"Britain is the country that exported Parliamentary democracy to the world. Do the British people consider Parliament the backdoor?
"Do the British people who killed their king to protect the rights of Parliament consider it the back door?
"Is that the respect some people show their Parliament , maybe the greatest Parliament in the world? I don't consider Parliament the back door."
All of this is true, but it has been shown on subsequent occasions that the British, when roused, will do some pretty amazing things, against all the odds, when they perceive themselves threatened; we can be amazingly stubborn when pushed too hard. Barroso's attempt at the smarmiest form of flattery is wasted on me and I hope very sincerely on both Blair and Brown. Even for someone as pro-EU as me, albeit opposed to our ratification of the EU Constitutional Treaty as originally agreed (as the development of my views is illustrated by a few of the posts I have written, here and here and here) and who would have voted against it if a referendum had been held (just as a majority of French and Dutch voters chose to do in their referenda), I feel pretty irritated that some jumped-up appointed EU official (unelected by anyone) should presume to tell the UK how it should deal with its own democratic institutions and its own future. I remain basically pro-EU, but Barroso needs to butt out of our internal affairs and not get 'ideas above his station'! We'll deal with our own government in due course if they make the wrong decision (and agree to Merkel/Sarkozy's attempted stitch-up) and choose not to allow the British people a referendum to ratify what they do if they allow themselves to be rail-roaded this weekend.