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There's an opinion piece on the Guardian by Miriam González Durántez, a former EU trade negotiator and, yes, Nick Clegg's wife, about a the Legatum Institute, a thinktank that is advising the UK government on Brexit negotiations despite a lack of EU-related expertise:
Unlike thinktanks like the Center for European Reform which knows more about the EU than the whole cabinet put together, the common characteristic of most of the Legatum trade commission seems to be not having worked at any time within the EU or even directly with it. I have negotiated myself for the EU on many occasions on trade, and I have seen how shocked negotiators from other countries become when they realise how difficult it is to negotiate with 27 countries - with their own institutions and legal system - at the same time...

The institute also seems to be behind Davis's recurrent claim that the UK will have "frictionless" access to the single market even if it is not part of it - an embarrassing comment that brings despair to Europeans, as the single market is a system of rules based on trust and a single legal order, and therefore accessible only to those who are part of it. When the EU negotiator Michel Barnier says that "some in Britain still do not understand", he seems to be referring among others to how Davis still has not understood this.


She goes on to mention that the Legatum Institute is a proponent of the "CANZUK" concept of an anglosphere free trade agreement, as well as "unilaterally removing tariffs and quotas on agriculture products (farmers, take note) in exchange for services agreements all over the world".
by Gag Halfrunt on Wed Jul 19th, 2017 at 07:37:19 PM EST
Well, of course, you just knew that some dumb right wing "think-tank" would be involved with the Toriy party response to the EU at a pretty integral level.

Bill Maher still has the last word on think tanks (tl:dr = you can't call yourself a thinktank if all your ideas are stupid)



keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Jul 19th, 2017 at 07:53:55 PM EST
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Stunning!!! - James McGill Buchanan by TarheelDem

Here is the Wikipedia entry for James McGill Buchanan.

George Monbiot of The Guardian reports today about what, accidentally found after Buchanan's death, has shown the darker side of this George Mason University economist and exposed the dark side of his "public choice" theory.

George Monbiot, The Guardian: A despot in disguise: one man's mission to rip up democracy

    In 1980, he was able to put the programme into action. He was invited to Chile, where he helped the Pinochet dictatorship write a new constitution, which, partly through the clever devices Buchanan proposed, has proved impossible to reverse entirely. Amid the torture and killings, he advised the government to extend programmes of privatisation, austerity, monetary restraint, deregulation and the destruction of trade unions: a package that helped trigger economic collapse in 1982.  


Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.
by Oui on Wed Jul 19th, 2017 at 08:09:18 PM EST
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Still the gold standard of think tank take downs...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Jul 21st, 2017 at 10:28:40 AM EST
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