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November 04, 2016

An important decision, not a critical one

Yesterday's ruling by the UK's High Court is not nearly as important as the newspaper headlines this morning suggest, and it certainly does not mean a reversal of Brexit, or anything of the kind. It is not even clear whether it means a softer or harder Brexit. One can draw up scenarios that would support both theories. But it means that the process towards Brexit is going to get a touch messier, and early elections are now - for the first time - becoming a real possibility. 

The ruling supports the view of the plaintiffs that the government will need to consult the British Parliament. The court did not specify the nature of this consultation, but much of this debate was short-circuited last night when Theresa May said the logical conclusion of this verdict, if upheld, would be the need to pass an act of parliament before Article 50 can be triggered. The government will appeal to the Supreme Court, which will hold hearings on December 7 and 8. May has arranged for a telephone call with Jean-Claude Juncker this morning to reaffirm that this ruling should not be interpreted in any way as weakening the UK's determination to leave. 

We should not prejudice the outcome of the Supreme Court's ruling. The High Court applied legal principles, but the Supreme Court tends to include political considerations in its rulings as well. In this case, these would be the impact of the decision on the court itself, and on the separation of powers between the government and the judiciary. If the Supreme Court upholds the High Court's decision, it will further flesh out the details of what form the consultation would have to take. 

So, what are the scenarios?

Assuming the Supreme Court upholds the High Court's ruling in full, the government will introduce Article 50 legislation. it is hard to imagine that the House of Commons would vote against triggering Article 50. Such action would very likely result in another election - through either a no-confidence vote, or a two-thirds majority in the parliament, to satisfy the conditions of the Fixed Term Parliaments Act. May is expected to win such an election with an enhanced majority, especially given the robust performance of the economy. In this case, it would take longer for the UK to trigger Article 50, but we would expect a much harder Brexit as a result. 

Alternatively, the parliament could accept Brexit, but demand a softer version. That may well work for May for the simple reason that a soft version may not be on offer by the EU. The parliament may be able to influence the government's negotiating position, but not the EU's. But what if the EU were to offer an EEA-type agreement, as part of which Britain retains membership of the single market, while respecting freedom of movement?

A third possibility is that the Supreme Court upholds the High Court's ruling, but with a rather softer set of conditions. The government may have to consult parliament, but not be under an obligation to pass legislation.

If the Supreme Court overturns the High Court's ruling, nothing will change.

Sebastian Payne notes that Remain supporters should not be under any illusions that the court ruling can force a U-turn on Brexit. In the worst of all circumstance, May will simply trigger an election:

"If Mrs May’s government loses the appeal and finds the Commons troublesome, it might decide to put the question to the country, particularly if a drawn-out parliamentary debate hits up against its timetable of triggering Article 50 by March. Based on the latest opinion polls, this would result in a landslide victory for the Conservatives, which would again not change the fact that Britain is heading out of the EU."

It is interesting to note that there is still constant talk among ex-Remainers about frustrating the Brexit process. We think this talk is extremely counter-productive because it reduces the probability of an EEA-type agreement. One of the incessant second referendum campaigners is John Kerr, a former UK ambassador to the EU and one of the co-authors of Article 50. He said it was not meant to be used, only inserted for a situation in which a country turns into a dictatorship. He made one point we had not heard before - that it is possible to leave the EU without recourse to Article 50. Indeed this was always so, even before the Lisbon Treaty:

"If you stopped paying the bills and you stopped turning up at the meetings, in due course your friends would notice that you seemed to have left."

 

And finally, Angela Merkel has hinted that the EU might be ready to do a deal with Switzerland, now that Bern has accepted a much weakened form of immigration control solely in the form of a rule to offer vacant jobs to Swiss citizens first. Merkel is now trying to ensure that this does not constitute a precedent for the Brexit discussions, which is, of course, illusionary. Once you give up on the principle of freedom of movement, you have weakened your negotiating position. This is Merkel's version of having her cake and eating it:

“If I tried to put myself in the shoes of a Swiss citizen, I wouldn’t be pleased if it was suddenly cast in a new light because of another decision in another country...That’s why we should conduct these talks with Switzerland as if the Great Britain issue never existed. I can only say that the German position hasn’t changed with Great Britain’s decision. These are two completely different issues.”

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November 04, 2016

Europe and Catalonia at the centre of Rajoy's new cabinet

Mariano Rajoy unveiled his new cabinet last night, ending a more than 10-month run as a caretaker PM during which he lost three ministers along the way. The number of positions remains unchanged at 13, but some of the portfolios have been reshuffled. The changes pertaining to our interests are as follows. Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría remains deputy PM, but is released from government speaker duty as she's adding a "territorial administrations" portfolio. As expected, she will be in charge of relations with the separatist Catalan government. Cristóbal Montoro loses territorial administration, but retains finance and public service which makes him sort of a pure austerity minister. Luis de Guindos remains economy minister, but without the purse strings, and gains industry without energy. He will continue to represent Spain at the eurogroup. 

