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Topic: What's Going on in Europe (Read 136674 times)

What's Going on in Europe
Portugal is weeping, Geert Wilders Says Netherlands Would Be Better Off if It Left 28-Nation Bloc, France can't compete with Germany, Merkel is pissed at Obama, Belgium is ousting Afgans. Is anybody happy?

  • jax
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  • Global Moderator
Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1175
A grislier German example of contract limitations.

  • ersi
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GDPR
Reply #1176
Privacy campaigner Schrems slaps Amazon, Apple, Netflix, others with GDPR data access complaints

Last May, immediately after Europe's new privacy regulation came into force, noyb [a.k.a. Max Schrems] lodged its first series of strategic complaints -- targeted at what it dubbed "forced consent", arguing that Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Google's Android OS do not give users a free choice to consent to processing their data for ad targeting, as consenting is required to use the service.
That's what I said: You get bugged for consent or you get shut off. No options.

Did somebody say that now, thanks to GDPR, you can ask from the companies to see how your data is used? Here's what it looks like.



  • jax
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  • Global Moderator
Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1177
That's why they got sued the very first day. The courts will give GDPR bite, or not. When the law comes there will be resistance, they will do as little as they can get away with, or even less if there are no significant consequence.

It is in many way the private (and some public) surveillance equivalent to Freedom of information laws. Some bureaucracies will comply quickly and fully, others will not, and try to obstruct and subvert. If the law lets them get away with it, they will. 

  • ersi
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1178
Congrats to Frenzie for the Dutch victory at Eurovision. Well, congrats to the performer too.

Eurovision is a terrible circus for decades now, and it is made worse that there is less and less European about it. Not only are non-Europeans participating (with full rights, not just for the circus effect) - the whole event took place, yet again, outside Europe.

The way it is going, I am thinking Eurovision should be re-formed and re-branded in the manner of movie festivals. Hollywood has its Academy Awards ceremony or the Oscars - the focus is in Hollywood, but the rest of the world gets to participate somewhat in various ways. Same with Cannes etc.

So, let it be something like Singers' Circus or Music Vanity Arena, hosted by EBU and Aussievision (and others as they become strong enough industry agents). And what was that heavyweight ballerina about? Oh, that was France. Oh dear.[1]
Btw, someone somewhere said that English "oh dear" originated from "adieu" or the like.

  • Frenzie
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  • Administrator
Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1179
Congrats to Frenzie for the Dutch victory at Eurovision. Well, congrats to the performer too.
Now I'll have to go look for some videos, I suppose. :P

Btw, someone somewhere said that English "oh dear" originated from "adieu" or the like.
That sounds rather implausible. The OED, which presumably put some more effort into research, agrees:
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A derivation from Italian dio, God, as conjectured by some, resting upon modern English pronunciation of dea(r), finds no support in the history of the word.
Because deor/dere is perfectly plain Old/Middle English for something like bold and precious, which seems to have organically lost its "bold" aspect. Cognate with Dutch duur.[1] No derivation from any other language necessary.

  • Belfrager
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1180
Elections are going on in Europe, so it seems.
A matter of attitude.

  • jax
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  • Global Moderator
Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1181
Yes, the Pirate parties have quadrupled their MEPs, after having them halved previous period. 2009-2014: 2 (SWE), 2014-2019: 1 (GER), 2019-2024 1 (GER), 3 (CZE).

  • ersi
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1182
Elections are going on in Europe, so it seems.
Luckily it's over now. Some candidates were really annoyingly campaigning on the streets. I hid myself from them at my home and did not vote.

  • ensbb3
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1183
I hid myself from them at my home and did not vote.
Good advice for me next year.

  • Frenzie
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1184
Lol, what'd they do?

  • jax
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1185
Good advice for me next year.

Three years election campaign must be longest in US history, or? I think by now US campaigns are longer than any other I am aware of. Should be time to start running for the 2024 campaign. The European Parliament campaign on the other hand is blink-and-it-is-over short. Even Eurovision voting takes longer. That on the other hand must have the record for longest voting period among musical competitions or whatever category that will be in.

That was one noticeable change moving to Sweden. This thing goes on for months. The international competition goes on long enough, but the national competition is even worse. And that is based on 28 songs selected from 2300 (!) songs that year. 28 songs making for 11 1/2 hour of television (including an hour of "Eurovision: The Day After"). Is there a lot of repetition? What do think? Is there a lot of repetition? What do think? Is there a lot of repetition?

  • ensbb3
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1186
The Dems would do well to focus on legislative seats. But the Parties have an all or nothing policy. Cut off the nose to spite the face type mentality.


28 songs making for 11 1/2 hour of television
Seems like there'd be a lot of repetition with that. :P

  • jax
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1187
So the Spitzenkandidat is out, while Merkel has weighed in against Vestager.

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"Both Spitzenkandidaten, whom I would call the only real Spitzenkandidaten, are in the race and have both made sure that the Spitzenkandidaten process will remain in the future," Merkel said on Saturday on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Japan. "We are on a path which will maybe make a solution possible tomorrow."

