So 0.173175 % of the EU population has voted “No” to the Treaty of Lisbon and thereby the whole process is stopped, and the decisions (at least potential) of 26 democratically elected governments, accountable to their democratically elected Parliaments and representing 497 137 585 Europeans are nullified. Anyone else thinking this is somewhat peculiar?
Obviously, the results of a democratic referendum should be respected. Equally obvious is that it should have consequences only for Ireland. It is important now that the ratification process continues and that, when finished, a separate solution is found for Ireland.
Unfortunately, Swedish opposition leader Mona Sahlin already “scents thee morning air” and has stated that the Swedish Parliament ought “to apply the hand-break” to the ratification process in the hope of attracting eurosceptics from all parties at a moment when her comfortable lead in the opinion polls has begun to crumble.
Swedish EU-blogger and MEP Åsa Westlund approvingly quotes the comments to the Irish “no” from the Secretary General of the European Trade Union Confederation :”For far too long, Europe has paid too little attention to the expectations and rights of workers and others who feel threatened by globalisation and the pace of change.” Fine, I agree, but fail to understand what this has to do with the ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon excepts in so far as it gives a Denkzettel to a Government whose policies you don’t like. Challenges such as those mentioned by the Secretary General of ETUC and others, for instance those connected with climate change, energy, food prices and geopolitical upheavals should make it all the more urgent to work for a strong and efficent European Union.