10 (pro-EU) reasons to be cheerful after Brexit

As the dust continues to swirl around the momentous Brexit referendum result a month ago (and doesn’t show any signs of settling anytime soon) I suspect many EU sympathisers will be somewhere in the middle of the various stages of the Kübler-Ross Grief cycle: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. So, somewhat incongruosly, are the ‘leavers’. Whereas there are almost as many emotions being experienced on all sides as there are potential options on what will happen next both in terms of the UK’s future relationship with the EU as well as the future of the EU itself, in this post I want to set out a number of (pro-EU) reasons – some obvious, some optimistic, others wildly speculative – to be cheerful amidst the uncertainty created by the Brexit vote.

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AG Saugmandsgaard Øe on Mass Data Retention: No Clear Victory for Privacy Rights

The opinion of the CJEU Attorney General on mass data retention has been long awaited by anyone interested in privacy rights, and more generally the relationship between states and their citizens during this period of an extended “war on terror”. While some civil rights groups have already claimed victory, on closer look the opinion of the AG is not an unmitigated success for privacy activists: It gives considerable discretion to member states to enact data retention provisions providing they meet the Digital Rights Ireland standard.

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After Brexit: Time for a further Decoupling of European and National Citizenship?

According to the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, the issue of Scotland’s EU membership after Brexit is ‘a matter for the UK’. That statement is simply false: the future EU citizenship of UK nationals is not a domestic matter but an issue – perhaps the issue – for the Union as a whole to determine.

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Like a Bargaining Chip: Enduring the Unsettled Status of EU Nationals Living in the UK

Yesterday, the UK Government has issued a statement to reassure EU nationals living in the UK as to their post-referendum status. While hundreds of EU nationals channel their relief through social media in welcoming the news and British businesses praise the Government for giving them the reassurance needed, to a more expert eye things seem much less reassuring.

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Das Brexit-Referendum: Sieg für die Demokratie?

War das Referendum doch zumindest ein Sieg für die Demokratie? Im Ergebnis wohl nicht. Demokratietheoretisch darf die Kritik freilich nicht beim Ergebnis, sondern bei der Entscheidung für das Referendum ansetzen: War die Austrittsfrage eine für ein Referendum geeignete Frage, oder hätte diese dem Parlament vorbehalten sein müssen? Vieles spricht hier für Letzteres.

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Calling Europe into Question: the British and the Greek referenda

On this day last year, Greeks woke up facing a referendum result that very few had expected. Almost a year later, on the 24th of June 2016, British and other Europeans woke up overwhelmingly surprised by the ‘Leave’ vote. Despite their significant differences, the Greek and the British referenda have some important things in common. Reading them together might have something to teach us about referenda on the EU—especially now that more people seem to be asking for one in their own country.

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Political Reductionism at its Best: the EU Institutions’ Response to the Brexit Referendum

In their reaction to the Brexit referendum, some EU institutions have shown a troubling understanding of law – law as the mere crystallisation of power relationships, norms as just technicalities, annoying obstacles standing between the political actors and their legitimate goals. This is profoundly wrong and dangerous.

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Everything you need to know about Article 50 (but were afraid to ask)

After the Brexit referendum, the new prime minister cannot dodge the fact that Article 50 is the only legal way for the UK to secede and that he or she, therefore, has a duty to pull the trigger. Not to deploy Article 50 would result in an even more disorderly situation than we have now. Article 50 it is. And if it were done, it were best done quickly.

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