It became a habit for the governments whose commitments are cancelled by European referendums to expect that people would be pro-European and that the refusal regarded only the texts submitted for ratification.
It became a habit for the governments whose commitments are
cancelled by European referendums to expect that people would be pro-European
and that the refusal regarded only the texts submitted for ratification. This
is also how the unconvincing explanation of the Prime Minister of Ireland on
the rejection of the Treaty of Lisbon sounded like. The first part of this
claim is just a rhetoric formula, without content and legitimacy. The second
part is absurd, as long as the authors of the rejection have not read the
document – they couldn’t, taking into account the size and its technical character
- and they presented their position based on arguments unrelated to it or made confusions
between the EU institutional construction and the European policies which are
the result of popular votes in elections in which the displeased persons have
not taken part.
If we cannot see the euro-support in the Irish "No" we can accept that it doesn’t express Euro-skepticism but Euro-confusion. Removing it makes it necessary to identify both the Euro-hostile people and fight against them, as well as the clarification and the legitimization of the European message.
Who are those who oppose to the political Europe? Firstly, there are the nationalists. For them, security is achieved only behind political barricades and cultural foundations based on ethno-centrism, cultural segregation and exclusion. Since the cultures gather us inside, but divide us on the outside, it would be required for the laws to ensure the neutralization of lower cultures with the superior ones. We find here again the classic speech of the extreme right, sometimes dissimulated in democratic-pacifist concepts.
Second, we are dealing with the sovereigns. They believe that democracy can exist only in national framework, where it was created. Security derives exclusively from the democratic international relations of the states with a strengthened internal democracy, and the democratic freedom is based on the principle of sovereign equality the states. Accordingly, any attempt to build a transnational European democracy replacing the intergovernmental method of harmonization of national interests and cooperation with the method of the communitarian management of resources and strategic interests, would lead to limitation of sovereignty, the undermining of the equality between states and weakening the real democracy. A European democracy would be delusional in terms of lack of a European nation, cultural diversity and educational inequality characterizing the great group of citizens. The sovereigns refuse to observe that the nation-state project exhausted its security potential and that, in search of security losses, the "invention" of the cosmopolite nation is a base for a political organization able to cope with the defiance against globalization.
Third, the opposition to European integration comes from regionalists. They admit that the national step of the history has reached its limits, but they see progress through dissolution, but not by integration. The globalization should be fought against with "glocalization", respectively by transferring the political power to the relatively small and civically coherent local communities. The truth is, however, that the management of global threats and opportunities cannot be done with local means, even if one certainly needs that the exercised power at European level should be counterbalanced with the devolution of the national power at regional level. That does not mean the regionalization of Europe, but the Europeanization of the regions.
Fourth, anti-Europeanism appears among the people that are against globalization. For them, the European integration is a particular form of globalization, and globalization means dispossessing people of power and leaving them without protection, replaced by occult super states, by border oligarchies. Actually, the political Europe is an attempt to socialize this oligarchy and make its movements transparent, to civilize the actions of the global capital, to confer individual and social, national and international security, and making globalization work for the benefit of all.
The mobilization of people in combating such trends, ultimately opposed to their existential interests, cannot be made with the help of treaties. It needs a simple political manifesto, which should fix the fundamental principles of the EU and should be approved by an EU referendum, not by national referendums. Thus, the national political elites will receive constitutional powers to engage. It will restore the confidence connection between the elites and the people while creating the path to an EU that is truly a union of states and a union of citizens.