Apple travesty is a reminder why Britain must leave the lawless EU. EU report reveals it wants its influence to spread into Asia and Africa. The EU has been accused of 'planning its own empire' after a report suggested the bloc wants its influence to spread into part of Asia and Africa.
The EU foreign policy document said 'gradual synchronisation and mutual adaptation' of defence planning would 'enhance strategic convergence between Member States'. In a report called Global Strategy, there are also calls to increase the bloc's influence in sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East amid fears over terrorism. EU leaders had tasked EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini (right, speaking to David Cameron) with drawing up the 'Global Strategy on Foreign and Security Policy' last year.
UK MEPs lose most in the European Parliament – UK in a changing Europe. In recent posts I have looked at policy outcomes, voting records and policy-makers’ connections to analyse whether the UK is ‘marginalised’ in the EU Council.
But, the Council is only half of the EU’s bicameral legislature. The other half is the European Parliament, which now has the power to amend and block EU laws in almost all policy areas. So, are UK Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) marginalised? A good starting point are the MEPs’ voting records (on www.VoteWatch.eu), and there are a lot of them: there were 6,149 such votes in the 2004-09 session (EP6); 6,961 in 2009-14 (EP7); and there have been 2,306 since June 2014 in the current session (EP8). From these records we can see whether UK MEPs and parties tend to be on the winning or losing side in votes, and whether our MEPs and parties vote with or against the European political groups to which they belong. Figure 1. per cent of times on winning side in the European Parliament, by member state.
Poland and Hungary’s defiant friendship. WARSAW — A six-hour private meeting on Wednesday between Jarosław Kaczyński, leader of Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in southern Poland brought together the two men who have most roiled European politics of late.
The meeting was held over a meal of sour soup and trout in the shadow of a castle that switched hands over the centuries between Hungary and Poland. The pair weren’t close in the past. When Orbán was in Warsaw in 2015, he didn’t even see Kaczyński, who was reportedly dismayed at the Hungarian leader’s close ties with Russia’s Vladimir Putin. But they now have an enemy in common — the foreign critics in Brussels, Berlin and beyond who have lambasted them both for allegedly trampling on European democratic norms — and an increasingly similar political philosophy and approach to governing.
With each week, the parallels between Law and Justice (or PiS, as it’s known by its Polish acronym) and Orbán are coming into sharper relief. Merkel meets Putin: not so easy as meeting a eurozone invertebrate. Here is my column from Monday's Irish Daily Mail -- One of the problems with judging Angela Merkel’s talents is that we almost always see her standing alongside politicians of such meagre abilities that she is bound to look pretty good.
If she stands next to the inept French president Francois Hollande, what we end up with is a picture of a competent German standing alongside Inspector Clouseau. Put her with the fumbling Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy and what we see is a German leader in a shot with Manuel of Fawlty Towers. Put her next to Enda Kenny, and there she is with Father Dougal. The point is that as long as Mrs Merkel stays surrounded by other EU politicians, she looks skilful. That is why Mrs Merkel’s meeting with Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Friday was so enlightening. Now a message from Europe of Freedom and Democracy: Onslaught of TV adverts by Brussels parties you have never heard of. Plans drawn up by Lib Dem MEP demand more party political broadcastsCandidates would appear under Europe-wide banners to bring EU togetherTory, Labour, Lib Dem and UKIP replaced with ALDE, ECR, EFD and S&DWarnings that 'silly and dangerous' idea will turn voters off politics By James Slack Published: 07:34 GMT, 3 July 2013 | Updated: 09:50 GMT, 3 July 2013 Voters in Britain face being bombarded with political broadcasts on their TV screens by European parties they have never heard of.
Instead of promoting themselves as Tories, Labour, UKIP and the Liberal Democrats, candidates in next year’s Euro elections would be expected to campaign under Europe-wide banners. The new dark age: Across Europe, free speech and democracy face their biggest threat since the Thirties. By Dominic Sandbrook PUBLISHED: 23:45 GMT, 2 November 2012 | UPDATED: 08:08 GMT, 12 November 2012 After a week dominated by the terrible effects of Superstorm Sandy, the increasingly bitter struggle between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney and the continuing fallout from the Jimmy Savile scandal, it was easy to overlook a little story about an obscure Greek journalist called Kostas Vaxevanis.
European Union is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Nobel committee said the award was for 'the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights'But critics condemn the move at a time when the bloc is gripped by the Eurozone crisis and facing serious questions about its futureLib Dem leader Nick Clegg says it is 'slightly interesting' to give to the award to an 'acronym'Tory MEPs joke the Nobel committee 'is a little late for an April fools joke' and declare: 'Parody is redundant'Tony Blair hails the EU as 'one of the defining concepts' of the last 50 yearsThe prize is awarded by a panel of five people from Norway - which is not even a member of the EU By Matt Chorley, Mailonline Political Editor Published: 09:12 GMT, 12 October 2012 | Updated: 15:38 GMT, 15 October 2012.
