In September 1993 the EEC transposed itself into a European Union. This change came about because the European Community is a Dynamic Organisation: likely to go on changing its size (membership) and focus of intention and objectives.

THE SOCIAL CHAPTER

The FDP's view of a future Europe must be of a Community founded in democracy, committed to human rights and freedom for all, working together for economic prosperity for all its citizens, and determined to play our part in building a true European Union of all its peoples: by this means we can promote a world of democratic social responsibility, demonstrating particularly the care and consideration of our under privileged and weaker brethren.

Founded in democracy is the fundamental phrase here: EU commisioners (the power brokers of the EU) are appointed by the individual governments without reference to the people. Self evidently this is un- democratec. The FDP would require EU commisioners to be elected by a postal ballot ofall electors on the electoral roll that are so interested and so disposed to vote.    

We must now devise a strategy, and build a partnership with other socially responsible parties within Europe to demonstrate the advantages and strengths of an equitable social society.

It is for such reasons that the FDP advocates that inter­ Parliamentary Exchange Committees should be established. To that end we would add the introduction of Westminster style Question Time to interrogate the council and the commissioners. From now on we must demand and demonstrate clear decision making procedures and identify the individuals responsible for such decisions.

This will not only stop a lot of the damn fool Regulations on, for example "Straight Cucumbers" coming out of Brussels, but it will draw the countries of the Community closer to a common understanding, which is what is needed for a "Union" but is presently sadly lacking.

The Tories elected to opt-out of the Social Chapter. This underlines their indifference to the rights of ordinary people, and their total disregard for the conditions and livelihood of the ordinary worker. This is exemplified by their vicious decision to abolish wages councils - the only defence at that time for low paid workers from exploitation.

The FDP Party must stand alongside its European partners and pronounce: "We are proud of our working people, at whatever employment status, and we intend to treat them, as all other Europeans, with the respect and dignity they deserve".

The second most important objective is to take Government closer to the people, in concert with the peoples of Europe. If we stay aloof the Europeans will leave us out of the reckoning for future Plans. Ultimately, this could result in defensive sanctions against Britain. In this connection, UK commissioners must also submit themselves to quarterly UK parliament question time interrogation. 

It is significant to note that the Social Chapter contained nothing about imposed costs or minimum wages. It actually stated at Paragraph 6, "The provisions of this Article shall not apply to pay, the right of association, the right to strike or the right to impose lock-outs." It does declare in respect of Article 4(2) that agreements between Management and Labour shall be "by collective bargaining". Such is, of course, anathema to the Tories, and is why they lied about it. But, no government would get away with such deception in the future if we had the inter-Parliamentary Committee Hearings previously referred to. Not only that, the world's greatest competitor these days, the Japanese (when written) insist upon and thrive upon collective bargaining. They actually introduced minimum wages in 1968: they agreed to settle these by mutual agreement in 1985: Industry Sector by Sector. Also, don't forget, MP's are on a minimum wage.

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Last Updated (Friday, 14 May 2010 11:15)

 
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