Apart from Sáenz de Santamaría's territorial portfolio, the most interesting appointment is that of Alfonso Dastis, a career diplomat, as foreign minister. For the first Rajoy term, Dastis has been Spain's permanent representative to the EU. His appointment indicates that European diplomacy will be front and centre in Spanish foreign policy. Dastis is exceptionally well acquainted with European diplomacy and law. He was a clerk to Spain's first judge at the European Court of Justice; advisor on European affairs to former PM José María Aznar in charge of the Spanish rotating presidency in 2002; and Spain's representative at the Constitutional Treaty convention. Dastis is reputed to be a skilled negotiator and a keen legal mind. As permanent representative, he accompanied Rajoy at European council meetings. 

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November 04, 2016

Turkey threatens to end refugee deal

We keep on hearing reports, sourced to some feckless Brussels sources, that the EU is still hopeful that it can sign the visa deal with Turkey, irrespective of the little local difficulties that have arisen there. We don't think this is possible, especially after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's crackdown on the press and the debate on the death penalty. Erdogan's foreign minister, Mevlüt Cavusoglu, said in an interview with Neue Zürcher Zeitung that he was waiting for a response from the EU in the next few days after an earlier deadline of October had lapsed. If this was not forthcoming, he said, Turkey would cancel the agreement. He said Turkey had reacted to the demands of the EU, but was not in a position to change its anti-terrorism laws, which had been one of the EU's demands. On the contrary: the very opposite has happened: Erdogan is about to take absolute power allowing him to run the country without interference from the parliament.

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November 04, 2016

Everyone against Sarkozy

The big story in France last night was the second debate among the seven Republican candidates ahead of their primaries on November 20, and the likely run-off on November 27 if none of them gain an absolute majority. Last night's debate focused on security and education - and it was a matter of everyone against Nicolas Sarkozy, who was in good form, but defensive and not always effective.

In one exchange, Alain Juppe said it was a mistake to have renegotiated the Touquet agreement in 2003 - agreed by Sarkozy as interior minister in 2003 under Jacques Chirac as president, which was designed to stop illegal immigration into the UK, and which turned Calais into a refugee swamp. Sarkozy responded dryly that it was the Canterbury agreement - between Margaret Thatcher and Francois Mitterrand in the 1980s - that was responsible. And then he added that it was probably not important that every candidate was on top of his brief. 

In another exchange, Sarkozy rounded on Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, who was a minister for housing and the environment under him. He said he did not regret appointing her, but he was not sure whether he would do it again. "You will not have the occasion to", she responded. Suffice it to say that these seven politicians are not friends.

The two most newsworthy elements of the debate was Sarkozy's announcement that he would seek only a single term, which is also what Alain Juppé had promised earlier. With both of them polling at over 30%, and likely to enter a second-round run off, this means the Republicans will nominate a one-term candidate only. 

The other was Alain Juppe's cautious announcement that it was time to appoint a woman as prime minister, though he said he would not want to discuss names at this point. 

When asked in a radio interview before the exchange whether he would respect the result of the primaries, Sarkozy said yes he would, putting to rest fears that we might end up with him running as an independent. He had earlier declared that the vote was rigged, since it was open to subversion by left-wing activists, who could register to vote for only €2 and elect Juppé instead of him.

