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In the wake of the financial meltdown, governments are taking steps to ensure its containment, ultimate recovery and how to prevent a recurrence. Individual countries have lost to globalisation their sovereignty to act alone. They can only recover it collectively by introducing an effective system of multilateral governance, certainly not by economic nationalism As Philip… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Who Cares About EU Membership?

Who Cares About Europe? is the caption of the Charlemagne column in the last issue of The Economist. Whether voter indifference needs to be managed or feared is a pertinent question. Comparing it with national attitudes towards government is inappropriate. National politicians may have lost the trust of their electorates but the national system is… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Investing or gambling?

It may be time to revisit our vocabulary in the light of the financial meltdown. “Safe as a bank” and “safe as houses”– forget them “Insure” – to guarantee or protect against a risk or loss – provided that the insurer remains solvent. And we need to re-examine the difference between “investing” and “gambling”. To… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Ireland: a constitutional and political quagmire The findings of the Irish government research into the reasons for the rejection of the Lisbon Treaty were published on 10 September. The main reason people voted ‘No’ was a lack of knowledge or understanding of what they were voting on (42%). Taoiseach Brian Cowen will update the European… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

The United States is leaderless.Europe is leaderless; the world is leaderless. Russia and China are not leaderless but their world roles are very limited – and a vacuum does not remain a vacuum. The conclusion is obvious. As Charlemagne wrote in this week’s Economist, “there is a place for Europe in the new world order.… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Paul Adamson writes today in the Financial Times that Ireland’s gift to the rest of the EU is to raise the question of a Member State losing its Commissioner, this being a key reason why the Irish voted ‘No’ according to the findings of major government research published on 10 September. I do not agree… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

There have been, and will continue to be media articles, commentaries and analyses on the Beijing Olympics and their effect on China itself, and on its relationship with and future policies towards Europe, the United States and other major countries. It is still too soon to attempt any considered conclusions, but some general observations and… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Russia, Georgia and NATO

My post of 5 September, ‘Russia: it’s time to be realistic’, concluded that unless Russia’s legitimate grievances are met, the EU will not progress beyond issuing consensual but ineffective declarations. And this means Georgia and Ukraine not becoming full members of NATO, and no US anti-missile bases being sited in the EU. The US House… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

Influence of Paralympics

Who would have imagined a quarter of a century ago, 4 000 physically disabled athletes participating in a spectacular opening ceremony before 91 000 spectators in the Birds Nest? Given the history of Chinese attitudes towards disability, the Paralympics are in some ways a more striking event than the Summer Games. And their influence is… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick

A Chinese window opening?

On the cover of Southern Window’s 11 August issue, a highbrow Chinese biweekly with a circulation of 500 000, there is an illustration of law textbooks and a teacher with a wooden pointer giving instruction to a businessman and a government official. The caption reads, “Rule of Law Starts with Limitation of Power.” This may… » read more

Posted by Stanley Crossick