Monday, August 6, 2007

Certain Ideas of Europe

The Economist is one of those publications that people either love or hate; very few who have read it are indifferent. I feel somewhat lonely as a regular reader who enjoys it but well understands the irritation and frustration of others with it.

It does at least have the virtue of providing a great deal of informed analysis on a great may issues. And its coverage of EU business, although it suffers from being too high-level and afraid to get down in the weeds, is very solid.

For those who like to look at EU affairs through the Good/Bad prism, who see any debate about the EU as being necessarily about praising it to the heavens or calling for its demise, the Economist is of little comfort. It takes a fairly middle-of-the-road stance, endorsing the idea of the EU but being critical of its workings. The Economist's excellent blog, Certain Ideas of Europe, is a good example.

I always dread the prospect of entering into a debate on the Constitutional Treaty, or the Reform Treaty, depending on the name you prefer, because it is so painfully sensitive that use of terminology has to be very precise to avoid accusations of favouring one side or the other. What the Economist does do skilfully is to expose some of the less "serious" criticisms of the Reform Treaty in one of its recent postings. I think the publication might have taken a more critical look at the treaty. But I also think that "unserious" journalism like that of British EU-sceptic Christopher Booker does nothing to aid his cause, since it is easily dismissed as ill-informed, misleading, or inaccurate.


Anonymous said...


Nice blog indeed. I enjoy the reviews of EU-related blogs.


Insideur said...

Peter, glad you like it. Spread the word! And don't hesitate to tell me if there's something I can add in terms of types of posts, or a topic you'd like to see addressed.

Anonymous said...

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Best wishes
Darek Wish