sexta-feira, 30 de novembro de 2018
Projecto para Miradouro de Sta. Catarina prevê vedação com dois metros
Relvado à volta do Adamastor será substituído por arbustos e a zona de pedra lioz vai ser aumentada. Está prevista para breve uma reunião de apresentação e discussão do projecto.
João Pedro Pincha
JOÃO PEDRO PINCHA 29 de Novembro de 2018, 22:30
A vedação provisória foi instalada um dia depois de a câmara ter anunciado as obras, que ainda não começaram
O projecto de requalificação do Miradouro de Santa Catarina, em Lisboa, prevê uma vedação à volta de todo o espaço público com dois metros de altura e outra, mais baixa, em redor da zona verde, onde a relva vai ser substituída por arbustos.
Os documentos do atelier de arquitectura paisagista Proap, a que o PÚBLICO teve acesso, revelam que, apesar da polémica instalada há uns meses, o miradouro deverá mesmo ter um gradeamento e três portas que permitirão o seu encerramento. “Foi um pedido que a câmara nos fez para poder pensar em, eventualmente, fechar o miradouro à noite”, explica Iñaki Zoilo, um dos arquitectos da Proap que trabalhou no projecto.
O anúncio da câmara de Lisboa de que o miradouro ia ter obras e passaria a ter vedação e horários de acesso, em Julho, apanhou de surpresa muitas pessoas, que rapidamente se organizaram em movimentos opostos. Um grupo de moradores, cansado do que diz ser a falta de higiene urbana e a insegurança do espaço, congratula-se com a decisão. Um outro grupo, chamado “Libertem o Adamastor!”, acusa a autarquia de querer ‘privatizar’ o miradouro.
Iñaki Zoilo explica que a Proap foi contactada “há uns meses” pela câmara para fazer “uma revisão do projecto”. O atelier “ganhou o concurso de requalificação do miradouro em 2003”, lembra o arquitecto, mas o projecto “só foi implementado dez anos depois, em 2013” – e com diferenças face ao anterior.
“Sempre foi muito importante para nós ter uma zona verde. Uma zona relvada aberta, onde as pessoas podiam passar e ficar”, diz Zoilo. A par disso, a Proap quis igualmente “criar uma zona de estadia mais franca”, o que levou à colocação dos grandes blocos de pedra lioz que agora existem, e que conferem ao miradouro a aparência de um anfiteatro sobre a cidade. “Logo desde o período inicial, a zona relvada teve grande atracção e alguma utilização incorrecta”, continua o projectista, afirmando que o sistema de rega ficou danificado e a relva acabou por não resistir.
Apesar de o relvado ter sido já substituído mais do que uma vez, ele nunca teve “um período de vida muito prolongado”, pelo que avançou uma solução que “já tinha sido discutida noutras ocasiões”, diz Iñaki Zoilo. A relva vai assim dar lugar a um “maciço arbustivo” com espinheiros, juníperos, alecrim, vinha-virgem, jasmim e ligustro-do-Japão, entre outros. “A zona verde terá uma vedação à volta para impedir o acesso e evitar a sua degradação.”
Para compensar o espaço de usufruto que se perde com essa vedação, “a actual zona relvada será ligeiramente diminuída e a zona do lioz alargada, para permitir que as pessoas tenham área suficiente para poder estar”, acrescenta Zoilo.
As explicações dadas pelo arquitecto correspondem ao que o vice-presidente da câmara tinha dito ao PÚBLICO em Julho, aquando do encerramento do miradouro. Duarte Cordeiro afirmou então que pretendia colocar duas vedações: uma em redor do espaço verde, outra abarcando todo o miradouro, de modo a “estabelecer momentos de descanso que facilitem a sua manutenção”.
Na memória descritiva do projecto lê-se que as vedações e portões deverão ser metálicos, “utilizando o aço galvanizado”. Está ainda prevista a instalação de um novo sistema de rega, que passará a ser gota a gota e não de aspersão, como até agora.
Os documentos a que o PÚBLICO teve acesso já foram mostrados e fornecidos aos representantes dos dois grupos em oposição. Nas duas últimas semanas houve reuniões entre a câmara, membros desses grupos e os arquitectos paisagistas.
O movimento Libertem o Adamastor! já enviou uma carta ao executivo autárquico a reiterar a discordância com as opções tomadas. “Mantemos a oposição e a discordância de que a vedação prevista neste projecto seja instalada de forma a que permita o arbitrário encerramento do espaço público do miradouro e que seja estabelecido um horário de acesso”, lê-se na missiva. “A preservação da segurança pública e do sossego e repouso dos moradores não depende necessariamente desse encerramento nocturno do miradouro, mas sim de um policiamento de proximidade e de incentivos à urbanidade dos utentes”, defende o movimento, apelando ainda à criação de “estruturas e equipamentos que fomentem a frequência por crianças e idosos”.
Já Vigília Santos, uma das moradoras que dá a cara por uma petição que defende o encerramento do espaço à noite, mostrou-se satisfeita com o projecto que lhe foi mostrado. “Aquilo não vai voltar ao que era antigamente, mas pelo menos vai ser um miradouro onde as pessoas podem estar sem ser agredidas”, disse.
Está prevista uma reunião pública de apresentação e discussão do projecto, mas ainda não tem data marcada. “Nas próximas semanas iremos reformular [consoante as sugestões] e fechar o projecto na sua versão final”, afirma Iñaki Zoilo.
Michael Cohen deal a critical step for Mueller that exposes Trump to new risk
An agitated Trump tried to play down his ex-aide’s deal with prosecutors – but experts call it ‘potentially very significant’
Tom McCarthy in New York
Thu 29 Nov 2018 18.34 GMT Last modified on Fri 30 Nov 2018 07.14 GMT
Michael Cohen in New York in April. Trump could be legally vulnerable on a number of fronts, analysts said.
A deal announced on Thursday between Michael Cohen, the longtime personal lawyer and fixer for Donald Trump, and federal prosecutors has left the president and his family vulnerable to new legal hazards and could represent one of the most significant advances so far in the work of special counsel Robert Mueller, legal analysts said.
Cohen pleaded guilty to making false statements to Congress about a deal he pursued on Trump’s behalf to build a Trump tower in Moscow.
Court documents revealed Cohen was in contact with top Kremlin officials about the prospective tower; that Trump was closer to the negotiations than previously acknowledged; and that the deal was alive as late as June 2016 – six months longer than Cohen told Congress.
The court filing appeared to expose multiple and repeated public lies by Trump about his links to Russia. “I have no deals that could happen in Russia, because we’ve stayed away,” Trump said at a press conference during the presidential transition. “I have no deals … because I think that would be a conflict.”
Confronted with the contradiction outside the presidential helicopter on Thursday morning, a visibly agitated Trump said “this deal was a very public deal – everybody knows about this deal”, then denied there was ever a deal, then said if there had been a deal it would have been no problem.
