Yeah, you know that Department for International Trade?

I’ve long had a nagging suspicion that Liam Fox has the unrewarding task of setting up a fiefdom that exists only to scrapped as a bargaining chip in the great brexit unwinding. Customs Unions are dangerous beasts, but they don’t do much damage – sovereignty wise – in and of themself.

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That is if we are to consider Customs Unions as separate from Single Markets.

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A Parting Gift – The ECR and the Visegrad+

More a case of putting down a marker for posterity…. but, have you noticed what a comfy looking home the ECR must look to fringe european nationalists? For all the approbrium that has been heaped on the ECR, it has often been the big mainstream parties that have have opened their doors to europes nuttier political parties. PES and EPP in particular, but this musing is about the latter of those two.

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Perhaps we’re reaching the point where the EPP will cease to be a useful shield…

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Merkron – Representation? We’ve heard of it.

Germany will regret this CDU(CSU)/SPD coalition if it survives first contact with the electorate. And France may well suffer Post-messiah-stress-disorder, just as the US did when hopes and dreams turned in mass-disillusionment. Both are problems caused by a lack of representation. Or, more precisely, a political discourse that disregards the importance of Representation.

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A theme this blog has come back time and again since 2010.

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Vega Gigahertz Edition at GDC – Not quite as versatile

Continueing my dubious legacy of AMD related tech predictions – I give you the Vega Gigahertz Edition! It almost certainly won’t sport the moniker “Gigahertz Edition”, but it will in many ways mirror the re-release of the 7970 some six years ago. It’s what you do when you don’t have anything new in a market that expects a twelve month product cycle.

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This is not to say it will be a bad product.

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The Original Sin, Two Mistakes and a Misdiagnosis – All out war (1997 to 2016)

The Context –  “The major recession of the early 1980s, which destroyed much of Britain’s ‘smokestack’ manufacturing and heavy industry, had been exacerbated by purist market ‘monetarist’ policies and unemployment rose to over 3million. The privatisation of the major utilities (coal, gas, electricity and water) had also led to much unionised job-shedding. Union membership had contracted from its 1970s peak of over 13 million to 7-8 million and collective bargaining was on the retreat across British industry. The process of ‘reforming’ (i.e., abolishing or severely restricting), traditional union activities and practices with three separate pieces of legislation (1980-84), was pressed home with the far more legalistic Employment Act 1988. This was after the defeat of the union ‘shock troop’ miners and printers’ in bitter and protracted disputes. In this polarised situation, the TUC were being marginalised by a government who had abandoned the last vestiges of the consensual ‘corporatist’ tradition of all post-war administrations (‘no more beer and sandwiches at Downing Street’). It was in this context that the unions’ and TUC, sharp pro-European turning of 1988 must be understood. It was also a sign of their recognition that unions and their members now needed a European ‘social dimension’ to face the profound industrial changes occurring.”

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A story told in quotes on the Labour Party & Trade Union movement role in Brexit:

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