26 July, 2011

Euro4: Eurozone leaders repeat: You must be honest! But honest practice brings honest money.

A euro based on supranational democracy would not fail to gain the highest credit ratings in all rating agencies worldwide. That is evident because it would have already been examined and rated that way by European civil organisations, businesses, workers and consumers, via their controlling chamber. Yet EU politicians want to do it their way: party political internationalism. They are fighting a tide of adverse criticism that says it will not work. Despite their efforts at the Euro zone summit, US credit rating agencies have downgraded Greece because of the long-term loan swaps are considered a selective default.

The answer? In a phrase, honest conduct for an honest currency. Honest conduct does not come from words alone. Nor does it come from a system where the policeman is a paid up member of a gang. The control must be public and legal, not political.

Amid the multi-billion euro deal at the Euro zone Summit on 21 July 2011, all the leaders appealed their fellow politicians to be honest. They had in mind Greece, which they said posed a unique problem. They were not addressing the public, that is the voters. The voters are hardly relevant at this stage when elections are not in sight. They were addressing the markets. Their audience for this section was headlined Private sector involvement.

In other words, forget the voters. What they are interested in is the private sector and if it is going to loan any more money to a bunch of people who clearly cannot trust each other.

The top Eurozoners said:
'As far as our general approach to private sector involvement in the euro area is concerned, we would like to make it clear that Greece requires an exceptional and unique solution.'
The Statement they issued adds:
'All other countries solemnly reaffirm their inflexible determination to honour fully their own individual sovereign signature and all their commitments to sustainable fiscal conditions and structural reforms. The euro area Heads of State or Government fully support this determination as the credibility of all their sovereign signatures is a decisive element for ensuring financial stability in the euro area as a whole.'
So the leaders are saying: Do not consider what has happened in the past about what we said to the voters. We are now telling you bankers, financiers and capitalists, we will be honest.

Is there any reason why the bankers, speculators and financiers should not believe the government leaders? Aren't they all honourable people?

Well, it only takes a brief look at what the leaders have said in the past to have some doubts. Did they say that their signatures could not be trusted? No. They said the opposite. The reality was somewhat different. They had to continue to repeat this when news leaked out that raised doubts.

Only on 25 March 2011 the European Council had already
'underscored the need to give priority to restoring sound budget and fiscal sustainability. ... Fiscal policies should aim to restore confidence by bringing debt trends back onto a sustainable path and ensuring that deficits are brought back below 3% of GDP in her time frame agreed by the Council.'
On 25 March 2010, the Heads of State and Government of the euro area issued a statement on unheaded paper:
'We reaffirm that all euro area members must conduct sound national policies in line with the agreed rules and should be aware of their shared responsibility for the economic and financial stability in the area.'
The paper is unheaded because the euro zone meetings are not officially part of the legal framework of the EU. Protocol 14 of the Lisbon Treaty allows them to meet 'informally'.

I do not know why the Statement issued on 21 July 2011 was published on paper headed Council of the European Union as it was not a meeting of the Council of Ministers. Hardly honest. Why this subterfuge? Is it illegality-creep because the case needed shoring up? At least they hesitated to call it a European Council to avoid prime-ministerial objections from the British, Poles, Hungarians, Danes, Swedes, Latvians, Lithuanians, Romanians, Bulgarians and Czechs who were absent. Did the absentee States protest that the Euro zone Statement was a false-flag communication of the Council of Ministers?

It is a pity that, when the Heads of State and Government of the euro zone 'reaffirm their inflexible determination to honour fully their own individual sovereign signature', they do so in a fraudulent document. Worse, they say that 'the credibility of all their sovereign signatures is a decisive element for ensuring financial stability in the euro area as a whole.'

On 17 June 2010 the European Council said in its conclusions:
'The crisis has revealed clear weaknesses in our economic governance, in particular as regards budgetary and broader macroeconomic surveillance. Reinforcing economic policy coordination therefore constitutes a crucial and urgent priority.'
The government leaders were therefore obliged to present their accounts for inspection in the so-called 'European Semester'. This involved preventive and corrective aspects of the Stability and Growth Pact, a pledge central to the euro. It is a legal requirement in treaties since Maastricht.