“This was a deal that didn’t happen,” Trump said. “That was no deal. If you look – this was an option. To my way of thinking, it was an option that we decided not to do.”
Former US attorney Barb McQuade called the Cohen deal “potentially very significant”, pointing out that in court documents, Cohen admitted to lying to Congress “in hopes of limiting the ongoing Russia investigations”.
McQuade said: “That says to me that – you know people only lie and take a risk like that when the consequences of telling the truth are even worse. So what would be so bad about it? Certainly the mere fact that they were negotiating a building in Russia was not in any way illegal, so what more was he trying to hide there?”
Trump could be legally vulnerable on a number of fronts, analysts said. Last summer, Mueller charged Russian hackers with a “conspiracy to defraud the United States” by tampering with the 2016 election; it is possible that a Trump associate or family member could at some point be charged as a co-conspirator.
“Michael Cohen is likely someone to be a trusted confidant who knows about these things and has now agreed to cooperate about them,” said McQuade. “This suggests that his cooperation is about the heart of the Mueller investigation and that is collusion with Russia.”
Other analysts said that the pattern of lying by former Trump aides about the campaign’s Russia ties – at least seven former Trump aides and associates have either been charged with making false statements or face such charges – could mean trouble for Trump, if the president were shown to have directed it.
“There are an awful lot of Trump underlings now caught lying to Congress and others about Russia and Trump specifically,” tweeted Neal Katyal, a professor at Georgetown University Law Center. “Why? At whose direction? Who stood to gain from the lies?”
Former US attorney Preet Bharara was one of many to point out that just last week, Trump submitted written answers to questions from Mueller, reportedly including questions about a potential real estate deal in Moscow.
“This is perhaps the most significant issue I’ve seen raised so far: does Cohen contradict Trump’s recent written answers to Mueller specifically on the Moscow Trump Tower project,” Bharara tweeted. “If so and Cohen’s version is corroborated, Trump is guilty of a false statement.”
The Cohen deal could pose difficulties for Trump’s family members, too. Court documents referring to Trump as “Individual 1” said Cohen “briefed family members of Individual 1 within the Company about the [Moscow] project”, and that “COHEN agreed to travel to Russia in connection with the Moscow Project and took steps in contemplation of Individual 1’s possible travel to Russia.”
If Donald Trump Jr was part of those conversations, he could be in fresh trouble. In May, Trump Jr told the Senate he “wasn’t involved” with the Moscow deal, and denied awareness that Cohen had contacted the Kremlin to negotiate the deal.
But the brazen nature of Trump’s public lying could represent the ultimate hazard for the president, whose party suffered huge losses in elections earlier this month and who himself comes up for re-election in 2020.
Andy Wright, a law professor and founding editor of the Just Security blog, called the Cohen news a “bombshell” development.
He said: “The president was lying to the American people at a critical time during the vetting of his candidacy about whether or not he was pursuing a deal with Russia. Before we get to the law, that’s very troubling.
“I still think that those fundamental dynamics about lying to American people apply.
“The legal process is also incredibly important, but at the end of the day it’s our democracy that matters more than whether Donald Trump gets punished.”
After Cohen's guilty plea, the threads of Trump Inc are fraying
The spectacle of Mueller cornering Trump’s gang is fascinating to watch and essential to the rebuilding of the rule of law
Thu 29 Nov 2018 22.23 GMT Last modified on Fri 30 Nov 2018 07.14 GMT
Trump and Melania on Thursday. We now live in a world where America’s truly worst president ever insists that cash is king.
The great unraveling has begun. Between the latest guilty plea by Donald Trump’s fixer and the breakdown of a guilty plea by his campaign chairman, the threads are fraying on the scheming enterprise that is Trump Inc.
The man pulling at the many loose ends of this loosey-goosey business is working methodically in ways that are only clear in hindsight. Robert Mueller, the special counsel, is a strategic mastermind cornering a gang of simpletons watched by a peanut gallery of gawkers and hecklers.
The spectacle is both fascinating to watch and essential to the rebuilding of the rule of law. The United States urgently needs to resume its role as a global example of good government. Especially when its own government is rotten to the core.
Republicans in Congress may refuse to investigate the Trump administration, but Mueller and the courts are reaffirming that it matters when people break election laws, tax laws, lobbying laws, or lie under oath. It matters when foreign agents conspire to attack the United States by hacking into the computers of one of its main political parties.
Meanwhile our simpleton-in-chief can only sputter on the sidelines of Twitter about the many ways Mueller is plainly driving him nuts.
“Did you ever see an investigation more in search of a crime,” Trump tweeted while he should have been prepping for another world summit. As a matter of fact, investigations are supposed to search for crimes, but that’s beside the point for the man who can fire and hire an attorney general. He would much prefer an investigation into anyone else right now: the Grinch who stole Christmas, Hillary Clinton, the man who broke the bank at Monte Carlo. Anyone will do.
“After wasting more than $40,000,000 (is that possible?), it has proven only one thing – there was NO Collusion with Russia,” he tweeted barely an hour later, still stewing in his own resentment. “So Ridiculous!”
To answer the president’s questions: yes, it’s possible to spend a lot of federal dollars (see: corporate tax cuts, Trump administration). No, Mueller hasn’t cost the taxpayer a dime after all the property he seized from Trump’s campaign chairman. The only Ridiculous Thing about this is pretending that the Question of Collusion has been Answered.
But since you mentioned Collusion, Mr President, let’s yank a little more on this thread, shall we?
Michael Cohen’s bombshell of a plea deal on Thursday establishes that Trump’s personal and business lawyer was colluding with the Russian government during the presidential election of 2016 to profit from a possible real estate deal.
Cohen’s guilty plea touches on at least three criminal undertakings. He lied to Congress to cover up the fact that the wheeling and dealing continued through the campaign. He literally coordinated his efforts on Trump’s behalf with the Russian government, which was at the time engaged in a criminal conspiracy to manipulate the election through hacking. And he was securing foreign financial support for a presidential candidate. The only way this proves NO Collusion is if colluding does not qualify as collusion any more.
Normally you might describe a political figure profiting from his public office – even his potential for public office – as corrupt. But the leader of the free world prefers to describe it another way: good business.
“I was running my business while I was campaigning,” Trump told reporters on Thursday. “There was a good chance that I wouldn’t have won, in which case I would have gone back into the business and why should I lose lots of opportunities.”
Why indeed? Why surrender private profit when you want to enter public service? What a quaint idea, enshrined into US law by something called the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
Trump has found himself surrounded by the most dismal collection of indicted, colluding, lying aides and employees
We used to live in a world where America’s worst president ever was defined by his insistence that he wasn’t a crook. We now live in a world where America’s truly worst president ever insists that cash is king.
To be fair, Trump has good reason to feel victimized. Some way, somehow, he has found himself surrounded by the most dismal collection of indicted, colluding, lying aides and employees.
