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.

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
Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 1st Jun - 12:07am
    Interesting article and good points on Belarus and democracy (or lack of). Overall, I like Cameron's foreign policy, except when it comes to Asia when...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 31st May - 11:54pm
    If the centre-right is "moribund" and the left where the future is then why did the far right nearly win in Austria and why are...
  • User AvatarRoland 31st May - 11:12pm
    @Stuart - You could complain that it's the EU's fault, but that is overlooking the fact that the sovereign UK government either didn't read the...
  • User AvatarStuart 31st May - 11:11pm
    @David Allen "Vote Leave are... totally failing to offer a responsible way forward in the event that they win" I don't get this point. Vote...
  • User AvatarRichard Underhill 31st May - 11:05pm
    Stevan Rose: People seriously engage with the issues about three weeks before polling day, so the polls could change. Unlike the bookies they are not...
  • User AvatarStuart 31st May - 10:58pm
    @Caron "It’s a post about the irony of Leave banging on about VAT on fuel like the Tories care about the poorest..." I presume those...