Circus1: Commissioners leave Commission to be elected to Parliament, to then resign, in order to become Commissioners again! Illegal Nonsense!
6, April, 2014
What a tangled web of moral corruption and irrational nonsense the political class has got itself into trying to defend political nepotism! Seven Commissioners have declared they will take leave of the Commission and stand or support parties for the European Parliament. Why? To be active in Parliament? Not at all! They want to be re-assigned to the Commission!
Then we have the European Parliamentarians demanding that the present President of Parliament resign! Why? Doesn’t he want to stand again in the May 2014 elections again? Yes he does. But he wants to resign once elected to become the President of the Commission !! Then we have a former prime minister of Luxembourg who the voters rejected at the polls. He too wishes to become the President of the Commission. What is he doing about it? He has put his name forward for the European Popular Party group for the European Parliament elections. He too will resign if ‘successful’ to become the President of the Commission!! Famously he was chairman of the ultra-secret Euro-Group that controls the major finance of the euro catastrophe. He said several times to journalists that he has to lie to defend the euro! Is he to use the same principles to defend the Politburo politics of the Commission — which is supposed to be impartial.
Have they also taken leave of their senses? The European Commission, the Council and the European Parliament were set up as INDEPENDENT institutions. It makes as much sense for Commissioners to leave to get elected in their national parliaments.
How can members of the Commission be independent and impartial by wanting to be part of another institution?
Then comical becomes farcical. As soon as they are elected they will resign!
It gets more ridiculous! The body they chose to be active for, the European Parliament, should completely disqualify them from any post in the Commission. Its main function is PARTISAN, to represent, analyse and support partisan interests.
It is nonsense! The Parliament is a representative body. So is the Council. But the Commission is different. It is supposed to be impartial and an honest broker for all Europeans. It is supposed to embody supranational values, like fairness, honesty and impartiality. It is not a political secretariat for the governments. It articulates the common good beyond political parties.
If you don’t think this is an absolute farce, consider the next step.
Being elected to the European Parliament or not, taking leave of absence from the Commission or not, even resigning or not, has nothing to do with if they will make it to the European Commission for 2015.
No, the people who really decide who will be in the Commission, will decide who this is to be, regardless of all this leave-election-resignation circus. The European Council behind closed doors will do as they have done in the past. They will pick a politician (yes they always choose one of their own) in complete secrecy. They are responsible to no one. Their whole aim is to reinforce political nepotism. They always choose a member of the main political parties. They thumb their nose at anybody among the EU’s 500 million people who is not a member of their club — even though the treaties say it is ILLEGAL to choose a politician active in his party. They can chose a person who was never in the Commission or the Parliament.
So this political circus, this political theatre, is only there for one purpose. It is to distract the public, the audience, while the government ministers politically pick the pockets of the public.
This process is not only illegal but highly detrimental to democracy. The European Commission is especially important in the Community system as it was designated as being totally IMPARTIAL from any government, political group or business, trades union or consumer interests. It is there to represent the common interests of ALL citizens without any exception. Beyond them it is supposed to be able to propose what is right and just for our children in the future. Children don’t vote!
That role has been written in the treaties since 1951 and the founding Treaty of Paris. It is still is in the Lisbon Treaties verbatim. What does any rational member of the public understand when the Lisbon treaty says:
‘the members of the Commission may not during their term of office engage in any other occupation, whether gainful or not.’
What is party political activity? Clearly membership of political parties is in violation of this article. It is an occupation which previously brought in a lot of money. Would you expect a businessman to retain his business while working as Commission President? Some Commissioners believe that their continued membership of a political party will again bring them a lot of money when they leave the Commission — either for government office again or some other activity dominated by party or governmental networks.
Governments do not like a body that must be honest and fair. This is especially the case if crooked deals are being cooked up in the Council of Ministers. So bit by bit they government ministers insisted that Commissioners could be politicians. Then they went further. Today all Commissioners are politicians! Now they say ONLY politicians can be members of the Commission. That contrasts with the early Commission when there were none!
Clearly party political membership is partisan. An independent, impartial honest person would shun any activity that impugned his or her reputation of impartiality. Would a judge who was involved in a corruption case involving billions of public money being misused go off and discuss who-knows-what in private and dine with the very people up before the Court?