Imagine Trump’s surprise when he discovered that Cohen was, as he put it on Thursday, “a weak person” who is “lying very simply in order to get a reduced sentence”. Don’t you hate those weak selfish liars who pretend to be strong and helpful? It’s like saying you’re helping the depressed rust belt while slapping down tariffs that shutter its remaining factories.
Imagine Trump’s horror when he found that Paul Manafort, his campaign chairman, was guilty of financial fraud and lying to prosecutors. All the poor man was trying to do was change the Republican party platform on Russia’s annexation of Ukraine, and, well, collude with the president’s lawyers. Yes, he may have also secretly met with WikiLeaks during the election. But that’s no reason to think there was actual, you know, collusion.
We can be sure that Trump is as surprised as we are that federal agents on Thursday raided the offices of a Chicago alderman who also worked on property taxes for one Donald Trump.
Truly, has there ever been a wealthy businessman so mistreated by so many people who worked so closely for him? Even his national security adviser turned out to be a liar who had close contacts with the Russians after the 2016 elections. Imagine how Trump will feel when he sees Michael Flynn sentenced in a few days’ time.
Betrayed, no doubt, in more ways than one.
Trump is right. This investigation needs to come to an end. We need to know what Mueller knows. We need to know how Trump’s honest motive to make money was honestly at the heart of everything he has done. We need to forget the pee tapes and follow the money.
Empresa de Trump quis oferecer penthouse de 50 milhões a Putin
Em plena campanha eleitoral, empresa do então candidato ofereceu apartamento ao presidente russo no edifício que o grupo ia construir em Moscovo
29 Novembro 2018 — 23:58
Ex-advogado de Trump confessa que mentiu ao Congresso
A trama das relações entre Trump e a Rússia. Depois de, na manhã de quinta-feira, o antigo advogado do presidente norte-americano ter admitido que mentira ao Congresso, o site Buzzfeed vem agora acrescentar os contornos dos negócios entre o então candidato republicano e uma nação rival que é acusada de interferir nas presidenciais.
São quatro fontes aquelas a que o Buzzfeed recorre, uma das quais a pessoa que organizou o plano.
Cohen, diz o site, ter-se-á encontrado com um representante do secretário de imprensa de Putin, Dmitry Peskov, com uma proposta simpática.
A empresa de Trump negociou em plena campanha eleitoral para as presidenciais norte-americanas a construção de uma torre de 100 andares no centro de Moscovo. E Cohen terá oferecido ao presidente russo a penthouse do edifício, avaliada em 50 milhões de dólares (44 milhões de euros).
O acordo não chegou a acontecer porque o plano para construção da torre acabaria por ruir. Mas, apesar de o Buzzfeed não ter conseguido apurar se Trump estava a par do negócio, o facto é que o advogado Michael Cohen já declarou que mantinha regularmente a família Trump a par dos negócios da empresa, mesmo durante a campanha para as presidenciais.
Michael Cohen foi advogado e conselheiro de Donald Trump durante mais de uma década e é considerado uma das mais importantes figuras neste processo de investigação, juntamente com Paul Manafort, antigo diretor de campanha de Trump, que também fez um acordo de confissão com o procurador especial Robert Mueller que investiga a ingerência russa nas eleições presidenciais americanas.
Donald Trump reagiu à confissão de Cohen dizendo que este é uma "pessoa fraca", que está a mentir para conseguir uma redução de pena.
quinta-feira, 29 de novembro de 2018
Medina diz que projecto do Martim Moniz pode ser alterado, mas na zona até há quem defenda a proposta
Medina diz que projecto do Martim Moniz pode ser alterado, mas na zona até há quem defenda a proposta
29 Novembro, 2018
O plano de renovação da zona central da Praça Martim Moniz tem sido muito criticado, mas o presidente da Câmara de Lisboa garantiu, em reunião pública de câmara, que a concessionária está disponível a ouvir as propostas da comunidade e até a alterar o projecto. Na zona, porém, há quem considere que a praça já sofreu transformações em demasia e critique as constantes intervenções no espaço público. “Talvez já seja de mais”, critica um comerciante ouvido por O Corvo. Mas também existe quem veja com bons olhos a mudança. Preocupados com os planos de reabilitação e o futuro daquela parte da cidade, os comerciantes acreditam que a instalação de um recinto comercial poderá atrair mais pessoas. Queixam-se de, nos últimos anos, terem perdido muitos clientes e acreditam que só uma restruturação do largo poderá trazer uma nova dinâmica ao Martim Moniz.
“Vamos ver no que vai dar. Quanto mais movimento houver, na zona, melhor, isto está muito parado”, comenta Nurja, 58 anos, funcionária num quiosque virado para a Praça Martim Moniz, que em breve poderá ser transformada num recinto comercial. Tal como a vendedora de jornais, vários comerciantes da zona estão entusiasmados com o projecto de requalificação de uma das principais praças da cidade. “O comércio na Rua da Palma está a morrer, pode ser que as novas lojas atraiam mais gente. Os turistas visitam a Mouraria e não vêm para aqui. Se o largo estiver renovado, vão querer passar mais tempo na zona”, comenta Manuel Soares, 65 anos, dono de uma loja de roupa no arruamento que liga a Almirante Reais à praça que se prepara para conhecer uma revolução.
Os lojistas têm comentado entre si o plano de reabilitação da Praça Martim Moniz que tem sido alvo de polémica. Quando foi apresentado, na passada terça-feira (20 de Novembro), pela Câmara Municipal de Lisboa (CML) e a Moonbrigade, Lda, empresa à qual a praça será concessionada, o projecto recebeu várias críticas da comunidade, ficando claro o grau de descontentamento. Os actuais quiosques presentes no largo, já abandonados pelos comerciantes, serão substituídos por contentores marítimos, onde funcionarão lojas de comércio tradicional, restaurantes e associações locais (que poderão ser Renovar a Mouraria, Cozinha Popular e o Centro de Inovação da Mouraria). Prevê-se ainda a criação de uma zona verde, a construção de um parque infantil e a manutenção do lago já existente.
Preocupados com os planos de reabilitação daquela parte da cidade – demolição de uma garagem para construção de uma mesquita e despejo de lojistas para criação de habitação no âmbito do Programa Renda Acessível (PRA) –, os pequenos empresários concordam num ponto: é necessária uma intervenção num largo “altamente degradado”. A forma como esta transformação da zona está a ser pensada divide, no entanto, as opiniões dos comerciantes. “Se fosse uma área verde, ficaria mais agradável, mas, nesta cidade, já nada é feito para ficar bonito”, critica Rui Alves, 60 anos. O vendedor de malas e outros artigos, na Rua do Benformoso, acaba por não usufruir do espaço público, mas está preocupado com o futuro do Martim Moniz. “Começo a trabalhar muito cedo e saio tarde, praticamente não tenho tempo para passear, mas os projectos de construção para as zonas históricas talvez já sejam de mais. A população é muito envelhecida, acho que deviam pensar mais nas pessoas”, diz.
