“We owe it to ourselves to oppose a trajectory that will vandalise society” – Vincent Browne

This week I intend voting No in the Fiscal Compact referendum, for reasons largely tangential to the Fiscal Compact itself. I will do so in awareness of the risk there is involved were a majority to do as I will do, and in disagreement with many of the claims made by the No side in the campaign.

I will vote No to reject the incorporation of stringent fiscal rules into our constitution, not because adherence to fiscal rules is not sensible but because, in our political culture, such adherence will be done at the expense of the lower paid.

I will vote No to register opposition to the European Union elite that in 2008 insisted no bank should fail when the financial crisis broke and then refused to spread the burden of ensuring that.

I will vote No to register opposition to this Fine Gael/Labour government which was elected to office on the promise to reject the policies of the outgoing Fianna Fáil-led government and on the promise that they would secure a write-down of the bank debt. In office, this new government has perpetuated the policies of the former and, according to Enda Kenny, done nothing at all to secure a write-down of the bank debt.

I will vote No to register opposition to the imposition here and throughout Europe of a neoliberal agenda, an agenda that will institutionalise inequalities and social cruelties through permanent supervision of budgetary, economic, labour and competitiveness policies, inevitably, from the perspective of that neoliberal agenda. (By neoliberalism I mean the ideology that ordains free markets must be the primary instrument of economic and social development, markets driven by demand, not need.)

I will vote No in solidarity with peoples throughout Europe who are and have been denied any say in this treaty or any say on the other European treaties, treaties that, in the main, favour rich and powerful elites throughout the union at the expense of the mass of people.

I will vote No to express indignation with the cavalier disregard of the procedures and protocols of the European Union itself of the sovereignty of its member states, in the conduct of the leaders of the EU institutions and of Germany and France, in their insolence in interfering with the internal affairs of Greece and Italy, in their disregard for “democratic” procedures of the Union – even in the way this Fiscal Treaty came about.

I will vote No to defy the wishes of the German elite, which benefited so spectacularly from the emergence of the Eurozone and now makes modest redistribution of that generated wealth, conditional on adherence to its economic and budgetary diktats, diktats that disadvantage not only the mass of people throughout the rest of Europe but the mass of people in Germany itself.

I will vote No to give backbone to the government’s dealings with the EU on the promissory notes and the other bank debt.

Voting No will not cause these iniquitous measures and policies to be reversed, but it will give some solace to others in Europe who are campaigning against these and will register, in the minds of the elite, some appreciation of the hostility of electorates to what they are about.

Read the statement in full at Politico

This entry was posted in Austerity & Bank Bailouts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to “We owe it to ourselves to oppose a trajectory that will vandalise society” – Vincent Browne

  1. Rita Cahull says:

    I Posted wrong Article, This is the correct Article”
    Airline passengers’ sensitive data to be handed to US

    Airlines will have to provide PNR data to US authorities to store for 15 years . Photo: Thinkstock
    By Christopher Williams
    Friday April 20 2012
    THE personal details of millions of airline travellers will be handed over to American intelligence agencies for up to 15 years under measures approved in Brussels.
    Passenger records for everyone who flies to the United States from Europe will be given to the US Department of Homeland Security which claims it needs them to tackle terrorism.
    The European Parliament agreed to supply the records which include names, addresses, passport details, credit card and phone numbers, and even the internet address of the computer with which the ticket was booked. Sensitive personal data such as religious meal choices and relevant medical conditions can also be included.
    Civil liberties campaigners were outraged yesterday (Thurs) following the decision, raising concerns over how the data would be used and claiming that the rights of air travellers had been “sold out for fear of upsetting the Americans”.
    Under the new laws, US intelligence agencies will be able to store and exploit the data for up to five years to investigate terrorism and “transnational crime”, although names will be removed after six months. The data will then be retained for a further 10 years, under stricter access rules.
    The EU has been under strong diplomatic pressure to bring in the laws since 2010, when a temporary deal expired. Last year the US Senate’s powerful Homeland Security Committee unanimously passed a resolution demanding continued access to Passenger Name Records.
    The European Commission said the new laws would protect privacy better than the temporary arrangement.
    “The new agreement is a substantial improvement on the existing agreement from 2007,” said Cecilia Malmström, the European Commissioner for home affairs.
    The temporary data sharing arrangement was prompted by the discovery of a series of plots against transatlantic flights. They included the 2006 “liquid bomb plot” to kill up to 10,000 people by detonating home-made explosives on at least seven airliners. The three British ringleaders received life sentences in 2009.
    The new laws will expand the access American authorities have to Europeans’ private lives. In 2010 MEPs approved the permanent sharing of data from the Swift banking transfer system, which had been secretly handed over since September 11 attacks.
    Airlines welcomed the new laws on passenger data, arguing it should also be shared with at least another 11 non-EU countries, “or flights to these countries could be disrupted”.
    – Christopher Williams
    This is unconstitutional without a referendum” plesae read this it is about dignity, and human rights being stripped from the Irish People and this article when you read it” its scary and it violates our Humanity rights” please read it carefully, it was Europeon Parliament and Alan Shatter who impliment this without informing Oireactas or the Judge in Irish Courts, it is totally wrong! wrong way Enda Kenny & Alan Shatter” Wrong! Criminals altering the Constitution Articles without The Irish peoples Vote Consent” wrong turn” We need to fix this article” it wasnt voted on by the Irish People” Eu took liberties and done it themselves they are breaking the Law2 Rita Cahill

