Campaign Against the Austerity Treaty

Vote No to the Fiscal Compact Treaty, Referendum in Ireland, May 31 2012

“There is only one vote!” – Published on Corporate Europe Observatory

with one comment



“There is only one vote!”


On 31 May, in a national referendum, the Irish people will take a stance on the Austerity Treaty, aka the Fiscal Compact. As Ireland is the only country where the Treaty will be tested at a referendum, powerful players are pulling out the heavy artillery to prevent a ‘No’. As if aware that the Austerity Treaty has nothing good to offer, the only card up their sleeve is a high-pitched scare campaign. All kinds of threats are being used to force a Yes vote.

See a bigger version of the cartoon [1].

“There is only one vote, and it’s a Yes vote” said Sean O’Driscoll, chairman of the Glen Dimplex manufacturing group, when he joined the big business chorus of agribusiness giants, pharmaceutical companies and others, in their claim that business would lose confidence in Ireland, and that a No would mean a sudden tumultuous and destabilising euro exit for Ireland.1

The voices of corporations are a helping hand to the Irish government, but in terms of rhetoric, the Irish right-wing parties are not in need of inspiration: “We will be back in the eye of the storm on 1 June,” said minister Eamon Gilmore when asked about the consequences of a No.

Another minister, Lucinda Creighton, warns that a “Greek style flight of capital is a very real – very imminent – issue”, and claims that Ireland will “have to go round with a begging bowl if we reject the treaty.”2

With the begging bowl she hints at the massive contribution of the European Union to the scaremongering. The German government managed to get the backing of the EU Council to insert a conditionality clause in the future ‘bail-out fund’ set up to provide loans to troubled economies in the eurozone.3 The clause reserves the funds exclusively for countries who have ratified the Fiscal Compact. Though the legal validity of the clause is disputed heavily by experts, access to funds under this so called ‘European Stability Mechanism’ is a recurrent theme in the Yes-campaign in Ireland, courtesy of the EU.

It remains to be seen whether the scaremongering is effective. It may be that the Irish people discover that the treaty would make the EU’s austerity medicine, which Irish society has already been exposed to in heavy doses (in order to get bailout loans), a permanent treatment. And that might make Ireland conclude that there is indeed only one possible vote: a resounding No.

Written by tomasoflatharta

May 25, 2012 at 12:56 pm

One Response

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  1. we suport Ireland in voying NO, I was in Dublin in 2009, I leave now near Athens Greece, I have no fear, my Grantparents fought Nazis with no suplies they could eat rocks for hardenning, I carry their genes, we are all Irish on 31/05/12 become all Greeks on 17/06/12 elections voting antimemorantum parties.

    assimakis georgoulias

    May 29, 2012 at 5:49 pm

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