Competing democracies

So, if the Greek parliament votes to sack George Papandreou and thereby cancels plans for Greece to hold a risk-laden referendum, is that democracy? Is it democratic to use referendums as a tool of political advantage (as they often are used)? Is it democratic to cancel plans for a referendum by a vote in the […]

Not thinking the thinkable

Chris Dillow’s excellent post yesterday expresses two arguments that are barely heard or discussed in the press – first, that Murdoch’s decision to pull out of the BSkyB bid was bad for the economy and for liberty; the second that the EU could solve the current Euro crisis by taking a big step towards political […]

A quick Europe round-up

Aside from the rolling soap-opera/fiasco that is the euro crisis, there have been a few bits of democratic interest going on in Europe this week. Quickly to run through them: Eurosceptics of the “ENGLAND NOT EUROPE, Malaga” variety will like this ruling from the European Court of Justice, which says that British people living in […]

The 2050 from Brussels-Schuman

The EU Transport White Paper sets out transport aspirations our political system is entirely incapable of delivering. Norman Baker, the Lib Dem transport minister, gave a response to the new White Paper that was classic Bore at the Golf Club Bar. He said, and I paraphrase, “EU, eh? Brussels, eh? Banning cars? Crazy or what? […]

Le peuple, c’est moi

He would definitely have wanted a national referendum on the Nutmeg (Weights and Measures) (Supplementary Provisions) Order. Image via Wikipedia I haven’t been following the debate on the EU Referendum Bill (aka the Glorious Patriotic Union Jack Eternal Triumph of Hardworking British Families Patent Referendum Lock to which only the Queen and Winston Churchill from 1940-45 […]

Events at the House of Cognitive Dissonance

For a kid who learned about politics in the 80s, the building on the corner of Smith Square opposite DEFRA will always be Tory Central Office. Now, however, in a strange twist of political destinies, it is the new London home of the European Commission, and called Europe House. As part of their launch, the […]

Lunchtime list for June 10th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: Balls’ EU immigration claims don’t stand up – Sarah Mulley at Left Foot Forward takes a look at the immigration stance of Labour leader candidate Ed Balls. Balls is conflating immigration with intra-EU migration, which has been pointed out elsewhere. She accuses […]

Lunchtime list for June 9th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: Heffer on the EU: Nostradamus he ain’t – One of our own pieces on a hysterical prediction of the future by Simon Heffer, written in 2003. Find out about the gangs of armed EU police who will be roaming the streets attacking […]

Heffer on the EU: Nostradamus he ain’t

It’s always enjoyable to come across a hysterical prophecy that has been disproved by the passage of time. How much more enjoyable it is when the author is as self-righteous and opinionated as Simon Heffer. The prophecy in question comes from the Daily Mail in 2003. In an article entitled without irony, Europe: Who’s telling […]