Oct 7, 2009

Brussels, home of Tintin and the EU

Last weekend, Ireland voted "yes" for the Lisbon Treaty, meaning the European Union will be getting a long-overdue structural overhaul. Grant Doyle was in Brussels for the celebrations.

Ireland says ‘yes’ and Brussels bustles

Sometimes — more often through good fortune than good planning — you’re in the place where history happens. Innocently touring the Big Apple one September a few years back and bang, history hits you over the head. Or, having watched the “Sorry” apology live from Canberra, you can say you were there when it was said.

Free Trial

Proudly annoying those in power since 2000.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions


Leave a comment

5 thoughts on “Brussels, home of Tintin and the EU

  1. paddy

    What a cracking good read!
    Well done Grant and let’s just hope that the Europeans don’t *really* screw up their new found unity by appointing Tony Blair as president.
    I would have thought he’d make George W Bush’s popularity ratings look good by comparison.

  2. Tom McLoughlin

    ectoplasm, bashi-bazouk, sea-gherkin!

  3. Tom McLoughlin

    Slubberdegullions, pithecanthropic mountebanks, nitwitted ninepin, prize purple jellyfish!

    (err sorry channelling Capt Haddock insults via a certain website)

  4. MartinCJones

    Two other factors influenced the Irish to vote yes this time around:
    1) The campaign the first time around was run very much with personalities, esp. politicians, rather than on the actual issue of the treaty. The “No” vote in June (?) of last year was thus also reflection of the (un)popularity of the Irish Government. This time, the campaign was very much more focussed on informing the voters rather than trying to charm them.
    2) One of the major Irish opponents to the Lisbon treaty is Declan Ganley, founder and current chairman of the political party Libertas. He waged a very successful media war against the Lisbon treaty in the first referendum, and went on to campaign (with his party) in the EU elections earlier this year. Ganely’s defeat in those elections meant he had significantly fewer resources with which to campaign against the vote this time.

    Doyle’s assertion that Poland and the Czech Republic are going to rubber stamp the treaty isn’t fully correct, either. Poland should ratify it in a few days, true, but the Czech President Vaclav Klaus is a declared anti-European, and will try to put off ratification for as long as he can. At the moment he’s using some constitutional complaints as an excuse to delay, though they have little chance of succeeding.

  5. Tom McLoughlin

    The Seven Crystal Balls
    1. [about Alcazar] �Second-rate son of a sword-swallower�
    2. [about Calculus] �Old goat�
    3. [to people shooting at him] Cannibals
    4. [to people shooting at him] Caterpillars
    5. [to people shooting at him] Troglodytes
    6. [to people shooting at him] Tramps
    7. [to people shooting at him] Ectoplasms
    8. [to people shooting at him] Sea-gherkins
    9. [to crooks getting away] �Tribe of savages�
    10. [to crooks getting away] Vampires
    11. [to crooks getting away] Monsters
    12. [about the crooks] Rats
    13. [about Calculus�s kidnappers] �Band of thugs�
    14. [about Calculus�s kidnappers] Rattlesnakes
    15. [about the kidnappers] Pirates
    16. [about the kidnappers] Bashi-bazouks
    17. [to police officer] Loon
    18. [about the kidnappers] Iconoclasts
    19. [about the kidnappers] Vampires
    20. [to car that splashed him] Gangsters
    21. [to that car] Road-hogs
    22. [to that car] Mountebanks
    23. [to that car] Steamrollers
    24. [to that car] Nyctalops
    25. [to the car] Parasites
    26. [to the car] Sea-gherkins
    27. [to the car] Pock-marks
    28. [to the car] Cannibals
    29. [to cargo movers] Numbskulls
    30. [to cargo movers] Hi-jackers
    31. [to cargo movers] Kleptomaniacs
    32. [to cargo movers] Body-snatchers
    33. [to two kids] Vagabonds
    34. [to two kids] Hooligans
    35. [to two kids] Iconoclasts
    36. [about the two kids] Jackanapes
    37. [about the two kids] Pirates
    38. [about Calculus�s kidnappers] Gangsters

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details