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The EU…based on democracy, human rights, accountability and transparency

The council of the European Union had a debate today on the external action service. As I was reading the report, one section caught my eye: “EU support for democratic governance” of nation states around the world. These were some of the points outlined:

  • The EU’s support should be based on a rights based approach,
    encompassing all human rights, and the principles of participation, non-discrimination,
    accountability and transparency.

  • The Council underlines that better use should be made of the wealth of experience the EU
    has accumulated in the area of democratic transition

Wow, this is alarming considering that the core structure of the EU does not encompass all human rights (particularly some UK rights that are overruled by the ECHR), is not fully democratic, and is certainly not transparent! Where are those accounts that should have been signed off for the past 19 years?

Here is some more text from the report:

  • Notwithstanding the partner country’s needs and the commitment of the EU to provide
    predictable funding, the Council notes that elements of an incentive based approach can stimulate progress and results in democratic governance.

  • The Council also notes that while financial incentives are not sufficient to trigger democratic reforms, an incentive-based approach works best when a critical mass of funding is available in order to generate significant impact and results, and where allocations form part of a broader strategy of EU engagement.

So basically the EU are going to do more of what they are already doing which is wasting millions on trying to persuade nations around the world to become more democratic, even though they acknowledge that financial incentives don’t actually work!

The report can be found here.

ps. The president of the council is non other than Catherine Ashton, who incidently has never been democratically voted for in her entire life.

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EU legislation watch: european defence technological and industrial base (Vote 21/11/2013)

This is my first post regarding european union legislation. I hope to post about more EU laws being passed that are not covered by the main press in the UK on this blog.

The first I have chosen is the european defence technological and industrial base. Here are the important points about the proposed legislation:

  • A strong European defence technological and industrial base (EDTIB), constituting a key element for Europe’s capacity to ensure the security of its citizens, protect its values and promote its interests.
  • Calls on the European Council to launch the development of a European capabilities and armaments policy (ECAP)
  • It regrets the fact that, while a certain level of concentration has been achieved in the European aerospace industries, the land and naval equipment sectors are still overwhelmingly fragmented along national lines
  • Make the coordination of national defence planning processes at EU level a reality
  • Harmonised equipment acquisition among Member States
  • To create employment in defence industry accross the EU

This is how MEPs voted:

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What can we take from this? The new european army is on its way folks. The text in red signifies the fact that the EU will use this army to protect its own values and to promote them too, one wonders how this will all end up!

In the end, it comes down to the number of pages

America has more than 70,000 pages of tax laws. In comparison, hong kong has less than 200 pages and slovakia’s flat tax is thinner than a magazine.

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