EU Treaties-2: Values & Democracy

The EU practices top-down government. They give us big talk on democracy and citizens’ fundamental rights, repeatedly stated but not practised. The goal is convergence – economic, political and regulatory. Mutual assistance between member states has proved hard to achieve.


Article 1: This Treaty marks a new stage in the process of creating an ever closer union among the peoples of Europe, in which decisions are taken as openly as possible and as closely as possible to the citizen.

The EU practices top-down government. They give us big talk on democracy and citizens’ fundamental rights, repeatedly stated but not practised. The goal is convergence – economic, political and regulatory. Mutual assistance between member states has proved hard to achieve.

(Also see Treaties-6 for ‘Subsidiarity’.) It is easily possible to take decisions more openly and closer to the citizens than the EU does. This is a major bone of contention; the Article is an attempt to disguise the real attitude of the EU to its citizens.

The principle of subsidiarity is largely ignored, since the goal of Ever Closer Union is to be achieved by sucking upwards ever more powers. This goal, the main ideology of the EU, requires authority to be centralised; it is steady and subtle in its implementation and takes precedence over other declared principles, which are used to disguise this ideological foundation.

Article 2: The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights… These values are common to the Member States in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.

Now they compound their false assertion (see Preamble in Treaties-0) with the claims that the EU is founded on these values and that the values are “common to the Member States” (see Article 6.2(3) below). The EU is founded on such false claims and assertions (note the ongoing disputes, values-based, with Poland and Hungary, among others).

The EU is reluctant to implement its own principles and values, as defined in the treaties. EU leaders go to great lengths to cover up the disparities and divergences among the member states (or explain them away), at least when they are not pointing to such divergences as the main obstacle to completing ever closer union and so solving all the problems that member states cause.

The EU offers plenty of evidence of the gap between its principles and its practices. Among its bizarre claims is that “EU values are common to the EU countries”. They are well aware that this is not true; for example their reactions to unshared values in Poland, Hungary, Malta and Romania.

Article 4: 2. The Union shall respect the equality of Member States before the Treaties…

Article 4: 3. Pursuant to the principle of sincere cooperation, the Union and the Member States shall, in full mutual respect, assist each other in carrying out tasks which flow from the Treaties.

These Articles have the form of instructions and are supposed to carry legal weight. But it can easily be shown that member states are not treated equally and that they are all too rarely willing to make sacrifices to assist each other.

Germany initially refused to allow any face masks or other virus protection to be exported to beleaguered ‘friends’. Several EU member states then closed their borders to the citizens of others, in direct violation of Treaty instructions. Clearly the nation state has not withered as it was supposed to.

Article 6: 2. The Union shall accede to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Such accession shall not affect the Union’s competences as defined in the Treaties.

Article 6: 3. Fundamental rights, as guaranteed by the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and as they result from the constitutional traditions common to the Member States, shall constitute general principles of the Union’s law.

The legal requirement of the first sentence is then dissolved by the second; the EU will continue to do what it does, regardless. This means in practice that they want judgements settled by the CJEU in Luxembourg rather than by the ICC in the Hague. If it fully accepts an existing, whole-world rights convention why does the EU need its own? And then we have to be persuaded by the obvious nonsense of “constitutional traditions common to the Member States”.

EU member countries’ constitutions oblige governments to put themselves up periodically for re-election or dismissal. This may be the only constitutional feature that all the member states have in common. But the ‘constitution’ of the EU (i.e. the Treaties) does not require this inconvenience.

Article 8: 1. The Union shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries, aiming to establish an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness, founded on the values of the Union and characterised by close and peaceful relations based on cooperation.

Just as long as the neighbour is not a renegade (or escapee) from the Union.

Article 10: 1. The functioning of the Union shall be founded on representative democracy.

They could say, but don’t, that the Union is a representative democracy. Instead they fudge the deceit with stuff that sounds commendable but doesn’t mean the same (“founded on”) presumably to avoid legal challenges.

Most of the EU’s problems result from its rigid ideology and the need its leaders feel to deceive its citizens about their aim to complete its progress towards governing large swathes of Europe by overriding the democratically-elected governments of its member states.

Article 10: 2. Citizens are directly represented at Union level in the European Parliament.

Member States are represented in the European Council by their Heads of State or Government and in the Council by their governments, themselves democratically accountable either to their national Parliaments, or to their citizens.

These are intended to leave us with the impression that because the member states are democratic therefore the EU too is democratic. A moment’s thought will reveal the lack of logic and even a little analysis will show (see below) that not only does the conclusion not follow it is actually false.

The EU has a top-down approach to government, its leaders cannot be dismissed by voters and its Parliament has few powers. European parliamentary elections are not a democratic exercise in any true sense. National elections matter because national governments can be dismissed, something that is not true for EU government.

Article 10: 3. Every citizen shall have the right to participate in the democratic life of the Union. Decisions shall be taken as openly and as closely as possible to the citizen.

The first claim is so vague as to defy any attempt to give it meaning. The second ‘instruction’ (legal commitment) we shall show (in Treaties-6 and in many other posts) is not obeyed in practice.

The EU often expounds its principles and rules. We are expected to believe that the EU adopts practices that are consistent with its own principles and rules, but it doesn’t. Many promises have been made, and quickly broken, about transparency but it seems that such promises are just for show while the practice remains to keep citizens in the dark, in case we spot what is going on and try to resist.

