Tally ho, old chaps! Lovely to be over here where I've been asked to write something about the Irish referendum. The one our great masters hope they manage to get right this time. That's the trouble with giving two options, though: you're giving people the chance to pick the wrong answer.
It appears that, confident that if people actually knew the truth about the treaty and these 'promises' they'd vote NO, the Irish establishment have decided to resort to their favourite weapon: lies.
Luckily it's quite amusing because the very low key Irish MEPs involved are clearly mentally retarded or masters of irony.
I'll guide you through an example shortly, but first of all let's return to Flanders and Swann:
The Irishman now our contempt is beneath
He sleeps in his boots and he lies through his teeth
He blows up policemen or so I have heard
And blames it on Cromwell and William the Third
See, it's supposed to be a joke but the Irish have taken this whole 'it's the EU or English Imperialism' rather seriously.
From the Irish Times today:
NO CAMPAIGN: IRISH MEPS have clashed angrily with the UK Independence Party (UKIP) over the British party’s plan to post “racist” leaflets to all Irish homes attacking the Lisbon Treaty.
UKIP confirmed yesterday it had begun posting some 1.5 million leaflets, which should arrive in people’s letterboxes between September 17th and 21st. It also accused Irish MEP Marian Harkin of “hypocrisy” for inviting fellow MEPs to donate funds to the Yes to Lisbon campaign.
“Yet again, the hypocrisy of the Yes side knows no bounds. When someone from outside Ireland who is opposed to the treaty speaks out, then it is foreign interference. But here they are invited to do the same,” said UKIP leader Nigel Farage, who plans a visit to Ireland next week to campaign for a No vote in the referendum.
Actually the leaflet is produced by the Europe of Freedom and Democracy Group in the European Parliament. Not UKIP.
The UKIP leaflet (sic) on the Lisbon Treaty, which is reproduced on the website www.euinfo.ie, alleges Lisbon gives the EU full control of immigration and warns that Turkey’s entry to the EU will lead to more mass migration of cheap labour. It portrays an image of a turkey with a medallion around its neck with the message: “Free movement for 75 million people.”
Turkey's entry into the EU will do. It's not tricky - it's sort of like osmosis but with people and we've had a rather good demonstration of it with the A8 countries in 2004 and, more recently, Bulgaria and Romania. Of course the Irish Europe Minister Dick
And what's with this 'alleges' crap, eh?
Lisbon gives the EU full control over immigration (Arts 79 and 67 TFEU)
Unless the Irish Times don't think that the text of the treaty is the real one?
It also alleges that Lisbon may create an “EU supreme court to overrule our values”, transform Ireland into an “EU province” and damage the economy.
Again, that's because it will. Lisbon grants the EU Court of Justice the power to order the harmonisation of national indirect taxes if it decides that this causes "a distortion of competition" in the EU market (Art. 113 TFEU)
The NO vote also stopped the CCCTB (Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base) which, if introduced, would shaft Ireland as it's currently so competitive and thus has a lot of Foreign Direct Investment.
But of course, it's when the loony MEPs get involved that it really gets unintentionally hilarious:
At the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Labour MEP Alan Kelly said UKIP was out of touch when it came to Europe and bordered on insanity if it thought Irish people would listen to them when they canvassed here. “I presume they’ll come over with their imperialist rhetoric. The thought of their smug smiles turns my stomach . . . 700 years was enough,” he said.
What can you say?
I presume they'll come over with their imperialist rhetoric
Sublime, simply sublime! Never mind the fact that the person he's talking about is actually promoting Irish independence from the EU, it's a sad state of affairs when these useless little jobsworths with no chance of getting even an internship in a private company have to drag everything back to William the Third, as the song goes. Or even Henry VIII.
Ms Harkin said the image of a turkey in the UKIP leaflet was outrageous and racist. She rejected criticism made by Mr Farage that she was “hypocritical” for inviting fellow MEPs to donate to the Yes campaign.
How is a Turkey racist? Is she confusing Bernard Matthews with Bernard Manning?
And I'm sure she did reject that she was being a hypocrite. To them the EU is so knicker wettingly orgasmic that the concept of anyone not wanting to say YES and pay money to help their appalling campaign is not going to penetrate the skulls of said MEPs. Just take a look at what she did:
The criticism from UKIP came after Ms Harkin sent an e-mail to all 736 MEPs asking them to consider contributing to a new campaign group called Europe for Ireland, which has been set up by Irish people in Brussels to lobby for a Yes vote. In the e-mail, Ms Harkin said many people had asked her if they could help in the referendum campaign.
“National referendums are, by definition, an internal national matter, even where, as in this case, the repercussions have an effect across Europe. That being said, Irish people resident in Belgium and indeed all over Europe have set up a Europe for Ireland group to promote a Yes vote to the Lisbon Treaty whatever way it can within the rules,” she added.
Unless you don't like the Treaty, think it's outrageous and an insult to every single Irish person that they are having another referendum and would like the peoples of Europe to be able to live in a prosperous, democratic country than a bloated EU mega state with a terrible anthem and soldiers who can't do drill. Because if that's you then you're an imperialist beast with no ability to read a Treaty document and the fact that you want to tell the truth to these people is sickening.
I mean, where do you get off with trying to inform voters what they're making a decision on?!?!
Get away with you. Feck off.