Conditionality through the lens of the CJEU: a “blurry” view

From the very beginning of the Eurozone crisis, conditionality progressively entered into the vocabulary and the normative sphere of the EU economic governance. At the time of the first assistance package to Greece, conditionality was just an emergency tool set in the bilateral Loan Agreements, signed by Greece and other Members States. However, after the establishment of emergency funds like the European Financial Stabilisation Mechanism (EFSM) and the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF), and especially after the creation of a permanent institution, a sort of “European mirror image of the IMF” – the ESM – conditionality has become a sort of leitmotiv of the European response to the economic crisis or, even, a necessary requirement according to the ECJ.

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In the shadow of sovereign debt conditionality: the rise of spending conditionality in the EU

For the last seven years, sovereign debt conditionality dominated the European public discourse. Courts called to adjudicate heavy conditions impeaching on constitutional core of EU nations. National parliaments vocally debating the democratic legitimacy of austerity measures. Executives busy implementing generous reform packages. Scholars actively commenting on the constitutional implications of crisis-driven conditionalities.

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Keine Ratifikation des CETA ohne den Deutschen Bundestag – so oder so …

EU-Kommissionspräsident Juncker will das umstrittene CETA-Freihandelsabkommen in alleiniger Kompetenz der EU behandeln lassen. Vor allem in Deutschland fürchten viele, dass CETA damit einer legitimationsstiftenden Kontrolle des Bundestages entzogen würde. Doch wie steht es tatsächlich um den Einfluss des Bundestages? Nach meinem Dafürhalten ergeben sich für CETA nicht nur im Falle der Behandlung als gemischtes Abkommen, sondern auch im Falle der Behandlung als Abkommen in alleiniger EU-Kompetenz entscheidende Einwirkungsmöglichkeit des Bundestages.

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Populists chairing the European Commission and Parliament

No, the title of this post does not refer to a dystopia to come after the next European elections in 2019. It refers to the two presidents of today – Jean-Claude Juncker and Martin Schulz. Now why can they be seen as populists in some plausible way? In my view, this is because of the way in which they see politics and the role of the “people” in it.

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Sovereign and misinformed: Brexit as an exercise in democracy?

Rather than criticising the Brexit referendum as a decision-making tool because ‘the people’ don’t have the necessary expertise to take decisions of this magnitude, we should question the conditions in which many UK voters were called to express their opinion. They, like many all over the world, have seen the progressive hollowing-out of those basic rights that make voting the expression of the right to individual and collective self-rule in the first place.

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England’s Difficulty; Scotland’s Opportunity

Rather than arguing over when and how Article 50 TEU might be activated and by whom, or whether the two year clock ticking for exit can be stopped once started, we need as responsible citizens in a democracy to face up in good faith to what many of us regard as an appalling result, and coalesce around pressing for the quickest possible conclusion of the least worst option which still respects the actual referendum result.

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Chronos and Kairos of Constitutionalism – The Polish case

Τοῖς πᾶσι χρόνος καὶ καιρὸς τῷ παντὶ πράγματι ὑπὸ τὸν οὐρανόν. This Septuagint translation of a verse from the book of Ecclesiastes points to a fundamental distinction regarding the transience – the distinction between chronos (time) and kairos (a right moment). Time is everlasting and consists of singular kairoi. Kairos, being its constitutive part, should not defy the structure of time. This distinction bares on the way in which we should understand any change of a constitution that claims to belong to free and equal citizens.

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The constitutional framework of power distribution within the Eurasian integration process: bellum omnium contra omnes

After the fall of the Soviet Union, many post-Soviet countries pursued integration among themselves, leading to various regional arrangements. Those had little success for an array of reasons stemming from considerable differences among the many integrating states. Eventually, an understanding came along, that in order to make things work, a change in approach is needed. Among others, such a change would require an efficient legal framework and stronger regional institutions capable of upholding it. These features were played with on the way to the creation of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), which was obviously inspired by certain narratives about the EU integration process, and eventually launched in 2015.

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United no more: Constitutional Headaches ahead for the United Kingdom

Those who voted Brexit are now celebrating and singing ‘Rule Britannia’ in the streets. They are still dreaming. When they will wake up, they will have to face the facts: there is no Empire, and Brexit will not solve their economic problems. Immigrants will not be deported, and if foreigners decide to leave, this will not solve their problems either. One day, they will wake up to discover that the Kingdom is dis-United.

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