Eurosphere roundup: Italy?s centre-left fails in presidential vote…Penguin agrees ebook pricing deal with EU

Italy?s centre-left fails in presidential vote

from – World, Europe

Berlusconi supporters celebrate ?death? of rival party after more than 100 Democrat MPs vote against Romano Prodi, dashing hopes of an end to political deadlock


Italian centre-left leader ‘to quit’

from BBC News | Europe | World Edition

Italy’s centre-left leader, Pier Luigi Bersani, promises to step down after a new president is elected, amid a rebellion among his MPs.


Is the euro crisis responsible for populism?

from Centre for European Reform by Centre for European Reform


Populists and extremists are on the rise across Europe. Even Germany is now seeing the rise of a eurosceptic party. The euro crisis is the reason for growing political risk in the eurozone. Or is it? True, populist parties are more important in several euro countries. But the reasons for this are manifold and it is hard to detect a Europe-wide trend. An end to the euro crisis would not guarantee a return to predictable two-camp politics.



Penguin agrees ebook pricing deal with EU

from – World, Europe

FT?s parent company becomes the fifth and final publisher to reach a settlement, in a move designed to ?clear the decks? ahead of Random House merger


Thatcher’s funeral – the crowd, the media and reality

from open Democracy News Analysis – by Jeremy Fox

Despite shameless media fawning the streets were in fact eerily quiet; the biggest crowd out was the police. But signs of her legacy are still pervasive.



Lord Renwick: If Margaret Thatcher were Prime Minister today she would seek major reform of the European Union before contemplating withdrawal

from Open Europe blog by Nina Schick

In a short piece for Open Europe, Lord Renwick, a key former advisor to Margaret Thatcher, argues that if the Iron Lady held office today, she would seek major EU reform before considering a ‘Brixit’.


Olli Rehn, Cyprus and fruit: reexamining the costs

from Brussels Blog by Peter Spiegel


Danish Ministries ? now all on Twitter (unofficially)

from Jon Worth


EU court condemns Belgian Flanders for language bias (News)




A fix for Europe?s emissions problem

from – World, Europe

The EU carbon trading scheme has long been an embarrassment and needs a serious overhaul to end its absurdities and create a credible market


Ties of blood: how Thatcher altered ‘British’

from open Democracy News Analysis – by Radhika Natarajan

By discarding the social and cultural ties of the Empire, Margaret Thatcher did away with old ideas of Britishness based on allegiance, desire, history and character. Blood was what mattered. As today’s questionably ‘multicultural’ Britain marks her death, a look back on this journey.



Double Standard? Protesting Foreclosures and Abortion Clinics in Spain

from Global Voices Online by Anna Williams

There’s been an ongoing debate in Spain’s Parliament on the reform of current mortgage laws after thePlataforma de Afectados por la Hipoteca [Platform of People Affected by Mortgages, or PAH] proposed thePopular Legislative Initiative (ILP) [es] in defense of those whose houses are in foreclosure.


Italy: Lost in stagnation

from – Analysis

The ruined and abandoned city of L?Aquila epitomises the despair of a nation paralysed by political and economic torpor. By Guy Dinmore



Is the IMF turning bearish on Spain?

by Open Europe blog team

It?s been a busy week for the IMF, releasing their latest iterations of the World Economic Outlook, Global Financial Stability Report and the Fiscal Monitor. We?ve been poring over the reports and will continue to do so (see here for some initial thoughts on the WEO). One forecast in particular caught our eye ? Spain’s.


Poland?s immigrants go against the flow

from – World, Europe

Spaniards, Portuguese and Italians are being tempted east as growth in the Polish economy outstrips that on the troubled fringes of the eurozone



Lost in EUrope: Germany under pressure

from – Today’s posts

Brussels and Washington both put pressure on Berlin. EU commissioner Rehn and US secretary of treasury Lev  think Germany should step up to stabilize the Euro. The German government currently ignores the pleas, but it will have to deliver after.



Where does air quality rank on Europe?s bucket list?

from Public Affairs 2.0 by Vassia Popova

We all kick the bucket. It?s a given together with taxes, as the famous saying goes. Before we do, however, there?s that notorious list of life goals that need to be checked off. With the Barroso Commission departing in October 2014 and the European Parliament elections looming in May 2014, Europe will have to start prioritising its own bucket list: the 2013 Commission Work Programme.


Public support for the EU drops by 16% in one month: is popular support for the euro in Greece finally about to wane?

by Open Europe Blog Team


MAIN FOCUS: EU threatens Hungary with sanctions | 18/04/2013

from euro|topics

Following the controversial changes to the constitution in Hungary, opposition is now building up at the EU level. Justice Commissioner Vivian Reding announced three new infringement proceedings on Wednesday and did not rule out the possibility of the country losing its voting rights. Some commentators are pleased to see the EU finally taking a threatening stance. Others accuse it of double standards, noting that the EU itself acts undemocratically.

As we’ve noted in the past, a factor that will determine whether the eurozone can hang together in the long term is the extent to which the public in the South begins to see the euro and EU austerity as synonymous.


Austerity is against European common values!

from Blogactiv by feps

A lot has been written in recent years since the crisis started about values and the European Social Model. Although funnily enough, most of these are the same values as they were over a century ago in the progressive movement and are still very relevant today. The European Union states six core values in its Charter of fundamental rights: Dignity, Freedom, Equality, Solidarity, Citizens? rights and Justice. To be noted here, that is the fundamental rights and not the fundamental values of the EU. Nevertheless these are all widely accepted as the being the basis for European society.

The election of the new Italian President: Has Silvio just scored another one?

by Open Europe blog team

The Italian parliament starts voting to elect the new President of the Republic today. Centre-left leader Pier Luigi Bersani has agreed with Silvio Berlusconi and Mario Monti to back the candidacy of Franco Marini – an 80 years old, pipe-smoking former trade unionist and Senate speaker (see picture).


Hungary’s critics should check their facts (Opinion)


Before liberal leader Guy Verhofstadt calls for Article 7 of the EU treaty to be applied against Hungary, he should check his facts, Enik? Gy?ri says in a commentary submitted to EurActiv.

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