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Future of EU: Federalism, or United States of Europe?
#81
Since Real European asked, I think this could be a could introduction to Swedish transparency principles, directed at a more general European audience (from a noticeably Swedish perspective), and briefly compared with those in the EU institutions. Researchers such as Bo Rothstein and Lars Trägårdh have studied the long-term effects of government transparency on public trust, and democracy. 

https://rm.coe.int/16806da686
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#82
(20-07-19, 12:51 PM)Forsete Wrote: Since Real European asked, I think this could be a could introduction to Swedish transparency principles, directed at a more general European audience (from a noticeably Swedish perspective), and briefly compared with those in the EU institutions. Researchers such as Bo Rothstein and Lars Trägårdh have studied the long-term effects of government transparency on public trust, and democracy. 

https://rm.coe.int/16806da686

Thanks Forsete.

Transparency is one of the most important things in a democracy IMHO. It allows accountability. As a French citizen, I very often feel irritated by our not so transparent habits Angry  (a bit better than before though). 

The site of the Commissioner HR of the CoE is a well of knowledge. You'll find a very independent body studying in depth all aspects of democracy and human rights in the CoE member states. Forsete, see that the second commissioner, Mr Hammarberg, is Swedish and has left a splendid memory of work and dedication to his mandate.  Today's commissioner is Dunja Mijatović from BH.

https://www.coe.int/en/web/commissioner
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#83
One more arguing that the way forward for the EU, is to go from the present Confederation to a Federation.



Radoslaw Sikorski - EU: The empire Britain has refused to rule
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#84
Thanks SwaziKing.
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#85
As you guys said before, it's good enough and usually naturally corrects any deficiencies.

That's highly inspirational and good. Sometimes letting things play out is a valid strategy, doing nothing.

However, it is probably best to keep fighting the populist right in this case I think. I dont know. What do you think?
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#86
It is imperative to fight the populist right everywhere. Difficult task but necessary.
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#87
(25-04-19, 11:34 AM)SwaziKing Wrote: Macron is a dreamer, he foresees 'a' future and wants to meet it with an upper hand, he also believes that time is of essence to deal with the issues of strengthening Europe.
 
Merkel seems to be the opposite, she is pragmatic, only takes steady steps, one at a time, no matter how long it takes, she likes to drive on the slowest lane to avoid a crash, when she arrives at the destination… it’s empty, China and the US have taken everything.

Reading this article in the Guardian Angela Merkel must go – for Germany’s sake, and for Europe’s once more reinforces the idea that the EU is at a standstill... for a long time.

some quotes from the article:
Quote:If Germany is the heart of Europe, then it is currently the slow-beating heart of a well-fed businessman resting on his office couch after an ample lunch. For Europe’s sake, and for Germany’s own, that heart needs to beat a little faster.

Quote:Maybe the country has wasted the fat years, not investing enough in its ageing infrastructure? Maybe it is missing out on the digital revolution, so its fabled car industry now looks distinctly old-fashioned compared with the self-drive electric cars being developed by the giants of Silicon Valley and China

Quote:The French president, Emmanuel Macron, impatiently wants to revolutionise Europe, giving the old continent Napoleonic strategic ambition, but Merkel’s Germany is not playing ball.

Quote:Yet in a recent Politbarometer poll, more than two thirds of those asked said they want Merkel and her government to continue until the end of the current electoral term, in autumn 2021. Of course, it’s entirely up to the German people to decide who they want to govern them, but I would respectfully suggest that this is not in the best interest of either Germany or Europe.

Where is Martin Schultz?
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#88
Is Federalist Ursula von der Leyen  diplomacy having an effect on Berlin?

Berlin and Paris outline plan for EU makeover in Politico.eu 26/11/2019

[Image: attachment.php?aid=282]

Quote:Germany and France have drawn up a blueprint for a two-year "Conference on the Future of Europe" aimed at overhauling nearly all aspects of how the EU functions, including possible treaty changes if need be, with a goal of making the bloc "more united and sovereign," according to a document seen by POLITICO.

Conference on the Future of Europe Franco-German non-paper on key questions and guidelines

Quote:3. What structure do we need?
As proposed by the new European Commission, the process should follow two phases, on the basis of on interinstitutional mandate to be agreed in January 2020. The mandate / institutional setting could be simplified for phase 1, to ensure an early start.
Phase 1 would start as early as February 2020, until the summer of 2020, and focus on issues related to EU democratic functioning (esp. regarding elections and designations in key positions – e.g. transnational lists and lead candidate system, issues related to citizens’ participation in EU institutions/matters).
Phase 2 focusing on policy priorities should be launched in mid-2020 (German EU presidency) and be closed in early 2022 (French presidency). The involvement of all EU Member states (e.g. by thematic conferences in different EU Member States) and midterm reviews (PT and SI presidencies) would ensure ownership and structure the process. 

It is good news to have Guy Verhofstadt (a Federalist), being mentioned as one of the potential contenders for the chair position of the steering group of experts to lead this process.
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#89
France is back, but where is Germany?
is an article written by Mujtaba Rahman in Politico 27/11/2019.

One more mind arguing that the will of Germany and France must be aligned for Europe to move forward.

Some quotes from the article:
Quote:Put bluntly: Macron believes the European Union must abandon its obsession with the free market and become a political and strategic player with one voice and one purpose — first in its own neighborhood and then in the world. Creating a proper EU defense policy is the key to all.

These ideas have exacerbated tensions with Germany. First, because there isn’t much strategic thinking in Berlin. As one senior member of the German government recently told me, “the last time we had a German idea for Europe was under the chancellorship of Helmut Kohl.” Second, because in the pockets of the chancellery, foreign ministry and Bundestag where such thinking does exist, the ideas differ markedly to those in Paris.

By placing defense at the core of his “new EU,” Berlin suspects that Macron wants to replace the economic leadership of Germany with the foreign and security policy leadership of France. This would amount to making the French army, rather than German economy, the nucleus of EU action and power, German officials groan.

Quote:Very well-placed officials in Berlin now believe that “Macron has decided to push forward with European reforms that he considers necessary, alone and without Germany.” As evidence, they cite the French leader’s veto on starting trade talks with the United States, his decision to block the opening of EU accession talks with Albania and North Macedonia and his support for rapprochement with Russia.

Quote:European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, whom Macron helped vault into the hot seat, has already said her term will be “geopolitical” in its focus — a nod to the Elysée’s priorities.

Here is the opportunity for Europe to back Mr. Macron's policy and for Mrs. von der Leyen to ease Germany in.
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