with power are side lining what they see as the inconvenience of democracy. Instead they trying to create a United States of Europe controlled by bureaucrats.
I think it is inevitable that Europe will evolve into a United States of Europe and I have no problem with that whatsoever so long as it’s done by the democratic will of the people of Europe.
In such a United States of Europe Irish citizens would enjoy the great benefit of being ruled by a competent and efficient administration and hopefully would be rid of the moronic self serving and for the most part corrupt rabble that have blighted our country since independence.
3 thoughts on “The most patronising argument”
Anthony, I agree with so much of what you say, however, was it not democratically elected politicians from every EU state who thrashed out the Lisbon Treaty? I fail to see how you can describe this process as anti-democratic.
On the other hand, if you say that the Lisbon Treaty is a move towards a substantially more federal EU and therefore should be cleared by a EU wide referendum, I think I would agree with you.
Why is it that we are the only country holding a referendum anyway?
I see this treaty as the original constitution that was rejected by the people of France and Holland Gearoid.
It was after this rejection that EU democratically elected politicians decided to take an undemocratic route. My impression is that a good percentage of Europeans feel they are being denied a say in the matter.
The only reason we get to have our say is because of the great work of Raymond Crotty who took an action against the Government in 1987 that forced them to hold a referendum every time significant changes were proposed to European treaties.
It is an absolute certainty that without this requirement Irish citizens would also have been denied any say in the matter
Was it not because of the rejection of the first effort at a EU constitution that the Lisbon Treaty was debated so tenaciously by even more Europeans?
I was away from Ireland during the Crotty business and know nothing about it, so I’m going to have to do some quick boning up before tomorrow!
Isn’t it ironic in the extreme (when you consider the reasons for this website etc.) that Ireland is the only country where this situation prevails?!!!
Anyone got a crystal ball?;)
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