  2. Rita Cahull says:

    THE GREAT EURO LIE
    18.05.12,
    I wouldn’t hold your breath Fred,but ask yourself this, why do the electorate keep voting for the same old tribes? There is the UKIP option after all. I blame these electoral sheep for the situation we’re in. UKIP would have given us our referendum and from what I see a lot more in the way of traditional common sense old fashioned values besides
    Enda kenny has supported everything that has led this country into a multi-racial hell-hole, and encaptured in a politically correct straight jacker ,ruled directly from the politburo in Brussels.It has supported every human form of immigration, incuding illegal. Also it has shown great sympathy to those who either(a)have no right to be here(b)pose a threat to the security of the people Ireland.
    How outrageous is that?
    It appears that the whole EUSSR project has been built on a tissue of lies, from the creation of the original EEC to the invention of the euro itself, as well as the lies told by countries wanting to join the eurozone. Even the founding father of the EU (Jean Monnet) essentially said that the ultimate objective of a federal super-state should be dressed up as an economic necessity so we didn’t realise what was happening. And still our political leaders continue to lie to us and insist EUSSR membership is in our national interest, our export trade will collapse if we leave, and so on. How anyone can possibly believe that it is in our interest to continue pouring money into the black hole of the EUSSR and its money-wasting lunatic schemes, over-regulation and restrictive practices is beyond me.
    The euro is on its deathbed now, but still these power-mad federalists are desperate to save it, along with their nightmare vision of an EUSSR super-state – at the same time as wiping out any trace of patriotism, national pride and heritage.
    However, I wouldn’t trust the promises of any of our three treacherous political parties on an honest referendum – they have lied to us too often in the past to retain any credibility on this subject. The only option left is to vote No – and Enda Conman will hopefully live to regret the way he has deliberately ignored the wishes of the Eire electorate.
    The CONs can’t win a general election with the Irish People who Oppse this strong.
    But it seem to me that FG & LB cannot be trusted? Oh NO.
    They have not ever offererd to a Renegotiate Terms , knowing full well that there will have to be an EU-wide Renegotiation on the EU when the Euro crashes,.

    Any Referendum offered will be a device to keep us in “not to give us a choice to leave.
    And the propaganda and funding by Brusssels of the IN campaign will make a free and fair Referendum impossible.

    Be careful what you wish for. Vote No – we will just leave;
    I keep encouraging all I meet to vote NO and am lucky to have a thick skin as most of them think I should be sectioned!!! I have a sense of responsibility towards my country and since the beginning have voted NO as I knew in my heart it would all come crumbling down eventually – was I right all along?? I think so.
    The wave that rises too fast comes crashing down with more force and that has happened.
    Anyway I will vote NO again this time and maybe, through a miracle, a majority will do likewise. Come on everybody, put your faith in the word ‘NO’ … it may change the way we go forward as a country but it cannot be as fractured as what Angela and her cohorts will make us and it is definitely worth the risk before we are swallowed up and spat out eventually.
    If we vote Yes and the Euro goes belly up…then what? Will we owe all of the money valued in euros in a new devalued punt? Are we likely to default then? The problem is that there are so many unknown, unknowns? There are so many questions which cannot be asked because we don’t know what to ask…and neither do the governments have any answers. The whole thing is imploding because of lousy economic governance all round. The public administration of Ireland did not do its job properly, if at all. They did not do due diligence and protect their citizens. If the Taoiseach and the Minister for Finance refuse to debate the Fiscal Treaty only one conclusion can be reached: They don’t fully understand the implications and the full treaty itself…they are relying on lawyers to interpret it for them. That is not good enough. They have a duty to debate this treaty with their citizens in order to make their citizens fully aware of all of the implications. They need to explain austerity will be imposed regardless if the vote is yes or no. They need to find their backbones…this is simply shocking cowardice.
    (Hard-working Greeks, as in 42.5 hours a week, on average, compared with 35.7 hours for the Germans, and we’re somewhere in between — these are OECD figures.)”
    Hours clocked in is no guarantee of work being done. One could be at one’s post asleep for 24 hours a day, no use though.
    Greece , Plato Socrates Aristotle
    Ireland , Kenny Gilmore Noonan
    My brain Hurts !

