EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - European Council President Herman Van Rompuy has for the first time asked EU leaders to leave the dinning room if they wish to smoke.We can take it that such restrictions are along the lines of those demanded by the EU then, yes? You know, a blanket ban backed up by eye-watering fines for the individual and property owner, and perhaps even prison for transgression.
The EU's Justus Lipsius building where summits are held is usually a smoke-free zone, but leaders have traditionally been allowed to puff away over dinner. New restrictions were laid down on Thursday evening (24 March) however, as heads of state and government sat down to eat and discuss economic plans.
Not a bit of it.
"The president made a little joke about it, saying that leaders' work needs to be done well and asked for smoking breaks instead," he said.An agreement. That's it. These hideous federalists spend every waking hour dictating illiberal laws and business-strangling legislation to a population of over a billion, yet can't bring themselves to do the same when face to face with their chums.
"He asked the idea to be kept in mind, its not a rule, more a gentleman's agreement."
While other leaders quaffed Hungarian Gere Portugieser red wine, Denmark's Lars Lokke Rasmussen and Luxembourg's famously hard-smoking Jean-Claude Juncker were among the group of leaders to quietly slip out the dinning room door for a quick cigarette.Just out of the room, note. Not banished to a couple of plastic chairs underneath a ripped awning, at the foot of a fire escape, by the air conditioning exhaust duct.
Because these are special people. They pass laws, not follow them. For them is the comfy smoking lounge, as was the case at the G20 summit in London in 2009.
So, if you're an EU politician you can be trusted to come to an arrangement acceptable to all present, but if not you will have your property's policy decided for you by a bunch of rich (on your taxes), hypocritical, condescending bastards.
Gotcha. Can we leave yet?