Na Rua do Terreirinho, Maria Isabel, ali cozinheira há 42 anos, ainda não sabia do projecto de renovação para a zona, que conheceu antes ainda de ser uma praça. “O largo está bonito como está, só colocava lá umas cadeiras para as pessoas poderem passar algum tempo. Os quiosques que lá estavam praticavam preços muito elevados, não eram para os locais, precisamos de sítios onde possamos estar sem consumir”, sugere. A funcionária do restaurante Mouraria critica ainda a falta de limpeza da zona e defende que a reabilitação do largo deveria contemplar o reforço da higiene urbana. “Passam ratazanas enormes aqui, visíveis à luz do dia. Se não limpam a freguesia, ninguém vem à praça fazer compras”, critica.
Paulo Santos, 33 anos, morador naquele arruamento desde os dois anos, está muito insatisfeito. “Aquele espaço estava destinado para lazer dos habitantes e de quem frequenta a Baixa, sem fins lucrativos. Mas tem sido transformado, sucessivamente, a pensar-se apenas no comércio e nos turistas, não está certo. A praça já sofreu demasiadas transformações e ainda não é desta que vão acertar no resultado final”, critica. O morador sugere que sejam instalados outros equipamentos, como esplanadas, e que a autarquia invista mais na limpeza e na segurança da zona. “Quantos mais contentores instalarem, mais espaços escondidos e propícios ao consumo de droga vão haver. O projecto não devia ter sido apresentado apenas. Devia ter sido discutido. Querem tornar a zona mais rentável, mas para quem? Quem vai lucrar com isto?”, questiona.
Madalena Ferreira, 60 anos, comerciante na Rua da Palma, apoia os planos de renovação da zona e sugere a demolição do Centro Comercial do Martim Moniz. “Os turistas, quando chegam à praça, nem se apercebem que já estão na Mouraria. Se deitarem o centro comercial abaixo, ficamos com uma vista melhor para o centro histórico e para a Igreja da Saúde, que está muito escondida. Tem de haver mais gente a mexer-se nesta zona e a instalação de mais lojas proporciona essa movimentação”, considera. A vendedora de roupa elogia ainda os projectos de requalificação já levados a cabo naquela parte da cidade, embora critique a construção de um parque infantil. “Quanto mais fizerem, mais ‘limpam’ a freguesia de pessoas problemáticas. Desde que requalificaram o Largo do Intendente, esta parte da cidade passou a ser muito melhor frequentada. Já o parque para crianças não faz sentido, já expulsaram os moradores todos, ao despejá-los de casa, não há praticamente crianças aqui”, diz.
Os comerciantes da Rua de São Lázaro, que terão de abandonar as lojas brevemente, sentem-se desencorajados a pensar sobre a zona da cidade onde trabalham há décadas. “Sendo corrido daqui para fora, perco o entusiasmo”, diz José Fernandes, 60 anos, proprietário de uma loja de revenda, que tem dado a cara pela luta destes comerciantes. “Deixar a praça abandonada não é uma boa opção, tem de ser revitalizada, mas os contentores, se calhar esteticamente, não ficam bem. Devia ser uma zona mais aberta”, propõe.
José Vicente, 48 anos, sócio-gerente da loja de têxteis Viúva de Luís da Mata, instalada na rua há mais de meio-século, está conformado. “A Câmara de Lisboa é que manda, não é? Não estão preocupados com os comerciantes, também perco o interesse pela cidade”, diz. O pai, Isidro dos Santos, está menos resignado. “O que estão a fazer a Lisboa é uma vergonha, só constroem a pensar no lucro, e não nas pessoas. Podiam deixar a praça como está e colocarem lá um segurança, que é o que esta parte da cidade precisa mais”, sugere.
De forma a impedir que a zona volte a degradar-se, a Câmara de Lisboa poderá encerrar o espaço ao público, durante a noite, estando prevista a colocação de uma vedação durante esse período de tempo. As obras estão a cargo do concessionário, que assume também a responsabilidade pela segurança, limpeza e manutenção, e deverão avançar brevemente. A degradação sentida, nos últimos anos, e a necessidade de dar uma nova vida ao mercado, bem como de melhorar a segurança, motivaram a autarquia a avançar com um novo plano para a Praça Martim Moniz.
Além dos módulos para os comerciantes, o projecto prevê a instalação de arte urbana no local, a criação de ruas e praças para as pessoas circularem na zona interior do mercado e um espaço de restauração com cozinhas de todo o mundo, ideias que não agradam a quem utiliza o espaço no seu quotidiano. Na reunião de apresentação do projecto, na passada terça-feira (20 de Novembro), vários moradores insurgiram-se contra os planos definidos para o largo. Pedem jardins em vez de contentores, espaços abertos, onde não seja obrigatório consumir para usufruir do espaço público, e onde a segurança é garantida sem muros ou vedações. Alegam ainda que esta é uma oportunidade para Lisboa aumentar as zonas verdes da cidade.
Na reunião camarária desta quarta-feira (28 de Novembro), o presidente da Câmara Municipal de Lisboa (CML), Fernando Medina (PS), avançou que a concessionária Moonbrigade pretende desenvolver um processo mais profundo de consulta junto dos moradores, tendo em vista o melhoramento do projecto. Medina promete ainda que não vai existir nenhuma vedação à volta dos contentores, garantindo que a área não será vedada à noite. “Estamos num momento de ouvir opiniões e há uma grande abertura para a incorporação de alterações no projecto”, afirma o presidente da câmara. O autarca socialista respondia assim aos pedidos de esclarecimentos adicionais sobre o projecto para o largo, feitos por vereadores do PCP e do Bloco de Esquerda. Ambos as forças políticas já haviam condenado, na semana passada, o que consideram ser a falta de discussão pública do projecto – tanto dentro dos órgãos municipais eleitos, como com a comunidade.
Nesta reunião da vereação, o vereador dos Direitos Sociais, Manuel Grilo (BE), manifestou igualmente o desagrado do BE e apresentou uma moção a pedir à Câmara Municipal de Lisboa (CML) a inclusão de uma praça aberta ao público, sem muros ou vedações, bem como espaços com sombra e bancos públicos independentes de espaços comerciais – propostas coincidentes, aliás, com as reivindicações da maioria das pessoas presentes na sessão pública de apresentação do projecto, ocorrida na semana passada no Hotel Mundial. Na referida moção, o Bloco de Esquerda pedia ainda a distribuição pelos vereadores do novo projecto e a análise, pelos serviços jurídicos, do contrato entre a Câmara de Lisboa e a concessionária, para que seja apurada a existência de eventuais irregularidades no seu cumprimento.
