Sigh. An awful rant today from Mr Waters. Will he ever learn?
A survey of 2,000 voters conducted by the European Commission immediately after the vote revealed that more than 70 per cent of those who voted No believed the treaty could easily be renegotiated.
This poll also found that many people who did not understand the treaty voted No; that the overwhelming majority of women voted No; that young people voted No by a margin of two to one; and that immigration (ie, xenophobic sentiment) was a significant factor in the No vote.
The entire basis for his argument is in EC poll that the Irish Times reported on Wednesday:
Why did you vote no? (only one option)
Dont understand /not familiar 40%
Protect Irish identity 20%
Dont trust politicians/Govt policies 17%
Protect neutrality 10%
Keep commissioner 10%
Protect tax system 8%
Young people between the age of 15 and 29 voted against the treaty by a factor of two to one, a finding that is labelled as “very serious” in an explanation of the referendum result prepared for commission president José Manuel Barroso.
Very serious indeed, Mr Barroso. Especially since people below the age of 18 can’t vote. And very serious too for Mr Waters.
There is a reason why children are prohibited from voting, and this goes also to the heart of why adults are expected to treat the franchise with solemnity.
Oh the irony.
It is a comfort that these iron men who built this society were not around to witness this latest exercise in self-regarding ignorance by the most pampered, narcissistic and vacuous generation ever to enter an Irish polling booth.
Cough. Are these the 15-17 year olds? From a Commission poll that posed a question that couldn’t have given a negative answer about the direction of Europe itself?
His best line is arguing that the Lisbon Treaty referendum is:
arguably the most disgraceful episode in the history of Irish democratic procedures.
Here’s the thing Mr Waters. Let’s imagine we had voted yes. And let’s imagine the ratio of yes to no was exactly reversed, the turnout was the same, and the campaigns were identical.
Would you be arguing now that it was a great day for Irish democracy that we voted for a proposal we did not understand? Would you be lamenting the yes voters for not understanding the treaty? Would you cast aside their democratic will and call for a revote on your assumption, on the basis of a poll conducted by a vested interest and given to the media via the Taoiseach’s office, that the yes side simply did not understand the treaty?