Tag Archives: lisbon treaty

Man of Few Words

Former Belgian Prime Minister Herman Von Rompuy is the surprise choice as the EU’s first President. One of the things he’s most famous for (well, to be honest, to only thing he’s even slightly famous for) is the fact that he writes haikus. A haiku is a poem with just 17 syllables, arranged 5, 7 and 5.

Conveying one’s thoughts via a haiku makes Twitterers look like chatterboxes.

(The haiku is never one of the categories in a game of charades, and here’s why:

*Stands, holds left fist a couple of inches above inverted right fist like a Town Crier reading from a scroll, trying to mime a person holding a small piece of paper drenched in lavender water…*

*Contestants: “…poem…”

*Sits temporarily so can hold up two hands and one and a half feet…*

*Contestants: “…seventeen syllables…”

*Stands again, holds up two hands and a foot, overbalances and then stands back up holding one ear…*

*Contestants: “…fifteenth syllable, sounds like…”

It could take a while).

Anyway, in honour of Mr Von Rompuy I am publishing some of his work. After Ireland passed the Lisbon Treaty (on the second vote, which if you think about it was a replay, even though they’d said before the first vote that there wouldn’t be a replay (leave it Tinman, time to move on, sorry, yes, you’re right)), Mr Von Rompuy wrote this:

The treaty has passed

I would be more excited

If I had read it.

Upon his election to the Presidency he wrote this:

I don’t have much flair

But I still got elected

Because I’m not Blair.

Finally, the drawback to this form of communication is illustrated by this last effort, where he outlines his ideas for getting the EU out of recession:

The EU is fecked.

Do not fret, I have a plan.

What I will do is

We wish him the best of luck.

Play it Again, Sam

We’ve been given a second chance, amazingly.

When the Nice Treaty vote was taking place in 2001, we were told that if we rejected it, there would be no second chance. We duly rejected it, and were made to vote again in 2002, when it succeeded.

But that was a once-off, we were told. We HAD to vote yes to the Lisbon Treaty last June, because this time there was NO WAY we’d have a second vote.

We voted no anyway (threats have seldom been the best way to win over the Irish), and now, having been told we were very bold and been made to sit on the naughty step for a few months, we’ve been told today that we’re very, very lucky, and we’re going to be given a chance to vote again.

lisbon-boobsOne pretty obvious outcome of this is that every future EU referendum that we face will be defeated first time round, while we wait to see what extra concessions we might get. If the Government have any sense they won’t even bother campaigning first time round. In fact, if the EU have any sense and a touch of deviousness (and remember these are politicians I’m talking about) they’ll work out a Treaty but then tell the Irish it’s something different and less favourable to us, so we can reject that, and then they’ll offer us the real Treaty as a “re-negotiation”.

This political master-stroke is offered as free advice. Who needs well-paid Spin Doctors?

It does surprise me that apparently the change concerning us keeping a Commissioner will be enough to persuade the people to vote Yes next time round. At the moment each of the 27 countries gets to appoint a Commissioner but this was to change so that the Commission would be smaller and the countries would get to appoint people on a rota basis. It seems the fact that we would lose our Commissioner was a major stumbling-block. I can’t see why.

What happens when Croatia, Ukraine, etc, join? What happens when there are 40 countries in the EU, will there be 40 Commissioners sitting around a desk?

No organisation is run like this. It’s like saying that every child in a school should have a parent on the Board of Management. Meetings would have over a hundred people at them, and nothing would ever get done. Instead parents elect a small number from among their ranks, and assume that they will do what’s best for everyone’s children.

Insisting on keeping a Commissioner for each country implies that we don’t think like that about the EU. That we believe that all the other countries can’t wait to get us off the Commission, so that they can do us down. That they’ll behave like bloody foreigners, in other words.

I think that’s sad.

Caked in Stupidity

I’ve nicked this -> picture from Jo’s other (respectable) blog (http://piosacake.wordpress.com/) because  of all the people I know she’s the one most likely go berserk over this, from today’s Irish Times:

New EU regulations have banned the consumption of cakes and confectionary entered at country fairs and agricultural shows immediately after baking competitions.

Under the rules adjudicators of bakery sections in local shows are only permitted to taste the traditional favourites such as apple tarts or cheese cakes. Once the judging is over, the produce must be immediately destroyed. As a result, only bite-sized versions of the cakes will be entered in shows.

Cad an fuck?

There was a cake-competition outside the Happy Pear in Greystones last June. Jo was at it, and she and twenty or so others entered cakes in various categories. One of the prizes was won by a 13-year old boy from Tinson2’s class. Can you imagine how thrilled he was – it had been his first ever attempt. When it was over everyone tried everyone else’s cakes, swapped recipes, etc.

What can possibly be wrong with that? What new gormless rule are we breaking now? All eating off the same plate? Eating outdoors? Not having napkins tucked into our shirts?

Chairman of Mayo County Council Joe Mellett, said:

“It is a real deterrent to those entering shows. If you thought your prize produce was going to be destroyed immediately after a tiny taste was taken from it, then you would not want to enter a competition.”

He also said “When you see things like this it’s no wonder the people voted No to the Lisbon Treaty.”

That may be a bit glib, but I know what he means.