A moção, constituída por cinco pontos, foi aprovada por unanimidade. A excepção foi o quarto ponto – aprovado com os votos contra do PSD, do CDS e do PCP -, no qual se pedia o interceder da Câmara de Lisboa junto da concessionária, no sentido de o projecto “responder ao interesse público”. Os três partidos justificaram o sentido de voto por considerarem que deve ser a autarquia a assumir a responsabilidade pelos espaços públicos estruturantes da cidade. Em declaração de voto oral, João Gonçalves Pereira, vereador eleito pelo CDS-PP, diz que o projecto para a Praça Martim Moniz deveria ser elaborado pelo município, como deveria existir, ainda, “uma deliberação de câmara sobre a matéria nos termos em que o interesse público possa ficar melhor envolvido”.
O vereador do PSD, João Pedro Costa, também diz que não deve ser o concessionário a assumir a responsabilidade de definir o projecto final para o largo. “O PSD entende que nos espaços públicos estruturantes da cidade deve ser a câmara a definir os usos e a determinar o desenho da cidade. O concessionário poderá, num segundo momento, assumir a exploração do espaço”, afirma. A vereadora comunista Ana Jara fez críticas mais severas à postura da Câmara de Lisboa que, na sua opinião, “dá protagonismo à concessionária para defender o interesse público”. “Estamos completamente em desacordo, uma concessionária não pode definir qualquer que seja o interesse público da cidade”, considera.
O presidente da Câmara Municipal de Lisboa (CML), Fernando Medina (PS), respondeu às intervenções, dizendo que não se revê nas mesmas. E explicou que, quando a CML aprovou o actual contrato de concessão, em 2011, definiu o que queria em matéria de interesse público e de espaço público. Quanto a um possível incumprimento do contrato entre a autarquia e a concessionária, Medina garante que já não existem irregularidades. “O Martim Moniz dispõe de uma concessão, atribuída em 2011. Quando se deu a extinção da EPUL, o concessionário encontrava-se em dívida e, nesse processo de passagem, foi feito um acordo de regularização da dívida do concessionário”, esclareceu.
Paris is burning
Worries are mounting that the global effort to fight climate change will not meet its goals.
By KALINA OROSCHAKOFF 11/28/18, 9:30 PM CET Updated 11/29/18, 9:40 AM CET
Illustration by Brian Stauffer for POLITICO
They were supposed to always have Paris.
Three years after world leaders celebrated the signing of a landmark agreement intended to head off catastrophic global warming, the effort looks to be going down in flames.
Scientists say the cuts to greenhouse gas emissions agreed to under the 2015 Paris climate agreement fall far short of what would be needed to meet the treaty’s goals. Meanwhile, national governments are failing to deliver on even those promises, and the United States — regarded as a linchpin in any effort to fight climate change — has announced it intends to withdraw from the agreement altogether.
“You’ve got a hostile environment,” said Rachel Kyte, special representative of the United Nations secretary-general on making energy accessible to the poor. “It’s not just the U.S. The U.S. is giving other people the permission to be less than their best selves.”
With burning forests, record-breaking temperatures and melting polar ice caps as backdrop, negotiators will spend the first two weeks in December at global climate talks in Katowice, Poland, working to firm up how the Paris Agreement will be implemented.
U.S. President Donald Trump has made it clear he has no intention of honoring the commitments made by his predecessor, Barack Obama.
But with atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide at their highest levels in human history and continuing to rise — last year, global carbon dioxide emissions increased again after a three-year hiatus — worries are rising that the agreement will fail to meet its objectives.
After a burst of optimism following the 2015 meeting in Paris, “reality is starting to come back again,” said Glen Peters, a research director at Norway’s Center for International Climate Research (Cicero).
The big achievement in Paris was getting 197 governments to agree to the goal of keeping global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius — ideally to 1.5 degrees Celsius — by the end of the century. The world has already warmed by around 1 degree since industrial countries first began burning fossil fuels in large quantities during the Industrial Revolution.
Rather than attempting to set fixed targets — as had been done under the agreement’s predecessor, the Kyoto Protocol — negotiators in Paris agreed that greenhouse cuts would be voluntary and non-binding.
For now, scientists say, the commitments made by individual countries are far from what would be needed to meet the agreement’s goals.
Some smaller countries on the front lines of climate change — like the Marshall Islands, which risk disappearing altogether if sea levels continue to rise — have made significant commitments. But without similar efforts from major polluters like the U.S., the European Union and China, there will be little impact.
Current pledges on the table, including those made by the U.S., are predicted to lead to around 3.2 degrees of warming — a level scientists say will cause catastrophic change to the Earth’s environment.
“National commitments to combat climate change come up short,” the U.N.’s Environment Program said this week.
Heading for the exits
Making promises was the easy bit. Getting countries to follow through with painful steps like shutting down coal-fired power plants, revamping their car industries and funneling billions from rich to poor countries in climate finance is proving a lot tougher.
Challenging vested interests and removing subsidies from sectors that have long benefited is hard, said Andrea Meza-Murillo, the deputy chief negotiator for Costa Rica at the climate talks. “That, of course, will generate a lot of social confrontation and it’s not easy to deal with that.”
U.S. President Donald Trump has made it clear he has no intention of honoring the commitments made by his predecessor, Barack Obama.
Behind the scenes, U.S. climate diplomats will continue to negotiate in closed-door negotiating rooms. But that doesn’t mean that the Trump administration won’t, separately, set up side events promoting fossil fuels — something it did at last year’s climate gathering in Bonn, to the alarm of many of its participants.
China is pushing hard to boost its fleet of electric cars and expand renewable energy, but its use of coal is back up this year after a few years of decline. India and other emerging economies are continuing to build new coal-fired power plants. “India can sell the narrative of mind-boggling solar growth, which is partly true, but at the same time business as usual is coal,” said Cicero’s Peters.
Meanwhile, with the U.S. out, other countries are taking Trump’s lead and heading for the exits, according to Elisabeth Köstinger, the environment minister of Austria, which currently holds the presidency of the Council of the EU.
“It’s a very difficult balance for governments to be ambitious but not overly ambitious” — Glen Peters, a research director at Norway’s Center for International Climate Research
“Australia also raised doubts over the Paris Agreement,” she said. “Other countries are following suit.”
Brazil — with a president-elect who is a climate skeptic — on Wednesday announced it would withdraw its offer to host next year’s climate talks, citing budgetary constraints.
Even in the European Union, which has sought to position itself as a leader in the fight, countries are falling short of their commitments.
In Europe, Poland has a grand tradition of hosting climate summits (Katowice is its third) while also supporting the coal industry, and this year is no exception. Just days before the start of COP24, the country’s energy ministry put out a long-term strategy showing that coal will be a crucial part of the energy mix past 2040.
Countries such as the Netherlands are pushing to increase the bloc’s 2030 emissions reduction goals, and Finland and Sweden have announced they plan to be carbon neutral by 2045. But in the bloc’s bigger countries, progress has been slower.
Despite Germany’s Energiewende green energy transformation, politicians there have shied away from conflict with the powerful car industry and put off shutting down the coal plants that generate nearly 40 percent of the country’s electricity. Germany will miss its 2020 goal of cutting emissions by 40 percent and is struggling to meet binding EU renewable and energy efficiency goals, too.
