Bird song

RSPB Northern Ireland today published a piece urging people to vote in the EP elections. They’ve asked all local candidates their views on a number of environmental issues. An interesting piece of advocacy, I think, and one likely to resonate in the current climate – focussing on the “why” not the “who”.


Filed under European elections 2009

2 responses to “Bird song

  1. Antonia,
    I’m surprised at the RSPB. Why should a narrow interest animal protection organisation have a public opinion on EU elections? That’s completely off their brief. Will the RSPCA be canvassing in England? National Trust? Who else?
    Interestingly the RSPB notes that “90% of NI environment law comes from Brussels”. A bit more than the 9% odd you mentioned in an earler post.


    • antonia

      Why shouldn’t they? I would say that it’s more democratic to ask those standing for an election where they are on something of importance to you and allow people to vote on that basis than to have the lobbying done behind closed doors when the voting is done. Brussels is full of representatives of single interest organisations who want to make sure their voice is heard in the legislative process, so why shouldn’t they make their views clear in the voting process?

      The 9% was from the House of Commons and was part ofreply to an assertion that 80% of laws that affect us on a daily basis come from Brussels. I would say it probably is more than that, because the House of Commons research didn’t include Regulations with direct effect. And of course I wouldn’t dispute that the level of regulation is much higher than average in business and environment. I just can’t get with the “cradle to grave, morning to night” idea that some people are putting around. If you go to party conferences, you search in vain for discussions on issues of European interest. Because what really interests people are day-to-day issues like health, education, social care, housing and there’s very little “Europe” there on a day-to-day basis.

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