[LEAPSECS] ITU-R SG7 to consider UTC on October 4

Michael Deckers michael.deckers at yahoo.com
Tue Aug 10 16:57:58 EDT 2010

On 2010-08-09 22:17, Poul-Henning Kamp wrote:

> In message<4C607952.2090301 at yahoo.com>, Michael Deckers writes:

> > I am confused: there is no time scale specified in the Danish law

> > quoted. Do you mean that the reference in the footnote is supposed

> > to include the Danish text of a European Directive into Danish law,

> > without even explicitly quoting it?


> Yes.

This I find very hard to believe. I do not think this would be
possible in English or German law: if prior written law was
superseded it had to be revoked or changed explicitly, paragraph
by paragraph.

> I have personally helped installed TCP/IP on all computers in the

> European Parliament in an earlier job. I met a LOT of the translators

> back then. I can tell you that a detail like the proper name for

> a timescale does not even register on their radar.


> So yes, I will argue that the directive specifies that all countries

> in EU change summertime at the same exact instant and that this

> is defined on the UTC timescale, which people call all sorts of

> different crap for historical, and in the case of GMT, hysterical,

> reasons.


> I can absolutely guarantee you, that if your argument is that

> the directive does _not_ say they should switch the same instant,

> you will have absolutely no traction in the EU-mindset, which

> is hell-bent on unifying the countries to a degree you can not

> even begin to fathom.

I can see what the European Directive says, regardless of the
mindset of European bureaucrats. The Directive is not clear
about the time scale, and not just because of your description
I think that if these bureaucrats really had intended to
prescribe UTC then they would have succeeded in doing so.
They didn't.

As it stands, the Directive says the time of switches to and from
summer time is 01 o'clock GMT or UT or WT or UTC, or whatever the
time base is. As you have remarked above, the translation of
the Directive is sloppy about that time scale (which is not too
bad because a European Directive is not by itself law anywhere
in the world).

For instance, in German, the EU Directive says "world time",
but the base for legal time in Germany is UTC, and in Austria
it is GMT. Both countries have their summer time law adjusted
to the Directive, but without incorporating or referencing
the text of the Directive, and without changing their base
for legal time.

Michael Deckers.

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