Citizen's Campaign South East: "Fiscal Compact/Stability" Referendum & ESM Treaty. Explanation, Analysis, Information. Text "JOIN" to 086-239-7192

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By Anthony Coughlan
Director, National Platform EU Research & Information Centre 

Reasons to believe that the ESM Treaty as it stands is illegal under EU law and therefore unconstitutional in Ireland:

The proposal to ratify the European Stability Mechanism Treaty as it stands and to approve the Article 136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties as authorizing the Stability Mechanism envisaged in the ESM Treaty, are unlawful under the EU Treaties and are therefore unconstitutional in Ireland and the other EU Member States.

There are constitutional challenges to the ESM Treaty and the Article 136 TFEU amendment in Germany, in Estonia and in Ireland. In this country independent Dáil Deputy for Donegal Mr. Thomas Pringle has launched a constitutional challenge on these matters which opens in the Irish High Court on 19 June.

Deputy Pringle’s lawyers are seeking a constitutional referendum in Ireland on the ESM Treaty. They are also claiming that the EU Treaties should be amended under a different provision of the Art. 48 TEU treaty revision procedure than that currently used of the ESM Treaty as it stands is to be lawfully ratified under EU law.

Deputy Pringle’s legal action is seeking to defend the principle that the EU is an entity governed by the rule of law in face of a political attempt to change the EU treaties by subterfuge and to open a way to transforming the present EMU into a fiscal-political union for the Eurozone.

While my colleagues and I are not involved in Deputy Pringle’s action, we and many other Irish people share his concerns that the integrity of the existing EU Treaties and the Irish Constitution be upheld in face of the attempt by some Eurozone Governments effectively to take the Eurozone captive for their own ends and to organize the Economic and Monetary Union on quite different principles from heretofore by means of this ESM Treaty. We have respectfully requested several ambassadors therefore, to urge their Governments not to proceed with their country’s ratification of the ESM Treaty or approval of the Article 136 TFEU authorisation, until the Irish Courts have ruled on the issues raised by this constitutional action.

The reasons which lead us to believe that the ESM Treaty as it stands is illegal under EU law and unconstitutional in Ireland are the following:-

1. Article 3 TFEU of the EU Treaties which have been agreed by all 27 EU Member States provides that monetary policy for the countries using the euro is a matter of “exclusive competence” of the EU as a whole.

It is not therefore open to the 17 Member States of the Eurozone to attempt effectively to diminish the competence of the Union and to establish among themselves a Stability Mechanism entailing a €700 billion permanent bailout fund to lend to Eurozone governments as envisaged in the ESM Treaty. This ESM fund, to which Ireland would have to make significant contributions for the indefinite future, would trench profoundly on monetary policy for the euro area.

The Stability Mechanism envisaged in the ESM Treaty is effectively an attempt to find a way round the “no bailouts” provision of Article 125 TFEU, whereby it is forbidden for the EU to take on the debt of Member States or for Member States to take on the debt of other Member States.

It also breaches other EU Treaty articles. The ESM Treaty if ratified as it stands would effectively amount to an attempt to open a legal-political path to what France’s President Nicolas Sarkozy called for last November, namely “A Federation for the Eurozone and a Confederation for the rest of the EU“.

A radical step of this kind, which would transform the Economic and Monetary Union from what it has been up to now, may only lawfully be taken by means of the “ordinary” treaty amendment procedure of Art. 48.2 TEU. It cannot lawfully be done by means of a mere Decision of the European Council of Prime Ministers and Presidents under the “simplified” treaty amendment procedure of Art. 48.6 TEU. The latter procedure is meant to deal with minor technical amendments to the treaties, but is currently being used by the governments of the 17 Eurozone countries in an attempt to alter radically the character of the EMU by ratifying this ESM Treaty as it stands.

