Minister of State for Finance Martin Mansergh is a dangerous fool.
He’s a fool because he’s a great admirer of the corrupt Haughey and numbers himself among those who have publicly admitted that they believe Bertie Ahern’s fantasy tales.
The Minister is dangerous because he’s one of those politicians who find democracy to be very inconvenient.
During the Dail debate on the Lisbon Treaty referendum Mansergh strongly suggested that perhaps it’s time to ‘re-interpret’ the Crotty Judgement, not as an attack on democracy you understand but because it would save the peasants, er citizens from having to deal with complex matters and would make things easier for our fellow EU partners.
“It is with good reason that all our other European partners chose to seek parliamentary ratification of the Lisbon treaty and the ruling party in France won a mandate to do that last year.
Referendums on something as general yet as complex as this treaty are vulnerable to all sorts of cross-currents, some quite unconnected with it. While many people passionately cherish the right to vote directly on such treaties now and in the future, I encountered many others who implicitly and sometimes explicitly resented a matter this complex being referred to them.
While I am certain the decision to hold a referendum was based on both clear legal advice and sound political considerations, it could be argued that since 1987 we have taken an expansive interpretation of the Crotty judgment.
While no longer relevant in relation the referendum just past, it is an issue that needs to be looked at carefully if we are not continually to be hampered in the future vis-à-vis all other member states. While our strict constitutional requirements must be respected, we do not necessarily have to go well beyond them.”