FT has their own favourites, which might suit the British, but for Brexit. 

  • Frenzie
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1188
Hopefully some thunderstorms soon. :ko:

  • ersi
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1189
Hopefully some thunderstorms soon. :ko:
Tour de France etape 19 was interrupted due to hail and mudslides. And at least in Estonia the temperature is expected to lower from about 30 C to below 20.

Nothing else is happening, so we are reduced to talk about weather.

  • Belfrager
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1190
Nothing else is happening, so we are reduced to talk about weather.
I don't know about other countries but at mine people got some kind of "weather mania", talking about the weather all the time.
Authorities publishes weather alerts every single day, usually in colors. Today will be green but caution, yellow or probably red for the weekend and so on, and so on, and so on...
 
The weather was something to talk about occasionally, when it was justified to do so, not constantly. It turned into the most important thing in people's life. It doesn't surprises me.

This is definitively a symptom of post modernity at a high, no hope of treatment, degree of disease. The population is severely infected.
A matter of attitude.

  • jax
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1191

Financial Times: Seven lessons for Europe's China policy
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Two facts are fundamental for the EU's orientation towards China.One is that the US is now at best indifferent to the survival of the rules-based international order. Europe is largely left alone to defend the international governance under which it thrives. The other is that China is building a global economic network with itself as the centre. [...] 
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    Put together, these two facts mean that for the first time in the history of the European project, the EU has to go on the offensive in order to defend its interests. What this means is restoring itself as a pole of attraction for third countries and projecting its influence with them just as much as China does and as the US has done in the past.Earlier this year Brussels named China a "systemic rival". Here are seven things Europe must do to address this rivalry.

Synopsis (read article for full argument):

  • articulate a vision for the future as concrete and appealing as anything Beijing can come up with
  • offer more to Europe's eastern and southeastern flank in particular
  • create a better-defined and more attractive offer for countries not on a path to full single market membership
  • employ sticks as well as carrots; carbon border adjustment taxes with those not doing their part on climate change; restrictions on data flows with those that disrespect the data rights Europeans increasingly assert
  • while being transparent about systemic rivalry, identify clearly aligned interests where the EU and China can work together as equal partners
  • look for areas to accommodate a full role for China in shaping global governance
  • the EU needs to be much more aware of the things it does well and which make it attractive to others

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In technology policy, for example, too many Europeans fret about having no equivalent to Google or Facebook, while too few pride themselves on the Linux operating system's European origins. The former extract massive profits from surveillance-intensive advertising. The latter is a free and ubiquitous underpinning of the digital world.

Which has done more for Europe's -- and the world's -- productivity? Rather than envying America's tech monopolists or China's privacy-blind data hoarding, Europe must learn to see that many of its particularities, such as tougher competition and privacy rules, are not weaknesses but strengths.

  • ersi
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1192
Synopsis (read article for full argument):

  • articulate a vision for the future as concrete and appealing as anything Beijing can come up with
     
  • offer more to Europe's eastern and southeastern flank in particular
     
  • create a better-defined and more attractive offer for countries not on a path to full single market membership
     
  • employ sticks as well as carrots; carbon border adjustment taxes with those not doing their part on climate change; restrictions on data flows with those that disrespect the data rights Europeans increasingly assert
     
  • while being transparent about systemic rivalry, identify clearly aligned interests where the EU and China can work together as equal partners
     
  • look for areas to accommodate a full role for China in shaping global governance
     
  • the EU needs to be much more aware of the things it does well and which make it attractive to others
This can never work.

"1. articulate a vision for the future as concrete and appealing as anything Beijing can come up with"

This already starts with pretention and disingenuousness. We should actually *be* appealing in fact and deed, not only by articulating a nicer vision than Beijing does. Unfortunately Europe has embarrassed itself badly enough in several different ways, such as by starting two world wars, then failing to stop next wars when they were close by (Balkans in the 90s) and running along to fight wars where we had no business (Afghanistan and Iraq). There is no way to articulate a vision that could erase these events. At the same time, modern China never attacked anyone outside its own borders.

In the outside world, the EU is seen both politically and economically as the pendant of USA. Any "vision" we might articulate will be seen as an attempt to push through the (military) interests and (asymmetric "free" trade) values of USA. This is not some remote impression, but has always been confirmed by the actions. Nobody in their right mind (or rightly skeptically minded) can trust us.

"2. offer more to Europe's eastern and southeastern flank in particular"

Those who call the shots in the EU always undermined Europe's eastern and southeastern flank, even when it was in their immediate interest to strengthen the flank against the aggression of Russia. For example, Merkel sang the bright future of visa freedom with Putin and France signed a treaty of delivering warships for Russia's Black Sea fleet just before the Crimean war, against warnings of eastern EU members. Another notable example, when MH17 was shot down in Ukraine and the Dutch prime minister almost immediately offered to go in to investigate with military backup if necessary, which would have shown that the EU is serious when their own citizens are attacked (most of the passengers were Dutch) and serious about what is going on at its eastern flank, the bigger members reined him in, for fear to upset Russia.

