Regarding the EU, Witterings from Witney had this some time back [dated August 1, 2013 for some reason]:
“David Cameron’s statements regarding Norway & Switzerland are factually incorrect. A huge amount of technical legislation is formulated at global or regional level, in bodies such as UNECE (on which Norway is represented) and then handed down to the EU institutions as “diqules” which cannot, in substance, be changed. Thus Norway, for example, has a considerable say in the nature of regulation, long before it gets anywhere near the EU.
As members of EFTA both Norway and Switzerland are represented on over 200 EEA committees which assist in the framing of Single Market legislation; also members of EFTA have the ability to refuse to implement any Directive the European Commission produces; something that Norway did do in respect of the 3rd Postal Directive and appears about to do with the latest oil-drilling proposal.
We demand a public apology from David Cameron for misleading the British public:”
The Boiling Frog has written:
Article 48 has ‘implicit’ and ‘explicit’ clauses. All bar one are explicit, i.e. any self-amendment to the Treaty requires the UK Parliament’s permission (along with the other 26 member states):
The amendments shall enter into force after being ratified by all the Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements.
Conversely the ‘notorious’ 48.7 clause is implicit; so basically Parliament always agrees to amendments unless it specifically objects within a certain time period:
Any initiative taken by the European Council on the basis of the first or the second subparagraph shall be notified to the national Parliaments. If a national Parliament makes known its opposition within six months of the date of such notification, the decision referred to in the first or the second subparagraph shall not be adopted. In the absence of opposition, the European Council may adopt the decision.
Therefore as we can see from Article 48 the key point is that Parliament still has a say in any potential amendments to the Lisbon Treaty. That it can choose largely not to is a failing on its part not Brussels; impotence that is inline with every other EU treaty that it has passed.
Thus time is not running out, Brussels isn’t forcing EU rule on us, instead the political establishment on our behalf choose it. Nothing can illustrate this better than the pickle Cameron has got himself into over his much awaited EU speech, as Richard North demonstrates.
There is considerable confusion about whether we are or are not bound. Whilst Witterings and the Boiling Frog are technically correct in that respect, Witterings also writes [dated the 10th of the 16th month]:
Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.
The last time I posted on this subject I was inundated by those who in commenting could not seem to accept two facts: (i) European Union Law prevails over national, even national constitutional, law; and (ii) there still exists a treaty, signed by the government of the day, to which the United Kingdom is bound by its Articles; and in which is clearly stated the procedure by which any signatory, who wishes to remove themselves from the obligations of said treaty, has to follow.
While I entirely support Carswell’s belief that membership of the European Union is not in the best interests of our country, I do feel he is being a tad disengenious to suggest that with the passing of his bill throught the House of Commons we would be rid of the European Union.
At the same time, he writes:
As Richard North has written on his blog, the minute Article 50 is invoked the UK could cease any contribution to the EU and cease to apply all directives and regulations because by the time any retribution could be executed and imposed by the Commission through the offices of the ECJ the two-year period specified by Article 50 would have ended.
Which appears to say the opposite.
So, what does the public make of this? A writer at NO, Wiggia, could formerly have been seen as “Undecided of London” and I hope he doesn’t take issue with that epithet. He wrote:
I’m not going into the details of the pros and cons of membership of the EU it’s something that has been laid out by all and sundry on both sides over a considerable period anybody with an interest has had ample opportunity to study some very good works on the whole subject, but if ever there was a good reason to distance ourselves from Brussels and all it represents it is this as seen on CH4 news last night.
… which does reflect a hardening in the attitude of the public. Which tends to undercut the whole idea of who’s actually responsible. This just says let’s get the hell out.