Today a large group of governments — nearly all of them — are known to be guilty of fraudulently fixing statistics for the euro, spending money to bribe voters and hoping that rich members of the EU will bail them out. The Commission is now expected to act as judge to see twice a year that the national budgets are properly managed. So any member of the public would expect extra care for choosing every and all Commissioners. They should distance themselves from party operations which lay at the faulty construction of the euro.
What happens in practice? The Commissioners travel Europe and attend party political conferences. And astoundingly they bring with them their personal staff and ‘their’ civil servants. All are paid at the taxpayers’ expense! No voter in the European Union agreed that.
According to this Treaty article the Commissioners are not allowed to have an occupation as party politicians. They must resign from any party they formerly adhered to. Why? The Founding Fathers are clear. To show their independence.
Can you be independent and a member of a political party? Clearly not. The word partisan — adhering to a party as distinct from the common interest — shows the two occupations are at loggerheads.
Now we have the spectacle of 7 Commissioners standing for Parliament! Is the job of European parliamentarian a gainful one? I should say so.
Why this circus? Nowhere do the present Lisbon Treaties say that the Commission should be chosen from politicians elected to the European Parliament. It merely says in Article 17 TEU that the Commission should be named by the governments after the results of the elections are known.
‘Taking into account the elections to the European Parliament and after having held the appropriate consultations, the European Council, acting by a qualified majority, shall propose to the European Parliament a candidate for President of the European Commission.’
This is not an invitation for politicians in government to nominate their buddies or their political enemies they wanted to send far away to Brussels!
The governments are to put forward candidates who have proven impartiality. The public can then examine their record. This is the principle established at the beginning of the Community process. Several candidates were refused because they were seen by others to be too partisan, too nationalistic or representing special interests.
Nowhere does any treaty say that the governments — who are one and all composed of party politicians — should nominate someone appointed by their party machines to be a candidate. That is electoral fraud. Political nepotism will only act as further lead weight to lower public trust and confidence in politicians. The Lisbon Treaty TEU article 10) in fact says that
‘ALL citizens have the right to participate in the democratic life of the Union. Decisions shall be taken as openly as possible.’
Decisions are not taken openly as to who can be the Commission candidate because the governments have so far refused to implement such a system. It requires the public to choose who is impartial. The party machines are sources of potential and actual corruption because they are the biggest Lobbies in Europe. How they make policy is usually cloaked in mystery. Who pulls their strings? In the past parties were paid for and controlled by cartels, trusts, or unions.
It might be worth asking how party machines chose their candidates, not only for this post but simply being an MEP. Too often, admitted one MEP, the party leader says: ‘You, you and you will be are our MEPs!’ That is the party list system. So much for democracy. Meanwhile the national governments put up a barrage of restrictions so that no individual free of such party political apparatchiks can stand as a candidate. The EU has 28 national elections. The treaty itself calls for ONE election with ONE statute for all the EU so that a citizen can vote for any person he or she wants to.
Then they nominate an out-of-work, or a failed politician to be the party candidate for the Commission! This is called parachuting. Only party members are allowed to be eligible for parachuting into the lucrative Brussels postings.
Only two percent of the population has membership of a political party. So that means 98 percent of the population is ruled out and eliminated by the political nepotism of the governments acting as a Politburo. They could offer non-political academics, professors of law or morals, diplomats, former leaders of NGOs. Even those who formerly had experience in small business and know the hard realities of economics and were no longer running businesses would make good candidates.
Now who would make the best impartial, experienced members of the Commission? It would be someone who is experienced with the Brussels bureaucracy, fights corruption committed at the European level and has the interests of all citizens at heart.
Consider the European Ombudsman who fights mal-administration in the European institutions.
One of the biggest outrages of mal-administration today is just that. The present Ombudsman is not a member of a political party. But the Council’s Politburo rules make party membership their essential factor of choice.
The experienced, non-partisan, impartial Ombudsman cannot become the President of the Commission. She is not a member of a political party!
What a circus! What egotistical corruption!
David Heilbron Price