Friday, 30 May 2008

Why I find myself in bed with the Shinners on Lisbon treaty


Excerpt of an article by Kevin Myers, emphasis added. See the Irish Independent for the full article.

Why should I risk my financial well-being, and that of my country, for a political union which leaves my heart as cold as a fish on the monger’s slab?

The terms of the Lisbon Treaty are largely (and intentionally) incomprehensible. But sometimes there are terrifying moments of lucidity.

And I thank Anthony Coughlan for pointing out the following provision to me: “The Council shall, acting unanimously in accordance with a special legislative procedure and after consulting the European Parliament and the Economic and Social Committee, adopt provisions for the harmonisation of legislation concerning turnover taxes, excise duties and other forms of indirect taxation to the extent that such harmonisation is necessary to ensure the establishment and the functioning of the internal market and to avoid distortion of competition.”

Harmonisation is Euro-babble for maximising both taxes and central power, and might one day enable the European Court of Justice to rule that Ireland’s 12.5pc rate of corporation tax, compared to Britain‘s 28pc and Germany‘s 30pc, is a “distortion of competition” (what a lovely term).

Why should we sign a deal, by which some future Euro-judge might declare our tax regime to be illegal, when that is the reason for our prosperity?

Would your solicitor let you buy a house with such an uncertain clause in the contract?

If she did, she’s actually working for the vendor — which is the very reason why our political classes are urging us to vote ‘Yes’, and why we should vote ‘No’.