Mark Steyn, I am somehow inclined to agree, at least in part, with him on this occasion.
Following Sunday’s vote in France, on Wednesday Dutch voters get to express their opinion on the proposed ”European Constitution.” Heartening to see democracy in action, notwithstanding the European elite’s hysterical warnings that, without the constitution, the continent will be set back on the path to Auschwitz. I haven’t seen the official ballot, but the choice seems to be: “Check Box A to support the new constitution; check Box B for genocide and conflagration.”
Alas, this tactic doesn’t seem to have worked. So, a couple of days before the first referendum, Jean-Claude Juncker, the “president” of the European Union, let French and Dutch voters know how much he values their opinion:
“If at the end of the ratification process, we do not manage to solve the problems, the countries that would have said No, would have to ask themselves the question again,” “President” Juncker told the Belgian newspaper Le Soir.
Got that? You have the right to vote, but only if you give the answer your rulers want you to give. But don’t worry, if you don’t, we’ll treat you like a particularly backward nursery school and keep asking the question until you get the answer right. Even America’s bossiest nanny-state Democrats don’t usually express their contempt for the will of the people quite so crudely.
One thought on “EU just won't take 'no' for an answer”
Just encountered your blog, today.
I donâ€™t read many blogs and comment to even fewer.
Iâ€™m over 50 and live in Chicago, a place I see you have not visited yet. I am always embarrassed to read that Europeans think Americans are ignorant about what is going on in the rest of the World. Some of us are, and some of us are not.
Placing myself squarely in the â€œignorantâ€? category, it is not because I am not interested. But relative to the other things going on in my life, it is not a priority. Knowledge about much of the World does not keep the wolf from my door.
There is a phrase, â€œYour career is not your lifeâ€?. Americans often lose sight of that. We easily get lost in our careers, and not simply because of ambition. Primarily, the beast has to be fed. This vast economic engine that we live in is fueled by ever increasing taxes and the need to sell more and more things/services to each of us. We pay Federal income taxes, Social Security taxes, State income taxes, real estate taxes, sales taxes (9.75% on everything I buy). The cost of private medical insurance, prescriptions, and care is another major and rising expense for those of us who are self-employed. â€¦Just trying to explain part of what keeps us busyâ€¦.I know costs are high in many places around the World.
Every day I get information from the local papers, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNN, major networks, etc., and none of it pulled together will get me really important information about what life is like for most others around the Worldâ€¦the actuality, the nuance, etc. Most of us are too busy paying the bills, worrying about how overextended we are, and how to cover the rapidly growing costs of the future. And we are actually the ones who care about the World, and not Paris Hilton.
Our government goes about its business while the rest of us work to pay for it. We take our vote seriously, but our politicians, once elected, donâ€™t necessarily take us as seriously as the people who make major contributions to their next election campaigns. Even when we think weâ€™ve made the right choice, a lot of damage gets done, in our name, by junior politicians trying to win their way to their next election, instead of representing their constituents. (I saw a bumper sticker recently that may resonate in the UK: Taxation with representation doesnâ€™t work so well either)
What the World sees of our television programs and our news media is not at all the same as what the World would see if they came and talked with most of us in our home or at a local bar. Many of us assume Americans would get the same distorted view by just reading your press or viewing your exported television.
Actually, I can only speak for myself. I care. I try to be informed. Iâ€™m busy working to pay the bills. I suspect that is true of most people the World over. Media is not likely to provide the necessary depth and perspective to understand the way individuals live and feel. Communication among individuals will help. This is my small part.
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