Article 11: 4. Not less than one million citizens who are nationals of a significant number of Member States may take the initiative of inviting the European Commission, within the framework of its powers, to submit any appropriate proposal on matters where citizens consider that a legal act of the Union is required for the purpose of implementing the Treaties.

This could be taken, if read uncritically, as an invitation confirming the activation of Article 10: 3 (above). However, it is so disabled by caveats that it cannot be taken seriously.

The perpetual problem the EU faces is this: how can EU involve the people in the Project and so make them more enthusiastic, without giving them more authority? The answer is, it can’t; the authorities will always do what they believe is best (for them). They cannot be both the final arbiters and claim to be democratic. Actually that’s wrong, the Eurocrats are the final arbiters and do claim to be democratic.

Article 12: National Parliaments contribute actively to the good functioning of the Union:

(a) through being informed by the institutions of the Union and having draft legislative acts of the Union forwarded to them in accordance with the Protocol on the role of national Parliaments in the European Union;

(b) by seeing to it that the principle of subsidiarity is respected in accordance with the procedures provided for in the Protocol on the application of the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality;

(f) by taking part in the inter-parliamentary cooperation between national Parliaments and with the European Parliament, in accordance with the Protocol on the role of national Parliaments in the European Union.

(Democratically elected) national parliaments “contribute” by: “being informed”, “seeing to it”, “taking part” and, item (e), “being notified”; that is, they contribute by taking instructions. These give a clearer picture of the attitude of the EU to its member states and their citizens, and makes a mockery of their claims in the Preamble and other Articles.

The EU Project is not sustainable, given its citizens annoying preference for the mess and muddle of their own democracies, economies and politics over the threat of the imposition of a grey uniformity. EU mandarins argue that diversity is dangerous and a threat to the success of their mission. Hence all the emphasis on eliminating divergence and reducing historically diverse nations to a stale uniformity.

Article 13: 1. The Union shall have an institutional framework which shall aim to promote its values, advance its objectives, serve its interests, those of its citizens and those of the Member States, and ensure the consistency, effectiveness and continuity of its policies and actions.

This is to establish, in legal terms, that the EU and its Commission, together with CJEU, will continue to do what they do. But how in practice (as distinct from treaty theory) does the EU “ensure the consistency, effectiveness and continuity of its policies and actions”?

The EU’s failures amount to a failure of every aim and value to which it aspires or claims to exhibit, except ever closer union (uniformity in practice). For example: relatively low average growth, high youth unemployment, severely limited prosperity, inadequate defence, subsidiarity ignored, lack of democracy, breaking treaty obligations.

Article 21: 1. The Union’s actions on the international scene shall be guided by the principles which have inspired its own creation, development and enlargement, and which it seeks to advance in the wider world: democracy, the rule of law, the universality and indivisibility of human rights and fundamental freedoms, respect for human dignity, the principles of equality and solidarity, and respect for the principles of the United Nations Charter and international law.

This is nothing more than propaganda; its purpose is to persuade us of the EU’s good intentions, without committing the EU to anything measurable. We’ve told you all this once, we’ve told you twice, we’ve told you again and again and again—do you believe us yet? No, we don’t.

There is not enough about the EU to recommend it to its citizens; it follows that they must be persuaded to accept it by propaganda, threats or coercion. If EU leaders and supporters were confident that their project would retain members because of its obvious benefits, they could afford to be honest about its aims.

Article 21: 2. The Union shall define and pursue common policies and actions, and shall work for a high degree of cooperation in all fields of international relations, in order to:

(a) safeguard its values, fundamental interests, security, independence and integrity;

(b) consolidate and support democracy, the rule of law, human rights and the principles of international law;…

(d) foster the sustainable economic, social and environmental development of developing countries, with the primary aim of eradicating poverty;…

The Union…shall work for…”. It doesn’t say how it will do this work, what achievements it expects, or whether any have been achieved.

The EU’s founders and current leaders hold the citizens of Europe in disdain and their elected, national governments in contempt for being elected, and therefore impermanent. They argue that what is needed is a unified, supra-national entity, or federal government, which has the power to override the decisions of the governments of its member states.

Article 24: 3. (also see Treaties-5) The Member States shall work together to enhance and develop their mutual political solidarity. They shall refrain from any action which is contrary to the interests of the Union or likely to impair its effectiveness as a cohesive force in international relations.

This assumes that “their mutual political solidarity” already exists, whereas this is, in practice, the ambition of the Union to achieve. The Treaties, as constitution, specify what should be the case, in law, but we can see that in practice this is not so.

EU member countries’ constitutions oblige governments to put themselves up periodically for re-election or dismissal. The ‘constitution’ of the EU (i.e. the Treaties) does not require this inconvenience. This is a design feature not an accident. To achieve its goal of a federal state in Europe the EU must force through ever closer union, against the wishes of many of its citizens. For this it needs stability and continuity. They cannot afford to risk a change of regime at the whim of an ignorant electorate.

Article 49: Any European State which respects the values referred to in Article 2 and is committed to promoting them may apply to become a member of the Union.

This acknowledges that there are European states which are not currently members, and gives the lie to its frequent references to itself as ‘Europe”.

The EU equates itself with Europe: “…the 2019 European elections shows the vibrancy of the European democracy.” The “unification of Europe is near” was proclaimed in the Laeken Declaration in 2001.


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