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Many Readers Have Given The Thumbs up to The Irish "No" Vote

Many readers wrote in this week to praise the recent "No" vote in Ireland against the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, and went on to further criticize the structure and the scope of the European Union.

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It seems that the Irish are not the only ones who would have voted "no"

The following comments reflect the views of DW-WORLD.DE readers. Not all reader comments have been published. DW-WORLD.DE reserves the right to edit for length and appropriateness of content.

As one viewing the European Constitution and the Lisbon Treaty from afar, I get the sense that EU politicians and their counterparts in the individual national assemblies believe that: a) they know better than their constituents what is good for them, b) their constituents don't have the intelligence to decide on the issues and, c) are afraid to put the issue to a referendum vote in each country because they know it could likely be defeated. If the Lisbon treaty is so good, why can't they explain it to the general population? -- George , US

The so-called objective of encouraging Eastern European countries to join the EU was to give them a taste of democracy. We now have a situation where only Ireland was allowed to have a referendum on the treaty, which all agree is similar to the previous constitution. This is not a union but an empire and like all empires, it will fall sooner or later because the will of the people is both ignored and despised by the political elite. I am very pro-European (being one myself) but am much against this corrupt and arrogant institution as it stands at present. -- George Davis , Great Britain

Good for Ireland. Other countries would reject it too if given the chance of a referendum. Government should be for the people and not for the interests of multinationals and other interest groups. -- Elisabeth Mérillet , Switzerland

I would like to share with you my joy about the rejection of the EU Treaty by the brave, Irish people: "Auf Wiedersehen, auf Wiedersehen, Euro-Soviets auf Wiedersehen !" -- Piotr Bozek, Poland

Perhaps now the powers that be in Brussels will start listening to the people. We were promised a referendum in the UK but were not given one, the French and the Dutch rejected the constitution. Well done Ireland! -- Gloria Harrison , Great Britain

Ireland is a pro-European country which cherishes democracy. The people would expect that their democratic decision be respected and that the Lisbon Treaty should now be shelved. Proceeding with further ratification of the treaty, now that a member state has turned it down, would only add to the democratic deficit which plagues the EU. The way forward would be a new treaty which in no way resembles the failed Constitution. -- Brian Kelly , Ireland

The elite politicians in Brussels should allow a referendum in each member state and let the "real members" have their say. Ireland has learned just how out of touch our leaders are with the Irish public. The Irish voters have done Europe a big favor in opening up the gap between the ordinary folks and the political Elite. Well done Ireland. -- Larry White , Ireland

I think the rotating presidency of six months should be held, instead of a permanent presidency for the European Union, because it gives all countries an opportunity to occupy the presidency. -- Jose Nigrin, Guatamala

As an Irish citizen, I exercised my constitutional and democratic right to vote on whether I agreed with the Lisbon Treaty and voted NO. For 800 years we fought foreign rule on our soil and we eventually got our independence. But it was hard won. Our constitution states that any changes that are to be made to it have to be agreed to by the people. This is true democracy. If Ireland voted in favor of the treaty this would be abolished and EU law would supersede Irish law. I voted no because I am not willing to vote away my freedom that was earned by the blood of my ancestors and neither should anyone in Europe who values their freedom, national sovereignty and identity. -- James , Ireland

The "No" vote against the Lisbon Treaty, which I believe innocuous, can be blamed firmly on the failure of our government to mobilize any enthusiasm to campaign for it, allowing fringe cranks and outrageous claims to take hold of the middle ground. They failed miserably due to selfish self preservation. I feel more European than Irish and I have nothing but the greatest respect for our community neighbors. Our mandatory referendums for constitutional changes are a vibrant cornerstone of democracy, but these referendums can produce the correct will of the people only when a vigorous and informed campaign ensues. -- Patrick Tuite , Ireland

The result was a clear "No," there was more information available on this treaty than any other in history and there was a large turnout. There is no valid reason for a re-vote. Ireland is pro-Europe but not willing to part with its sovereignty. How could that possibly be of benefit to us? -- Frank , Ireland

The question as to "should Ireland vote again" shows what an absolute sham the European Union is. If the EU doesn't like the result of a referendum by a sovereign people then they cajole, bully and threaten until their demands are met. It happened with the Danes in 1992 and in Ireland with the Nice Treaty. The Irish were accused of being xenophobic, selfish racists. It has to be admitted that the pro-business right are firmly in control of the EU and until power is wrested from these narrow minded bigots, European integration should remain a dream. -- Pol Mag UIdhir, Ireland

The Irish vote should make it clear that the EU is failing in its attempt to create some sort of European political union. The only feasible solution is a very tight economic, political and even military alliance between Germany and Russia. The economic reforms of the EU should remain and be extended bilaterally between Russia and Germany. The resulting "super attractor" will gradually draw most of Europe into its orbit. The bureaucrats in Brussels can be left chatting there, indefinitely. -- Denis Arvay , US

As an American, I am both surprised and encouraged to watch the EU perform the most Republican of actions as a free and equal people: to respect the rights of the minority over the will of the majority. By these proceedings you have all proven the EU will be a constructive competitor and ally with the United States of America. -- Sybredeth , US

Ireland should not vote again. The Irish voters have given their considered decision. To pressure them to vote again would be yet another nail in the coffin of Democracy. -- Anna Elmy, Great Britain

There is a precedent for voting on a treaty a second time: the Nice treaty. It was galling at the time and I wondered what part of "no" did the government not understand. To put the Lisbon treaty to another plebiscite would be even more offensive and galling and could provoke a very negative response. -- Greg Sexton , Ireland

The Irish no-vote was made on the basis of the non-democratic nature of the EU structures and the failure of the Lisbon Treaty to address this sufficiently, the reluctance to hand over further powers to such a body and the proposed militarization of the EU. The Irish voters are undoubtedly the best informed EU citizens regarding the content of the Lisbon Treaty and considered their vote carefully. Many people came out and voted who normally don't vote in general elections and many young people voted. The Irish are in favor of European cooperation but not a militaristic and undemocratic federal state in which small countries aren't listened to. We ask the support of all EU citizens to demand of their governments that the Lisbon Treaty is set aside and that the EU is re-examined in order to establish democratic structures. -- Katharine Larkin, Ireland

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