In France, President Emmanuel Macron has been trying to placate protesters demonstrating against a planned fuel tax hike. The so-called Yellow Jackets movement has blockaded roundabouts, truck depots, bridges, and even Paris’ iconic Champs-Elysées boulevard, demanding he retreat.
“It’s a very difficult balance for governments to be ambitious but not overly ambitious” because otherwise they tend to lose elections, said Peters. “It’s very hard to change that about pissing a lot of people off.”
‘Choking on the rule book’
The gathering in Katowice is supposed to be a largely technical affair, working out how countries monitor and report their emissions cuts and increase their climate and financial efforts over time. But that doesn’t mean it will be easy.
“This will be a complicated COP, it will be difficult,” European Energy and Climate Action Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete said last month, expressing confidence the bloc “will be united, active, and leading.”
“The most important thing is that … we agree the rule book,” he said. “If we don’t have a system to monitor, to review, to compare where are we globally, Paris won’t be operational.”
“Without rapid cuts in CO2 and other greenhouse gases … the window of opportunity for action is almost closed” — Petteri Taalas, secretary-general of the World Meteorological Organization
The gathering is also meant to serve as the first moment in which governments signal that they will go beyond what they originally pledged in Paris three years ago. But preparatory talks in the fall yielded little reason for optimism.
The challenging political landscape, paired with the difficulty of negotiating highly complex rules to implement the deal, is dragging the process down.
“I think people are choking on the rule book,” said the U.N.’s Kyte. “This was always going to be the hard work.”
Aiming for zero emissions
Climate scientists say the Paris Agreement’s goal of keeping warming below 1.5 degrees is still technically within reach — but getting there would require unprecedented and radical changes in the world’s economies as well as, pretty much an instant end to fossil fuel use.
Hitting the deal’s more ambitious goal would require reaching net-zero carbon dioxide emissions by around 2050, according to the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). “There are no obstacles to limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees besides the political will,” according to Daniela Jacob, a climate scientist and one of the lead co-authors of the IPCC report.
For now, that seems to be obstacle enough. Atmospheric levels of heat-trapping greenhouse gases “reached another new record high,” according to the World Meteorological Organization, a U.N. body. It warned there’s “no sign of a reversal” in the trend.
“Without rapid cuts in CO2 and other greenhouse gases … the window of opportunity for action is almost closed,” said Petteri Taalas, the organization’s secretary-general.
Boris Johnson dispara gaffes sobre Portugal enquanto visita Lisboa
28.11.2018 11:57 por Diogo Camilo
Nos bastidores de um vídeo gravado para o seu Twitter oficial , Boris Johnson tenta mostrar o que une o Reino Unido a Portugal mas acaba a misturar James Bond, Segunda Guerra Mundial e parcerias trocadas.
O antigo Secretário de Estado do Reino Unido, Boris Johnson, passou por Portugal em Outubro de 2017 e deixou marcas. Nas gravações de um vídeo em Lisboa, o irreverente ex-chefe da diplomacia britânica afirmou que a personagem James Bond havia nascido no Estoril, que Portugal era o quarto parceiro internacional do Reino Unido e a aliança (que não existiu) entre Portugal e Reino Unido durante a Segunda Guerra Mundial.
Os bastidores de Boris Johnson foram captados pela BBC Two para uma série documental de três episódios, chamada "Inside the Foreign Office". Neste episódio, o anterior responsável pelas negociações do Brexit preparava-se para enviar uma mensagem aos seus seguidores do Twitter, destacando as boas relações entre Portugal e Reino Unido.
Mas não correu tudo como o esperado. Durante a gravação, foram inúmeras as vezes em que os assessores de Johnson intervieram para corrigir o antigo Secretário de Estado.
Primeiro, Boris Johnson referiu a ajuda que Portugal prestou ao Reino Unido durante a Segunda Guerra Mundial. "O que é que fizemos na Segunda Guerra Mundial? [Portugal] era neutro, não era? O que é que fizemos nos Açores?", perguntou aos seus assessores.
De seguida, o antigo chefe de diplomacia do Reino Unido referiu Portugal como o quarto parceiro internacional do Reino Unido – quando é o Reino Unido que é o quarto parceiro internacional de Portugal. Chegou ainda a afirmar que a personagem fictícia dos filmes 007, James Bond, nasceu no Estoril, quando foi a cidade portuguesa que serviu de inspiração para a criação do mítico membro do serviço de espionagem britânico MI-6.
O programa realizado por Michael Waldman estreou a 15 de Novembro e o vídeo onde Boris Johnson aparece em Portugal está inserido no segundo episódio, "Admirável Mundo Novo", que foi transmitido no Reino Unido na passada quinta-feira, dia 22 de Novembro.
'Britannia rules the waves' ? OVOODOCORVO Ever get that sinking feeling? VIDEO:Brexit: A Titanic Disaster | Comedy Central
'Britannia rules the waves' ?
Ever get that sinking feeling?
UK worse off under all Brexit scenarios
UK government analysis concluded that under no-deal scenario, GDP growth will be 9.3 percentage points lower after 15 years compared to remaining.
By CHARLIE COOPER, BJARKE SMITH-MEYER AND SILVIA SCIORILLI BORRELLI 11/28/18, 1:09 PM CET Updated 11/29/18, 9:13 AM CET
LONDON — Governments don’t usually say their policies will leave the economy worse off, but these are not normal times for Theresa May.
As the U.K. prime minister attempts to sell her Brexit deal agreed Sunday in Brussels to MPs at home, her government produced analysis showing all Brexit scenarios would hurt the economy but the impact of leaving under May’s plans would be significantly less than exiting with no agreement at all.
The government analysis was echoed later in the day by a separate report from the Bank of England, which warned economic output in the U.K. could drop by as much as 8 percent if Britain drops out of the EU without a deal in place, compared to expectations had the U.K. stayed in. That compares to a 6.25 percent drop during the 2008 financial crisis.
May defended her government at her weekly question-and-answer session in the House of Commons, saying that her deal is the best available to protect the economy and “honor” the 2016 EU referendum result. She was met with widespread criticism, both from the Labour opposition, who dubbed her plan the “worst of all worlds,” and from Brexiteers, who questioned the validity of the reports’ assumptions.
Brexit-supporting MPs were also quick to dismiss the Bank’s analysis, recalling its (so far incorrect) pre-referendum warning that a Leave vote could result in a recession — a prediction that was linked by Brexiteers to an anti-Brexit campaign by the David Cameron government that they branded “Project Fear.”
Jacob Rees-Mogg, chair of the Euroskeptic European Research Group of backbench Conservative MPs, said BoE Governor Mark Carney’s new warning about the no-deal Brexit scenario had “turned Project Fear into Project Hysteria.”
Likewise, the opposition Labour Party was quick to attack the government. John McDonnell, Labour’s shadow chancellor, said: “The Bank has confirmed what other independent reports this week have been telling us: A no-deal Brexit could be even worse than the financial crisis of 10 years ago, and the country would be much worse under Theresa May’s deal. Instead of plowing on with this discredited deal the government should set new priorities that would protect jobs and the economy.”
