Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Current Affairs

High- and low-stress holding models

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A while back I wrote about the UK’s approach to the Withdrawal Agreement (WA) and Trade & Cooperation Agreement (TCA), arguing that this was driven by a lack of strategic intent, resulting in constant efforts to keep things up in the air. In so doing, the UK aims to avoid falling into any settled pattern […]

The news changed and we got Brexit

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Brexit used to sit on the far side lines of politics. Indeed, the word ‘Brexit’ was only invented in 2012, and until the referendum, most people didn’t know what it meant. (Now it’s in the Oxford English dictionary.) Prior to 2011, tabloids such as the Daily Mail and Daily Express were more fixated on false […]

WA/TCA Committee Tracker, November 2021

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As part of this blog’s ongoing monitoring of the two treaties, we regularly produce a tracker of meetings of the various bodies that they have set up. These trackers are useful at a number of levels. Firstly, the level of overall activity provides an indication of the vibrancy of the treaty and the extent to […]

What they want: The end of the EU

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They want to see the end of the EU altogether. That’s been the aim of prominent Brexiters from the start. And it’s certainly the aim of the guy who started Brexit: former UKIP leader and MEP, and now President of the Reform Party, previously the Brexit Party, Nigel Farage. In September 2017, Mr Farage received […]

The party’s over

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Only the Tories can now save Britain from the Tories. That may seem a strange thing to say, but even Tories know when things have gone too far. The Conservatives have dominated the 19th, 20th and, so far, the 21st centuries. Since the 1830s, the Conservatives have been in the business of winning. They are […]

Telegraph spreads nonsense about the EU

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Former Conservative MEP, Daniel Hannan, has penned an article for The Telegraph with the headline: ‘Poland is learning, as Britain did, that the  EU will never let its members be sovereign’ What nonsense. The EU is not a foreign power lording over the members. The EU IS the members. All EU laws and treaties are […]

Making sense of the UK’s approach to the Protocol

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Just a short post this week, since I already wrote about this in a Twitter thread earlier in the week: The thread was an attempt to make sense of what the UK is doing and whether it might work. As you’ll see, I’m not that confident that it will. Conversations with people on both sides […]

BBC Question Time fails to answer my questions

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On last week’s BBC Question Time (7 October) host Fiona Bruce announced: “The majority of you voted FOR Brexit in this audience.” She explained: “We select this audience very carefully to be representative”. Her response came after a comment from a member of the audience who said: “We’ve got a lack of foreign workers which […]

Reworking the Protocol, or just trying to make it work?

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This week has seen the full return of the Ireland/Northern Ireland Protocol to political agendas, after a lull during the UK’s party political conference season. Last night saw the publication of the Commission’s extensive proposals on enabling the implementation of the Protocol, following much consultation both within the EU member states and with Northern Irish […]

November 14th 2012: “European Day of Action and Solidarity” or “Day of Rage”?

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by Cláudia Araújo This article is based on research presented at the UACES Graduate Forum Research Conference 2021 (17-18 June, online)   Writing a blog post about November 14th 2012 may seem like a delayed reaction after almost 9 years, but this day was central in my choice of a theme for a doctoral dissertation. This is […]

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