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EU Politics, Technology

How do you get to Augustusburg?

It had to happen at some point – delays to Ryanair flights. Considering how often I fly with them, it’s a miracle I am not delayed more often. Anyway, Saturday morning most of northern Europe was covered with fog and the incoming aircraft that would then take me to Altenburg […]


A small good deed in Lambeth

When cycling home this evening from Waterloo towards Clapham, it soon became clear there was a major problem – no traffic southbound from Lambeth Bridge all the way to the Vauxhall Cross roundabout. Turned out there had been an accident there – quite serious, and apparently a fatality according to […]

EU Politics

British obsessions: fire doors

There are some things that strike you as just plain odd in the UK. Have no fear – this entry, and similar ones to come, is not going to turn into generalised rants. It’s just that some things in the UK are a bit particular. The first of these that […]

EU Politics

Ken Livingstone and the genius of Oyster

Shock horror! Tube and bus fares in London are going up again. Oh, no, they are not actually. Everyone has been ranting today that a Zone 1 tube fare will hit ??3 for a single – more than 3 times as much as Paris. But on the other hand, make […]

EU Politics

Consumer power, and a new job

The blog has been a bit quiet over the last couple of weeks – I have started a new job and it takes a bit of time to settle. It feels like a breath of fresh air with a new start though – I am now at the National School […]


Fischer, the negotiations, and why are the British so insular?

Joschka Fischer has now announced his withdrawal from a formal role in the Green Party, signalling he will not play a role in front line politics unless the Greens stay in government as part of a traffic light or Jamaica coalition. Seems a strange decision from Fischer, but I suppose […]


German Elections – give us a traffic light

It???s about 4 hours after the polls have closed in a remarkable election in Germany. Probably for the first time in a few decades, it looks very hard to presently predict what is going to happen. A quick summary of the results (roughly): SPD ??? 33% (down 5%) CDU ??? […]


Kroes should just be Trouw to the European ideal

EU Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes has put her foot in it by writing in a newspaper that the Germans electing Merkel would be a good idea. This has led to a chorus of howls from Social Democrat MEPs that she has no right to say such things about national politics […]


The fat blokes are back!

They are back. Or at least they look like they are trying a bit. The fuel protestors that did their best to bring the country to a halt in 2000 are trying to gear up once again. Seems things are staring slowly though. The population – in their infinite wisdom […]


UK Startling Statistics

In a column in today’s Guardian by Polly Toynbee, on what would happen if a natural disaster hit the UK: Poor London victims would also have nothing more than the clothes they stood in. Nationally 27% of people have no savings, not one penny; 25% of the poorest have at […]

EU Politics

He’s probably right, but aren’t we the Presidency?

Gordon Brown has today launched a very thinly veiled attack on the European Commission’s trade deal with China on textiles in an article in the FT – summary here. His basic stance is towards those that have appealed for quotas is tough – protectionism is not going to save inefficient […]