These examples should convince everyone that the EU is absolutely not serious when their own citizens are attacked and is ever ready to sacrifice its eastern and southeastern flank.

"4. employ sticks as well as carrots; carbon border adjustment taxes with those not doing their part on climate change;"

Somewhat doable only with those who have ratified the relevant treaty. And does not pull out like USA did. Anyway, it would be good for that carbon thingy to make sense in the first place. There is too much CO2 in it and too little about reducing industrial pollution, encouraging renewable energy, reusable/recycled materials, etc. With such senseless emphasis on mere CO2, pranksters can say that the farting cows of India have the most effect on global warming.

"5. restrictions on data flows with those that disrespect the data rights Europeans increasingly assert"

What data rights do Europeans assert? The right to the cookie popup hell? How is this even a right?

"6. while being transparent about systemic rivalry, identify clearly aligned interests where the EU and China can work together as equal partners
7. look for areas to accommodate a full role for China in shaping global governance
8. the EU needs to be much more aware of the things it does well and which make it attractive to others"

Yadda yadda.

  • ersi
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1193
USA is much more likely than the EU to devise something to counter China.

How to Respond to the Rise of China - Part 2

Due to its larger geographic size and larger population relative to earlier challengers, the US had a big advantage in its knowledge base to fuel its innovation. Against the Soviets, the US had a larger economy, invested more in higher education, and even managed to attract many of the leading German scientists after World War II. Against the Japanese, the US had a much, much larger economy and a much larger population, as well as more investment in higher education. This advantage gave the US a big edge in innovation, whether it was in developing superior weapons systems and consumer goods relative to the Soviets, or inventing new industries in response to the Japanese challenge.

Today, China's economy is approaching the size of that of the US, while its population is more than four times the size of the US. And the country has steadily and strongly expanded its spending on higher education to prepare for an even brighter future. Since China knew that it would take many years to strengthen its own universities, it has also provided generous funding for young masters and doctoral students to study at excellent international universities, not only in the US but throughout the developed economies in Western Europe, Canada and Australia. China calculated that allowing its citizens to study abroad would strengthen their knowledge, and that most of them would likely return to China and put that enhanced knowledge to work in the Chinese economy. This meant that China did not need to wait for its own universities to catch up, in order to increase its innovation capability.

As a result, we in the US now face a near-peer in innovation infrastructure. The innovation infrastructure consists of the hard and soft assets in the society to generate, disseminate, and absorb new innovative knowledge. This requires investments in hard assets, like 5G connectivity or up-to-date airports, roads and train stations, as well as investments in soft assets, like training, skills, universities and other forms of human capital development.
USA, always calculating how to override others, continues to do according to its nature. Continental Europe does not have this in the genes and the genes cannot be altered. The EU does not even have a Russia-policy (except as a weak reflex of USA's Russia-policy), so there is no reason to hope we come up with a China-policy.

Then again, USA is strongly to blame for what China has become and is becoming. The point of blame is when Kissinger switched diplomacy from Taiwan to mainland. Often enough USA wrestles monsters of its own creation and imagination.

  • Mr. Tennessee
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Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1194
You must remember that we are now the land of Trump!
 :devil:

  • jax
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  • Global Moderator
Re: What's Going on in Europe
Reply #1195
That won't last. This Trump administration is scorched earth by groups that know that they are never going to hold power again, and try to cause as much damage as they can before they go. Whether or not it wins re-election next year, it is history.

But yes, long-term the US relationship to China is a far bigger threat than Trump. Not the Thucydides Trap, that's hogwash, but setting up China as a strategic enemy to the US, type Soviet Union. The US has become used to have a significant other, a rival, and some, Republican and Democrats, are propping up China to be the next one.

By which, of course, I don't mean criticism/arm-wrestling based on Zhongnanhai activities, many nefarious, or looking out for American interests, also when they conflict with Chinese. All that is well and good, and often needed. The US is one of the few countries that can stand up to China. I am talking about those who try to set up China as the next Soviet Union. In all likelihood that will pass, much like the US and partially Japan, came through the bout of Japanophobia in the 1980s.

If it did, Europe would have no choice but to hold a middle position, and finally we would have reached the world of 1984.
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Oceania was at war with Eastasia: Oceania had always been at war with Eastasia. A large part of the political literature of five years was now completely obsolete. Reports and records of all kinds, newspapers, books, pamphlets, films, sound-tracks, photographs -- all had to be rectified at lightning speed. Although no directive was ever issued, it was known that the chiefs of the Department intended that within one week no reference to the war with Eurasia, or the alliance with Eastasia, should remain in existence anywhere.
Soon enough the rest of Asia will be rising, India and Indonesia for instance, and the ridiculousness of this position will be apparent.