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Line dancers against market liberalisation


Or so one might think upon seeing this logo. It is actually the logo of the European Trade Union Confederation, and presumably noting the fabulous success of the Number 10 petitions site are calling on Europe's syndicalists to sign the following petition:

"Public services are essential for social, economic and regional cohesion in Europe. Such services must be of high quality and accessible to everyone. Until now, the only options put forward for developing public services have been privatisation or liberalisation (namely in sectors such as Energy, the Post and Telecommunications). It is time to find different solutions! For this reason, we are calling on the Commission to propose European legislation on public services designed to:
  • give priority to the general interest embodied in public services;
  • ensure that everyone has access to public services;
  • strengthen public services in order to guarantee citizens' fundamental rights;
  • guarantee more legal security so as to allow the development of sustainable public service missions;
  • give public services a firm legal basis and thus immunity from ideologically motivated free market attacks."
I just love the idea that free marketeers have an ideology, whereas presumably syndicalists do not. Presumably a demand jobs for life and annual above inflation pay rises was excised after the first draft. How, indeed, is the general interest to be differentiated from that of employees in the public sector? ETUC certainly is not giving any details....

Being older than dirt, I remember pre-privatisation telecom in this country, and I do not want to go back to a party line, a choice of maybe five different models of phone, relatively much higher prices and a wait of months to have a line installed.

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Anonymous nick drew said... 1:01 pm

"give public services a firm legal basis and thus immunity..."

what a chilling phrase, these people are 100% unreconstructed luddites

In 1988 (when dinosaurs roamed the earth, yeah yeah) I needed a high density 'phone line installed at home to be able to have my PC dial up my office, quite hi-tech for those days.

As well as being made to wait several months (which was utterly crazy in commercial terms since the line rental was astronomic), a most amusing little drama played out in the street when they finally installed it:

a Man with a Red Flag stood in the middle of the road, halting all traffic for the duration of the operation (overhead cable in play)

It was at once both incongruous and yet strangely appropriate.  



Blogger Ed Clarke said... 1:09 pm

Left-wingers used to hate "Europe" because it was too free-market. Wonder why a lot of right-wingers hate "Europe" these days?!?!  



Blogger Arthurian Legend said... 1:10 pm

And guess which provisions of the EU Treaty would provide cover for this legislation to be introduced...

Yep, Arts. 136-145, i.e. the Social Chapter

So, that's a done deal then...  



Blogger Newmania said... 1:16 pm

Oh that AL ...I don`t know is he dangerously obsessive about Europe.After all isn`t a bit nebulosuly scary to be ..."OUT"...in the cold like a litle lost waif.....alone ..alone I tell you.  



Blogger Newmania said... 1:16 pm

Oh that AL ...I don`t know is he dangerously obsessive about Europe.After all isn`t a bit nebulosuly scary to be ..."OUT"...in the cold like a litle lost waif.....alone ..alone I tell you.  



Blogger Croydonian said... 1:19 pm

I think labour/Labour changed its tune after that speech Delors made over here, and they worked out that there was scope for socialism via the back door.  



Blogger Arthurian Legend said... 1:54 pm

Spot on, C.

N - Switzerland, Norway and Iceland are all "out in the cold" (literally as well as metaphorically at times...)and yet they all feature in the UN's Top 10 Development index...Switzerland and Norway and Nos. 1 and 2 respectively!

Oh, and the US, Japan, Australia and every other non-EU member is also "out in the cold" as well...I think there's enough body warmth there to keep us from freezing.  



Blogger Newmania said... 2:56 pm

Just throwing you an easy one AL. It has occurred to me that one of the ways the whole project has been sold is to reverse in so you are always in the position of appearing to do something radical simply to behave like any other country.

C :Labour changed its tune symmetrically with normal small c Conservatives having increasing doubts . people forget he extent to which the "Common Market" as it was then called was a Conservative business lead idea. It was after all supposed to be just a "market"  



Anonymous david Allen said... 5:42 pm

Yes N. From 'common market' to 'European Economic Community' to 'European Community' to 'European Union' _ what next?  



Anonymous hg said... 6:10 pm

What is next is displayed in the "Public services are essential for social, economic and regional cohesion .." preamble.

Public services may well have social and economic cohesion goals, infrastructures do.

But 'regional'?

The Europe of the regions is aimed at dismantling settled contstitutional democratic systems, specifically within the nation state but as well in its supranational, both European and global, links and exchanges.

We will vote in our regions on local issues and leave all that other stuff to professionally qualified, appointed bodies.

Or should this thought be expressed in green ink?  



Blogger CityUnslicker said... 12:11 pm

it is not a subtle logo though is it? Red brothers and sisters in a line with there hands held in an aggrsseive way.

PROTEST!

perhaps a worst logo post is in order C....  



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