2. How can it be lawful for the ESM Treaty to permit a permanent ESM loan fund to be established for the 17 Eurozone countries when the express terms of the Article 136 TFEU amendment, agreed by all 27 EU Governments, authorises a Stability Mechanism only if that is established unanimously by the Eurozone States, as the general provisions of EU law require,

viz:

The Member States whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole” (emphasis added).

The Art. 136 amendment to the EU Treaties does not say that “Member States”, meaning some of them, may establish a Stability Mechanism, but rather The Member States” , namely all of them (In French Les Membres rather than Des Membres).

Yet the ESM Treaty which has been concluded among the 17 provides that the Stability Mechanism it envisages may come into being once States contributing 90% of the capital of the proposed fund have ratified the treaty.

The eight largest Eurozone States, a minority of the 17, can therefore establish this Stability Mechanism, while other Eurozone States that may need assistance from it badly are excluded.

How then can this be a Stability Mechanism “for the euro area as a whole“, as article 136 TFEU, which still has to be constitutionally approved by all 27 EU Member States, requires?

Likewise the so-called Fiscal Treaty – the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the EMU – on which Irish voters have just voted and which cross-refers to the ESM Treaty, provides that it can come into force when it is ratified by 12 Eurozone Members.

Does not this treaty also require unanimous ratification by all 17 Eurozone Members before it can be lawfully binding on them under EU law?

3. How can the ESM Treaty be lawfully ratified by July 2012, as is the stated intention of the 17 Eurozone governments concerned, when the Article 136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties authorising a Stability Mechanism does not have legal effect, once if has been constitutionally approved by all 27 EU Member States, until 1 January 2013?

Does not this mean that any treaty purporting to establish an ESM before 2013 must be legally void? ESM Treaty No. 1 which was signed by Eurozone Finance Ministers in July 2011 but was never sent round for ratification, conformed to the 2013 time-frame set by the Art. 136 TFEU authorisation, whereas ESM Treaty No. 2 which was signed by EU Ambassadors on 2 February 2012 does not.

This shows again how the exigencies of a political response to the financial crisis by some Eurozone States puts them in breach of EU law and therefore of the Irish Constitution.

4. EU Member States may only sign international treaties that are compatible with EU law. The EU Court of Justice has made clear that intergovernmental agreements cannot affect the allocation of responsibilities defined in the EU Treaties.

The provisions of the ESM Treaty and the Fiscal Treaty which involve the EU Commission and Court of Justice in the implementation of the proposed ESM go well beyond what is permissible under the current EU treaties and are therefore unlawful.
Copies of this article are being released to the Irish and international media for their information regarding the concerns which are widely shared in this country that the proposed ESM Treaty is in violation of EU law and in breach of the Irish Constitution.

Anthony Coughlan
Director, National Platform EU Research & Information Centre

Related Link: http://www.nationalplatform.org
Source: indymedia.ie

Source: rebel-alliance.org

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[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CZr17HLH5U]

