The Independent hits the nail on the head over the ‘Non!’ vote:
With hindsight, it might have been better to separate the the writing of the constitution — short and idealistic in tone — from a basic law bringing together and streamlining all the legal instruments. There will doubtless be much hand-wringing to this effect in the days and weeks to come.
(No link to the full leader because it requires a subscription.)
I’m neither pro nor anti-Europe or the notion of a European super-state for the simple reason that I don’t understand what it means.
It’s a bit like going through all the deeds and legal mumbo-jumbo that goes with buying a house before you’ve even seen the property, decided that it is better than your existing home, negotiated the price, checked that you can afford it or even decided that you want to move house at all.
That is exactly what happened when the French government sent each of its citizens a copy of the 130 page long treaty. Very laudable, but it makes the assumption that the people have already been sold on the idea of a ‘new house’ and all that is now needed is for them to go through the tedious detail and sign on the dotted line.
That might have been a safe assumption for the innately pro-European French, even if events have proved this not to be so, but it wouldn’t have a cat in hell’s chance in more sceptical countries, not least the UK.
The problem it seems to me is that no-one has expressed a vision for Europe. No politician, no statesman (if such a beast isn’t extinct) and no simple, easy to understand constitution. And until they do, I’ll stick with the ‘house’ I know and can afford thank you very much.