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  • Juppé open to join forces with Macron for EP elections
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • May 13, 2019
  • Brexit Party has already changed UK politics
  • Orbán visits Trump, after a very long wait
  • Le Pen's appeal to the PiS likely to fall on deaf ears
  • November 01, 2017
  • Brussels receives Catalan president as a circus
  • Canada Dry
  • Me too
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • April 11, 2019
  • Thoughts on how the European elections in the UK could affect UK and European politics
  • Far right to enter Estonia's government
  • October 17, 2017
  • Catalan separatism has its martyrs
  • European Parliament agrees to restrict posted workers
  • Foreign policy will be key in Austrian coalition talks
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • March 13, 2019
  • Not really all that meaningful
  • Will the EPP merely put Orban on probation?
  • Why AKKs riposte to Macron is deeply disturbing
  • October 02, 2017
  • Catalonia recalls EU and eurozone instability
  • French trade unions increase pressure over labour reforms
  • Watch out for a political accident in the UK
  • Municipal elections boost Portugal's Socialists
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • February 11, 2019
  • SPD dumps Hartz IV
  • Macron's revival
  • September 18, 2017
  • Why Germany cannot lead Europe, let alone the free world
  • Will Macron help to build up Mélenchon?
  • Boris' Coup
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • January 07, 2019
  • What to look out for in the Brexit debates
  • Macron's last-resort tool for the gilets jaunes
  • August 31, 2017
  • Where are the Républicains?
  • Poland unmoved by EU rule-of-law sanctions
  • May will stay through Brexit, and then fight the 2022 elections
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • December 12, 2018
  • 48 letters
  • A sense of deja-vu
  • August 21, 2017
  • Soft, getting softer
  • Tsipras' chances of a boost
  • On the fallacy of a middle-ground option for the eurozone
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • October 29, 2018
  • Why the EEA is no longer a Brexit option
  • Behold the rising superpower: post-catholic Ireland’s European miracle
  • July 27, 2017
  • Löfven's move
  • The nearing end of petrol and diesel engines
  • Why a second referendum in the UK won’t happen, and why it would be wrong
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • September 25, 2018
  • Be careful what you wish for - second referendum edition
  • July 10, 2017
  • EU in self-destruction mode
  • The EU's fault lines
  • Fake News and Fake views
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • October 17, 2019
  • A dangerous game for the EU
  • After Brexit, get ready for a German EU budget rebate
  • August 20, 2018
  • ... and a subtle shift in EU policies towards both Russia and Turkey
  • Nothing to celebrate about the end of the bailout programme
  • Support for Brexit holding up
  • June 20, 2017
  • How to soften Brexit?
  • The deep roots of Brexit: Thatcher and the Germans
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • August 27, 2019
  • Remain’s narrowing pathway
  • Macron's diplomatic masterstroke
  • July 09, 2018
  • German panic about Target2
  • AfD level with SPD
  • How the EU could fail
  • May 31, 2017
  • Getting real in the debate on the euro's future
  • Russia's growing influence in Italy
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • June 18, 2019
  • Retaliation threats over drilling
  • May 28, 2018
  • A no-confidence motion that could backfire
  • The political repercussions of a historic referendum in Ireland
  • Why the lack of an international role for the euro matters
  • May 10, 2017
  • PSOE primary campaign in full swing
  • Czech government crisis escalates
  • Backroom dealing on electoral reform in Italy
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • April 09, 2019
  • What can go wrong now?
  • April 13, 2018
  • German support for eurozone reform next to zero...
  • ... and no support for France on Syria either
  • A French sermon
  • Why the euro endures
  • April 19, 2017
  • Shadows of money
  • Breppe Grillo vs Eurointelligence
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • January 29, 2019
  • What comes after plan B fails? Plan C, of course. C for cliff-edge
  • Gilets jaunes, how to structure a movement in free flow?
  • European Court of Auditors criticises Juncker’s investment fund
  • February 26, 2018
  • Angela Merkel's cabinet
  • March 27, 2017
  • Governing formation troubles - Northern Ireland edition
  • Did Trump present Merkel with a bill for Nato?
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • September 30, 2019
  • A pyrrhic victory for Kurz
  • Will there really be UK elections?
  • November 19, 2018
  • May’s pushback is kicking in
  • January 08, 2018
  • Getting real on Brexit
  • Macron in China
  • March 01, 2017
  • The threat of Frexit
  • Fear and loathing of a referendum in Spain
  • How to get around Theresa May’s little ECJ issue
  • Solve the problem
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • June 11, 2019
  • Politics and the new sense of urgency
