On February the 23rd a fascinating meeting took place in the European Parliament. It was a joint meeting of two intergroups, the Federalism, represented by that man Jo Leinen, and the President of the Civil Liberties Committee in the Parliament Mr Jean-Marie Cavada, who was there in his role as President of the Intergroup the Press Comunication and Freedom.
The purpose of the meeting was;
What communication strategy? What role for the press?”
For some strange reason somebody has leaked me the minutes of the meeting and they make fascinating reading. Please understand that any direct quotes I make are translated through my own shaky comprehension of translators French.
Overall there seemed to be a growing feeling of panic. Leinen opened the meeting with an angry report,
“the Commission is hardly involved in the campaign for the Constitution whilst its opponents are very active. No marketing strategy has been suggested, we (the Parliament) must respond”.
The meeting was all sound an little action though this comment from Thijs Berman, a Dutch socialist was a little scary,
“Journalist should write many articles” he trilled “they must understand that to support rejection of the Constitution would cause catastrophic darkness on their credibility as journalists, so they should be assimilated as accomplices of the Establishment”.
It appears that the main deal is for the Parliament to involve itself more. Bully the Commission into acting and most importantly according to Leinen and Mendez de Vigo, it was felt that using football stars to publicise the Constitution rather than politicians was the way forward. To that end he suggested “getting UEFA on the side of the Constitution”.
The shining knights of federasts seem to be all of a dither. They have cash, but seem to be unable to spend it. They recognise that they, and even national governments are tainted by association. They want the Commission to act decisively, but fear that that too would be counter-productive. The only thing they seem to agree on is that the media need to do more. Nobody, not even the high faluting Cavada pointed out that it was the job of the media to question authority, not just do its bidding.