Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Why don't pro-Europeans mobilise?

This Tuesday, while most of us where thinking of other things, I was at the Social Market Foundation, talking about Brexit and euroscepticism. In the course of questions at the end, I was asked whether British pro-Europeans displayed the same range and variety of positions as sceptics, to which I noted mobilisation hadn’t really happened. A […]

David Davis doesn't understand negotiating or the EU

Brexit Secretary, David Davis, has said that Britain won’t hold ANY Brexit talks unless the EU drops its demands for €100bn in payments it claims are due. It’s now more than likely that Britain will leave the EU without any agreement in place, which of course will be disastrous. Unfortunately, David Davis has shown he […]

France 2017: The end of ridicule?

For over forty years, since Maurice Duverger coined the expression in 1974, ‘The Republican monarchy’ has no doubt been the most frequently used metaphor for the Fifth Republic. In countless books, essays and articles, the presidential system and all its corollaries –power, pomp and protocol – have been portrayed as a legacy of pre-Revolutionary, absolute […]

Latest posts from all blogs

Why don't pro-Europeans mobilise?

PoliticsatSurrey, Simon Usherwood |

London_Brexit_pro-EU_protest_March_25_2017_31

This Tuesday, while most of us where thinking of other things, I was at the Social Market Foundation, talking about Brexit and euroscepticism. In the course of questions at the end, I was asked whether British pro-Europeans displayed the same range and variety of positions as sceptics, to which I noted mobilisation hadn’t really happened. A […]

David Davis doesn't understand negotiating or the EU

Jon Danzig |

David Davis does not understand

Brexit Secretary, David Davis, has said that Britain won’t hold ANY Brexit talks unless the EU drops its demands for €100bn in payments it claims are due. It’s now more than likely that Britain will leave the EU without any agreement in place, which of course will be disastrous. Unfortunately, David Davis has shown he […]

Tory hard Brexit puts two Unions at risk

Jon Danzig |

Tory tweet

This week the Conservative Party tweeted Theresa May’s statement: ‘Sturgeon’s plan to leave the UK – Scotland’s biggest market – would mean economic chaos.’ The Prime Minister doesn’t seem to get it, does she? Exactly the same arguments also apply to her plan to leave the EU as well as its Single Market – the UK’s […]

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How to be awkward in the European Union

PoliticsatSurrey, Simon Usherwood |

A bit of a quiet week this week: British politicians are launching their manifestos, Macron’s naming his first administration, Trump’s Trump. Rather than get sucking into the usual hot-take approach, I want to step back and think about the notion of awkwardness in the EU. The UK is, famously, the ‘awkward partner’ (in George’s phrase) […]

France 2017: The end of ridicule?

Albrecht Sonntag |

For over forty years, since Maurice Duverger coined the expression in 1974, ‘The Republican monarchy’ has no doubt been the most frequently used metaphor for the Fifth Republic. In countless books, essays and articles, the presidential system and all its corollaries –power, pomp and protocol – have been portrayed as a legacy of pre-Revolutionary, absolute […]

Two-faced Theresa

Jon Danzig |

Britain’s Prime Minister, Theresa May, has pledged to take the country out of the European Union. But before last year’s referendum on 23 June, Ms May was a firm advocate against Brexit and for Britain remaining in the EU. Can we trust a prime minister whose principles blow so easily in the wind? Is this […]

Brexit à la française

PoliticsatSurrey, Simon Usherwood |

As that wise old owl of eurosceptic theorising, Dr Richard North, once observed, there are no Brexit experts, for the simple that Brexit hasn’t happened. It’s good to be reminded of this from time to time, if only to reflect on the variety of opinion that’s out there. The past weeks have served up two fine […]

The troubled road to ever closer union

Saagar Dattani |

Earlier this year, leaders from the European Union (EU) gathered to mark the 60th anniversary of the 1957 Treaty of Rome, a treaty which first laid the foundations for an ever closer union – shaping the future of the EU in the process. In principal, the idea of ever closer union has never offered the […]

France 2017: Disruptive

Albrecht Sonntag |

Emmanuel Macron had no chance of winning the presidential election. Every textbook on French politics or contemporary history will tell you so. He had no chance, and he seized it. After his first large-scale rallies, in Strasbourg in October 2016 or in Paris in December, all serious commentators indulged in gentle mockery. Partly because his […]

May's rhetorical Brexit trap

PoliticsatSurrey, Simon Usherwood |

To say that the past week has been a poor one for Article 50 would be something of an understatement: the fall-out from last Wednesday’s ‘Brexit-supper‘ culminated yesterday with Theresa May holding a press conference in front of Number 10, claiming that some Europeans were deliberately interfering in the General Election. It would be easy […]

France 2017: The Bridges of May

Albrecht Sonntag |

It’s the first thing the French check out when they’re back from their summer holidays and ‘La Rentrée’ – that fateful moment when normal life resumes in early September – is looming again: on what day of the week will the national holidays fall in the forthcoming school year? 1st and 11th November (All Saints […]

The Brexit business exodus

jolyongumbrell |

One of the consequences of Brexit is that companies and organisations – which have head offices in the UK – are now looking to relocate their business premises to other European countries. Brexit is all about risk because the UK will be giving up the safety of the European Single Market, when the country finally […]

The recurring Brexit problem

PoliticsatSurrey, Simon Usherwood |

It is with more of a whimper than a bang that the first week of campaigning in the 2017 General Election begins. On the one side, a Prime Minister who feels herself to be in such a position of strength that she doesn’t need to explain herself or her plans. On the other, the other […]

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