    We have emigration revisited, austerity reinstalled and voting “yes” to this fiscal treaty simply reintroduces us to the joys of being re-colonised.
    Coming up to the 100th anniversary of 1916 how ironic that the independence that was sought and claimed should now be voted away.
    The lack of leadership, at this time, and the “I’m all right Jack” of our smug rulers who, rather than walk , as Emmet did, sacrificing all for the better good of the people, cravenly betray the philosophical ideals of a nation longing to be whole.
    It is this we hand on to our children,this love of one’s country, not pennies from the rich man’s table.
    It truly breaks my heart to see what these people are doing to my country.
    yes, and the Irish public are only to ready to believe. What a spineless nation we are. Willing to throw our children to the wolves in Canada and Australia as long as the politicians and the elites can keep robbing our taxes at the same time.
    The Majority of Citizens in Ireland are fully aware that the Republic’s politicians have been away with the Birds for the past two decades in nest Feathering Dail Eireann , What is so frustrating to me is that the seed of an overdue Revolution across the Country is taking so long to Germinate. while the Weeds of Leinster House Continue to strangle ordinary People’s day to day Lives.
    “Insulated from the effects of recession, with a big pension to come, Kenny and his like can’t help seeing unemployment as a lifestyle choice.”
    Ouch, on the button though—sure hope the “hammer of the lone parent and pensioners in fuel poverty”, Joan Burton, is reading!

    Ignorant, arrogant and heartless! Do the Greeks not breathe like us? The ordinary people of Greece are ruled by the elite who have been feathering their own nests for decades..just like the boys here! What this remark betrays is how much contempt these people have for the ordinary citizens.
    a joke is this government with no real plans nothing at all to inspire confidence from if the euro goes belly up and it very well could we will be screwed because these bozos wont have anything planned, to busy been yes men and worrying about feathering their own nest, its a disgrace.
    As Pat Rabitte admitted there is “no plan”…they are making it up as they go along! No wonder Noonan and Kenny won’t debate the Fiscal Treaty with Vincent Browne…they don’t dare to because they’ll be found not to understand its full legal implications for Ireland. Why? Because no one knows! And they want us to vote in a referendum to give them powers to ratify a treaty they don’t have full details on yet? It’s insane. None of these people are fit to govern. They are under-qualified and under-performing. I don’t agree with Lucinda Creighton but at least she has the courage to go on debates and provide leadership. Voting no is the only sensible thing to do. The world will not end!
    …..yet despite all this eloquently expressed Vote No rhetoric, the people will probably still vote Yes, I fear. It is not only Noonan who flies with the birds, Id say.
    “Noonan and Kenny spoke nonsense.” Haven’t many of us being saying this for the past 13 months!
    FG had no plan, nor will they ever have a plan for government, let alone Ireland. They live in cloud cuckoo land, and the people take it from them.
    They are not going to change their ways and will hold out for as long as they can to get their pension: that is all that concerns these men.

    IRA Revolution distorted Attempt!
    There is an irony in the fact that while the split may have been provoked by the differering attitudes towards armed struggle, it also had a lot to do with the disaste of MacStiofain and others for what they saw as a lapse into Godless communism by Goulding and others under the influence of Roy Johnston. The irony lies in the fact that MacStiofain, O’Bradaigh and O’Conaill were eventually ousted by Adams and co at a time when the leading IRA figures in the North had also come around to embracing Marxism. If the militaristic rhetoric and military action of the seventies was the skeleton in the closet SFWP wanted to forget in the eighties, the Marxist rhetoric and belief in a socialist republic is something SF, or at least leading figures within SF, seem to want to shake off these days. It seems to be their belief that FF’s tarring of them with the left-wing brush was what banjaxed them at the last election. Personally I think the McCartney murder and the Northern Bank robbery probably did them far more damage as they conjured up the link between the SF and an active IRA.
    As regards an enormous spasm of republican sentiment, I think the cliche of smug southerners totally turning their backs on what was happening in the North masks the high levels of republican sentiment which persisted at least until the mid to late seventies, and were reawakened briefly during the hunger strikes.
    An episode too often forgotten is the Portlaoise hunger strike of 1975 when 14 prisoners went without food for 47 days after demanding a public inquiry into the conditions at the jail. Among those who supported this call were members of the African Society of Missions at Maynooth, the Cork County Board of the GAA, former members of the National Farmers Association, residents of the Bayside area of Sutton and workers at the Ardnacrusha Power Station, Fiat in Ballyfermot and Tara Mines. Interestingly, given the subsequent attitude of ‘what are those mad Northern bastards doing up there’ there were hunger strikers from Monaghan, Clare, Offaly, Kerry, Tipperary, Dublin, Wexford, Donegal, Laois, Cavan and Limerick. I often wonder what would have happened had there been large numbers of deaths on this occasion, given the huge trouble surrounding the single funeral of Frank Stagg two years previously.
    In the end FF took power later that year and took the heat out of the situation by improving conditions in the prison, something the coalition could quite easily have done in the first place. But I think it’s a reminder that the republican movement was not the small unrepresentative rump it’s sometimes portrayed as South of the border. Among the hunger strikers were Martin Ferris, helicopter escapee Kevin Mallon and Sean McGettigan who’d been convicted of the murder of Senator Billy Fox, an incident I believe has been much underestimated for its effect in bringing the repressive instinct out in FG.
    Not really surprising that political innovation came from the Army. I think historically that was always the way, and it was SF where you had the higher concentration of traditionalists.
    I’ve just about got into the 1980s by now, and will have to seriously start taking notes along the way. There’s this weird deja vu element, where you’re reading a work of history and most of the people in it are familiar to you, if only by reputation. I think it’s hard to underestimate the role of the individual, or indeed the family, though I’m also thinking in terms of something Wohlforth used to say about how organisations have personalities of their own.
    What I think it’s good on as well is the differences between north and south, and what a cultural gap there was. I remember laughing out loud when the DL founders talked about how they had had no idea that Group B existed. Maybe that sounded plausible in Dublin, but in Belfast it just seemed hilarious. So yes, I’m getting a lot out of the southern stuff where my knowledge is a lot sketchier.
    The politics will bear thinking about though.

