How fitting. The unelected, unaccountable Minister for Europe, Lady Glenys Kinnock, has today thrown her weight behind Tony Blair becoming the unelected, unaccountable new EU President.
According to PA, she told the European Parliament in Strasbourg today:
"The UK Government is supporting Tony Blair's candidature for President of the Council (of EU governments)".
Asked if the prospect of being Europe's president had been discussed with Mr Blair, she said: "It is the Government's position. I am sure they would not do that without asking him."
It shows a blatent disregard for the Irish for the Government to be talking about grabbing the cushy new jobs in the Lisbon Treaty, before it has even been ratified. But this is also a reminder to the Irish, as they prepare to vote again, that the creation of a new EU President will substantially diminish the influence of smaller countries in Europe.
Under the existing system, each EU country gets to chair the EU and set the agenda for six months at a time. That is no small matter for a small country whose politicians tend not to secure the higher profile jobs in the other EU institutions.
It means that the democratically elected prime ministers and presidents of each country are able to be EU President on a rotating basis. Nobody is pretending that this system is ideal. But it seems a damn sight fairer and more democratic than simply handing the post, complete with enormous new salary, perks, pension and prestige for two and a half years at a time to an ex-leader who has fallen from grace in his or her own country, as will be case under Lisbon.
Nobody even knows what this uber-President is actually going to do, given the total ambiguity of the Lisbon Treaty. How will his role differ from the super new EU Foreign Minister's?
The Swedish EU Presidency have today had a novel idea. According to PA, the Presidency "has suggested drawing up a proper job description - and then seeing which available political figure best fits the bill."
A job description??! Radical!
This just proves that the idea for a President is mostly about giving the EU a symbolic, political figurehead to help propel its wild dreams about becoming a world superpower. Otherwise why has noone ever bothered with the details?
Tony Blair may well be well respected around the world, and a weighty character for meetings with Putin and Obama. But he is also yesterday's news - he has no democratic mandate at all - and neither will any of the other contenders for the post.
Not only that, but according to a Populus poll for the Times in May, 63% of British voters don't want Blair to be EU President. So Glenys Kinnock is completely out of touch with the British people - quelle surprise.