Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Democracy & Citizenship

From 2005’s ‘Permissive Consensus’ to TTIP’s ‘Empowering Dissensus’: The EU as a Playing Field for Spanish Civil Society

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At a time when the EU is undergoing a number of crises, some seen as existential and provoking an upsurge in theorising on the disintegration of the EU, Luis Bouza and Alvaro Oleart offer intriguing reasons for suggesting there is room for more optimism. In a succinct summary of their larger article, recently published in JCER, […]

Pie in the sky Brexit

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This week Prime Minister, Theresa May, told the House of Commons Liaison Committee that the UK could have frictionless trade with the EU, without being in the Single Market or the EU customs union. SNP MP, Angus Brendan MacNeil, told the Prime Minister that her plans were “pie in the sky”. Not only is he […]

Getting to an end-state

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Let’s suppose my university likes talking about the future. They might do fancy powerpoint presentations, with artists’ impressions of shiny buildings and other infrastructure, together with charts showing How It’s All Going To Be Great. Looks wonderful, I might think. But how do we get there, I might also think. And then it might turn […]

The EU referendum must be annulled

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There are now calls for the EU referendum to be scrapped and run again. It follows the Electoral Commission’s ruling that Vote Leave, the official Brexit campaign group, significantly broke spending limit rules during the referendum. The group has been fined £61,000 by the electoral watchdog, which has also called for a criminal investigation. Former […]

Britain needs the EU Single Market – article and video

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More of Britain’s exports and imports go to and come from the EU Single Market than any other area in the world. It’s our most important, most lucrative, most vital international market for transacting business, upon which our country’s wealth depends. Nearly half of our exports go to the EU Single Market, and just over […]

It’s coming home to roost

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At times this week it’s been hard to tell whether the flapping sound one can hear is that of England trying to avoid the build-up of excessive expectations, or of hard Brexiters fanning the flames of their ire.* Since Friday’s Chequers meeting, numerous individuals have been working themselves up into states of apoplexy about things […]

Brexit is reversible

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Every day Brexiters tell us Remainers that we are undermining democracy by campaigning to reverse Brexit. ‘Are you going to campaign until you get the result you want?’ they ask us, with disdain. ‘Yes,’ is our answer. ‘That’s how democracy works.’ Our aim is not to undermine democracy, but to use the democratic process to […]

It’s time to bury Brexit

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The resignations of Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, and Brexit Secretary, David Davis, along with other government ministers, show that there is no real consensus on what Brexit means. There is a jagged oozing fissure right through the Conservative government and party, just as there is across the country, because Brexit is as enigmatic as ever. […]

The Conservative mode of making Brexit decisions

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Perhaps the most infuriating questions to ask a young child is “what you do what to be, when you grow up?” Well, I found it infuriating, at least. The question supposed that you knew what the options might – did I even know that ‘social media pundit’* was a thing back then? – and that […]

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