Yes, yes, but who checks up on all the politicians and their sums? The European Commission -- but it is now composed entirely of politicians, not independent, competent personalities as the treaties require. The selection of the Commissioners is made by the governments who they are supposed to check. Hardly a guarantee of independence. The goverment ministers insist that all candidates should be party members! The Commissioners also insist on retaining party membership and attending party meetings. The outlaws are now the sheriffs!

Nearly all the States had distorted, corrupted or just ignored the Stability and Growth Pact. Among the first guilty Member States to do this were France and Germany. The French and German ministers immediately said that they should be let off the hook. The honest Dutch and others protested -- in vain. The Dutch said they were now paying for the Franco-German deficits. Other States got caught out later when the level of their statistical fiddling became apparent.

The Council added that new measures were necessary,
'ensuring the quality of statistical data, essential for a sound budgetary policy and budgetary surveillance; statistical offices should be fully independent for data provision.'
The 23/24 June 2011 the Heads of government and State in a full European Council noted:
'the clear determination of all Member States to do everything that is required to fully implement the Stability and Growth Pact.'
Why do government leaders need to keep repeating the same old thing? Firstly because they have been found out not adhering to the solemn pledge they had all made. Secondly even after they had repeated this pledge for growth and stability, some of the politicians still wanted to overspend their budgets -- especially just before elections. And the others said nothing.

Is that an honest mistake or it because they wanted to be free for political or social bribery for votes?

It can be statistically shown that this was electoral bribery and not honest statistical mistakes. How? Because the errors in the statistics are all in the same direction. They are all hidden deficits. Deficits increase before elections.

So what should the leaders do about it? How can these addictions to bad habits be resolved? In a Community moral values must be agreed by all. The honesty of politicians' decisions is exposed when times turn rough. When they were considering monetary union in around 1999, the price of oil was around 9 dollars a barrel. That was the free market price. Times and morals were easier. Countries like Italy had a huge surplus. Then energy blackmail recommenced. The twelve-fold rise in oil prices in a dozen years not only strained the economies but exposed corrupt practice and speculative bubbles.

Consider what would happen if your local tennis club, commune or parish had a group of politicians who were accused of corruption. One may have been a worse culprit than the others but they were all in it together. Would the local parishioners or voters agree that the secret meetings should continue? Would they be happy that in the many subsequent secret meetings of the clique of culprits, the group issued the same sort of communiques on offically headed paper saying: 'Don't worry, the entire Tennis Club is insisting on being honest'?

Probably not. What may be happening was that the politicians were dividing up the spoils amongst themselves or inventing new ways to hide the corruption. They might be insisting on meeting in private so that the more corrupt members were putting pressure on the least corrupt members so that they would comply with their wishes. In some States, the politicians are now facing legal cases in the courts.

That is why Schuman and the other more politically honest Founding Fathers insisted that the Council should be open. Schuman wrote that
'New Europe needs to have a democratic foundation. Its Councils, Committees and other organs should be placed under the control of public opinion, a control that should be efficient while not paralysing action nor useful initiatives.'
It is hard to argue that the current behaviour of politicians passes the democratic criterion.

The solution for the euro is ultimately:
The definition of the European currency should be based on a full meaning of what is the common European good, not as happened what seemed good to a handful of politicians. The Stability and Growth Pact -- which was not observed by Member States with few exceptions such as Luxembourg -- is a poor approximation of what should be done.

Openness is not impossible in monetary matters. It is only impossible when for years politicians have been making cushy deals between themselves. On Greece it covers a lax period of thirty years. The questions arose when a cushy deal was made by politicians that it should leap forward from the least qualified candidate to join the EU -- according to the then Commission President Roy Jenkins -- to be the first. The questions remained unanswered when lots of EU money went missing. They were reinforced when in spite of huge and constant increase in its deficits and its past history, the politicians agreed to let Greece join the euro. It got even deeper into murk when statistical fiddling in many of the new euro States was exposed.

