All power to Brussels
Under the Lisbon Treaty, the EU gains new powers over justice and home affairs, with European judges being granted the final say over the whole area. It is also the fastest growing item in the EU budget. The European Commission gets more powers to draw up new laws, the European Parliament has the power to amend them, and the European Court of Justice (ECJ) is responsible for enforcing them.
The government’s proposed European Union Bill ignores a huge range of areas where the EU can pass new laws. The bill does nothing to stop the day-to-day transfer of powers over crime, policing and immigration from Britain to the EU.
The current bill does not require a referendum on the extension of Eurojust’s powers, to include the power to investigate crimes here, something that before he became Prime Minister Cameron said he opposed. Nor does the bill require a referendum to abolish our veto over family law proposals.
French attack on industrial ‘genocide’
A columnist in the French newspaper Le Figaro wrote, “The Greek domino fell last spring. The Irish domino has been wobbling over the last days. The Spanish domino will follow suit, along with the Portuguese domino. This is all very sad for those experts who conceived the eurozone and put it into practice – by pursuing an often absurd monetary policy which led to the ‘genocide’ of our industry.”
Stop the pressure, says Africa
African states want to end ten years of trade talks with the EU, because of what they call the European Commission’s “pressure tactics” to liberalise their economies. In its free trade talks with India, the EU is pushing for intellectual property rights that would threaten the flow of cheap, life-saving medicines.
A recent Gallup poll found that most Croatians oppose their country joining the EU, due to fears for their fisheries and tourism industry. Yet Croatia is still widely expected to join the EU in 2012.