On 16 November the public could be able to read the secret documents on Brexit.
This is vitally important — not just for Britons. It is essential for European Democracy.
Brexit goes far beyond the obvious. What is obvious is that some Europeans living in UK fear that after Brexit they may be lose their jobs, their residency rights, their rights to travel freely and their health care. The big question for Europe is not about residency or social services or Ireland. Nor is it about trade.
The crux is: Who rules? Who decides on everyday matters? Do Europeans accept politicians deciding their future unaccountably behind closed doors?
The core issue is DEMOCRACY. This year politicians created a Fake News campaign about the 1957 birthday of the European Community called 60Rome. Not true! Schuman created the basis for Freedom and Democracy in 1951.
Robert Schuman announced the European Community system on 9 May 1950 as the most responsive and responsible democratic system. Instead of realizing its open, democratic potential, de Gaulle and succeeding politicians created a closed-door autocracy in the Councils.
For nearly twenty years British politicians promised that these major changes to Europe’s governance in the Maastricht, Amsterdam, Nice, Constitutional and Lisbon treaties would each be confirmed in a Referendum.
Many referendums were promised. None materialized.
Then in 2015 the UK government proposed a referendum, not on whether the UK people should recognize these treaties, but whether they should leave the EU on the basis of an unconfirmed, undemocratic treaty!
That’s upside-down logic. First you have to agree to a treaty before you can apply it. The addled thinking went further after the 24 June 2016 results came out. PM Cameron resigned.
In chronic upside-down logic both the UK government said it would exit the EU. Four Brussels presidents insisted within hours of the result that an advisory referendum must be carried out immediately ‘however painful that process may be‘ upon 500 million citizens!
The power of the government comes from the people. The people said governance is upside down here.
Think! Is a referendum a legal instrument? Is it recognized legally by Brussels and London?
If the advisory, non-binding referendum for Article 50 mandates UK government action to leave an undemocratic, overly bureaucratic EU, then a referendum must be first conducted to see if Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is valid.
If a referendum is not necessary for validating the Lisbon Treaty, then the 23 June 2016 referendum confers no powers on UK governments to leave. Any result just says: This is a stupid, illogical and unlawful procedure. The half-and-half (48.1/ 52.9%) result on 23 June says the same thing: what a silly, irresponsible government Britons have.
Brussels is also guilty of this pick-and-chose governance. When democracies voted against treaties, Brussels said the legally binding referendum NO votes did not apply.
Maastricht: rejected by Denmark.
Nice: rejected by Ireland
Euro: rejected by Denmark, Sweden.
Constitutional Treaty: rejected by France, the Netherlands
Referendums in other States, Czechia, Denmark, Ireland, Poland, Portugal UK were cancelled.
Then, contrary to all honest government, the quasi-totality of this failed and rejected Constitutional treaty was forced through by States and passed by autocratic party systems. Even the European Parliament passed it without a text being available. In fact they refused to have the text of the treaty they voted on!
The implications of lack of honesty and democracy are serious for all Europeans. If UK is leaving because the Brussels system is undemocratic or anti-democratic, will the absence of UK make it any more honest and fair? Europe will be divided by two systems, UK and EU, both with declining standards of democracy and honesty. Democracies like Switzerland, Norway, Iceland will stay clear away — for good reason! They know what a referendum means.
The European Community’s foundational principle is the Freedom of Citizens to choose. Today it is obvious that both Nation State and the Brussels system fail to colour the democratic litmus paper. All States — whether Spain, Germany, France, Italy, Poland, national regions like Scotland and Catalonia or the smaller States — are showing the nationalistic strain as Brussels tries to impose its autocratic will against voters. Why? because the Brussels politicians refuse to implement Schuman’s design for an elected parliament and committees for economic, social and regional policy.
What do politicians and bureaucrats discuss when they close the doors on the public cameras? Are politicians more interested in their careers than how they change, reduce or eliminate citizen rights? What sort of arrangement or deals are being done about taxpayers’ money that the taxpayer knows nothing about? What sort of crackpot schemes are being envisaged that will endanger the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland?
And how on earth did democratic Europe get into this tragi-comedy or farce?
Other issues may come to light. Are the so-called negotiators really competent?
As Robert Schuman said: Government should be at the service of the people and act in agreement with the people. How can it be democratic if the people are kept in ignorance about the doings in the dark of their so-called representatives?
In August I therefore requested that the European Commission supply all the Brexit papers as they were of primary concern to the public, the press and to all individual citizens. As expected the Commission sent a registered letter on 13 September refusing any documents beyond the position papers they had already released. The Freedom of Information Regulation 1049/2001 allows an appeal to be placed. My reply was sent on 2 October. It refutes the grounds given by the Commission, maintaining that all the documents are public information. It is imperative that all documents should be disclosed.
On 24 October I received from the Commission a notice that they cannot reply on the due date to my Freedom of Information Request for the Brexit papers. They are notifying that they are applying an extension of 15 working days until 16 November under article 8 of 1049/2001.
“we have not yet been able to gather all the elements we need to carry out a full analysis of your request in order to take a final decision and, therefore, we are not in a position to reply to your confirmatory request within the prescribed time limit expiring 24 October 2017.”
It appeals to Article 8.2 of the Freedom of Information Regulation to extend the deadline. This paragraph says:
8.2. In exceptional cases, for example in the event of an
application relating to a very long document or to a very large
number of documents, the time limit provided for in paragraph
1 may be extended by 15 working days, provided that the
applicant is notified in advance and that detailed reasons are
Are the Conservatives more interested in keeping their party together than real democracy? Is Brexit merely a strategy to hold a minority party in power? Are the present European institutions more interested in maintaining their closed-door system in violation of the treaties than serving citizens?
The origin, purpose and future of supranational and European Democracy
Robert Schuman wrote a book, For Europe, incorporating some of his speeches explaining the principles of a new, more perfect form of democracy that would unite the existing European democracies in a supranational European Community. These comments here draw on that founding philosophy that united Europe's Allies and former enemies in a constructive new entity. Schuman said it would change world politics. It introduced, he said, a new stage in the history of civilization. More information on Schuman and democracy on www.schuman.info Reproduction is permitted freely provided no profit is made in the process, otherwise permission must be obtained. (c) Bron, D Price asserts his moral right to be considered the author. Information: firstname.lastname@example.org
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.