Who is in charge of monetary policy the central banks or the politicians? If it is the central banks that are by treaty law independent, why do politicians still have secret meetings on the monetary fundamentals? Are the central banks so secretive? Good banking practice is to publish the minutes of the monetary committee a few days after the decisions are reached. That way openness and protection of the currency from speculation is guaranteed. The Bank of England and the Riksbank of Sweden, which are not part of the euro, do this.

So why does the European Council refuse to have open sessions on what should not be their business? Why does it refuse to publish anything that resembles minutes, even though it is obliged to by treaty law? Is it something to do with their concept of honesty and honest practice?

The question of honesty has now been raised in the context of a global financial calamity. It is for the Member States to show they are serious. It they are, they will implement the treaties that call for independent institutions, not continue to fill them with compliant politicians.

14 July, 2011

Euro3: How to pay the huge bill for Euro Frauds and 'political' fixes

Many of the EU States are now in deep debt and looking for a bail-out. Too often this is due simply to government overspending for ideological or "political" reasons. Too often these debt problems are accompanied by fraudulent national statistics or fiddling the books. Some of the secrets have not yet seen the light of day and public discussion. Yet the European Community system is vibrant and resilient. It can correct abuse.

Europe needs honest government and a solid economy. But it will take time to bring it in. In the meanwhile it will cost hundreds of billions of euros to shore up failing systems. Europe needs a breathing space to overcome this mismanagement and get a democratic and fully open system into place.

The road is clear. Any viable monetary system for Europe needs to have full participation of organized civil society in the institution designed for it. It needs the trust and confidence of ordinary people. That can only come from their active involvement -- especially when and where the politicians fail.

Non-political civil society has been cut out by 'egotistical and selfish' politicians. Before Europe can get on its monetary feet, politicians will have to learn humility and provide for the election of this major Community institution for organized civil society.

In the meanwhile how can Europe pay the bills? Two basic imperatives are required. One is to stop the secret deals  of politicians deciding matters behind closed doors, thus thumbing their noses at civil society. The other imperative is to mobilize civil society to new goals that will make Europe a continent fit, prosperous and comfortable for our children and grandchildren.

Here are some examples. You can make a list of similar ones for yourself.

The European Union budget amounts to some 130 or 140 Billion euros. It is still discussed in secret by a cabal of politicians -- who think they know best about (1) How to raise the money (2) How to spend it.

Are they efficient in their secret deals? A recent report reveals that perhaps an amount equal to between half to three-quarters of this annual amount is lost to the European economy -- by politician-induced FRAUD. According to a recent report by MEP Bart Staes the fraud due to Value Added Tax (VAT) 'carousel fraud' amounts to 80 to 100 Billion euros EACH YEAR. Mr Staes says that the fraud is entirely avoidable. It is merely the lack of political will that has failed to introduce the counter-fraud measures. This is not all. Fiscal fraud altogether may amount to twice the entire EU budget around 250 Billion euros.

Ask yourself: 'If the people were in charge, rather than politicians meeting in a secret Council, would the taxpayer allow fraudsters to get away with stealing what amounts to the most of or even the double the entire EU budget? Would they say "Yes  OK, you can take 100 Billion euros from my pocket and give it to fraudsters who are laughing in my face on the beach.'?'

No, they would certainly be active to stop the matter as soon as possible. There is one thing worse than paying tax and that is that someone else is not only refusing to do so but is in effect taking your tax money and living high on the hog at your expense. That is worse than government waste. It is encouraging criminal activity -- except that the people involved in the carousel operations are not yet in gaol. They aren't convicted criminal criminals -- yet.

Politicians too often are not willing to take hard decisions for ideological reasons or for lack of guts. If they made a mistake in the system they should correct it. If they have introduced a system that works only partly then they should repair it. An active Chamber for organized civil society, the Consultative Committees, would make sure this was done rapidly. All members would be tax-payers and represent all Europe's taxpayers.

Carousel VAT works by the same fraud well known to politicians -- spin. This time it is geographical spin. It uses the benefits of the Single Market to extract VAT refunds from governments while the fraudster spins his base of operations from one country to the next. The fraudsters 'sell' easily items like microchips, hi-fi, perfumes, mobile phones and carousel from one State to another while the tax officials run around wildly trying to catch them by their fleeing coat-tails.