    “Not really surprising that political innovation came from the Army. I think historically that was always the way, and it was SF where you had the higher concentration of traditionalists@
    I think it is more than this. The activists were in the army and SF was considered a supplementary org. Connolly had a marxist version where there would be an inner core, the SPI and the LP would be the outer, vaguer periphery.
    In the Sticks this transmuted partially into thesecret cumanns.
    On Costello I would not take everything you hear as gospel. Yes, he was determined and some could say ruthless but not mindless. All of those who were in the army cannot claim to be squeamish. It was not a home for pacifists.
    On criminality. My main objection is to the hyprocrisy about it. The apologists for state repression and their own stuff should stay quiet rather than claim to be innocent/ignorant about what he dogs in the street knew.
    The Republicans and marxists share a belief that an insurresction is needed..
    The probelm with Republicanism is the disconnect between winning mass support and their actions.
    a justification for a doctorate. But because of that, they actually compliment each other quite well, and should be read in tandem. Both make clear, by the way, that although the split may have been exploited or wished for by the Southern Irish authorities, the reasons for it had deep roots within the organisation.
    There’s none so hypocritical as those on the political Left, particularly the hard Left, so it’s been more than interesting to watch some of Ireland’s most well known communists and socialists, both the die-hards and the born-agains, lining up to defend former Workers Party leader Seán Garland, as he faces extradition to the United States. Just as interesting has been those who have kept well away from the court case, aware of their own shadowy past links to the bold Seán, the Workers Party, Sinn Féin and the Irish Republican Army. The hijacking of the leaderships of the latter two organisations by communists in the late 1960s and early ‘70s led to the split in the Irish Republican movement that gave birth to Provisional Sinn Féin.
    The hijacking of the leadership of the Irish labour Party by Official Sinn Féin / Official IRA Sinn Féin the Workers Party / Official IRA the Workers Party / Official IRA / Group B Democratic Left in the 1990s is one of the great putsches of Irish party politics. The sequence of events is clear enough. In the late 1960s the higher echelons of Sinn Féin and the Irish Republican Army had come under the influence of would-be communist revolutionaries more concerned with liberating the global working classes than the Irish population of the North of Ireland. The fact that the working classes of the world weren’t all that sanguine about the glories of communist liberation and that Irish citizens living in the north-east of the country were rather more concerned about being murdered in their beds by rampaging mobs from the British ethnic minority than Marx or Lenin never really bothered these newbie Reds. The proletariat would follow where the revolutionary leadership led them (for the leadership knew better.
    We cannot let this government reform British regime as we do not want to turn back into British reform regime, no Brits allowed in Eire, good Friday agreement cannot be broken, we have to stop these bastards before they ruin this country, we are 100 per cent Irish bred, and I would like to keep my Celtic Irish roots, not British or uk, what is Sein fein going to do, to stop them, we need to stop LB and FG from ruining Ireland, no to this treaty, no to British, have you read Jean Monet 1998 it tells you all about Cameroons plans and merkel and Israel and Britain and northern Ireland’s real plan and it seems to follow a very huge pattern of corruption, also if you get a chance read green paper, pretty interesting of the 27 elected members plans, and bailouts and war plans to attack Iran, all to steal their oil, like Iraq, this government is very dangerous and need to be kicked out of government, well I said enough for now,

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