David Heilbron PRICE
President Jose Manuel Barroso
than half a century, the European Commission has played a central and impartial
role in the unification of Europe. This impartiality assured for business,
workers and consumers that cartels should not abuse the market place.
Impartiality was originally guaranteed in the EUís founding treatyís Article
9. It forbad Commissioners to take another job, paid or otherwise, in the three
years after leaving the Commission.
week, discussions in the European Parliament in relation to the Lisbon Treaty
draft revealed a serious flaw with a risk of corruption on a vast scale.
According to the Treaty, the European Commission will lose its most valuable
quality it has had since its inception. That is its impartiality.
the proposed Treaty insists on choosing the new Commission on a party political
vote in Parliament. This excludes the original, founding concept that
Commissioners should be non-partisan. Former politicians were a minority in
early colleges. Now some 98 per cent of Europeans are to be disenfranchised from
becoming Commission President and members, simply because they wish to remain
impartial and non-political. The proposed system would disqualify Jean Monnet,
the first president of the Commission/High Authority and many others! How will
non-political Europeans in other professions: lawyers, academics, trades
unionists, businessmen or philosophers, react when the institutions eventually
explain their newly imposed exclusion to them?
rationale for this amendment that I have seen is that party politics are failing
to attract a good turnout at elections, as politicians are losing the respect of
the public. It will supposedly add controversy, and therefore interest. However,
politicians are often perceived as being dishonest. Will it help? Will
such political Ďreformersí soon require all officials, even Court judges, to
be chosen by party membership cards to boost voting stats?
The Commission was conceived to be an honest broker and arbiter. Making
the Commission a political reflection of the partisan majority in Parliament is
equivalent to insisting a football referee be a paid-up member of a football
club. It is extremely shortsighted to mix up an impartial, supranational
democratic Commission with national parliamentary systems.
it was made clear in the European Parliament last week that the Parliament will no
longer be able to dismiss the Commission for serious misconduct or
corruption. This endangers not only anti-cartel action but European democracy
this political distortion of the Commission, as unsackable and restricted to the
nominees of political party machines, creates an open invitation to powerful
cartels, multinationals and international sovereign funds countries to
corrupt the party machines themselves. The unwise reform amendments could
subjugate Europe to a non-democratic, external oligarchy.
herewith enclosing a copy of my letter to the President of the European
Parliament, which explains this danger.
be grateful if I could receive answers to the following questions:
former Commission official, I look to the Commission as guardian of the treaties
to defend its fundamental role of impartiality in the Community system and
defend the interests of all Europeans.
Annex: Letter to Mr Poettering, EP, Intelligent Treaty Guide
Back to Welcome page