Mr Staes says:
'The removal of internal administrative borders and the failure to  introduce an effective system of fiscal control within the EU has  created massive opportunities for fraud. The absence of any EU-level  co-ordination of VAT rates and the deficient systematic co-operation and  information exchange are two major issues that have facilitated this  fraud. They make it more difficult for authorities to effectively tackle  cases.'

Mr Staes says politicians' irresponsibility extends to other aspects of taxation.
'Another major shortcoming is the absurd absence of any  formal or official definition of this particular form of fraud within  the EU. A clear and uniform European definition of VAT carousels is  absolutely necessary and a crucial step towards addressing the problem  and allowing for better enforcement. A comparative European {study}, including  the authorities of 25 member states, shows that there are almost no  coinciding formulations of the coordinated directive on VAT.

Eurofisc - a  new initiative, providing for voluntary fiscal co-operation between  member states - has so far failed to emerge as a meaningful platform for  co-operation. Despite an annual reporting requirement, the  deliberations of Eurofisc remain secret. Transparency on Eurofisc is a  necessary step to improving its effectiveness.'

A supranational Consultative Committee is a Treaty-based organ. It was designed to be a powerful network of democratic associations with regular statutes recognized at the European level, all paying tax honestly, represented in the chamber for organized civil society. It would make sure such nonsense never happened.

That is why the politicians in the Council arrested its growth and wanted to kill it off or freeze the three Consultative Committees in the treaties. The Council acted illegally ever since the first Consultative Committee in the 1952 Treaty of Paris and was so condemned by Schuman and Paul Reuter. The Council then decided that the members of the European Economic and Social Committee should be not be properly elected. They would chose who would be members of this 'independent' institution. The membership is decided by the political elites in their party cartel, in the secrecy of the Council of Ministers. Civil society needs to have a chamber with democratic legitimacy.

The long reform of the Parliamentary Assembly into the European Parliament -- still far from complete -- shows the path for the Economic and Social Committee. It took nearly thirty years before MEPs were able to be directly elected. All that is lacking is civil courage -- to stand up against what is wrong and what is fraudulent in the political cabal that believes in secret 'economic governance'. Time will tell.

Now reflect on an example of what could be done positively with a revived supranational democratic system comprising the five active institutions in the energy sector. This is far more democratic and powerfully productive than the present political internationalism that passes for governance in the EU.

First consider how much money is lost on foreign energy supply. Last year the rise in gas and oil prices -- not the actual cost but just the rise in price -- cost the EU as much as HALF the EU budget. The total cost amounts to more than twice the cost of the EU budget. The Founding Fathers warned that reliance on external energy sources was bad for Europe. It was bad for the economy and also bad because with Middle East oil in a cartel like OPEC Europe would lose its ability to have an independent foreign policy. They warned Europe to get off oil addiction. De Gaulle and other self-willed politicians did not listen. Europe has already lost trillions of euros.

This warning has proved to be accurate. Oil and gas prices are set to rise and rise. The time to start doing something sensible and intelligent is NOW. Oil is not only vital for the engines of cars and freight vehicles, it is also necessary for building the roads themselves. The price of tarmac is now sky rocketing too.

Why use tarmac or bitumen on the road? Habit, bad habit. Europe and North America have been doing it for more than a century. But in the last four years the price of a ton of bitumen rose from $175 to over $1000. Tarmac (tarring McAdam roads) may have seen a good idea in 1901, but is it a good idea today? Hardly. It was then a means to improve roads for horse drawn carriages to smooth and waterproof them for cars. Until then the speed of travel on roads differed little from the time of the Romans -- or for that matter the ancient Persians.  Bitumen was sold off as a waste product from the people who gave you the oil cartel. They also set up an infrastructure of petrol pumps and roads that made it difficult for Europeans, who have little oil, to kick the addiction.

