Monday, May 30, 2005

French voters reject EU Constitution

An appropriate follow-up to the downfall last week of Chancellor Schroeder’s Social Democratic Party in Germany has to be the resounding NON delivered by French voters yesterday at the doorstep of Jacques Chriac and the European Union HQ in Brussels. Old Europa is sinking ever deeper into a state of political, economic, and social crisis while the new EU member states look on in disbelief.

You may have already seen or read news reports and political commentaries about the meaning of the French vote and the consequences for all European Union member countries. Below are links to the German press (
Der Speigel) and German state-run broadcast media (Deutsche Welle) as well as today's Technorati search results for 12,137+ postings on France's EU Constitution referendum, and last but not least an interesting pre-vote commentary by Gwen Pris for

Me? I have absolutely no comment. This is an internal affair for the Europeans to work out amongst themselves without any input from the U.S. of A. America has enough severe problems of its own right now without having to worry about who the French are frying now.

I am just as dumbfounded and shocked as poor ol’ Jacques Chirac. All that work, all that time, all that money, for a NON!!? I’d feel sorry for the guy if I had any feelings for him at all, which I don’t. I wonder how those clear thinking and liberal minded citizens over in the Netherlands are going to vote on Wednesday? I wonder what this means for the fate of the world?? Not much, probably.

Der Speigel:
Going Dutch on the EU Referendum,
Der Spiegel: Chirac Gets French Fried
Deutsche Welle: French vote not end of Europe
Technorati search: EU Constitution
OpenDemocracy: The end of the European Union


Carine said...

Hello Bill,

I knew the French would vote NO. In my opinion European leaders are doing a very bad job at explaining the European constitution and the future policies that they plan. unemployement is blamed but I think there's more than that. Everyday Europeans have felt left out of the process and let's face is the EU is mostly about economics.

In a way I am glad the vote turned out this way. It's a victory for the democracy. It also shows the lack of "communication" between leaders and the population. I though this would have been the big lesson but I just learnt that Jacques Chirac nominated Dominique de Villepin as prime minister. Obviously Statesman don't like learning from the mistakes.

The consequences on the british referendum shall be interesting though.

This is just a quick opinion.

other than that I hope you had a nice weekend :)

Brian said...

It shows the folly of constructing a system based on unanimous consent when one wants to achieve an ambitious project.

The US had a system of unanimous consent called the Articles of Confederation. It only lasted for six years (1781-1787) before it proved so unworkable that they called a convention to revamp them (which eventually became the US Constitution, which took effect in 1789).

Black River Eagle said...

Hi Carine and Brian. Thanks for stopping by and leaving those great comments on the French-fried EU debacle. This is causing major, major ANGST over here in Germany. Now the German voters are saying that maybe they were cheated in that their Bundestag (Parliament) made the decision in favor of the EU Constitution for them without a referendum vote. We might get a Wallmart-style political rollback on the German "JA vote" if this keeps up. The Dutch (Hollanders) are definately going to vote NEE!

Carine, Dominique de Villepin was a smart choice for Prime Minister in my opinion. He's got that kind of French handsome look and a silk tongue that comes across well on international TV, especially with the laidies. It will be good for France's image internationally but it won't save Jacque Chirac's political rearend. I don't know if de Villepin can help to solve France's domestic woes as I have only seen him in action at the U.N. and on the international scene. Slick, real slick that guy.

Chirac is finished in France. He should quit now and save the country the embarrassment of an old man desperately trying to hang on to political power (and all of that dirty money).

I am personally not very happy to see Europa on such shakey ground at the moment as this could spiral out-of-control and get real ugly real fast. Remember Europe's collective history over the past 500 years, not a good track record there! Fortunately I live near the airport and not far from the sea, just in case...:-)

Brian thanks for the history lesson on the headaches and false starts we had in America with our own constitution back in the late 1700's.

I am going to travel down that very road (American history) in some upcoming posts that will focus on the ties between New World Africans and U.S. American Military History. Should be interesting reading if I get it right. In the meantime I must work on my online writing and presentation skills and then build up my courage to publish it.

In the meantime Carine and Brian please checkout this link from BusinessWeek's new Blogspotting blog for May 30th about popular French blogger Loic Le Meur:

A blogger tilts the French vote in Europe:

Also check out Der Spiegel's english site May 30th for more news about the EU Constitution fallout here(Wahnsinn! Wahnisnn!):

Brussels in Turmoil,1518,358350,00.html

Europe is Moving Ahead, but Where's It Going?,1518,358306,00.html

Auf Wiedersehen und Danke!