  • Ten little monkeys jumping up and down - down mostly
  • August 28, 2018
  • Urban politics and national crisis - the Irish case
  • How anti-semitism became one of the main issues in British politics
  • November 13, 2017
  • A pro-European list: Wauquiez' nightmare
  • Catalan separatism isn't going away
  • Why oh why does Germany behave the way it does?
  • Why the four freedoms matter
  • February 02, 2017
  • Will it come to the use of force in Catalonia?
  • The day Brexit became irreversible
  • Can Trump and May succeed?
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • February 13, 2019
  • What to make of the man in the pub - and other tales
  • Macron loses more early advisers - or cuts them loose
  • June 01, 2018
  • Will France and Germany stick together in their response to US trade tariffs?
  • From a eurozone budget to a slush fund
  • September 18, 2017
  • Why Germany cannot lead Europe, let alone the free world
  • Will Macron help to build up Mélenchon?
  • Boris' Coup
  • January 05, 2017
  • French Socialist primaries - old wine in new bottles
  • Le Pen's hard ecu
  • Will Tusk get a second mandate?
  • Themes of 2017
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • May 09, 2019
  • The EU's impossible dilemma
  • The horsetrading starts in Sibiu
  • May to bring withdrawal bill to Commons week after next
  • September 27, 2018
  • Two ways out of the Brexit impasse
  • February 16, 2018
  • How big will the euro budget be?
  • July 10, 2017
  • EU in self-destruction mode
  • The EU's fault lines
  • Fake News and Fake views
  • November 30, 2016
  • Is Russia behind a massive cyber attack in Germany?
  • Will Fillon move to the centre?
  • The Dutch left field is getting crowded
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • October 18, 2019
  • The horrifying implications of Merkel’s 5G decision
  • April 17, 2019
  • Why it is far from clear that the grand coalition will survive the year
  • Macron's chance and challenge
  • Eurozone firms' surprising response to sagging profits
  • The result of Spain's elections, a riddle wrapped in mystery
  • The MMT debate is coming to Europe - and Germany
  • Greek parliament seeks German war reparations
  • October 15, 2018
  • Black Brexit smoke
  • Bettel can relax and stay in office
  • Solving the crime vs solving the problem
  • April 16, 2018
  • Italy's and Germany's pained response to the Syria attacks
  • On the end of the eurozone's economic honeymoon
  • Why Bulgaria should stay out of the euro
  • Where shall we meet after Brexit?
  • October 16, 2017
  • What‘s the deep meaning of the elections in Lower Saxony?
  • Can Brexit be revoked?
  • Macron's grand narrative
  • April 19, 2017
  • Shadows of money
  • Breppe Grillo vs Eurointelligence
  • October 20, 2016
  • No games please, we are Europeans
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • July 16, 2019
  • What next, after EU sanctions Turkey?
  • What to make of Johnson’s four-point Brexit plan
  • Galileo fails, and nobody notices
  • March 04, 2019
  • Macron's two-month sprint
  • May's numbers are not there yet
  • Greening QE
  • On the "hope" of a rate raise
  • October 22, 2018
  • A week of intense political tension in the UK
  • Poland's local elections reveal deeply-split country
  • June 11, 2018
  • The end of the G7 - good riddance
  • Macron needs allies for his European agenda
  • Who is going to be the next director-general of the Italian treasury?
  • January 29, 2018
  • Where is the opposition in France?
  • Scenarios and risks for Syriza over Macedonia
  • September 21, 2017
  • Time to get serious about Brexit
  • Would the FDP claim the job of finance minister?
  • The return of the ultra-right to German politics
  • May 15, 2017
  • SPD and CDU disagree on how to respond to Macron
  • Was Rajoy blackmailed?
  • The rise of the re-leavers
  • January 05, 2017
  • French Socialist primaries - old wine in new bottles
  • Le Pen's hard ecu
  • Will Tusk get a second mandate?
  • Themes of 2017
  • August 30, 2016
  • Brexit facts on the ground
  • Burkinis and Republican primaries
  • The SPD and TTIP
  • April 25, 2016
  • The death of the Grand Coalition
  • Insurrection against TTIP
  • Juppé to benefit from Macron hype
  • On optimal currency areas
  • Why the Artic region could be the next geopolitical troublespot
  • From a currency to a people
  • October 10, 2019
  • What if UK parliament rejects both elections and the second referendum?
  • Should Europeans really look forward to President Warren?
  • August 27, 2019
  • Remain’s narrowing pathway
  • Macron's diplomatic masterstroke
  • July 03, 2019
  • A bold but risky choice
  • What will the European Parliament do?
  • May 22, 2019
  • Better start those no-deal preparations right now
  • Europe's real transfer union is from east to west
  • April 09, 2019
  • What can go wrong now?
  • February 27, 2019
  • EU bets on stable dictatorships to guard its south
  • The grand débat context for the unemployment insurance reform
  • Survey suggests that political dividing line in Europe is between France and Germany
  • January 18, 2019
  • Why Dublin won't yield on the backstop
  • Town hall debates vs street protests - who is winning?