It is time to move on. What is the solution? One innovative scheme getting US funding is solar roadways. The idea is to use a whole range of new industrial developments and intelligent innovations to create solar panels made of reinforced glass. Glass? Well, if glass can withstand bullets and bombs it is no problem to withstand the weight of a large lorry or multi-wheeler truck. Made from sand, glass has been developing technological refinements since 3500 BCE in Babylonia.

Modern glass can also have safety features unheard of and even undreamed of last century. Glass embedded with high tech microchips can not only supply electricity to the electric vehicles as they travel and powerfeed into to nearby homes, it can turn the highways into an intelligent system with warning lights, ice and snow melting system and human safety features. A parking area could power an entire office building.

If the USA had these panels in place today it could generate THREE times its entire electricity supply needs with enough for most of the rest of the world.

Europe needs to mobilize this present generation to create new ideas that will make Europe a place fit for the next generation. A system of solar roadways could pay for itself in 20 years. The pay off would come that much sooner if Europe really set itself the goal of energy independence by 2020 through an Energy Community based on democratic supranational principles.

Let us assume that this is a proven, technically feasible idea that would save the EU trillions of euros, create new industries, provide a European IT nervous system, an intelligent backbone across the Continent and help share intelligent grids systems and cut costs of power, how shold the EU proceed?

Do you think that the politicians would understand the technicalities of changing a centuries old infrastructure into one fit for the future? Would they have the courage to introduce it? Not much hope. Many of the career politicians with backgrounds in politics and the law would be afraid of derisive laughter from the media and maybe from their electors about a fragile glass road.

But if you asked a chamber composed of highly technical associations of industries, workers and consumers they could tell you how to change from a petroleum based economy to one based on creating an intelligent electrical infrastructure. They would all gain, in products, services and work so they would be highly motivated to succeed. They could call on the greatest expertise in computer networks, highways,  in glass, electricity, safety, vehicle production and a whole range of other leading edge areas that need to be coordinated to make it a success. Europe's confidence in its future must similarly depend on the solidarity of expert experience and trust of all our citizens.

A Consultative Committee would force competing lobbies to work together. Why? because they would have to vote in a tripartite consultation of industries, consumers and workers, on all the important legal measures. It acts like a comprehensive, continent-wide think tank, a network of expertise. This would ensure that instead of wasting an ever-increasing amount of resources on petroleum, the Energy Community projects would use the money on creating employment and expertise for Europe that it could then help the rest of the world with in the inevitable transition to the sustainable, non-polluting, non-oil economy.

Europe has the brains, the industries the workers. What it lacks is the will to get its supranational act together. Schuman designed it as the most moral solution. A humble Statesman brought in a solution based on humility and pragmatic wisdom. After two thousands years of continuous war, European nations implemented the first stage of a system that made war 'not only unthinkable but materially impossible'.

Today politicians want to forget that lesson. When will they come to their senses? That time might come, unfortunately, when the politicians have been shown the futility of all the other cul-de-sac policies that they are presently trying.

A supranational Europe with a fully functioning system of Consultative Committees would also have a major purifying effect on monetary fraud. Their specialized committees would make sure that the politicians did not get their fingers into the national and European  piggy banks. They would be subject to the proper supervision and control.

Thus Europe could enter on the next exciting stage of democratic solidarity that Schuman predicted.

05 July, 2011

Budget9: Is the EU Budget Illegal? You and any tribunal can ask the European Court!

Can a Parliament and any other allegedly 'democratic institution' ban the public and journalists from their meetings? Do they have the legal right? Once they have shut the doors, can they then make a deal to IMPOSE a budget on taxpayers who are not present? Is its secretive procedure LEGAL? If it is not, is the budget illegal, void and invalid?

In October to December 2010, the  Council, Parliament and Commission held a series of meetings on the 2011 Budget. The public and journalists were banned from setting foot in any of the meetings. A guard was put on the door. Only people on a special list were allowed to enter. On the agenda was the means to collect and spend around about 130 Billion euros defined in their 2011 budget. At the meetings were the Belgian Prime Minister and others representing the Council. The meetings included the President of the European Parliament and a score of his MEP colleagues and the European Commissioner Janusz Lewandowski, responsible for the Budget.

