The people really are stupid. Well at least that is what our Government in Brussels thinks of us. Jens-Peter Bonde MEP, Co-President of the Ind/Dem Group in the European Parliament happened to be in the room as the Heads of Government signed the Treaty of Lisbon (that is apart from Macavity Brown of course).
Next to him was one of the functionaries who drew up the Lisbon Treaty. This fellow was unaware of the political sympathies of Mr Bonde and was disarmingly dishonest. At one point he chuckled and said,
"You know how we made the Treaty smaller than the Constitution?"....
"We changed the font size..Hah ha, so the Treaty is now truly shorter than the Constitution".
I checked this, and having gone to the Council website I can say that this is not entirely true. They did not change the font size; they changed the line spacing. So here is Exhibit one, from the Constitution of 2004, p.11
And here is the same text in the Treaty p.12
So I checked a couple of other things, like the word count of the two documents. The Constitution comes in at 67,850 words, and the Treaty 76,250, a full 8,500 words longer. And the page total?
The Constitution has 349 pages and the Treaty has 287.
So it stands to reason that, despite being 8,500 words longer the Treaty is 62 pages shorter and is therefore the much vaunted Mini-Treaty so beloved of Mr Sarkozy.