However, MPs supportive of a second referendum said the Bank’s analysis strengthens the case for a fresh vote.
Labour MP Wes Streeting, a member of the House of Commons Treasury committee, said: “No responsible government — on either side of the negotiations — will allow no deal. Time for the [prime minister] to drop the pretense and put her Brexit deal to the country with an option to remain [in the EU].”
The government’s 83-page document sets out a range of scenarios and makes a number of assumptions, reflecting the uncertain nature of the U.K.’s future relationship with the EU and post-Brexit immigration policy. It makes comparisons with projected GDP growth if Brexit does not go ahead.
In all the versions of Brexit considered by the government, the report concludes the U.K economy would continue to grow. Brexit’s effect is predicted to be a check on growth, rather than leading to a downturn. The biggest projected hit would happen under a no-deal Brexit, where GDP growth is predicted to be 9.3 percentage points lower over 15 years compared with a continuation of the status quo, again if migration from the EEA is reduced to net zero.
In their separate report, the Bank of England also found that a no-deal Brexit scenario could witness an increase in unemployment of up to 7.5 percent, with inflation potentially rising up to 6.5 percent. However, in stress tests published at the same time, the Bank concluded British banks are strong enough to withstand a global recession or disorderly Brexit.
“If you look at this purely from an economic point of view, there will be a cost from leaving the European Union because there will be impediments to our trade” — Philip Hammond
However, May is unlikely to achieve a full Chequers-style settlement in the negotiations over the U.K.’s future relationship with the bloc, and analysts also set out predictions for an alternative scenario falling halfway between the Chequers prediction and one based on a Canada-style free-trade agreement.
Impact of migration
The government predicts that May’s proposals for the post-Brexit relationship with the EU, as outlined in the July white paper — better known as the Chequers plan, after the prime minister’s country residence — would leave U.K. growth 2.5 points lower, if migration from the European Economic Area is reduced to net zero.
If EEA migration remains unchanged, the cut in growth would be just 0.6 points under this scenario, the analysis predicts.
Under this scenario, arguably a more likely endpoint for negotiations, U.K. growth would be 2.1 points lower if there are no changes to EEA migration, but 3.9 points lower if EEA migration is reduced to net zero.
Hammond acknowledged that May’s Brexit deal would entail a cost to the economy | Ben Stansall/AFP via Getty Images
May has pledged to end freedom of movement from the EEA, so it is likely migration numbers will fall.
‘Impediments to our trade’
Speaking on the BBC’s Today program this morning, Chancellor Philip Hammond acknowledged that May’s Brexit deal would entail a cost to the economy compared with staying in the EU.
“If you look at this purely from an economic point of view, there will be a cost from leaving the European Union because there will be impediments to our trade,” Hammond said. He said the prime minister’s deal “minimizes those costs.”
May, speaking in the House of Commons following the publication of the document, said it shows the U.K. is “a strong economy that will continue to grow.”
The document’s projections for the 15 years immediately after Brexit assume that the U.K. will have replicated all the trade deals with third countries via the EU, and will have negotiated its own trade agreements with 17 countries, including the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, China, India, the Mercosur countries and the Gulf Cooperation Council countries.
However, the overall benefit of new trade deals is estimated to be a maximum of 0.2 points extra on GDP growth.
Regionally, the northeast of England would be the hardest hit economically in a no-deal or Canada-style free-trade agreement scenario, according to the document. Under no deal, the region’s growth would be more than 10 points lower than it would have been inside the EU.
quarta-feira, 28 de novembro de 2018
Youtuber português Wuant lança crítica viral à directiva de direitos de autor
O vídeo de Paulo Borges, conhecido como “Wuant” no YouTube, correu a Internet. Mas é também um exemplo da complexidade do que está em causa.
KARLA PEQUENINO 28 de Novembro de 2018, 17:16
O YouTube está a enviar emails sobre algumas das consequências da nova directiva
A polémica sobre as novas regras europeias de direitos de autor na Internet – discutidas há anos e em vias de serem aprovadas – ganhou novo fôlego junto dos jovens em Portugal, depois de um popular youtuber alertar sobre como podem causar “o fim da Internet”. Não foi o primeiro.
Nos últimos meses, vários criadores da plataforma online têm feito vídeos semelhantes, depois de receberem emails do Google, que é dono do YouTube, a alertar para as consequências das novas regras para o digital que estão a ser discutidas na União Europeia.
“O meu canal vai ser apagado e provavelmente não vai ser o único”, começou Paulo Borges (mais conhecido pelo nome “Wuant”), num vídeo de 11 minutos em que o artista, que é famoso por publicar vídeos de humor na Internet e tem mais de três milhões de seguidores, tenta explicar o que está em causa. Desde então, o vídeo tem sido amplamente partilhado nas redes sociais, tornando-se mesmo alvo de debate em algumas salas de aula.
Fonte oficial do YouTube confirma o envio da informação: “Estamos a mostrar estas mensagens para garantir que criadores e consumidores têm conhecimento acerca da próxima reforma dos direitos de autor.” O PÚBLICO tentou contactar Paulo Borges, mas não obteve resposta até à hora de publicação deste artigo.
O vídeo tem, no entanto, algumas imprecisões.
Máquinas de censura, direitos dos autores e o novelo de uma directiva polémica
Máquinas de censura, direitos dos autores e o novelo de uma directiva polémica
O artigo 13.º vai causar o “fim da Internet” ?
O artigo 13.º é o mais controverso da proposta. Ganhou fama como uma espécie de “máquina da censura” porque a versão original da Comissão Europeia pretendia que os serviços online adoptassem “tecnologias efectivas de reconhecimento de conteúdos” (chamadas “filtros” pelos críticos) para monitorizar todo o material. O objectivo era barrar conteúdo com base em mecanismos para detectar porções de ficheiros (áudio, texto, ou vídeo) protegidos por direitos de autor.
O texto actual é diferente e estipula que se deve evitar “o bloqueio automático dos conteúdos”. Antes havia uma referência aos filtros, agora lê-se que as plataformas “devem celebrar acordos de licenciamento justos e adequados com os titulares de direitos”. A ideia não é que o YouTube impeça a presença de conteúdo na sua plataforma, mas que crie acordos para pagar aos seus autores. Isso significa, no entanto, monitorizar os conteúdos e, eventualmente, barrar também aqueles para os quais não haja certezas sobre a questão dos direitos de autor.
A proposta determina igualmente que os Estados-membros “estabeleçam mecanismos de reclamação” eficazes para os conteúdos retirados por engano. “No caso em que conteúdo de paródia ou humor seja removido, os criadores podem contestar a remoção e pedir que o conteúdo volte a ser colocado online”, lê-se numa página do site do Parlamento Europeu dedicado a dúvidas sobre a nova directiva.