What did they get up to? We know that the Commissioner accused the politicians of behaving like a 'kindergarten'.  It was not an edifying spectacle. Each side claimed the budget was their toy.  Commissioner Janusz Lewandowski characterised the whole affair as ‘self-centered and egoistical'.

Whose toys, or rather, whose money were they arguing over? It was the group that was refused entry to all the meetings -- the public.  The politicians did not only refuse to include them, they banned them outright. The political 'leaders' did not deign to have any REAL representative of the people from whom these 'democratic' leaders were about to extract their Billions! No member of the press was officially allowed to observe and report the politicians' infantile behaviour.  No outsider was invited who would criticize this dangerous clique's discrimination and predatory action against the citizen.

I call these political juveniles 'dangerous' because they follow the pattern of President de Gaulle and others who refused to have open Council meetings that Robert Schuman said was essential. In the secrecy of the Council of Ministers, they created a vast pattern of corruption for votes with their Wine Lakes, Meat Mountains, faudulent, regional infrastructure projects that never happened.

The next generation of politicians did not open the doors either. They paid huge amounts of European taxpayers' money to party comrades in Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain, winking at the money that disappeared into boltholds and their subsequent fraudulent statistics. Those monetary falsehoods are now being exposed as Europe falters on the edge of a euro collapse.

The politicians today are committing similar immoral acts against European citizens in their secret sessions. Their arrogant offences would not pass in most of their home parliaments where a national press has free comment. Don't they think that secret budget discussions in Brussels must be wrong? Or do they just think: 'If we can get away with it here, why not?' They now want economic governance, another term for cartel dictatorship of their parties, by their parties for their party cartel.

Then in June 2011, not content with this trivial amount of hundreds of billions of euros, the European Commission proposed that a TRILLION euros should be levied from the European public, industries and workers. It is to be a combined seven-year plan. The public need not worry their silly, little heads over watching this unsavoury performance every year. It would be done in one quick stroke!

The Commission said it would speak about it to the people's representatives, the European Parliament. And so, the European Parliament quickly closed the doors on the people and the press! What happened behind closed doors? How did the party leaders react to this further money grab from European citizens? Did they rub their hands with delight? Did they yell 'Sock it to the public! We will bleed them dry!' We do not know the facts because the press was thrown out!

Why? Why did these very privileged people -- all of them obviously considered themselves very privileged  -- feel it necessary to impose secrecy? Why did they ban the public? Why did they ban the press?

What is common with all these people?  What unites those who have the only say-so in the European budget? They are all card-carrying members of political parties. Isn't that normal? NO it is not. They will tell you it is. Don't believe them. The European Community had a much more balanced democractic system where non-political civil socity plays an important part.

These 'closed-door politicians' represent ... what and whom exactly? Those in Nazi Germany were told the true German party members were those who decided matters for them. In fact they were kleptocrats and gangsters, stealing from the people. Those in Communist-controlled East Germany, Czechoslavakia, Poland and Hungary were told: 'The Worker's party is in charge!' Those in Mao's Communist China said the Party must control not only the Budget but every aspect of life.

Some systems banned non-Aryans, others businessmen, or capitalist running dogs from entering their 'parliaments' when deliberating the budget. All these diverse systems had one thing in common. They did not like a free press.

Are Europeans free? Those in control in the EU all have party cards. They are a tiny minority. All party card-holders amount to about one in fifty of the entire population.  And the parties are increasingly unpopular. In the European elections more people who can vote refuse to vote for any of them. The majority in the EU is not the parties but an entity called 'None of the above' that should appear on the ballot.

At one stage in history party affiliation had some importance. Now they nearly all act together in a continuous coalition or a cartel of parties. It makes no difference who the electors vote for, they get the same result -- more expenditure and luxurious padding for the parties. When corruption is exposed, confidence in the parties plummets again. Public support has been declining for decades.

Yet this small but powerful cartel plans to extract more and more money from the other 98 percent of the population. They are all generally in favour of having more projects and subsidies which they feel will buy them support. These bribes are just tax money being returned diminished under new conditions set by the political parties. For themselves they want nothing but higher salaries, more assistants, help for friends in the same party wherever they are, expansion of agencies and dubious employment initiatives such as the 'External Action Service', overseas aid which corrupts and anything else that supports the ideologies of the parties.

