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Christian-democrats prefer islamophobic populists

from Social Europe Journal by Rene Cuperus

In the Netherlands, like in Belgium, the formation of a new cabinet is underway. In these small, but ultracomplex coalition countries,  it takes weeks and weeks to form governments.  Cabinet formation is a giant Sudoku puzzle.

What’s behind Sarkozy’s crackdown on the Roma?

from FP Passport by Joshua Keating

Nicholas Sarkozy seems to be indulging in the time-honored European tradition of cracking down on Gypsies for political gain:

The deportations, scheduled to start Thursday, follow the dismantling of 51 illegal camps?set up by Roma of eastern origin and by other Gypsies, including French citizens?over the past three weeks. Around 700 of the people expelled from their camps who were staying in France illegally will be flown home to Central and Eastern Europe, he said….

France sends Roma back to Romania

from BBC News | Europe | World Edition
Dozens of Roma (Gypsies) are flown back to Romania from France, in the first of a wave of repatriations condemned by rights groups.

MAIN FOCUS: France deports the first group of Roma | 19/08/2010

from euro|topics

The French government is flying 79 Roma to Romania today, Thursday. By the end of August roughly 700 people are to be deported to their countries of origin. The deportation of the Roma diverts attention from France’s integration deficit and serves primarily the interests of President Nicolas Sarkozy, writes Europe’s press.

France criticised over Roma gypsy plan

from BBC News | Europe | World Edition
Criticism is mounting of France’s move to expel hundreds of Roma gypsies.

EU commission monitoring French Roma explusions

from EUobserver.com – Headline News

France: Racism and Politics

from Global Voices Online by Lova Rakotomalala

By Abdoulaye Bah · Translated by Lova Rakotomalala · View original post [fr]

Nowadays in France, like in Africa, when politicians need a boost in popularity or want to cast a wider political net, they make an appeal  into the most primal instincts of the voters: ethnic identity. The approval rate of French president Sarkozy has gone from 67% in July of 2007 to less than 27% in July 2010, according to the blog sarkononmerci.fr, citing 9 opinion polls from independent media sources. The blog adds the following analysis after the latest surveys [fr]:

MAIN FOCUS: German growth a boon to Europe’s economy | 16/08/2010

from euro|topics

Germany’s recovery played a key role in the second quarter in raising the growth rate in the Eurozone to its highest level in three years. But it is too early for euphoria because the German economy is too dependent on exports, writes Europe’s press.

Sarkozy rebuked over raids on Roma camps

from FT.com – World, Europe
Members of the French president’s own right-of-centre party criticise him for his policy of breaking up of gypsy encampments and the launching of a government offensive against crimes committed by people of foreign origin

Two decades of the Brussels Consensus

from Social Europe Journal by George Irvin

There was a time when progressive economists derided the ?Washington Consensus?, that infamous combination of deflationary fiscal policy, deregulation and privatisation which the Fund and the Bank exported to developing countries for decades with such poor results. The Washington consensus, it will be recalled, came into being when Ronald Reagan cleaned out the progressive element at 1818 H Street and replaced it with people like Ann Krueger who famously dismissed the public sector as inefficient and rent-seeking. The Asian countries, led by Japan, commissioned a report challenging right-wing orthodoxy about the need to shrink the state, and a major debate ensued about the importance of state-led industrialisation strategy;[1] South Korea and China are good examples of how the ?developmental state? can boost growth.

After Eurogoblin: Why is English not the lingua franca of European integration?

by Grahnlaw

The free movement of goods, persons, services and capital has been popular in England, at least when headed towards the European Continent, but the free flow of thoughts less so in the reverse direction, if threatening to enrich Britain.

Pocket-size European Human Rights

by Grahnlaw

The Council of Europe (CoE) has published a small and convenient booklet with the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), as amended by the provisions of Protocol No. 14 which entered into force on 1 June 2010.

Europarties: Yes to primaries for EU Commission President 2014

by Grahnlaw

Conor Slowey (Eurocentric) drew my attention to the campaign for the Party of European Socialists (PES), to which he dedicated a thoughtful post on The European Citizen blog: PES primaries and a Parliamentary EU.

MAIN FOCUS: France marginalises Roma | 13/08/2010

from euro|topics

French police have cleared forty illegal Roma settlements in the past two weeks. Around 700 people are to be deported to their home countries of Romania and Bulgaria. Commentators criticise France’s inefficient Roma policy, which they say damages the country’s reputation.

EU tax: Discussing a part of a fraction of public spending

by Grahnlaw

Total government expenditure in EU-27 during 2011 is forecast at 50.3 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), according to the publication Public Finances in EMU 2010 (European economy 4/2010).

EU tax: Euroblog discussion on Bloggingportal.eu

by Grahnlaw

One of the few silly season issues to make waves during summer recess in Brussels has been the preliminary announcement by the EU Budget Commissioner Janusz Lewandowski that he will present a few options for an EU tax in September, as reported by Financial Times Deutschland on 9 August 2010 (in German).

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