  • John Corcoran (ICTA) writes in an email: At 8.25 am yesterday morning Paul Krugman and John Corcoran spoke simultaneously on BBC radio and advised the Irish people to vote No in the Fiscal Treaty Referendum.  John spoke on BBC radio ulster and Paul on BBC radio 4.  Both are distinguished former students of the London School of Economics.   Please join with John and Paul and ensure a No vote today.  If you click on the podcast link… you can hear the interview.
    John Corcoran, M.Sc. Economics London School of Economics and Political Science.
    Spokesperson, Irish Commercial Tenants Association;
  • David McWilliams / Irish Independent - The fiscal treaty will only make things worse: The situation in the eurozone is not getting any better. The fiscal treaty, by imposing austerity on an already enfeebled economy, will make things worse, prompting more capital flight. Rolling the snowball down the hill is not an honest option.
    Mightn’t it be better to open the negotiations properly now?
  • Forpras Financial Solutions - Why vote NO to the Fiscal Stability Treaty? Why are our Irish politicians telling us to vote YES? Are you aware that the ESM (European Stability Mechanism) isn’t even setup and yet Portugal, Spain and Greece need immediate bailing out? Where will all this funding come from? Well, more and more taxes will be needed to pay for all these bailouts and ofcourse the vicious circle of Ireland having to borrow to help bailout itself out and our partners. Every cent borrowed needs to be repaid with excessive interest rates. The government tells us not to worry as they have agreed with their collegues in the EU that we will be permitted to pay these loans over an extended timeframe. But nobody is agreeing to help reduce our debts or even write a portion off? Why? […] It looks like Ireland and the Irish public will be left with mountains of debt. More and more Irish will be required to pay higher taxes (VAT 23%, property tax, water charges, higher car taxes, higher fuel taxes and the list goes on) resulting in the standard of living in Ireland falling, rising debt and a massive increase in the number of Irish unable to pay off their debts whether they be mortgages, credit cards, etc.
  • Vincent Browne / Politico.ie - We owe it to ourselves to oppose a trajectory that will vandalise society: I will vote No to express indignation with the cavalier disregard of the procedures and protocols of the European Union itself of the sovereignty of its member states, in the conduct of the leaders of the EU institutions and of Germany and France, in their insolence in interfering with the internal affairs of Greece and Italy, in their disregard for “democratic” procedures of the Union - even in the way this Fiscal Treaty came about.
    I will vote No to defy the wishes of the German elite, which benefited so spectacularly from the emergence of the Eurozone and now makes modest redistribution of that generated wealth, conditional on adherence to its economic and budgetary diktats, diktats that disadvantage not only the mass of people throughout the rest of Europe but the mass of people in Germany itself. 
    I will vote No to give backbone to the government’s dealings with the EU on the promissory notes and the other bank debt.  
  • TEEU - the power union - TEEU Executive Committee Urges Members to Vote No to Austerity: The inevitable result would be a further contraction in the size of the economy – already decreased by over a quarter since 2008 – with an accompanying increase in unemployment and decrease in government revenue. As Nobel laureate Paul Krugman simply put it, austerity “pushes depressed economies deeper into depression”. We, and others, have pointed out that a fiscal stimulus is what is required and have suggested, to no avail, a means of applying it.
Source: rebel-alliance.org

Irish Commerical Tenants' Association says No

ICTA: No to upwards only rent, No to the Fiscal Treaty, No to Liar PoliticiansJohn Corcoran, ICTA

Source: facebook.com

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FINAL UPDATE: TUESDAY 29th May           Wexford town

Wexford Sinn Féin @St Joseph’s Community Centre, Bishopswater, Wexford Town

Our apologies: due to a local death, today’s (Monday) meeting needed to be postponed

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Friday 4th May:           Bridgetown

Wexford Sinn Féin @ AOH Hall, 8pm.

Saturday 5th May:         Austerity Treaty Road Show, Wexford Town

(May Day Parade, Protest at SIPTU/Labour HQ)

Monday 7th May:           Ballycullane

Wexford Sinn Féin @ Tintern GAA Complex, 8pm

Saturday 12th May

:       Austerity Treaty Road Show, Ferns,Gorey

Monday 14th May

:            Enniscorthy

Riverside Park Hotel 8pm. Talk on Fiscal Treaty.

Tuesday 15th May:         Gorey

Wexford Sinn Féin @ Loch Garman Arms, 8pm

Wednesday 16th May:   Rosslare Harbour

Wexford Sinn Féin @ The Railway Club, 8pm

Thursday 17th May:      

Wexford Sinn Féin @ Ballagh Community Centre, The Ballagh

People’s Movement at 8.00 p.m.Tower Hotel, Waterford

Saturday 19th May:       Austerity Treaty Road Show, Bunclody, Enniscorthy

Tuesday 22th May:

Wexford Sinn Féin @ The Parish Pump, Rosbercon, New Ross

People’s Movement at 8.00 pm, Reddys Tullow Street, Carlow

Wednesday 23rd May:

People’s Movement at 8.00, Club House, Patrick Street, Kilkenny

Thursday 24th May:

Wexford Sinn Féin @ St Senans Community Centre, Enniscorthy

People’s Movement at 8.00, Park Hotel Dungarvan.

