Sunday, 30 June 2013

Greek translation of the open letter

I'm glad that the number of translations of the open letter are growing.

The latest translation is in Greek and you can read if hear

The open letter have been translated into the following languages.


A Spanish and Romanian translation is on the way.

Feel free to publish and spread the open letter.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Quotes from Letter NO 2. European federalist papers

To the paper

I'm just gonna give you some educational quotes from letter NO 2. No need for comments.

Quote 1.

"Every resident is, within his own house, sovereign with respect to the way in which he or she wishes to live: with or without a carpet, with a couch or camping furniture, sleeping until noon each day, deciding on whether or not to follow a vegetarian diet, whether or not to give the children a Christian education et cetera. However, the care of the roof of the building, the maintenance of the elevators, the heating, the water and the cleaning of the stairwell, are all matters of common interest. The individual occupant cannot and is not expected to deal with these common aspects. For the costs of these, an amount (service costs) is charged, managed by a board, elected by all owners, deciding on the implementation of the common interests. The same is true of any changes in the set of powers of that board. No hierarchy: the board has nothing to do with what you do within your own home. In essence, this reflects a federal organization."

Quote 2.

"The intergovernmental system is hierarchical. That system prescribes – so to speak – that everyone should have a shower at 08.00 o’clock, for no longer than five minutes, and have a vegetarian meal every Monday."

Quote 3.

"It takes only one incompetent politician/professor/journalist to associate ‘Federation’ with ‘Superstate’, for the trouble to start."

Comment on paper No 1 European federalist papers.

To the paper

"If you have to cut down on your national agenda in favor of a greater general interest, you always return home as a loser."

What could be more true in European politics today?

Our national leaders are so depended on scoring short term points to get a head in the national polls, that the common good of the people often are neglected or comes, second hand.

How could it come to this? Our union was created for our common good. Not so one could say, I'm the winner. 
The author blames the system of intergouvermentalism. I agree!

Intergouvermentalism is a system that long ago got outrunned by the  growing European integration. It's a governing system that lost every connection with the citizens and therefore have no accountability.

The crisis that still hunts the people of Europe, have in a scary way made it clear just how inefficient and out of touch this system is.

"The European Union is being eaten away from within. And that is caused by the actual structure of the intergovernmental system."

Once again I agree!

The system creates more division then unity. Us and them mentality, that only creates short term winners and long term losers.

No one could imagine there member state being governed with a similar system for obvious reasons.

"As a result, we now have in the European Union no fewer than four persons who may argue that they are President of the European Union: the President of the European Parliament, the interim President of the European Union, the President of the European Commission and the President of the European Council. Who could ever create a situation like that? What organization can cope with this?"

This quote says it all!

Can anyone of these presidents be held accountable? Who answers to the people?

We need Europe, Europe needs us, the people!
It's about time that we demand and build a system where the power comes from the people.

Portuguese translation of citizens open letter

Carta aberta para o Presidente da Comissão Europeia; Presidente do Conselho Europeu e para o Presidente do Parlamento Europeu Exmos.

Senhores José Manuel Barroso, Herman Van Rompuy, Martin Schulz

Estamos profundamente preocupados com o futuro da Europa. A contínua crise política, económica e social está uma vez mais a colocar a união do continente em risco. As consecutivas falhas nos projetos anticrise têm feito aumentar o nível de desconfiança das instituições da União entre os próprios cidadãos. O populismo e nacionalismo continuam também a aumentar em todos os estados-membros, assim como também erguem-se fortes vozes partidárias que defendem o fim da nossa União. Estamos claramente perante um desenvolvimento muito perigoso.

Com a crise temos vindo também a assistir a um crescimento de organizações na Europa. Criadas pelos seus cidadãos, essas organizações estão a trabalhar para uma Europa mais democrática, mais forte e mais solidária. Através diferentes iniciativas, fóruns, debates e campanhas de informação, as organizações querem fazer aumentar a participação das pessoas na construção de uma Europa para os cidadãos.

