Model EU Highlights

EU Parliament in Strasbourg

I wrote already some posts about my recent experience as a participant in the 2015 edition of the Strasbourg Model European Union simulation. I got attributed the role of an ECR deputy from the UK.

During the conference, I took some notes on things I found remarkable. Altogether, we have been quite creative to make our one-week adventure as out-standing as possible. Sometimes, I thought that we have created an atmosphere close to the reality, sometimes it felt like a parody. I enjoyed both!

If you have been part of the adventure, what was your personal highlight? In the following, I will share mine with you (in no particular order).

Read More

Model EU Impressions

The Schedule of an MEP

Parliament Session in the faction room of the European People’s Party in the European Parliament in Strasbourg. <div class=pull-right>Copyright by <a href=''>MEU Strasbourg on Facebook</a></div>
Parliament Session in the faction room of the European People’s Party in the European Parliament in Strasbourg.

It’s Sunday and it's already two weeks that I’ve been in Strasbourg. The simulation of the EU parliament has been great. I thought initially that I would blog every day of the week, but I resigned from this idea already after my post to day 1 in favour of sleeping at least five and a half hours per night which have been in any case too few.

I wont try to reproduce in detail what we have been doing. There has been an enormous schedule of sessions in the parliament and a social program in the evening. Usually, we got up by 6:20 am to pass the security at the European Parliament entrance before 8 am. We left the parliament around 6 pm. So what happened in between?

Read More

Protectionnisme entre Étudiants

École normale supérieure de Paris.

Je ne comprends pas les associations étudiantes des établissements d'enseignement supérieur, c'est à dire, les universités et les grandes écoles. À mon avis, ils pratiquent souvent le protectionnisme qui augmente les inégalités. C'est dommage, car au sein de la société, il me semble que les étudiants sont plus engagés et progressistes. Voici mes arguments.

Read More

MEUS follow-up: Google is evil!

Google HQ with Android statue: looking cute on purpose

This is a follow-up comment for my dear friends that have been discussing with me the Proposal for the EU Data Protection Regulation. In our parliament simulation, we had the honour to welcome a very strong participant representing a Google lobbyist that was hard to deal with (hi Lois ;)).

In my candidature, I chose the lobbyist role as my second choice, but I was eventually chosen to represent a British Conservatives politician in the ECR faction1. In this role, I mostly agreed with the Google lobbyists.

However, I’m a bit worried that some other participants might have been hoodwinked and really think that Google might be a honourable enterprise that fights for freedom of expression and wants all the best for the internet users.

Of course, there are cases where Google is doing a good job. One example might be the acquisition of the VP8 codec from On2 Technologies just to release the intellectual property (in this case: source code) under a free software license publicly accompanied with a irrevocable patent promise. Until today, this is part of the most efficient widespread video file format that serves a free exchange of videos and thus a more open internet.

Unfortunately, this is not the end of the story. Last week, the EU commissioner “Margrethe Vestager unveiled a formal complaint against Google, marking the most significant tech case since Brussels took on Microsoft a decade ago” (source: Financial Times).

Read More

Model EU Preparation Day 1

Warm-up during lunch break. Photo by Sara D.
Warm-up during lunch break. Photo by Sara D.

It’s Sunday. After the confusion last evening if we should present us in the hotel lobby by 8h or 8:30h, if we would get breakfast or not, it turned out for the best: 8:30h and breakfast provided at the revenue.

I use the unexpected half enough to blog about the arrival and to gather my equipment that I won’t be able to use the other days for security reasons when we are in the European Parliament building.

I’m 5 minutes to late in the then empty lobby and realise that against my intuition there is not even a trace of the ~100 people.

Read More

Model Simulation EU Strasbourg 2015 started!

The EU parliament in Strasbourg.

Hello everyone,

during the following 7 days, I will be at Strasbourg for the simulation of the European Parliament in the European Parliament. The adventure started yesterday and I will try to blog here regulary if I find some time (could be the last post already ;)) or tweet hashtag #MEUs2015.

Yesterday evening, we had our check-in, a short recap of important rules that have been distributed ahead of time per mail, but were assumed to haven’t been read, and finally the EuroFEAST, our international potluck.

Read More

MEU Strasbourg 2015 Documents

best-practice (paper-free) reading of EU regulations

Dear participants of the Model European Union simulation 2015,

We have been asked to read quite a lot of papers. Instead of printing them out as you find them on the server. I generated some derivates that you hopefully find usefull.

Read More

Open Letter to BETA e.V.

Freedom not fear demonstration in Berlin, 2013

Dear Josef,

my Facebook account is blocked.

I am asking you again to be sure that there is no misunderstanding.

You want that I use a profile on a US enterprise network, where EU privacy standards are willingly and legally broken, censorship is performed (e.g. Turkey1), and data is abused to retain citizens of any country. They have still death penalty2 over there and use whatever is necessary to eavesdrop even international political conferences (NSA spying on Copenhagen climate talks3).

While the German data protection officers criticise the platforms for their illegal terms of use4 5 (e.g. real name obligation), and the EU is funding research projects6 on how to fight the American predominance of internet monopolists, you want to make a 2nd class participant, just because I don't want to disclose my political engagement on Facebook7.

Read More

Raucher im Straßenverkehr

Biker in Berlin

Ich gebe zu: Ja, ich habe ein wenig provoziert.


Es ist Sonntag in Lyon. Ich stehe gerade noch rechtzeitig auf um nicht auch noch das Mittagessen zu verpassen. Das wartet natürlich nicht auf mich – es möchte selbst zubereitet werden. Ich beschließe spontan für den lokalen Internationalen Studenten-Verein ebenfalls einige Crêpes zu backen, so dass durch den Erlös die Vereinskasse sich der schwarzen Null annähern mag – eine gute Sache. Außerdem könnte ich selbst vorweg ein paar Crêpes zum Mittag essen. Also los.

Read More

Plaidoyer pour la danse

Lindy Shock 2011, Roumanie

Pourquoi danser ? C’est un texte pour les gens qui n’ont jamais dansé ou l’ont abandonné après peu. Lorsque je parle de danser, je pense à la danse sur la musique tout seul, dans un groupe ou en couple qui ressemble à plus que balancer ses pieds. ;)

La danse et toute la culture qui s'en rapporte, peut ouvrir un monde très enrichissant pour ceux qui sont loin de la sphère artistique dans leur vie professionnelle ou dans leurs loisirs comme c'était le cas pour moi.

Premiers pas

Je suis tombé gravement amoureux d'une fille à la fin du baccalauréat qui était dans la même promotion comme moi. Elle était très sportive et un peu introvertie. J'ai essayé de m'approcher en proposant de l'accompagner sur les sortis jogging ou venir avec elle sur le cours de danse contemporaine. C'était ma première expérience de danse – dans ce moment là cent pour cent contre ma nature – et dans un cours exclusivement féminin. Elles avaient déjà commencé le travail sur une choréographie. Je ne savais pas comment suivre, comment bouger. Je savais vraiment rien. En allemand, on parle d'un saut à eau froide1. Je me suis senti très gêné en tant que seul mec et seul débutant.

Read More