Saturday 26th May:       Austerity Treaty Road Show, Castlebridge, Wexford Town

Source: oisin.org

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(Note: The following replaces & corrects earlier version of 7/May)

TWO TREATIES FOR THE EUROZONE AND AN AMENDMENT TO  ONE OF THE EU TREATIES  - ALL RELATED TO EACH  OTHER!

Reply to Dr Gavin Barrett, Senior Lecturer in European Law, UCD, who wrote an articleurging a Yes vote in the Fiscal Treaty referendum in the Irish Times on Friday 4 May, by Anthony Coughlan, Director, The National Platform EU Research and Information Centre, 24 Crawford Avenue, Dublin 9; Tel.: 01-8305792

Wednesday 9 May 2012

INTRODUCTION:

AMENDMENT TO ARTICLE 136,  TREATY ON THE FUNCTIONING OF THE EUROPEAN UNION (TFEU)  -

“The Member States whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole. The granting of any required financial assistance under the mechanism will be made subject to strict conditionality.”

- Proposed amendment to Article 136 TFEU of the EU Treaties by which the 27 EU Member States  authorize the 17 Member States of the Eurozone to establish a  Stability Mechanism

The above Art.136 TFEU amendment to the EU Treaties has still to be approved by Ireland in accordance with its constitutional requirements under the “simplified” EU treaty amendment procedure of Article 48.6 TEU.

The European Council “Decision” to insert this amendment into the EU Treaties comes into force on 1 January 2013 if  by that time it has been approved by all 27 EU Member States in accordance with their constitutional requirements.

The ESM Institution which the 17 Eurozone States seek to establish and which Ireland would become a Member of is to be set up by the ESM Treaty for the 17 on the basis of this  Art.136 TFEU authorization  by the 27.  The ESM Treaty states that it is “complementary” to the Fiscal Treaty on which we have a referendum vote on 31 May.

The Government has promised the other 16 Eurozone Governments that it will have the ESM Treaty ratified by July,  but without the necessary constitutional referendum being held on it and on the Art. 136 TFEU amendment which authorizes it.

Q.  BUT WHERE WILL WE GET THE MONEY?

A.   We will get the money by holding a referendum on the Article 136 TFEU amendment and the ESM Treaty that it authorizes. This is constitutionally required in Ireland in order to validate these proposals as they stand, but our supine Government wants to avoid such  a referendum at all costs.  The 16 other Eurozone States will have to persuade us to vote Yes in such a referendum if they are to establish the kind of Stability Mechanism which the ESM Treaty envisages.  They can do this by agreeing to forgive the private bank debt the ECB has insisted should be imposed on Irish taxpayers, plus the Anglo-Irish promissory notes etc.   An Irish referendum on Article 136 TFEU and the ESM Treaty would also be an opportunity to add the voice of the Irish people to the calls across  Europe for the Eurozone authorities to agree a growth strategy instead of the present failed austerity policies.

Q.  WHERE WILL WE GET THE MONEY IF WE VOTE NO TO THE FISCAL TREATY?

A.   Where will the Government get the money to pay the €11 billion the ESM Treaty will require from us -  €1.3 billion up front and €250 million of that this July! -  with an open-ended treaty commitment to pay further sums thereafter without limit?

Read More

Source: nationalplatform.org

A Tale of Two Treaties: Citizen’s Guide

Written by Mary Linehan, Solicitor & Joe Noonan, Solicitor.