Now consider if the European leaders were all identified with another small group. What if the Commission, Parliament and Council were composed entirely of  Freemasons? What if they were all Catholics or Jews or Shi'ite Muslims or Europeans of Chinese origin? What if they were all paid up members of the FBSS, the Fraudulent Bankers' Speculation Society? What would be the public's reaction if the controlling class in the European institutions all believed in Ju-Ju?

It is obvious that the secret and secretive control of the budget by any one tiny group raises questions of motive and propriety. When they close the doors the public would immediately presume that they are making some underhand contributions of tax money to the furtherance of Ju-Ju. No moral person would allow himself to get into  such an dubious situation and be enthusiastic to keep the ban on outsiders and the press. A well run parish or tennis club would ensure their meetings would always be open. Are the EU's leaders moral? They have no qualms about secret sessions on the budget. They insist on them.

The party cartel who seized control of the institutions have included those bodies which the treaties say should not be political. What should the citizen do if the public remain banned from budget meetings because they do not have a Ju-Ju membership card?

Should the citizens ask for a Ju-Ju card? Or would they ask: Is it legal? Is the Budget legal? Is the discrimination against the citizen legal? What can we do about it?

We can go to Court! But how?

The Founding Fathers, you will be happy to know, put adequate safeguards in the Treaties. If any institution feels that another is not acting democratically according to the treaty, there is a recourse. That institution can take the other to the European Court of Justice.

But what if all the main institutions are in cahoots? What if all the leaders of the main institutions are all members of Ju-Ju and they ban anyone who isn't?

Don't despair! The founding Fathers provided a powerful solution. They said that any citizen who feels that he or she is being discriminated against can go to the European Court. And it won't cost a cent more. If the European institutions bring in legislation -- such as the Budget -- and the citizen feels it is unjust or discriminatory, then he can go to any local court or tribunal in the land and have redress.

If it is a matter of paying taxes and the citizen refuses to pay European taxes, then the citizen can explain to the judge that the European tax is unjust because it was decided in secret without democratic control. As part of the case the judge is then allowed and encouraged to ask for an opinion of the European Court of Justice, to see whether it is so and whether it is legal. The citizen should cite article 267 of the Lisbon Treaty which reproduces the article from earlier treaties.

A few hundred million citizens can do this. So can all companies, trade unions and consumer groups of civil society.

Article 267 states:
The Court of Justice of the European Union shall have jurisdiction to give preliminary rulings concerning:
(a) the interpretation of the Treaties;
(b) the validity and interpretation of acts of the institutions, bodies, offices or agencies of the Union;
Where such a question is raised before any court or tribunal of a Member State, that court or tribunal may, if it considers that a decision on the question is necessary to enable it to give judgement, request the Court to give a ruling thereon.

The service of the European Court is open. If not today, then maybe tomorrow an individual or an association will bring a case complaining that raising taxes without the knowledge of citizens and in secret meetings is illegal.

The judges would be sure to check Article 15 of the Lisbon Treaty. It was added by civil society group specifically because of M. de Gaulle's bad habits. It states:

In order to promote good governance and ensure the participation of civil society, the Union institutions, bodies, offices and agencies shall conduct their work as openly as possible.

The next paragraph is especially relevant:
The European Parliament shall meet in public, as shall the Council when considering and voting on a draft legislative act.

There are few legislative acts as important as the Budget.

If the Court agreed that
  • consultation with citizens is pre-requisite for any legislation to pass,
  • a minority cannot oppress the majority,
  • all legislation must be conducted in the open from the first consideration to the final vote,
  • the press must be allowed access to report any political chicanery,

then the law in question could be annulled on any one of these grounds. The whole of the EU budget and all its programmes would be thrown into confusion until it could be sorted out.

That recourse to justice can happen at any time, by any citizen or association. For the cartel it is like a time bomb that will one day explode against them.

It would be far better for the Parliament and the Council to begin to act like democratic institutions TODAY.