Europe

Human Rights No, Corporate Rights Yes?

Andrew Norton's picture

It’s become a hallmark of British Government that they say one thing and do another. Rarely is it ever so cut-and-dried as with the current Conservative government.

Much has been made over the last few weeks about the desires of the Prime Minister to leave the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). Cameron has said he wants to bring more powers back to London, because he doesn’t like the way it ‘hands power’ off – powers we British have given to that court more than 60 years ago. Most notably, he doesn’t like the way it often deals with his right wing agenda of disenfranchising people, and creeping towards a police state, but seems to be championing the way with misinformation.

 

It’s quite surprising to note then, that he has not been an outspoken critic of the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP) or the Comprehensive  Economic and Trade  Agreement (CETA) which was released yesterday. In fact, he has been portrayed as a massive supporter of the TTIP, and CETA.

“Why is that surprising?”, you might ask, and the answer is simple. The entire thrust of his anti-ECHR campaign, has been that the court takes power ‘out of London’. He has no problem with ‘Human Rights’, but wants to somehow bring it entirely inside the UK, no matter the outside cost (there may well be significant consequences to leaving the ECHR). In essence, he wants a UK subservient only to UK judges. 

UK Government not so neutral on Net Neutrality

Monday, 19 May, 2014 - 13:30

In April, the European Parliament adopted draft legislation as part of a move to regulate the European Telecommunications market. This included the formal adoption of Net Neutrality. Net Neutrality is a principle which states that internet service providers must treat all traffic equally regardless of source, and cannot charge for the preferential treatment of their subscribers or a particular service.

A Q&A with George Walkden on a referendum UK's membership of the EU

Right now, Pirate Party candidates are being asked about their positions on everything from their views on shale gas and union membership through to immigration and the UK's role in the EU.  Its great to see so many people interested in what the Pirate Party has to offer in elections and what our candidates think, and want to achieve.  One question comes up more often than others and that is whether the UK should hold a referendum on its membership of the EU.  It was an issue that came up again and again when we discussed policy as a party and it is an issue that so many people in the UK are talking about.

Of course both the UK's membership of the EU and whether we have a referendum is a matter for the Westminster Parliament.  Those elected in the upcoming EU Parliament elections aren't in a position to change the UK's relationship with the EU at all, that is something our MPs are responsible for.  But since it is an important issue we wanted to make sure our candidates views are clear.  

To reiterate the Party's position from the 2012 manifesto: We believe that a referendum on the UK's membership of the EU should be offered to voters in the UK, and that such a referendum should include the option for the UK to pull out of the EU and negotiate its own agreements with the EU as a whole or with individual member states.  

Vote for more Pirates in the European Parliament

The Pirate Party will be standing in the upcoming May 22nd European Parliament elections in the North West region.  

You can support the campaign by getting involved in the North West, or Nationally - We also need to fund the campaign, so donate if you can - see our crowdfunding effort here: http://www.pozible.com/project/180266.

First on the Pirate Party North West list is Maria Aretoulaki. She runs her own IT consultancy as well as being a dubstep DJ and promoter. Born in Greece, Dr Aretoulaki speaks 4 languages and has lived in 3 different EU countries. Next on the list are George Walkden, lecturer in linguistics at Manchester University and Pirate Party Manchester organiser and Europe spokesperson Jack Allnutt.

We are campaigning for the UK to be a part of positive change in the EU- for a more transparent and democratically accountable Europe, for a Europe that is right for all of us. We have been calling for a referendum on Britain's EU membership since 2012, because we want people to have their say - and we will be campaigning to show that the UK is a vital part of the EU. 

Tuesday, 29 April, 2014 - 10:00

Victory For Euro Consumers As EU Votes To End Roaming Charges, Guarantee Net Neutrality

 Some big advances today in the often frustrating, slow moving world of communications regulation: the European Union has voted in favor of ending mobile roaming charges, and also in favor of guaranteeing net neturality on data networks....

  

Wednesday, 9 April, 2014 - 03:30

Are our politicians doing enough to ensure the internet is ‘free and open’?

It should be unthinkable for a politician to be anti-digital, or indeed anti-internet – after all we rely on the net for our entertainment, travel, learning, jobs and our future economy – writes Andy Halsall

Can you imagine a world in which you have to pay a little extra to see the occasional YouTube clip? A place where there is a small charge for every iPlayer episode you watch? What about a world where it is free and quick to upload photos to your internet service provider’s photo sharing service but it takes hours to do the same using flickr? Or horror of horrors, what about a world where your ISP has done a deal with Microsoft, and you can quickly access Bing, but Google is strangely unresponsive....

Monday, 7 April, 2014 - 22:30

A Vision For Europe - Loz Kaye Joins Swedish Pirate Party EU campaign launch

Saturday, 5 April, 2014 - 09:00

The Pirate Party's Loz Kaye will be speaking at the launch of the Swedish Pirate Party's (piratpartiet) campaign for the May 2014 European Parliamentary Elections.  Speaking in Stockholm at 11:30 CET, he will be joined by Swedish party leader Anna Troberg and MEPs Christian Engström and Amelia Andersdotter.

PiratPartiet was founded in 2006 and its early successes and political aims inspired the rise of Pirate Parties with similar goals in Europe and around the world, as well as the formation of an international Pirate movement.

Andy Halsall : Take your phone on Holiday (well, almost)

If there is one thing the EU does manage to get mostly right on a fairly regular basis it is consumer protection. Maybe as a bloc it has more clout when facing big business, maybe it's more responsive in dealing with transnational issues, it's certainly better placed. Whatever the reason, we have the makings of a success story today with the vote on the excitingly named 'Telecoms Single Market Regulation'.

One of the issues dealt with was roaming fees, and it's about time: With roaming data fees of up to 46p/MB in EU countries, and up to £8/MB around the rest of the world it has been expensive and confusing to take your phone or tablet abroad and use mobile broadband services. Essentially the practice left people out of touch, or out of pocket.

Right now as a UK Virgin Mobile customer it would cost you £20 for 250MB of mobile usage within the EU using your UK Virgin account. That compares to £1 per 100MB in the UK, an 800% difference. It would be £1250 for the same outside of the EU, but that's an issue for another day.

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