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Old 21.06.2014, 13:46
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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"The plan was criticised by the article's chief backers, the rightwing Swiss People's Party, who accused the government of deliberately provoking the EU with a hard line approach in the hope that its rejection might pave the way for a new vote."


I do not see how the government could find an approach that complies with the vote without provoking the EU.
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  #902  
Old 21.06.2014, 19:47
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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"The plan was criticised by the article's chief backers, the rightwing Swiss People's Party, who accused the government of deliberately provoking the EU with a hard line approach in the hope that its rejection might pave the way for a new vote."


I do not see how the government could find an approach that complies with the vote without provoking the EU.
Back when the alpeninitiative was accepted, they did manage to twist an initially sceptical eu over without being openly aggressive about it.

Admittedly, the stated goals were never achieved. But they managed to bring the eu from a "your demands are beyond the pale" position to "your core objective makes sense, and we actually want something similar"

But at the time we had a couple of bundesraete who were statesmen rather than puppets. Alas times have changed. The present lot are only a few steps short of apologizing that Switzerland decides things democratically.
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  #903  
Old 21.06.2014, 23:42
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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But at the time we had a couple of bundesraete who were statesmen rather than puppets. Alas times have changed. The present lot are only a few steps short of apologizing that Switzerland decides things democratically.
This has nothing to do with how we reach our decisions, we could come to our decisions by tossing a coin for all the EU cares. The only thing the EU is interested in is are we going to stick to the agreements we made and voted on or not. If we decide to break the agreements and go our own way, then we should not expect the EU to feel obliged to stick to the agreements either. But no doubt if and when that happens the removable of our preferential treatment under the agreement by the EU will be painted as retaliatory, rather than being the consequences of our own actions.

The other thing to recognise is that things have changed dramatically in the EU since the last time a round. Today any new agreement or amendment to an existing agreement requires not only the agreement of the Council of Ministers, but also EU Parliament and despite the recent election the parliament is still dominated by those who favour a more integrated EU. On the other hand for the EU to terminate the bilateral all that is required is a simple majority of the Council of Ministers.
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Old 23.06.2014, 20:47
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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On the other hand for the EU to terminate the bilateral all that is required is a simple majority of the Council of Ministers.
Are you sure about that?

According to this article it is not clear which method would be required to terminate the bilaterals from EU side. It is possible that the EU member countries have to decide this in unison. This would be difficult to achieve as GB, DE, AT, FR, IT and others might have interests in keeping the status quo.
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Old 23.06.2014, 20:57
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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Are you sure about that?

According to this article it is not clear which method would be required to terminate the bilaterals from EU side. It is possible that the EU member countries have to decide this in unison. This would be difficult to achieve as GB, DE, AT, FR, IT and others might have interests in keeping the status quo.
If it is true that Switzerland is unable to exit a previous agreement (for whatever reason) because certain EU countries won't let them, then Switzerland has already effectively signed away its sovereignty. At no point were the people informed or consulted over such a radical move. I would therefore assume it is illegal.

Similarly, if present or future applicants for EU membership come to realise because of this that their membership may under conditions be irreversible, they make think twice before signing up.
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  #906  
Old 23.06.2014, 21:02
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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If it is true that Switzerland is unable to exit a previous agreement (for whatever reason) because certain EU countries won't let them, then Switzerland has already effectively signed away its sovereignty. At no point were the people informed or consulted over such a radical move. I would therefore assume it is illegal.

Similarly, if present or future applicants for EU membership come to realise because of this that their membership may under conditions be irreversible, they make think twice before signing up.
No, I think this is a misunderstanding. Switzerland could always terminate the contracts. The question is: What is necessary for the EU to terminate them? And one option is that all EU countries would have to agree on that.
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  #907  
Old 24.06.2014, 12:41
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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If it is true that Switzerland is unable to exit a previous agreement (for whatever reason) because certain EU countries won't let them, then Switzerland has already effectively signed away its sovereignty. At no point were the people informed or consulted over such a radical move. I would therefore assume it is illegal.

