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Well, I hate being contrary ...

Posted by Helen Wednesday, June 18, 2008 , ,

... but with all the rejoicing over the Irish result and discussion as to what the colleagues might or might not do (whatever it is will be bad for us in the short term) I still see no indication that soi-disant eurosceptics are making an effort to understand the nature of the enemy.

Via Conservative Home we hear of another YouGov poll conducted on behalf of Open Europe, our new best friends (heh, the boss is away, looking at toys), which gives apparently very helpful results.

54% agreed with the statement that "The government should drop the Lisbon Treaty and not try and ratify it".

Just 14% agreed that "The government should carry on and ratify the Lisbon Treaty in the UK".

Labour voters are 46% to 19% against continuing ratification of the Treaty.

29% said that "The UK should stay in the EU".

38% said that "The UK should stay in the single market but pull out of the other political elements of the EU".

24% said "The UK should leave the EU altogether".

65% agreed with the statement "The EU is out of touch with normal people".

88% said they could not name any of their MEPs. Among those who did attempt to name some of their MEPs, the most popular choice was "Neil Kinnock".

Disregarding that last question in that I am a little surprised that 12 per cent could actually name their MEPs (I suppose 12 per cent of 1,000 is not that many people), we are back to the usual problem.

What is it people are being asked and what is it they are telling us. All right, just over half agreed that the Lisbon Treaty should be dropped. Actually, that is rather low. Far too many people seem to think that it is OK to disregard referendum results and break one's own rules (whatever happened to that club we are always being told about?) Well 14 per cent is too high. And the number of people who seem to have no opinion on the subject is shockingly high.

29 per cent on one side and 24 per cent on the other seemed to have some idea of what they wanted, though what is the betting that a large proportion of the former keeps whining that this is not the way the EU should be going?

But what on earth do the 38 per cent think they are talking about? Do they know what the single market is or how one could possibly achieve the status they seem to yearn for? Do those who formulate the questions know? Do the gifted members of Open Europe, our new best friends, know? If so, they are keeping very quiet.

You see, ladies and gentlemen, it is not that easy to change our status in the EU. We would have to renegotiate the treaties and you can bet all you possess that if that remote possibility happened and a new treaty was achieved without anybody killing anybody else, the rule about unanimity would apply.

The sad truth is that, Lisbon Treaty or not, we remain full members of the European Union with no obvious way out (that Article in the Treaty that allegedly makes it possible does nothing of the kind, if you read it carefully) and no obvious way of making the change apparently so desired by the people of this country. I wonder when our allies and best friends will grasp that and move on to the next stage.