The European Tribune is a forum for thoughtful dialogue of European and international issues. You are invited to post comments and your own articles.
Please REGISTER to post.
What we find particularly significant was the intervention by Angela Merkel who urged both sides to show compromise. As the FT reported this morning some observers saw in her remarks a message that the EU negotiating team should rethink its approach to the Irish border. She also stressed that in the event of a no-deal Brexit there would be a hard border in Ireland, something the Irish government still seems to be in denial about. Her intervention seems to have puzzled some of those present. We are far less puzzled. If you know about Germany's massive dependence on trade with the UK, the last thing Germany needs right now is a hard Brexit. Germany supported a united EU front against the UK. One of the Brexit predictions we made was that Germany would soften its line as talks headed into the final phase. This seems to be happening now.
However, the real push for no deal isn't coming from Germany or the EU, it's coming from the lunatic right in the UK who wish us to become a low wage, no regulation offshore tax haven whilst they plunder the UK or any assets to sell off and make money.
Then they'll all retire to the south of France where they all own dachas
keep to the Fen Causeway
PS. I'm not sure Merkel has all that much clout left... let me rephrase, Merkel is very much weakened here, and her recent attempts at "finding compromise" have already shown she's lost power, since they didn't work. For example, her attempts at helping the auto industry avoid the worst payback from the diesel scandals, and resultant coming Fahrverbot (diesel autos not allowed) in frankfurt and other major cities, shows her previous ability to force compromise has waned at best. (I won't go into the details of her attempted compromises here.)
Not to mention, her attempt to keep the government together is on very shaky footing.
"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
Varadkers' Party, Fine Gael only have 49 seats out of a parliament of 158 seats and are dependent on Fianna Fail abstaining on confidence votes and a number of independents of varying hues and allegiances. Talks are ongoing as to whether this arrangement can continue. Traditional coalition partners like Labour and the Greens have been decimated.
Theresa May's problems have been well documented, but how many other Governments in Europe are barely hanging on? The most remarkable political achievement of recent times has been the unanimity of the EU27 in the Brexit negotiations. It seems to be about the only thing they can agree on.
Index of Frank's Diaries
Fahrverbot (diesel autos not allowed) in frankfurt and other major cities
Municipalism, my friend. Your friend. Everybody's friend. The return of democracy, and of constructive disobedience. There is an epoch-making shift going on, and it's a Good Thing (except when it's the hard right doing it of course)
It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue
- Queen Elizabeth II
Michel Barnier is meeting a delegation from the ERG today, including Lord Trimble and eminent economist Shanker Singham. They will be bordersplaining Brexit to the EU. Here's the fly on the wall after the first hour of the meeting: pic.twitter.com/bZE73GVllM— The Irish Border (@BorderIrish) October 22, 2018
Michel Barnier is meeting a delegation from the ERG today, including Lord Trimble and eminent economist Shanker Singham. They will be bordersplaining Brexit to the EU. Here's the fly on the wall after the first hour of the meeting: pic.twitter.com/bZE73GVllM
The fly is saying bzzz zzzz bzzzzz, which from fly translates as stop stop oh lord of the flies please make it stop— The Irish Border (@BorderIrish) October 22, 2018
The fly is saying bzzz zzzz bzzzzz, which from fly translates as stop stop oh lord of the flies please make it stop
There is a long an honoured tradition in Ireland of laws formally enacted but totally ignored in practice dating back to the time when the British ruled and the Irish subverted wherever possible. This has been in rapid decline in recent years, but can always come back. Think of the black economy in Italy, Greece, Spain and many Eastern European states. It is characteristic of poorer, less rule bound societies or more divided societies with less consensus around the methods of government.
My German relations coming to Ireland used to be astounded at the very relaxed attitude to law enforcement and observance in Ireland when compared to "Vee haf rulz" Germany. That culture has changed in recent years, but you can force an Irish government to sign any law you like, it simply won't happen in practice. Ireland will veto anything it can in the EU until that situation changes. It is simply an existential issue for the Irish political establishment and many more besides.
Index of Frank's Diaries
some other means will have to be found to deal with it - random, roving customs patrols; trusted trader schemes; checks at Irish air and sea ports etc.
Plus, I imagine that the EU26 may be minded to turn a blind eye if the trade across the border is a trickle. But if it begins to become in any way substantial then they may become much lesss amused.
keep to the Fen Causeway
So may I hasten to add: There are always rules to be had. Not those rules, the other rules.
Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Frank Schnittger - Jan 18 31 comments
by fjallstrom - Jan 16 6 comments
by IdiotSavant - Jan 15 66 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Jan 12 83 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Jan 7 36 comments
by Oui - Jan 7 109 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Dec 26 43 comments
by Oui - Dec 28 21 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Jan 1831 comments
by Oui - Jan 175 comments
by fjallstrom - Jan 166 comments
by IdiotSavant - Jan 1566 comments
by Oui - Jan 154 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Jan 1283 comments
by Oui - Jan 91 comment
by Oui - Jan 82 comments
by Oui - Jan 84 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Jan 736 comments
by Oui - Jan 7109 comments
by Oui - Jan 59 comments
by Oui - Jan 3
by Oui - Jan 36 comments
by Oui - Jan 21 comment
by Oui - Dec 313 comments
by Oui - Dec 2821 comments
by Oui - Dec 278 comments
by Frank Schnittger - Dec 2643 comments