Explaining the inexplicable

Tories, pop media and now Labour rebels want us to vote on a European Treaty that’s barely readable, largely incomprehensible and hardly consequential. Why? UK Legislators have got the referendum bug again. Nothing wrong with that: asking your electorate to decide on really big questions has a long and noble history. This referendum, though, if… Continue reading Explaining the inexplicable

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Oi! referendum monkeys!

The political classes and the media should seize on the reform treaty referendum as an opportunity to spread understanding and get people talking. I’ll keep this brief (my wife says my blog is the most boring in Britain. She may have a point). A referendum is a deliberative device. It only works if voters understand… Continue reading Oi! referendum monkeys!

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Hutton on the Euro-crisis

Clever and persuasive piece by Will Hutton from Sunday’s Observer about the crisis produced by the French and Dutch ‘no’ votes. He provides a very neat pair of scenarios (one rosy, one gloomy) for the post-referendum period, which I’ll reproduce here because they’re so good (and because I can’t link to them directly).

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Europe 2.0?

It’s an epic defeat for the European establishment but that doesn’t make it a victory for the isolationists and sceptics. Once the dust settles, once Giscard’s Napoleonic (and paralysingly boring) constitution has been abandoned, this moment might just look like a real opportunity for the radical European middle. For people, like me, who believe in… Continue reading Europe 2.0?

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Titter ye not

Can’t beat a 21st Century Eurovision Song Contest for lessons on the dynamics of the new Europe. Talk about New vs. Old. Fringe vs. centre. East vs. West. Anyway, the fringe is obviously where it’s at now. Those picturesque Eastern European capitals with their glistening waterfronts and their pretty mediaeval old towns and their flat… Continue reading Titter ye not

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