Killing dissent in Europe: Mr. Nigel Farage won't be the last victim. Farage victimised by van Rompuy The shocking tale of UKIP (UK Independence Party) leader Nigel Farage’s grossly inappropriate fine for his sardonic remarks about European Council President Herman Van Rompuy appears to be drawing to an unhappy and worrying conclusion. As Guido Fawkes , Britain's leading Westminster media outlet, pointed out on Tuesday, Farage has lost his appeal against the 3,000 euro ($4,000) penalty and will also have to pay costs. Barroso: eurosceptics are 'dangerous.' I say not yet dangerous enough.
This is an edited version of my column in Monday's Irish Daily Mail -- Spot the paradox.
Ireland needs a deal on its bank debt to get back to growth and out of this depression. The European Union needs a success story to show that its austerity policies are working. The case against Europe: MEP Daniel Hannan reveals the disturbing contempt for democracy at the heart of the EU. By Daniel Hannan Published: 22:04 GMT, 14 August 2012 | Updated: 09:08 GMT, 17 August 2012 Over 13 years as an MEP, Daniel Hannan has witnessed first hand how Brussels works.
Now he has written a forensic analysis of why it’s rotten to the core. His devastating critique should be required reading for every politician. There is a popular joke in Brussels that if the European Union were a country applying to join itself, it would be rejected on the grounds of being undemocratic. It’s absolutely true - and, believe me, it isn’t funny.
Democracy is not simply a periodic right to mark a cross on a ballot paper. As George Soros warns of a eurozone Reich, why Germany will do whatever necessary to preserve the single currency. By Adrian Hilton PUBLISHED: 18:41 GMT, 28 June 2012 | UPDATED: 14:31 GMT, 29 June 2012.
Ireland has now passed the point where it can honestly be deemed an independent country. By Richard Waghorne PUBLISHED: 18:00 GMT, 1 June 2012 | UPDATED: 18:04 GMT, 1 June 2012 Ireland’s ratification of the EU fiscal pact can only be described as abject. There comes a point when a country has surrendered so much of its sovereignty that its claim to be a self-governing polity expires. Too grand to pay taxes. Too arrogant to care about democracy. No wonder the Euro elite sneer at the idea of a referendum. By Stephen Glover PUBLISHED: 22:42 GMT, 30 May 2012 | UPDATED: 22:48 GMT, 30 May 2012. A Damnable Contempt for Democracy by Dominic Sandbrook. By Dominic SandbrookUPDATED: 15:09 GMT, 3 November 2011. Merkel and Sarkozy meet in Paris: 'And now for our next coup...' It is 3 pm here on the Continent and President Nicolas Sarkozy of France and the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, have just come out of their meeting in Paris, the kick-off to the EU summit later this week.
The two – right, call them Merkozy -- have just told the Press they want a wholesale change to the EU treaties to lock-in fiscal discipline and restore investor confidence in the eurozone. Two points. First, it will take more than a re-jigging of the treaties to make the vastly indebted and uncompetitive countries of the eurozone look like a good place for investment. Second, I don’t think either Mrs Merkel or Mr Sarkozy means it. Graphic: How bureaucracy is slowing Europe's recovery. Boring, Cruel Euro Romantics. I call foul. I know from technocrats; sometimes I even play one myself. And these people — the people who bullied Europe into adopting a common currency, the people who are bullying both Europe and the United States into austerity — aren’t technocrats. They are, instead, deeply impractical romantics.
They are, to be sure, a peculiarly boring breed of romantic, speaking in turgid prose rather than poetry. And the things they demand on behalf of their romantic visions are often cruel, involving huge sacrifices from ordinary workers and families. And to save the world economy we must topple these dangerous romantics from their pedestals.
Democracy Live - Home. Greece: the EU's Colonial Administrator gives his report. This morning the European Commission presented the first report of its Task Force for Greece. (Embarrassing, isn't it, how these over-protected low-testosterone eurocrats like to dress up their committees with military-sounding names?) Refuseniks and problem cases of the non-eurozone. How Brussels Stifles Democracy in Europe. How could so many clever people get it so wrong? Mary Ann Sieghart: The dreamers who gave us the eurozone stand condemned. The formation of the euro has more than a little in common with the PIP implants scandal. In both cases, rules were deliberately broken, dreadful consequences were easily foreseen, and a culture of wilful blindness and moral negligence prevailed.
In both cases, untold human pain has been caused, with little chance of redress for the victims. Bizarre: the anti-Lisbon campaigner wants a United States of Europe. This is my column in today’s Irish Daily Mail. May God defend the EU’s heretics. Nigel Farrage attacking Herman von Rumpoy. Jürgen Habermas: democracy is at stake. The Eurozone crisis has raised calls for greater political integration of the EU. However, sociologist Jürgen Habermas argues that the tactics adopted by European leaders have sidelined what should be their main priority: the well-being of citizens, established within a democratic framework. Excerpts.