Democrat - April 2002 (Number 61)
Editorial - John Boyd
The first round of the election for President of France produced a predictable result. Jean Marie Le Pen, of the fascist National Front, squeezed out the socialist candidate Lionel Jospin. There were umpteen candidates including many from the left and far left which split the vote several ways.
Le Pen is not the only far right politician in a west European country who leads a political party opposed to the European Union cashing in on the popular opposition to the EU. This is a severe warning to the labour movement and left in Britain.
The course for Britain is clear. Either continue along the path to black reaction in a European Union or take the path to independence and right to self-determination. If the left does not unite around the latter and lead the way, the far right will fill the vacuum.
Doing nothing in regard to the single currency or the many facets of European Union is not an option anymore. Action is required now.
Soon after WWII those who called for an EEC wanted an "ever closer union". The current so called Convention on the `Future of Europe' to produce a constitution for the EU has borrowed favours from the US Convention of 1787.
Former French President, Giscard d'Estaing self styled President of the EU Convention, has stated that: "juridically it (the Constitution) will be a treaty, but the content is by definition a Constitution...(to)...lead in the direction of Political Union."
Political not economic document
Roy Jenkins, now a Lord, formerly one of the Gang of Four and a Commission President, said the 1957 Rome Treaty although written as an economic document was in fact a political document.
Since 1957 there has been the Single European Act of 1986 which laid down the objective of an ever closer union and opened the door to a military union, a Euro-military-industrial-complex and European Army as well as set the European Single Market in place. This was followed by the 1991 Maastricht Treaty on EU which spelt out the framework of a political union with a common currency and a common foreign and security policy. These have been called "the two pillars of the nation state - the sword and the currency", by Commission President Romano Prodi. (Financial Times 9-4-99)
The Amsterdam and Nice Treaties on European Union made further strides towards Euro-federalism and put in place key elements of an EU Constitution. Although the Nice Treaty still has to be ratified by all member states, in particular Ireland, EU ruling circles are carrying on as though this had happened.
The backdrop to the Constitution is the EUs own juridical system. EU law is superior to national law over matters covered by EU Treaties. The EU Court of Justice takes decisions which push towards further Euro-federalism. This Court decides its own field of competencies and hence the right to decide on disputes between member states and the EU itself.
Although the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights (see Democrat February 2001) is not legally part of the EU Treaties the EU court has referred to this Charter in judgements. The Charter has therefore become part of the process towards a Constitution which is used to transfer powers from the member nation states to the EU. In practice the process is in fact even more sinister.
Euro-federalists want to remove the use of referendums by electorates to block steps towards a supra-national state. This includes the right to stop ratification of treaties as has happened in Ireland and the right to stay out of the single currency as happened in Denmark. This gets around the problem for the federalists of having all member states ratify each successive treaty.
Expose and oppose
This Convention has to be exposed and opposed before national parliaments join the so-called European Parliament and become mere fig leafs called democracy where our votes become meaningless and we become powerless through the ballot box to kick out those who govern us.
There are plenty of opportunities on the way as the EU is about to both enlarge and deepen. The EU will be more reactionary and a prison house for member states.
Either process has immense problems. Put both together and there will be real crises which to shake the EU to its very foundations and openings to cause the monster to come to its inevitable end.