By definition the Irish voters have the right to reject the Lisbon Treaty through a democratic voting process. By more than 100,000 votes, the Irish rejected the treaty (similar to how France & Denmark did so in 2005).
The Lisbon Treaty officially needs the approval of all 27 EU member states, meaning the way forward for the union is now uncertain.
Side: Its their right
They were right to. A better question would be: Will they just force it through anyway, as with the Dutch and French automatic ratifications this time, and thereby ignoring all the "no" referendums? Actually that's not a better question it's a certainty.
Side: Its their right
Of course we were right.
If we voted yes europe wouldn't really be equal, all the dominating countries like France would have all the power.
Our Taoiseach(leader), Brian Cowen, even admitted he hadn't read the treaty so why would we, the people, vote for something our country doesn't even understand?
While Ireland has the full right to decide its fate as a nation it's my opinion that Europe would do well to unify as quickly and efficiently as possible. The EU states are going to be woefully unprepared to meet challenges head-on or effectively if this sort of nationalistic bickering, isolationism, paranoia, and elite power mongering continues. (I blame the EU elites: ministers, economic powers, functionaries..etc..just as much if not more than the general public in the stalling of a fully-functioning true European Union).
With global economic and environmental crisis looming, an ever aggressive Russia, a potentially aggressive China, a loose-cannon U.S. (I am a U.S. citizen), and the threat of Fundamentalist Islamic insurrection I don't think it is in the people of Ireland's best interest to keep the E.U. from becoming a potent international power in its own right.
France, Germany, Ireland, Britain, Poland..etc...etc...cannot compete economically without each other, they cannot compete militarily, and they cannot progress scientifically, environmentally, and socially without each other's help.
Without the combined efforts of all Europeans the E.U. member states are likely to fall behind the U.S., India, China, Russia, and Brazil as economic, military, social, cultural, and scientific powers. The more cogent and stream-lined the E.U. governing body becomes the more powerful and protected the individual E.U. citizen becomes.
Europe would do well to unify as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Personally I'd rather they did it properly than quickly. The current trend in Europe seems to be heading disturbingly towards "undemocratic", not to mention the corruption and bullying already surrounding the MEPs. They appear to be basing it on the US model, without any of the safeguards, which in my opinion is an awful combo.
Personally I think it's all going horribly wrong, it seems more about becoming a powerhouse (the EU) than about liberty, transparency, democracy and the people (rather than the corporations) of Europe.
Side: It's all going wrong
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