Similarly, if present or future applicants for EU membership come to realise because of this that their membership may under conditions be irreversible, they make think twice before signing up.
Most of us wants the EU and most of us were very aware of the consequences.
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Old 24.06.2014, 12:47
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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No, I think this is a misunderstanding. Switzerland could always terminate the contracts. The question is: What is necessary for the EU to terminate them? And one option is that all EU countries would have to agree on that.
It is not unanimous anymore:

http://europa.eu/legislation_summari...ajority_en.htm
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Old 24.06.2014, 14:37
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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If it is true that Switzerland is unable to exit a previous agreement (for whatever reason) because certain EU countries won't let them, then Switzerland has already effectively signed away its sovereignty.
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Most of us want [to join] the EU and most of us were very aware of the consequences.
SteAlka, I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but who are "us"? The Swiss in the canton where you live, the Swiss members of EF, or a majority of Swiss in Switzerland? I doubt it was most citizens in Switzerland, because if it were I believe stronger efforts would have been made in Bern to join the European Union.
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Old 24.06.2014, 16:22
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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SteAlka, I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but who are "us"? The Swiss in the canton where you live, the Swiss members of EF, or a majority of Swiss in Switzerland? I doubt it was most citizens in Switzerland, because if it were I believe stronger efforts would have been made in Bern to join the European Union.
European people, I am Italian, most of the EU people were aware of what EU meant when we decided to put the efforts together. It was explained, voted, voted again, and accepted by the majority as something positive. Even now, the majority of the people in EU knows that the EU is something positive. It has its problems, but it does not imply it has to be thrown away.
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Old 24.06.2014, 17:06
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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SteAlka, I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but who are "us"? The Swiss in the canton where you live, the Swiss members of EF, or a majority of Swiss in Switzerland? I doubt it was most citizens in Switzerland, because if it were I believe stronger efforts would have been made in Bern to join the European Union.
There were several referendums where people could have made clear that they were against Europe but the majority of Swiss did not.
I agree there was no specific vote about joining the EU.
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Old 24.06.2014, 22:40
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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SteAlka, I hope you don't take this the wrong way, but who are "us"? The Swiss in the canton where you live, the Swiss members of EF, or a majority of Swiss in Switzerland? I doubt it was most citizens in Switzerland, because if it were I believe stronger efforts would have been made in Bern to join the European Union.

A majority of people in Switzerland do not (not yet) want to join the EU, but a majority is in favour of the Bilateral Process. Most of the votes about CH EU relations resulted in a clear pro EU position. No other European country voted more pro Europe than Switzerland.
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Old 24.06.2014, 23:09
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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There were several referendums where people could have made clear that they were against Europe but the majority of Swiss did not.
I agree there was no specific vote about joining the EU.
The referendum to join the EU was over 70% no. I think that's a majority.

Of course that was a while ago. I still think the majority of Swiss would vote no again today.
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Old 24.06.2014, 23:22
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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The referendum to join the EU was over 70% no. I think that's a majority.

Of course that was a while ago. I still think the majority of Swiss would vote no again today.
You mean the referendum on 4 March 2001: the federal popular initiative "yes to Europe!" (« Oui à l'Europe ! ») on opening accession negotiations is rejected by 76.8% of voters.

After that the climate on relations with Europe seemed to improve;
  • 5 June 2005: the Schengen Agreement and the Dublin Regulation are approved by 54.6% of voters.
  • 25 September 2005: the extension of the free movement of persons to the ten new members of the European Union is accepted by 56.0% of voters.
  • 26 November 2006: a cohesion contribution of one billion for the ten new member states of the European Union (Eastern Europe Cooperation Act) is approved by 53.4% of voters.
  • 8 February 2009: the extension of the free movement of persons to Bulgaria and Romania is approved by 53.4% of voters.
  • 17 June 2012: the federal popular initiative "international agreements: let the people speak!" (« Accords internationaux : la parole au peuple ! ») on requiring all international treaties to be approved in a referendum launched by the Campaign for an Independent and Neutral Switzerland is rejected by 75.3% of voters.

Then of course we had the vote that is the topic of this thread.
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Old 24.06.2014, 23:55
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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You mean the referendum on 4 March 2001: the federal popular initiative "yes to Europe!" (« Oui à l'Europe ! ») on opening accession negotiations is rejected by 76.8% of voters.

After that the climate on relations with Europe seemed to improve;
  • 5 June 2005: the Schengen Agreement and the Dublin Regulation are approved by 54.6% of voters.
  • 25 September 2005: the extension of the free movement of persons to the ten new members of the European Union is accepted by 56.0% of voters.
  • 26 November 2006: a cohesion contribution of one billion for the ten new member states of the European Union (Eastern Europe Cooperation Act) is approved by 53.4% of voters.
  • 8 February 2009: the extension of the free movement of persons to Bulgaria and Romania is approved by 53.4% of voters.
  • 17 June 2012: the federal popular initiative "international agreements: let the people speak!" (« Accords internationaux : la parole au peuple ! ») on requiring all international treaties to be approved in a referendum launched by the Campaign for an Independent and Neutral Switzerland is rejected by 75.3% of voters.