  • December 10, 2018
  • ECJ says UK free to revoke Article 50, even inside extension period
  • A turning point in Macron's presidency
  • China has added Portugal to the list of its key EU partners
  • Belgium's coalition implodes over Marrakesh pact
  • November 01, 2018
  • Is candidate Merz a keen pro-European?
  • Around the corner - Brexit edition
  • September 25, 2018
  • Be careful what you wish for - second referendum edition
  • August 20, 2018
  • ... and a subtle shift in EU policies towards both Russia and Turkey
  • Nothing to celebrate about the end of the bailout programme
  • Support for Brexit holding up
  • July 16, 2018
  • How to think about the three Brexit options
  • How to respond to Trump
  • June 11, 2018
  • The end of the G7 - good riddance
  • Macron needs allies for his European agenda
  • Who is going to be the next director-general of the Italian treasury?
  • May 08, 2018
  • Macron and the technocratic republic
  • Philippe's silent offer to the SNCF unions
  • On the ordoliberal utopia of a debt-free state
  • April 06, 2018
  • Schleswig Holstein collapses Spain's strategy against Catalan separatism
  • On the implausibility of conspiracy theories in the Skripal case
  • March 07, 2018
  • The PD - so much like the SPD
  • Why the EU is right to blackball the City of London
  • Car companies don't deliver on diesel upgrades
  • February 05, 2018
  • How big is Germany's external surplus, really?
  • Macron's first election test
  • Coeure's endorsement of a fiscal union
  • January 05, 2018
  • Catalonia's government by Skype
  • The case for EEA membership
  • November 30, 2017
  • Please tell us there is another way than fudging the border
  • Could Gentiloni remain prime minister beyond the elections?
  • Stage set for Babis minority government
  • November 03, 2017
  • Catalan separatism is energised again
  • A prime minister without a party
  • Northern Ireland - handle with care
  • The death of liberalism
  • October 09, 2017
  • UK is starting to prepare for a no-deal Brexit
  • Why Germany will resist meaningful eurozone reform
  • September 14, 2017
  • Bravo Mr Juncker
  • ... what he said about the labour market
  • ... and what his speech means for Brexit
  • August 21, 2017
  • Soft, getting softer
  • Tsipras' chances of a boost
  • On the fallacy of a middle-ground option for the eurozone
  • July 25, 2017
  • The impact of Duda's veto
  • How to undo Brexit
  • Front National: Frexit or not?
  • July 03, 2017
  • Can Greece exit its programme without a credit line?
  • The softening Brexit
  • Macron's state of the nation address
  • June 12, 2017
  • Not strong perhaps, but stable
  • Catalan independence, a mental state
  • May 22, 2017
  • Catalonia's independence blueprint
  • Commission wants completion of eurozone by 2025
  • The case for more honesty about the abolition of cash
  • The case against an Italian euro exit
  • May 02, 2017
  • An accident waiting to happen
  • Matteo Renzi wins PD primaries
  • So much for the Schulz effect
  • April 15, 2017
  • Happy Easter
  • March 29, 2017
  • B-Day
  • Wargaming Catalan independence
  • Macron's strategy for the legislative elections
  • March 13, 2017
  • Poland and the future of the EU
  • Polls show 40% support for Costa's Socialists
  • Council of Europe questions Spanish constitutional court reform
  • February 27, 2017
  • May’s next gamble
  • Macron and the rise of the centre
  • Bite the bullet and get on with it
  • Who is the AfD?
  • February 13, 2017
  • What decides the French elections: cult or programme?
  • Sense and nonsense on globalisation
  • Towards the next European crisis
  • January 30, 2017
  • On the illusion of choice
  • January 16, 2017
  • Trump doubles down against the EU
  • Fake maths
  • January 05, 2017
  • French Socialist primaries - old wine in new bottles
  • Le Pen's hard ecu
  • Will Tusk get a second mandate?
  • Themes of 2017
  • December 22, 2016
  • Round up the usual suspects
  • A populist goes to Moscow
  • Macron ahead of Fillon?
  • Discombobulated
  • December 13, 2016
  • Pretending as though nothing had happened in Rome
  • Preparing narratives of who to blame
  • Pretending to criticise Turkey
  • The futility of the Article 127 challenge
  • December 05, 2016
  • Tu felix Austria
  • All eyes on Valls
  • Discrimination is the issue, not deportation
  • What do these men have in common?
  • November 28, 2016
  • And now what Monsieur Fillion?
  • The inescapable logic of an interim agreement
  • On Germany's foreign policy post-Trump
  • How to lose against the populists
  • November 21, 2016
  • Merkel IV
  • Erdogan increasingly alienated from the West
  • EU may force a hard Brexit
  • The day after
  • November 14, 2016
  • The populists are winning
  • The Trump effect on the French Republican primaries
  • ND to target disenchanted Syriza voters
  • Debt repayment postponed to infinity
  • November 11, 2016
  • What Trump means for Europe ...
  • ... for the economy ...
  • The new era of chaqu’un pour soi
  • November 09, 2016
  • Brexit all over
  • November 07, 2016
  • Why UK elections are becoming more likely
  • The EU's moral bankruptcy on Turkey
  • Merkel's presidential mess
  • The case for a No vote in Italy