|Sisyphus (1548–49) by Titian|
According to the author, the outcome of the next treaty change should be a democratic federation, composed of states and citizens. But paradoxically this Duffian federation has the form of an international treaty, is founded by the states and operates mostly on the states. States can unilaterally secede from it, so in fact it is not a federation at all and strongly contrasts with the idea of a federal republic created by the people. With all respect, I have no idea why Mr. Duff associates the adjective federal with it. If someone knows better and spots an error on my side, I'd love to be educated by them in this matter. If I may, for the time being, I'd also like to suggest a more fitting adjective that would have raised no eyebrows: confederal.
If one takes an intergovernmental treaty and applies some heavy lifting, streamlining, renaming and tinkering to it, but does not change the confederal substance, he will not arrive at a federation, but at a more integrated intergovernmental treaty. Calling things federal when they aren't does not make them any more federal. It's like if Mr. Duff could not liberate himself in his writing from the confines of what he knows best: the institutional order of the present European Union.
Proponents of this idea are therefore sometimes reminiscent of little industrious creatures that live in a one-dimensional world, honest in their intentions and sincere in their efforts, but nevertheless completely ignorant of the other dimensions. They can move in either direction on the axis also known as the European integration, so they move forward, hoping to find the European political sweetspot in front of them. Interestingly enough, the Eurosceptics are the same kind of creatures, only moving in the opposite direction. Unfortunately, neither of them is able to find the sweetspot, because it is not situated on the axis. In order to reach that point, they need to become aware of the other dimensions and take a bold, discrete step aside. A step towards thinking from the citizens and a real federal organization.