There is one Brit who seems capable of explaining the EU in an amusing and pleasant way – Eddie Izzard. He went to the last European Council meeting with Blair, and has recorded a Podcast about it – hear it here (pic to the right is from pm.gov.uk). He’s also written a column about it at the Guardian website here. Parts of the podcast are quite tedious – lots of time on a plane – but then he gets into the Justus Lipsius building, and talks briefly while on the plane to Tony Blair. Quite fun, from Blair’s words to Izzard, explaining what the European Council is:
“You need to care about the European Council because that’s where the leaders turn up… Not that the Council of Europe is not important or anything.“
Does stuff get done at the European Council meeting? asks Izzard. Blair seemed to think so. And he acknowledges that European Councils can be hellish, but it’s better to negotiate than fight. Izzard also talks to Jan Peter Balkenende about football as well – not very enlightening, that part.
Seriously though, Izzard is human, quite funny, and cares about the EU. Pity there are not more like him. However there’s not much clarity about how the institutions work on the basis of the podcast. Maybe that was too much to expect, or I am too much of a geek!