Archive for May, 2005

O Freunde, nicht dieser Töne!

29 May 2005

Sondern lasst uns angenehmere
anstimmen, und freudenvollere!

France votes no to the EU Constitution: 55% no – 45% yes. Turnout is high.

So, back to the drawing board? Not sure here… Naturally, if you value the democratic principle that everyone must have the opportunity to pronounce himself on the issue, and if you want to know if France (and perhaps the Netherlands and the UK) are alone in Europe in their rejection of the Constitution, the ratification process should continue. That is also what, in the run-up to the referendum, Jean-Claude Juncker said he thought should happen. Several European politicians have repeated that tonight.

On the other hand, the French result may influence the votes in other countries so much that the outcomes might not be too indicative of people’s opinions anyway. And a, no doubt, symbolic rearrangement of the Constitution’s contents would of course offer the opportunity to relaunch the ratification process and get it right this time (i.e. voting on the same day or at least in the same week, or even better: an EU-wide referendum after parliamentary ratification in those countries where a national referendum can be avoided). (more…)

Yes to the EU, yes to the Constitution

25 May 2005

Versac, from the French blog Publius, sent me a list of questions concerning my views on the EU and the EU Constitution. The idea is to interview a number of non-French bloggers in this way and publish the result on Publius, as part of the discussion in France – which is, by the way, (compared to the Netherlands for instance) of excellent quality. Below are my replies in English. The translation in French (or excerpts thereof, as I could not keep myself, once again, from being exceedingly lengthy…) will appear on Publius in the days to come.

who are you ? How would you characterize your attitude concerning the European Union and the process of European integration : Euroenthusiast, Eurosceptic, Europhobe? Why?

I have worked in one of the EU institutions in Brussels for several years and now work as a civil servant in the Netherlands, still on EU affairs. As for my attitude toward the EU and European integration, I would first of all call myself a democrat – that is the main reason why I am in favour of further integration. (more…)