"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen."

Sunday, 17 October 2010


It's a little quieter around here now and I can actually hear myself think so here's the rest of this week's EU catch-up:

Turkey calls on France for "active support"
"Negotiations over the bid have broken down in large part over French opposition and objections from Cyprus over the continued closure of Turkish ports to Greek Cypriot ships. But broader fears among Europeans of mass migration by cheap Turkish labor have helped split the bloc over whether to admit a relatively poor, mainly Muslim nation of 73 million."
France to change its national immigration legislation
"The Commission had given France until today to present its plans or face legal action at the  European Court of Justice. It decided on 29 September to threaten taking legal action after an investigation into the expulsion of thousands of Roma to Bulgaria and Romania found that France had not properly implemented EU rules."
New directive will harmonise laws against cyber-attacks
"Inside the EU, damages from this botnet were reported in France, the UK and Germany. French fighter planes were unable to take off after military computers were infected by Conficker in January 2009. The German army reported in February 2009 that parts of its computer network were infected by Conficker, making the websites of the German army, and the Defence ministry unreachable and preventing them from being updated by their administrators. Certain IT services, including e-mails, were unavailable for weeks to the UK Ministry of Defence personnel in January/February 2009 after they were infected by the Conficker botnet."
MPs vote to freeze EU budget
"An amendment by Conservative MP Douglas Carswell, calling for a reduction in how much the UK gives to the EU, was defeated by 252 votes to 42. However, Ms Greening said the Government accepted an amendment by fellow Conservative MP Bill Cash, Chairman of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee, calling on the Government "to reject European Parliament proposals to increase the budget".
Attempts to sideline 'extreme-right' Parties
"Specifically, the party [PES] is calling on mainstream left, right and centre parties to reject any ruling coalitions, electoral alliances or any "implicit support" with far-right parties and to isolate members who break the cordon sanitaire.
"Britain is pressing MEPs to back controversial proposals to grant Pakistan privileged trade access to EU markets to help it recover from the flood disaster and bolster its political stability as fighting in Afghanistan spills over the border."
Towards a common European defence policy
"Helicopters, too, are a perennial shortfall. So why not set up a pooled fleet, like the car-share schemes mushrooming across European cities, or indeed like the NATO pool of C-17 airlifters?
Observation drones and satellites are another obvious priority. Next-generation technology is under development; the real challenge is to corral divergent national efforts, so that common ownership and operation are established wherever possible, and costs and benefits are fairly shared."
Getting the EU message across
"Localisation is the key to better communicating EU policy issues to journalists...Meanwhile, Commission spokeswoman Ahrenkilde Hansen warned against the danger of letting so-called 'Euromyths' about what the EU is doing build up until they take on a life of their own in the media.  "We have extensive experience of rebuttals in our London office, as Euromyths are quite prevalent in the UK press."


  1. ""Specifically, the party [PES] is calling on mainstream left, right and centre parties to reject any ruling coalitions, electoral alliances or any "implicit support" with far-right parties and to isolate members who break the cordon sanitaire".

    So, what if they're voted in democratically? Is this the end of democracy as we know it?

  2. Well, it's already happening in the Parliament (look how they isolate Griffin) plus there's provision within the Lisbon Treaty to extend it to national/regional level. I suppose they're just highlighting the point by mentioning it formally. It makes no difference that these Parties have been voted for - the EU has no ears. If it did, it would dissolve itself.

  3. Ironic... the most totalitarian regime since Hitler and the Nazi's is saying it's our way or no way...

    If right-wing factions have grown, it is the governments fault in the first place. The more they deny the people their say, the more they'll join the extreme right wing.


  4. If nothing is done it will be illegal for right-wing Parties to exist and it will be an offence to insult a member of the EP/EC or the flag (mentioned in the Lisbon Treaty). There's provision for so much in that treaty that just hasn't been enacted, yet. Yes, I think you're right, totalitarian is the word.


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