Chris Kendall, EU official and host of the wonderfully informative Cakewatch podcast. Cakewatch is aimed at combatting the British exceptionalism and misconceptions held by both Remainers and Brexiteers. In this discussion we get into the concept of Cakeism, the reforms that both Britain and Europe might undertake post-Brexit, the concepts of Federalism and Subsidiarity, and much, much more.
Chris and Garvan Walshe catch up on how they handled lockdown, what to expect next, and what has changed since they last recorded the podcast together, in November 2018. Just as it did two years ago, the Northern Ireland backstop features heavily in Lie of the Week. Also, will the Conservative Party have the good sense to ditch its current leader?
Alviina Alametsä is a Green Party MEP from Finland. She took up her seat only in February 2020, after it was vacated by a departing UK MEP.
We look at the ethics of tactical voting in the 2019 general election, and why you should hold your nose and vote for a candidate from a party you might not endorse as a party of government.
This is an extract taken from the latest CakeWatch podcast episode where Chris interviewed Ayo, Dami, Sim and Emma Jane whilst they were in Brussels on 16th and 17th of October meeting MEPs as part of the 12 strong #RemainerNow delegation.
CakeWatch - Episode 63: Honey Badger 22/10/2019
Boris Johnson, his so-called new deal, and the wholesale attack on citizens' rights. For light relief we join four Remainers Now standing in the rain outside the European Commission's headquarters and hear from them why they've made the journey to Brussels and what they want to achieve here. This podcast was brought to you by a large gin and tonic.
Chris is back from Tashkent with a head full of musings. How badly does the EU want the UK to leave? Quite badly, he thinks. Steve sort of agrees. But this week's unicorn chaser is the imminent collapse of the Bannonite populist project on both sides of the Atlantic. Steve sort of disagrees.
Johnson says he has a deal that might fly but he won't show it to anyone yet, because it's too soon isn't it? [turns head, stares at camera]. / Is the EU losing patience? Xavier Bettel looks as if he has. ... Plus we have a half-hearted go at a making verbal Jon Worth flowchart on the fly - what are the scenarios from here on out? And - we can dream - what happens the morning after revocation?
CakeWatch - Episode 59: Rentrée 04/09/2019
After a long absence, Steve is back co-hosting the podcast and here we all are again: parliament versus executive. Does Cummings have a grand strategy? Or is Johnson flying by the seat of his pants and about to crash? After a long evening watching Parliament TV, we catch up with each other and wonder where this shaggy dog story will go next.
Chris is joined by Jason Knoll who teaches high school students in Verona, Wisconsin. His particular interest is the European Union, and he brings his particular point of view to the podcast in a discussion about Trump, Johnson, populism, and grassroots politics.
Former Tory Party insider Peter Wilding is back on an historic day for his old party and for the UK. We reflect on the realisation of Boris Johnson's ambition and how he'll handle his poisoned chalice; the Jacobins are now in charge and the next hundred days will be... eventful. Plus a few reflections on the European election and on the EU top jobs.
CakeWatch - Episode 56: Montagegate 25/06/2019
Chris and Steve Analyst discuss 'montagegate', in which Steve documents selective editing of news footage by the BBC to give the false impression that Leavers and Remainers alike said ahead of the referendum that voting to leave the EU would mean voting to leave the Single Market. This is not true.
CakeWatch - Episode 55: In Medias Res 12/06/2019
Ancient historian Katie Low joins Chris to talk about why ancient history has so much to teach us about modern Brexit. Will Brexit be the UK's Sicilian Expedition? (Yes.) Is Boris Johnson the modern Alcibiades? (Sort of.) Is Jacob Rees Mogg a modern Cicero? (No.) Is Jeremy Corbyn the modern Julius Caesar? (No but Seumas Milne might be.) With a side order of griping at British educational elitism.
CakeWatch - Episode 54: Denied My Vote 29/05/2019
Chris, Tanja, and Axel Antoni offer a first take on last week's European election and its aftermath before examining in a bit more detail what led to the disenfranchisement of many EU citizens who were denied their vote, and what can be done about it.
CakeWatch - Episode 53: More Joy in Heaven 15/05/2019
Andy voted Remain but was not particularly engaged in politics. But something prompted him to become an activist and launch a huge and growing grassroots campaign providing a platform for people who voted Leave. / Chris finally does his homework on the Spitzenkandidat procedure.
CakeWatch - Episode 51: Pattern Recognition 30/04/2019
Chris is flying solo as host with guest Peter Wilding, aka @eurorealist, long-time Tory party insider, former head of the British Influence think tank, inventor of the dread word Brexit, and now a European Parliament candidate for Change UK.
CakeWatch - Episode 50: Useful Idiots 24/04/2019
We D'hondt tell you how to vote in the European elections, but we hope our prolix chat about infighting and outfighting and tactics and principles and manifestos and candidates and choices and dilemmas has given you a helping, er, hondt.
Correction to Cakewatch 49 on the d'Hondt system in EP elections in the UK
CakeWatch - Episode 49: Be An EU Citizen 16/04/2019
So we got another extension, to Halloween ... Also, how should we be approaching the European elections? Should we vote tactically? To what extent should we treat it as a proxy referendum for Remain v. Leave? How would this sit with our democratic responsibility as EU citizens to vote on a European platform?
Recorded on the evening of Wednesday 3 April, Steve and Chris discuss the failure of Meaningful Vote 3.0, Indicative Votes 2.0, and Theresa May's Road to Damascus moment (spoiler: it's not). How will the EU27 respond to her plan for a further short extension?
With only two days to go until UnBrexit Day, we try to survey the rapidly shifting landscape and chart a course for where we head next. It's an exciting and unexpected place to be with only two days to go until 29 March, but we are by no means out of the woods. Listen while our takes still have some residual warmth left.
CakeWatch - Episode 46: Narcissistic Pish 21/03/2019
We visit Alyn Smith MEP in his offices, surrounded by boxes, for what might be a farewell chat, and reflect on another absolutely hatstand day in Brexit's endgame. Theresa May ... asking for a short extension and managing to annoy everybody on all sides; and (at time of recording) we're hiding behind the sofa waiting for her latest excruciatingly awful podium address to the nation.
CakeWatch - Episode 45: Erskineful 20/03/2019
Chris, Steve, and a gurgling kitchen sink discuss extensions and whether the neighbours might lodge an objection with the council.
CakeWatch - Episode 44: Cox Blocked 12/03/2019
So the government has lost the meaningful vote on the Withdrawal Agreement by a massive margin - AGAIN - and now what? Should we celebrate? How will Brussels react? What are the options for and chances of extending the Article 50 two year deadline?
The first half is a look at the day's news from Westminster, where Corbyn now says he backs a referendum with Remain on the ballot, and where May now says she will call for a vote on whether to leave with no deal, or extend Article 50. Plus, more importantly, how the EU might feel about this.