Throw Irish Families a Lifeline: Be Positive – Vote No to More Austerity

Source: voteno2012.ie

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Confirmed in Bold
Events in Italic are under the banner of the Austerity Treaty Road Show
 

Friday 4th May:           Bridgetown
                                      AOH Hall, 8pm.
                                      Speakers; Oisin Ó Conail (Sinn Féin), Kevin McCorry (People’s Movement) & Cllr Anthony Kelly (Sinn Féin)
 
Saturday 5th May:         Austerity Treaty Road Show
                                      Wexford Town (May Day Parade, Protest at SIPTU/Labour HQ)


Monday 7th May:           Ballycullane
                                        Tintern GAA Complex, 8pm
                                        Speakers; Cllr Anthony Kelly (Sinn Féin), Kevin McCorry (People’s Movement) & Oisin Ó Conail (Sinn Féin)

Saturday 12th May:       Austerity Treaty Road Show
                                      Ferns, Gorey

Monday 14th May:            Enniscorthy

For your information - we’ve been informed of the following:

Riverside Park Hotel 8pm Talk on Fiscal Treaty. Speaker: Joe Higgins (Socialist Party)


Tuesday 15th May:         Gorey
                                        Loc Garman Arms, 8pm
                                        Speakers; Fionntán Ó Suilleabheán (Sinn Féin), Professor Anthony Coughlan (National Platform EU Research & Information Centre), others TBA
 
Wednesday 16th May:   Rosslare Harbour
                                        The Railway Club, 8pm
                                        Speakers; TBA
 
Thursday 17th May:      The Ballagh
                                        Ballagh Community Centre
                                        Speakers; Cllr Johnny Mythen (Sinn Féin), others TBA
 
Saturday 19th May:       Austerity Treaty Road Show
                                      Bunclody, Enniscorthy
 
Tuesday 22th May:       New Ross
                                        The Parish Pump, Rosbercon
                                        Speakers: TBA
 
Thursday 24th May:         Enniscorthy
                                        St Senans Community Centre
                                        Speakers; Cllr Johnny Mythen (Sinn Féin), others TBA
 
Saturday 26th May:       Austerity Treaty Road Show
                                      Castlebridge, Wexford Town
 
Monday 28th May:           Wexford town
                                        TBA
                                        Speakers; TBA
 

Possible meetings forthcoming in Taghmon, Kilmuckridge and Bunclody.

Source: wexfordsinnfeinnews.blogspot.com

Sinn Féin's policy alternatives: the Eurozone Crisis, causes & solutions

We were asked at our second Co. Wexford public meeting (Ballycullane) about any political party’s public policy alternatives, to those of the current government. Here is the link the Sinn Féin panelist said he would provide to Sinn Féin’s alternatives.

Source: sinnfein.ie

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Warning: Permanent Austerity Ahead!

The People’s Movement has opened an office in central Dublin for the duration of the referendum campaign on the Permanent Austerity Treaty. The office is at 5 Cavendish Row, directly opposite the Gate Theatre.
We are near intersection of Parnell & O'Connell Streets

We are near intersection of Parnell & O’Connell Streets

Get involved!

People's Movement Referendum HQ: 5 Cavendish Row
The result of this important referendum will have a major influence on this country and the welfare of its people.

So why not become involved? You don’t have to be a treaty expert to deliver leaflets or put up posters—just a willing worker, and there are many more tasks in a campaign. It is a relatively easy way to participate in a process whose result will profoundly shape your future.

There are now only three weeks to go to polling day, and every effort, no matter how small, to boost the No vote counts.

So why not give us a call or send a text to 087-2308330, or drop a line to post@people.ie.

Appeal

Warning: Permanent Austerity Ahead!
This is an urgent appeal for financial support to help us to wage a successful campaign against the Austerity Treaty. The treaty has been roundly rejected by such bodies as the European Trade Union Confederation and large swathes of opinion throughout Europe.