Then of course we had the vote that is the topic of this thread.
The Swiss want to work with the EU. But they don't want to be part of the EU. I think that's quite clear. I'd be very surprised if the vote would be any different today.
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Old 24.06.2014, 23:58
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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The referendum to join the EU was over 70% no. I think that's a majority.

Of course that was a while ago. I still think the majority of Swiss would vote no again today.
The proposal you mean meant
A) a full joining of the EU (would still be a no now)
B) a joining immediately (utterly stupid)

I well remember that I voted NO, exactly because I wanted to rescue to Bilaterals
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Old 25.06.2014, 00:06
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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The Swiss want to work with the EU. But they don't want to be part of the EU. I think that's quite clear. I'd be very surprised if the vote would be any different today.
the todays relationship Switzerland has towards the EU is no major difference than for a member state, for the common man i.e…

personally I didn't notice any major difference when Sweden back in the 90s joined the EU…sure there was a lot of speculations and propaganda (as here)…

The whole anti-EU hype in Switzerland is totally exaggerated, but somehow the Swiss tend to enjoy the good parts
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Old 25.06.2014, 18:32
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

Bundesrat just announced they will invest 4.4 Billion in research to replace the loss of EU funding; that was a higher cost than I expected, circa, a thousand per head for every man, woman and child here.

I hope they have savings in other areas to offset this

They claim this is the same as their planned contributions to the EU programs.

Will be good to see the details and to see if this is more or less than the hoped for EU grants in the period.

Newspapers claim this is less than was anticipated from the EU
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Old 28.06.2014, 12:02
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

The article I quoted was written this year, so the Lisbon treaty and it's consequences were for sure known by then. Additionally they consulted Christa Tobler a specialist for European Law. I read the glossary, but it sounds not very specific.

Are you 100% positive this applies to this case (IANAL)?


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You mean the referendum on 4 March 2001: the federal popular initiative "yes to Europe!" (« Oui à l'Europe ! ») on opening accession negotiations is rejected by 76.8% of voters.

After that the climate on relations with Europe seemed to improve;
  • 5 June 2005: the Schengen Agreement and the Dublin Regulation are approved by 54.6% of voters.
  • 25 September 2005: the extension of the free movement of persons to the ten new members of the European Union is accepted by 56.0% of voters.
  • 26 November 2006: a cohesion contribution of one billion for the ten new member states of the European Union (Eastern Europe Cooperation Act) is approved by 53.4% of voters.
  • 8 February 2009: the extension of the free movement of persons to Bulgaria and Romania is approved by 53.4% of voters.
  • 17 June 2012: the federal popular initiative "international agreements: let the people speak!" (« Accords internationaux : la parole au peuple ! ») on requiring all international treaties to be approved in a referendum launched by the Campaign for an Independent and Neutral Switzerland is rejected by 75.3% of voters.

Then of course we had the vote that is the topic of this thread.
I think it is very clear that the Swiss want to have good relationships with the EU. No one questions that and even post-Masseneinwanderungsinitiative-surveys show this. 74% are in favour of the bilaterals.

The question is regarding joining the EU and frankly I know hardly anyone who would still like to join the EU. Most of the people I know who wanted to join the EU in 90s changed their mind by now, no matter if SP, CVP, FDP or SVP member/symphatiser.

According to a survey from 2012 11,5% of Swiss still wanted to join the EU and actually I am surprised they are still that many. It has become clear in the last 20 years that the Swiss democratic system is incompatible with the EU system and I literally know nobody who wants to give up that. A few of the people I know are in favour of the EU, but think we can somehow keep our system. But the vast majority does not want to exchange half-direct democracy for this implementation of an European Union with, what can only be called, a simulation of a representative democratic system.


Good relationships with the EU? Very important. Joining? Hell no.
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Old 28.06.2014, 12:06
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Re: Repercussions of Vote Already Starting...

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Bundesrat just announced they will invest 4.4 Billion in research to replace the loss of EU funding; that was a higher cost than I expected, circa, a thousand per head for every man, woman and child here.
There are only four million people in CH?

500/head is the correct number, and that's over 7 years, so 70/head/year.

Tom
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