Roses are red, violets are blue,
This week it’s Brexit, copyright and lazy rhymes too.
This week we are supported by the European Parliament.
Worried about Brexit? Have a sense of humour? Dutch? Then let me introduce to the Dutch government’s official Brexit muppet… yes really!
Heb jij al gecheckt welke gevolgen Brexit voor jou of je bedrijf heeft? Doe de Brexit Impact Scan op https://t.co/eytAlAwphK of kijk op https://t.co/U64nYectmE. Zorg dat Brexit jou niet in de weg zit….of ligt. pic.twitter.com/LWKOLnLPQl
— Stef Blok (@ministerBlok) February 14, 2019
Cruelling overlooking the EU’s own fuzzy monster.
Dutch govt: We need a puppet monster to embody the clusterfuckery that is Brexit.
Dutch govt: Hmmm.
Me: *cough cough*
Dutch govt: Nope. We're going to have to make one up.
— Berlaymonster (@Berlaymonster) February 14, 2019
The large blue muppet is part of a campaign to encourage Dutch companies to prepare for all Brexit scenarios.
Make sure #Brexit does not get in your way when doing business! With this Brexit media campaign, the Dutch government urges companies to prepare for all Brexit scenarios. https://t.co/5m2SNDaBKr pic.twitter.com/SxHUXMJFLq
— Netherlands at the EU (@NLatEU) February 14, 2019
The Dutch have basically said that 17.4 million Brits voted for the mongrel bipedal offspring of a big brush and a car wash roller, said James Crisp. Adding if this is what they picked, he’d love to see the rejected designs.
The Dutch have basically said that 17.4 million Brits voted for the mongrel bipedal offspring of a big brush and a car wash roller.
And if this is what they picked, I'd love to see the rejected designs!
Make it happen @ministerBlok !
— James Crisp (@JamesCrisp6) February 14, 2019
Staying with Dutch Brexit news, in a simultaneous speech, Nick Gutteridge reported that it was brutal stuff from Dutch PM Rutte who said that Brexit will leave the UK a weakened middling economy stuck out in the Atlantic on its own.
Brutal stuff from Dutch PM Rutte: 'It's the UK that Brexit will leave weakened. It's already on the wane compared to 2-3 years ago. It's going to become a middling economy stuck out in the Atlantic. It's too small to appear on the world stage on its own.' https://t.co/BqYmdnVGPy
— Nick Gutteridge (@nick_gutteridge) February 14, 2019
And this is supposed to be the UK’s most sympathetic friend in Europe, Dave Keating added.
And this is supposed to be the UK's most sympathetic friend in Europe https://t.co/CaJUOKPYrY
— Dave Keating (@DaveKeating) February 14, 2019
Danny Kemp reported that the monster has its own LinkedIn page, but not a proper name.
— Danny Kemp (@dannyctkemp) February 14, 2019
And we couldn’t let this week go without pointing out someone else having trouble with names as Brexit Secretary Stephen Barclay meets with European Commission President Jean-Paul Junker.
Brexit Secretary Stephen Barclay struggles with European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker's name! pic.twitter.com/F0sQAt6FLS
— Joe Barnes (@Barnes_Joe) February 12, 2019
Meanwhile in Strasbourg this week, after several misfires and re-starts, an agreement was finally reached on copyright reform, reported Sam Stolton.
— EURACTIV (@EURACTIV) February 14, 2019
Pirate Party MEP Julia Reda says this will need lessly stoke resentment against the EU by ignoring young voters.
Trotzdem hat @saschalobo Recht, wenn er sagt, dass die Unterstützer von #Artikel11 und #Artikel13 völlig unnötig Ressentiments gegen die EU schüren, indem sie die Urheberrechtsreform gegen allen Protest durchdrücken wollen, Jungwähler*innen ignorieren. https://t.co/eZgwmHQbiF
— Julia Reda (@Senficon) February 14, 2019
ALDE MEP Marietje Schaake was also deeply disappointed.
— Marietje Schaake (@MarietjeSchaake) February 13, 2019
However, Rapporteur Axel Voss and other conservative MEPs were pleased.
Press statement on the #CopyrightDirective with rapporteur @AxelVossMdEP.
?"Huge and important step for the European creatives. Press publishers‘ right is an important step to protect independent quality-journalism" #Copyright https://t.co/iM5OaWuBwB
— EPP Group (@EPPGroup) February 14, 2019
And the Commission’s Digital Vice President Andrus Ansip argued whoever said we were banning memes, was trying to fool you.
— Andrus Ansip (@Ansip_EU) February 13, 2019
Sanna Wolk helpfully explained that anyone who thinks copyright is boring has not been involved in the negotiations: Subterfuge, loaded comments, tense expressions.
Anyone who thinks copyright is boring has not been involved in the negotiations on the EU Copyright reform. Subterfuge… loaded comments… tense expressions…? Finally agreement reached on new digital copyright rules between EP and Council. #copyright #euhttps://t.co/uTXBblgkzC
— Sanna Wolk❤️ (@sanna_wolk) February 14, 2019
This file had it all. And it was long… boy was it long! 2 and a half years, 10 trilogues, 52 shadow meetings and 18 technical meetings.
— Q Deschandelliers (@deschandelliers) February 13, 2019
But spare a thought for reporter Laura Kayali who was almost past caring!
Let's kill time while we wait. Twitter, do you think this afternoon's #copyright trilogue will lead to an agreement?
— Laura Kayali (@LauKaya) February 13, 2019
Finally yesterday was Valentine’s Day. As if any social media user could miss it with the deluge of shhh… I mean… beautiful, heartfelt poetry.
Peter Spiegel set the tone:
Roses are red, but Rome’s in a frenzy
Did anyone vote for Monti, Letta or Renzi?
Roses are red/But Rome's in a frenzy/Did anyone vote/For Monti, Letta or Renzi? #EUValentines
— Peter Spiegel (@SpiegelPeter) February 14, 2014
Sjoerd Douma followed suit
The planet is hot and so are you!
Should we keep it that way or tax CO2?
The planet is hot
and so are you!
Should we keep it that way
or tax CO2?#TaxValentines
— Sjoerd Douma (@SjoerdDouma) February 7, 2019
Roses are red, violets are blue,
Poetic structure is less important than implementing a biobased, circular economy across the UK, EU, and beyond.
— NNFCC (@NNFCC) February 14, 2019
Ok, perhaps American EU Dude had the right idea in hitting the mute button!
[mute bad attempts at EU Valentine poetry]
— American EU Dude (@AmericanEUDude) February 14, 2019
So let’s have a quick look at some not so happy couples.
Guy Verhofstadt gave British MP Kate Hoey some serious burn after she called him an “unelected bureaucrat” saying “Thanks for the feedback. Actually, I was elected by my constituents with over 500k votes.”
Hi @KateHoeyMP, thanks for the feedback. Actually, I was elected by my constituents with over 500k votes.
Imagine an elected MP campaigning on Europe, not knowing that MEPs are elected? pic.twitter.com/dEEQOVfMoN
— Guy Verhofstadt (@guyverhofstadt) February 8, 2019
And tension between Parliament President Antonio Tajani and Commissioner Violeta Bulc certainly ratcheted up after the latter made some pretty tone deaf comments about Croatia and Bulc’s own Slovenia that were interpreted as an Italian claim on territory.
History is History
— Antonio Tajani (@Antonio_Tajani) February 11, 2019
Doh!… just when we’d sorted out North Macedonia!
That’s it for this week, join me again next week for more good bad and ugly in the Brussels Bubble Twittersphere.