After months of statements and preparations, the European Council - wasting days, nights and energy - reached a compromise on the British requests for "reform" enabling David Cameron to start his campaign towards the IN/OUT Referendum on 23 June. It was - sofar - an irresponsible waste of time on a non-issue (to write in Eurospeak). After all, Britain entered the EU on January 1st. 1973, participated in and adhered to all the EU Treaties concluded since (see my earlier item ''Somewhere in London").It isdubious local politics, to call for a referendum as if Britain is still free to decide whether or not to BECOME a member; and to burden the EU and its other 27 members with an issue of local politics.
The laborious compromise reached according to the attached Conclusions of the European Council, is unlikely to be read by the majority of the British voters. On may hope that the majority of British voters is blessed with more wisdom than their Prime Minister or the London Major. Reforms in the EU are called for, but not under threat of one member's exit. Called for in 2013, such threat has blocked progress on reform and will continue to do so at least until after the referendum.
What David Cameron's real problem - in addition to local politics - is, that he wants Britain to withdraw from its basic committments to European Unification. Just read Section C of Annex 1 in the Council Document to understand Cameron's unconstitutional request. How to defend his thesis that Britain's specific situation no longer commits Britain to the fundamental purposes of the EU? The recognition of that thesis by the other 27 is no less than the political acceptance of treaty violation by one of its members. When members are allowed to opt-out of the fundamental purposes of Reconciliation Solidarity and Unity, the outcome can be most tragic. A Union in which member states want to reap the benefits and refuse the responsibility for strengthening it, is doomed to disintegration and failure.
With the IN/OUT Referendum, David Cameron is acting irresponsibly, wasting time and energy, and risking tragic failure for Britain and Europe.