In Ireland we have a chance to decisively reject the treaty in a referendum. Our campaign is swinging into operation, but, as always, it is an uneven struggle with regard to resources. In the last Lisbon referendums the Yes side spent some €2.3 million, while the combined No side spent €1.2 million. In the second referendum the contrast was even greater: €10.206 million for the Yes side against €780,000 for the No side. All the indications are that vast resources will again be expended to engineer a Yes vote on 31 May.

We urgently need your help!

peoplelogo.jpg
Opinion polls on voters’ attitudes show 30 per cent in favour, 23 per cent against, and 39 per cent still undecided.

Already non-partisan commentators have found the Yes campaign to be faltering, as four major trade unions decide to urge a No vote and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions declares that it will not be supporting the treaty.

Thomas Pringle TD, a patron of the People’s Movement, is challenging the constitutionality of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) Treaty.

Robert Ballagh: Mise Eire (limited edition fine art prints)
This treaty is closely linked to the Austerity Treaty, and he is asking the High Court to determine, among other matters, whether the Constitution of Ireland requires a referendum on that treaty also.

It will be a victory for democracy if he is successful; but it will also put a further enormous strain on our resources, as it will necessitate yet another referendum.

We earnestly ask you to respond favourably to this request.

Robert Ballagh print Mise Éire


A few copies of the limited edition of 250 copies of this fine-art print, signed, numbered and blind-stamped by the artist, Robert Ballagh, are still available. The print can be purchased for €250. Robert Ballagh is Ireland’s premier artist. All proceeds will go to the referendum campaign.

Contact post@people.ie or 087 2308330.
Related Link: http://www.irishreferendum.org
Source: indymedia.ie

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By Anthony Coughlan, Director, The National Platform EU Research and Information Centre

“The Member States whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole. The granting of any required financial assistance under the mechanism will be made subject to strict conditionality.”
- Proposed amendment to Article 136 TFEU of the EU Treaties by which the 27 EU Member States authorize the 17 Member States of the euro currency area to establish a Stability Mechanism

INTRODUCTION

This amendment to the EU Treaties has still to be approved by Ireland in accordance with its constitutional requirements under the “simplified” EU treaty amendment procedure of Article 48.6 TEU. The European Council decision to insert the Article 136 TFEU amendment into the EU Treaties comes into force on 1 January 2013 if by that time it has been approved by all 27 Member States in accordance with their constitutional requirements. The ESM Institution which the 17 Eurozone States seek to establish and which Ireland would become a Member of is set out in the ESM Treaty. This treaty cross-refers to the Fiscal/Stability Treaty on which we vote on 31 May. The ESM Treaty states that it is “complementary” to the Fiscal/Stability Treaty. The Government has promised the other 16 Eurozone Governments that it will have the ESM Treaty ratified by July, but without the necessary constitutional referendum being held on the Treaty and the Art. 136 amendment which authorizes it.

Q. Where will we get the money if we vote No on 31 May?

A. Where will the Government get the money to pay the €11 billion the ESM Treaty will require from us, with an open-ended treaty commitment to pay further sums thereafter without limit?

Q. But where will we still get the money ?
A. We will get it by holding a referendum on the Article 136 TFEU amendment and the ESM Treaty, as that is constitutionally necessary in order to authorize these proposals as they stand. The 16 other Eurozone States will have to persuade us to vote Yes in such a referendum if they are to establish the kind of Stability Mechanism which the ESM Treaty envisages. They can do this by agreeing to forgive the private bank debt they have insisted should be imposed on Irish taxpayers, plus the Anglo-Irish promissory notes etc. A referendum can also be used to press the Eurozone authorities to agree a growth strategy for the Eurozone instead of the present failed austerity policies.

Read More

Source: nationalplatform.org

"The evidence suggests that Ireland will have continued access to EU funding until we have regained market access regardless of the outcome of the forthcoming referendum as long as we meet the terms of the programme."

- , Lecturer in Economics, University College Cork
Source: economic-incentives.blogspot.com

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Source: thejournal.ie

Goverment to sell Cork to stabilise the economy

Source: youtube.com