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Consulting the populace, EU style

"What future do citizens want for Europe? In each of the 27 Member States, this question is currently being answered by citizens. Between February and March 2007, 27 European citizens consultations are being held. The answers to this question will be summarised by European citizens into a joint “European Citizens’ Perspective on the Future of Europe”. This will then be presented to the heads of the EU institutions in the European Parliament shortly before the EU Council summit in June". Source.

Naturally I had to investigate what is being done in thses parts, and lo and inded behold, consultation will indeed take place in the UK. Not an enormously extensive one though - one 200 place meeting at the University of York.

Details are a little limited, but it will feature our old friend 'Baroness' Helena Kennedy, a Lib Dem MEP and the basically decent if self-confessed europhile John Bowis.

I would trust that Yorkshire eurosceptics will do their level best to get tickets, although the EU claims "randomly selected citizens will discuss the...selected topics".

Further, be advised of the London Festival of Europe, whereat "For two weeks in March 2007 the centre of London will be host to philosophers, political theorists, artists and curators who will engage a public audience in discussion of the multiplicity of European questions". To the hills, to the hills....


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Anonymous verity said... 3:52 pm

Helena Kennedy's a baronness.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 3:54 pm

Or rather was made one. Correction forthcoming.  

Anonymous swift said... 4:06 pm

At least the Brits are allowed 200 places. The French get 50 and the Italians 30. I imagine the EU will only listen to what people have to say if they say the right thing. After all, dissent is unhelpful and should be ignored.  

Blogger Raedwald said... 4:49 pm

Ah yes. A consultation about on a par with Hayden Phillips' consultation on state funding for parties, then.

The real problem with this is that it shouldn't be happening at all. The EU should have no remit to consult directly with the citizens of a state over the heads of the state's government. This is what the whole Europe of the Regions debacle is about - bypassing national governments and sovereignty. I'm surprised we've approved so many - if the Italians beat them down to 30 (thus robbing the exercise of any vestige of credibility whatsoever) this labour shambles clearly missed a trick in not limiting attendance in the UK to 15.  

Anonymous this guy said... 5:14 pm

No doubt the audience will be selected as fairly as Question Time, where the only right-wingers appear to be on the panel. This is surely unfair. If 75% of Brits do indeed loudly support Morning Star, Old Labour & Soc. "Worker" analyses, why aren't there more such on the panel?  

Blogger CityUnslicker said... 10:33 pm

an invitation for some of them to 18DS should be in order C. A well reasoned debate and knife fight should make for good viewing.  

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