Estamos orgulhosos com o que a Europa conseguiu atingir ao fim de 60 anos, mas também vemos que o sistema intergovernamental não consegue dar resposta aos desafios de uma Europa moderna. Como consequência, este sistema tem gerado um afastamento entre os governos e as populações. Os cidadãos estão à procura de diferentes alternativas a este sistema. Procuram uma maior participação, responsabilidade e democracia. O défice democrático que frequentemente tem atormentado a União Europeia não pode ser mais tolerado.

A crise deixou claro que nós devemos salvar a Europa, precisamos de reconstruir e reformar a Europa, não apenas economicamente mas também a nível politico e social.

É como estivéssemos prestes a escolher um caminho. O caminho que vamos escolher, afetará muitas gerações futuras. Estamos a enfrentar sem dúvida, o maior desafio para uma Europa unida.

A Europa está a caminhar para uma federação ou teremos uma desintegração. Uma desintegração na Europa levaria a uma nova Era de divisões e crises que nenhum de nós gostaria de viver, ou então deixar passar para as próximas gerações. Cada vez mais os cidadãos veem uma Europa Federal como a mais pragmática, assim como uma solução de longo prazo. A questão que se coloca é se essa mesma federação deve ter como base os seus cidadãos ou os seus estados-membros?

Esta carta reflete a forte convicção de um grupo de cidadãos Europeus de vários estados-membros e convidamos V. Ex.ª Presidente José Manuel Barroso; Presidente Herman Van Rompuy e Presidente Martin Schulz para promover uma nova fase de reforma na União Europeia focada numa federação democrática para os cidadãos.

Por uma Europa na qual todos nós queremos viver

União Europeia 2013 06 26

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

A comment on European federalist papers and the draft for a federal constitution

The European federal letters are arguably one of the most important initiatives in the European debate and presents important ideas for democratisation and the federalisation of the modern Europe.
Another important factor is that the letters, the writers and the readers are ordinary citizens.

I will in a series of posts comment on the letters and in some cases share constructive criticism to create debate.

In this post I look at a paragraph from the draft of the Federal Constitution.

Section 2, second paragraph:

"Eligible are those who have reached the age of thirty years and are registered as Citizen of a State of the Federation during at least seven years"

In this section I get stuck at the age limit, which the authors suggest to be 30 years to be eligible  to the Assembly.

What is the problem?

1. I believe that the right to vote and the possibility to be elected  should not be separated.

2. The elected Assembly should represent the entire voting population, regardless of age, sex, religion, etc.

3. Discrimination cannot be accepted by principle.

4. The strength in diversity also applies in this case.

I would like a serious debate regarding this issue and I await comments from the author(s).

German translation of the citizens open letter

Liebe Präsidenten,

Wir sind tief besorgt über die Zukunft von Europas.

Die andauernde politische, soziale und ökonomische Krise droht den Kontinent abermals zu spalten.

Unter der Europäischen Bevölkerung hat die Krise angesichts einer wenig überzeugenden Krisenpolitik einen dramatischen Vertrauensverlust verursacht. Populismus und Nationalismus in allen Mitgliedsstaaten sind auf dem Vormarsch und politisch einflussreiche Stimmen treten offen für die Teilung der EU ein.

Das ist eine sehr bedrohliche Entwicklung!

Gleichzeitig hat die Krise zur Gründung diverser Organisationen engagierter Bürger geführt, die ein demokratischeres, stärkeres, und solidarisches Europa fordern. Diese Organisationen und Individuen haben verschiedene Initiativen ins Leben gerufen, Räume für Debatten und Informationen geschaffen und Kampagnen geführt, um die Partizipation von Bürgern beim Bau der Zukunft Europas zu stärken.

Die Errungenschaften Europas in den letzten 60 Jahren sind eine großartige Leistung. Dennoch stellen wir fest, das zwischenstaatliche System ist nicht mehr in der Lage, den Anforderungen des modernen Europas gerecht zu werden. Zudem erzeugen die steilen Hierarchien dieses Systems eine große Lücke zwischen Entscheidungsträgern und Bürgern. Die Bevölkerung suchen nach einer Alternative für dieses auf mehrere Ebenen verteilte System.

