Democracy, pull your socks up…

20 04 2009

Conall McDevitt’s piece comparing devolved administrations past and present was packed full of interesting comparative stats. The bottomline is that things are not quite so productive right now. Coincidentally John Redwood comes up with some interesting comparative statistics on Westminster administrations. Erm, things are not quite so democratic now.

So the economy is not the only thing that must inspire renewed confidence. Thank god for elections – it gives political parties and reps the opportunity to reconnect with the people they are there to serve – and thank god we’re only weeks from the Euro elections. This is a chance for political parties to inform, persuade, engage and make the case for NI’s position within a community of nations. The global marketplace allows no nation to stand as an island – the Euro elections are about designing our contribution to the global policy agenda and how we want to contribute to achieving meaningful change.

That being the case, I wonder who among the Euro candidates inspires confidence in the capacity of the political system to promote  change. Or perhaps that can be best encapsulated in the term ‘hope’. Who inspires the hope voters are looking for?

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2 responses

21 04 2009
subrosa

I’m interested in how Eire will vote regarding the Lisbon Treaty. Any thoughts?

23 04 2009
bobballs

Tough question! This isn’t something i’ve been following up on of late, though.

But i think Ireland needs to get Lisbon passed as speedily and happily as possible. It’s economy will need friends and partners to help it along. Suffice to say the Republic’s recent budget (hairshirt stuff) was met with applause by EU commission. It seemed to me that the gov did everything it could to ingratiate itself once more with European partners (and the EU in turn gave Ireland a big pat on the back).

The mainstream political parties would like nothing better than to reverse what happened last year – it’s just a question of getting voters to agree.

So can’t imagine how Ireland will reject Lisbon again. I saw some early polls in the southern press which suggested that the popular view is that Lisbon has changed sufficiently, and perfectly acceptable. Whether those polls are right, and whether that translates into votes… ?

In my view, it would be disastrous for Ireland’s relationships, status and prospects within Europe to reject Lisbon again. Last time round the Yes campaign was accused of butter fingers – that just won’t happen again. I think it’s going to be a Yes (but i come at this a bit cold to be honest).

How did you feel about the No vote?

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