Tag Archives: Norway

The Swiss Wheeze: the Better Off Out argument that’s full of holes

Swiss CheeseIf only we were Switzerland, eh? That’s the dream of the Better Off Out brigade, who long for its freedom as part of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). And it’s a tempting offer: all the benefits of free trade with EU member states, and (if you believe Nigel Farage, Dan Hannan et al) none of the risks.

Except it’s not quite that easy, as The Economist highlighted when it investigated Britain’s options.

photo by: Filter Forge
Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 19 Comments

5 reasons not to assume the FDP wipeout in the German elections will happen here in the UK

fdp germany logoAn amazing result for Angela Merkel, increasing her vote and almost winning an absolute majority for the conservative CDU in her third election. A dire one for the liberal FDP, eliminated from the German Bundestag after failing to cross the 5% popular vote threshold – from 93 seats to 0 in one go. Ouch.

Part of the fun of elections in foreign countries is cherry-picking the bits of confirmation bias that suit our own weltenschaung. “Liberal party wiped out after coalition with centre-right party, eh – you just wait til …

Posted in Europe / International | Also tagged , , , , and | 58 Comments

Opinion: Norway? No way! Why a life on Europe’s periphery is not an option for Britain

Norweigan coastIn Britain’s recent EU debate, it’s clear that the anti-Europeans have been doing most of the running. When they’re not basing their arguments on wholesale lies, they fall back on a mixture of half-truths, assumptions and wishful thinking. One of the best examples is the common claim that Britain can leave the EU but keep trading with the Single Market, ’just like Norway’. A have-your-cake-and-eat-it solution that sounds like the best of both worlds. They highlight the non-EU country’s considerable oil wealth – irrelevant to the membership debate – to drive home their point.

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | Also tagged | 24 Comments

80 dead in Norway shootings

I’ve been keeping late hours baking but as I was getting ready to turn in, the news began breaking about the extent of the awfulness in Norway. As I write, 80 are confirmed dead at a summer camp for youth members of Norway’s ruling Labour party.

It’s terrible, terrible news, all the more vivid for me for the thought that this meeting must have been a similar sort of thing to the dozens run by our own party over the years. None of us would ever have considered Activate, or a Liberal Youth meeting a target for such an atrocity. …

Posted in Europe / International | Also tagged and | 1 Comment

Recent Comments

  • User AvatarGlenn 1st Dec - 4:56am
    Manfrang. I see your point, but this isn't the out come in Libya, Iraq or Afghanistan. I suspect that what we will end up with...
  • User AvatarManfarang 1st Dec - 4:13am
    ...was not just bombed... ...but was in the movie.... Macular degeneration setting in!
  • User AvatarManfarang 1st Dec - 4:09am
    Shaun "tackling an evil ideology hell bent on destroying our way of life" Cammunism as once was said years ago and used to justify military...
  • User AvatarManfarang 1st Dec - 3:31am
    Glenn Long term outcomes? New states- Western Syria plus Lebanon, a greater Lebanon. Eastern Syria, Jordan, parts of Northern Iraq, a new Sunni kingdom. Unions...
  • User Avatarpetermartin2001 1st Dec - 3:26am
    Just a reminder that Keynes was perhaps the ultimate Economic Liberal or should that be Liberal Economist? He's largely fallen out of favour but we...
  • User AvatarManfarang 1st Dec - 3:17am
    David Raw "we opposed getting involved in Vietnam in 1968 " The British Army did help build the runways at the American bases in NE...