Das demokratische Defizit, der immer-währende Makel der EU wollen wir nicht länger tolerieren. Die Krise hat sehr deutlich gemacht, dass Europa nur durch eine Neuaufstellung und Reformen gerettet werden kann - nicht nur ökonomisch, sondern auch  politisch und in Fragen gesellschaftlicher Solidarität.

Wir stehen an einem Scheitelpunkt. Der Weg, den wir gehen, wird viele Generationen beeinträchtigen. Ohne Zweifel ist dies die größte Herausforderung, mit der das vereinigte Europa bisher konfrontiert wurde. Europa bewegt sich auf eine Föderation oder ein Auseinander-Brechen zu. Letzteres würde wahrscheinlich zu einer neuen Ära der Abgrenzungen und Krisen führen, die niemand von uns erleben oder unseren Kindern überlassen will.

Eine wachsende Zahl von Bürgern sieht in einem föderalen Europa  die beste pragmatische und langfristige Lösung für Europa. Die Frage ist, soll diese Föderation auf seinen Bürgern oder Nationalstaaten beruhen?

Dieser Brief gibt die starke Überzeugung einer Gruppe von Bürgern aus vielen Mitgliedstaaten wieder und läd Sie, Kommissions-Präsident José Manuel Barroso, Rats-Präsident Herman Van Rumpoy und Parlaments-Präsident Martin Schulz ein, ein neues Kapitel der Reformpolitik in der Europäischen Union hin zu einer demokratischen Föderation aufzuschlagen!

Für ein Europa, in dem wir Leben wollen.

EU, der 12.06.2013

Translated by Charian Grundmann

Friday, 21 June 2013

Translations of the open letter

A Portuguese translation of the open letter to the presidents of the EU bodies will soon be published.

Are you willing to translate the document to any European language? Please contact me via mail. Read the letter in English

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Translations of the open letter

The first translation of the open letter to the presidents of the EU bodies have just bean published in Italian.

Are you a concernd citizen who strongly believe that Europe needs change and are willing to translate the letter in to any of the official languages of Europe? If so, please mail me on mathias.darmell (at)

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Open letter

Open letter to the President of the European Commission, the President of the European Council and the President of the European Parliament

Dear Presidents José Manuel Barroso Herman van Rompuy Martin Schulz

We are deeply concerned about the future of Europe.
The ongoing political, social and economic crisis is once again threatening to divide the continent. The failure to effectively handle the crisis has created a great mistrust towards the institutions of the union among its own citizens. Populism and nationalism are on the rise in all members-states and there are in the wake of the crisis strong political voices who openly advocate for the breakup of our union. This is a very dangerous development!

The crisis has also led to the creation of a number of organizations of engaged citizens advocating for a more democratic, stronger and solidary Europe. These organization and individuals are taking different initiatives and are creating forums for debate, information and campaign to strengthen citizens’ participation in building the future Europe of citizens.

We are all very proud of what Europe has accomplished over the last 60 years, but we also see that the intergovernmental system no longer can meet the challenges of modern Europe. This system also has a top down approach which creates a great gap between leaders and citizens. Citizens are looking for alternatives to this tiered system. They seek participation, democracy and accountability. The democratic deficit that chronically afflicts the European Union is no longer tolerated.

The crisis has made it very clear, if we shall save Europe we need to rebuild and reform Europe, not only economically, but also socially and politically. We are standing at a crossroad. The way we are going to choose will affect many generations to come. This is without a doubt the biggest challenge that united Europe have faced.

Europe is moving towards a federation or a breakup. A breakup would most likely move Europe towards a new era of divisions and crises that none of us want to experience or leave as a legacy to our children and grandchildren. An increasing number of citizens see a Federal Europe as the most pragmatic, long term solution for Europe. The question is, shall that federation be based on the foundation of citizens or on nation-states?

This letter reflects the strong conviction of a group of European citizens from many member states and invites you, President José Manuel Barroso, President Herman Van Rompuy and President Martin Schulz to promote a new phase of reform of the European Union towards a democratic federation of citizens.

For a Europe we all want to live in

European Union 2013 06 12
Mathias Darmell, Hans Mund, Leo Kliniker, Matteo Laruffa, Bernard Barthalay, Horatiu Ferchiu, Ralf Grahn. Matteo Adduci, Andrea Canil

Sunday, 9 June 2013

The crisis is not over

The French president (not the European president) just made a statement, saying that the European crisis is over. I don't agree!

Maybe the banks and financial markets are saved for now, but what about the people?

Here's is why the crisis is not over.

1. Youth unemployment
2. The lack of citizens participation
3. The democratic deficit
4. Where is the growth
5.Nationalism and undemocratic forces are on the rise all over Europe

This are all areas that must be solved before we can pretend that the crisis is over.

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Training in EU democracy

A Swedish school class of 17 year olds along with 440 other students from Europe won a trip to the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The purpose of the trip was to learn about Parliament's work and function.
Students tried out for a day what it's like to be a parliamentarian. They got in mixed groups to submit proposals which they then voted on.
Some issues that were voted on and passed was that Europe would form a federation, that Europe would adopt a common school system and that all exemptions should be abolished.

This is a prime example of training in European democracy. All students may not be able to go to the European Parliament but the idea can be implemented in any school, anywhere in Europe.

A common European school system is probably some distance away but to introduce a European 'democracy' day in all European schools each year for this kind of training would be fully realistic and vary useful.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

There's nothing wrong with a little bit of patriotism

I am a patriot, a European patriot.

I'm very proud of what Europe have accomplished after WWII.
I'm proud of Europes diversity.
I'm proud of Europes ambitions.
I'm proud of the peoples fight against tyrants at home and abroad.
I'm proud of Europes integration.
I'm proud of Europes influence and reputation in the world.
I'm proud over our charter of fundamental rights.

I'm proud over our common foundation that we are building our house on.
I'm proud of the future we are creating for our children.

There's nothing wrong with a little bit of patriotism, for as long as it doesn't blind you.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Eurosceptics biggest fear

American Steven Hill writes a great article about the democracy deficit in the EU.
One piece especially captivated me.
"Many of the ‘less Europe’ critics of the democracy deficit are scared to death that European governance actually might become more democratic, since that would confer greater legitimacy, and what they really want is for each European country to retreat further inside its own castle walls."
It confirms my own experience and the feelings I have from my debates with Eurosceptics.
There 'arguments' are very seldom constructive. They lay all there energy on what is bad and on what needs to be dismantled. Eurosceptics often use very strong words, just to be extra clear that there message comes across.
In lack of arguments many sceptics turn to comparing EU with Nazi Germany or the Soviets.
My experience from debates in social media, tells me that most Eurosceptics are more interested in the romantic picture of a nation state, that no longer exists, then about pragmatic solutions and the common good of the people.
To quote my self: Nation states are about what's good for the nation. Federalism is about the common good of the people.
A rather provocative assertion that Eurosceptics to often confirm in debate.

Monday, 3 June 2013

I strongly recommend this post by JakUB

JakUB - Jakub's Universal Blog: Hitting the European nail on its head


To make peace where war rules and build stability where unrest reigns requires determination and your dreams

To build hope out of ruins and unity from dust and  blood from the streets requires your forgiveness

To show strength when you are week and give love when all you feel is hate requires a heart of empathy and your spirit

To feed the unknown when you are hungry and to comfort your old enemies when you shiver of fear requires your courage

You are my Europa

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Critical difference between critics

There are basically two different positions among "EU" critics. Those against integration all together and the reformist, democratic federalists.

Federalize and democratize for pragmatic integration

There are many pragmatic reasons to federalize and democratize  Europe. There are also many areas where it would be necessary to democratize if deeper integration should be thinkable at all.

As a euro federalist I strongly believe that integration must have a pragmatic and a democratic purpose and order. The integration area should be strengthened and citizens must gain a greater influence over policy by integrating the specific area.

Some examples of areas meeting these requirements is foreign policy, defence policy and migration policy.
(I will get back to why these areas would be pragmatic to integrate in a coming post.)

They are also examples of areas where integration would be impossible or unacceptable without a democratic European Government and a democratic Constitution.