Parte do problema do YouTube com a nova directiva é o facto de ser “pouco realista”. Num artigo de opinião recente, a presidente executiva do YouTube, Susan Wojcicki, explica que “muitas vezes os próprios criadores de conteúdo discordam sobre quem é que tem os direitos sobre o material”, especialmente em vídeos que incluem música, imagens e textos de vários autores.
A empresa frisa que o Content ID, uma funcionalidade de identificação de conteúdo que analisa todos os vídeos do YouTube, só funciona quando os donos do conteúdo com direitos de autor informam o YouTube sobre o material a que têm direito. A lista é feita de obras enviadas ao YouTube por estúdios de cinema, editoras de música, produtoras de televisão e outras entidades, que são notificadas quando é detectada alguma infracção.
Os internautas vão ser processados por uma imagem do Shrek no Twitter?
Não. Muitos críticos da proposta têm alertado para a possibilidade de a utilização de memes ser proibida com as novas leis. Trata-se de um fenómeno humorístico da Internet, em que se exprime sucintamente uma ideia pela manipulação de uma expressão, imagem, ou vídeo.
Ainda no começo do vídeo, Wuant sugere que, no futuro, os utilizadores da Internet poderão ser “processados” por colocar uma imagem (como a de Shrek, o personagem da Disney) – que não compraram, desenharam ou fotografaram – no Twitter.
É algo que o Parlamento Europeu já veio clarificar, ao identificar “caricaturas, paródias, ou pastiche” como um excepção, garantindo “a reprodução e comunicação de tal conteúdo ao público” como parte da liberdade de expressão.
A lei já foi aprovada?
A directiva ainda está em processo legislativo. Em Setembro, o Parlamento Europeu aprovou uma proposta de 17 artigos que está a ser algo de negociações num processo à porta fechada conhecido como “trílogo”. Envolve a Comissão Europeia, o Conselho Europeu e o Parlamento Europeu. O resultado destes debates será alvo de novas votações em Janeiro.
"Taxas" sobre links e filtros de censura na Internet
Quem aprovou a lei?
Wuant refere que “uma das últimas pessoas a aprovar esta lei” era portuguesa. Numa votação em plenário, e ao mesmo tempo que os restantes eurodeputados, a maioria dos eurodeputados portugueses disse sim à proposta mais recente da nova directiva de direitos de autor. Dos 19 deputados portugueses a participar na votação de Setembro, 14 deram um voto positivo.
A favor votaram os eurodeputados eleitos pelo PSD, PS (com a excepção de Francisco Assis) e CDS, bem como o deputado do Partido da Terra. Contra estiveram os deputados do PCP e a deputada do Bloco de Esquerda.
Apenas os deputados socialistas Ana Gomes e Manuel dos Santos, ambos do PS, mudaram a sua opinião face à votação anterior. Na altura, Gomes tinha rejeitado a proposta e Manuel dos Santos tinha-se abstido. Desta vez, votaram a favor.
Em declarações ao PÚBLICO, Ana Gomes disse na altura que mantinha reservas sobre a directiva, mas não queria barrar o documento. “O que está em jogo é muito importante para ficar parado. O problema é que o tema é tão contraditório, tão emocional e todos os pontos de vista são válidos”, afirmou então a eurodeputada. “Mantenho muita apreensão contra o artigo 13.º. Não fala em filtros, mas fala em mecanismos que podem resultar em censura.”
“Pessoa importante para a lei” não a conhece?
Wuant diz que Axel Voss, relator do texto votado, “não fazia ideia do que era a lei”. Apesar de Voss não ser mencionado pelo nome, é mostrada uma fotografia do eurodeputado alemão, e Wuant descreve-o como uma das pessoas “mais importantes” na redacção da nova lei. A informação de Wuant vem de um artigo do site Quartz, para a qual o YouTuber remete na descrição do vídeo.
O que Voss admite no artigo é que desconhecia a rectificação número 76 (referente à transmissão de eventos desportivos na Internet), dizendo que não foi “suficientemente escrutinada” devido ao foco noutros pontos da legislação. A rectificação número 76 prevê pretende evitar que empresas de apostas aliciem utilizadores da Internet para os seus sites com vídeos de eventos desportivos que não têm o direito de filmar.
Quem pode partilhar links?
Wuant alerta que o artigo 11.º, que pretende que os sites de jornalismo possam cobrar pela partilha de excertos que acompanham os links para as suas páginas, pode obrigar as pessoas a pagar para usar links.
O artigo nasceu para satisfazer a reivindicação da imprensa online de poder cobrar às plataformas que agregam conteúdos jornalísticos (por exemplo, a do Google).
No texto mais recente, o Parlamento Europeu clarifica que os direitos conferidos à imprensa “não impedem a utilização legítima, privada e não comercial de publicações de imprensa por utilizadores individuais” e não devem ser alargadas para incluir meras hiperligações de palavras isoladas. Muitos críticos continuam a descrever o artigo como vago.
Quem está contra a proposta?
Tal como Wuant refere no seu vídeo, Tim Berners-Lee, o engenheiro britânico que inventou a World Wide Web, também está contra a proposta da directiva, por acreditar que as mudanças aumentam a monitorização que é feita ao conteúdo online.
Há também vários políticos contra, de que um dos rostos mais visíveis é Julia Reda, eurodeputada do Partido Pirata Alemão. Para Reda, a formulação actual é muito estreita e pode prejudicar a competitividade do sector privado tecnológico na União Europeia. A eurodeputada do Bloco de Esquerda, Marisa Matias, compara o resultado à “abertura da caixa de Pandora” para o “caminho livre à censura prévia”.
A associação portuguesa D3, que luta pela defesa dos direitos digitais e também se opõe ao texto actual, lembra no Twitter que o processo está longe de terminar e não envolve apenas YouTubers, mas também "organizações de direitos digitais, software livre, dados abertos".
A favor da proposta, estão músicos como Paul McCartney e Ennio Morricone que escreveram cartas a apoiar a proposta e a acusar “tecnopólios” de promoverem campanhas de desinformação para evitar pagar o trabalho dos artistas. Em Agosto, vários artistas e associações ligadas à indústria criativa em Portugal também enviaram um apelo aos eurodeputados portugueses a defende a proposta. “A campanha dos seus opositores tem vindo, deliberadamente, a descentrar a discussão do essencial, procurando agitar a opinião pública com fantasmas da censura”, lê-se no apelo enviado ao Parlamento Europeu.
Isle of Madness
A Series of Miscalculations Has Brought Britain to the Brink
Brexit was to allow the United Kingdom to reclaim its former glory. Instead, the country's leaders have bumbled their way into catastrophe. Built on a false premise from the start, the UK's move away from the EU has been dominated by mistakes and miscalculations.
By Peter Müller and Jörg Schindler
November 28, 2018 05:34 PM
On Saturday of last week, the sun was rising over London when a blue bus set off along the shore of the Thames. Lucy Swale and Matilda Allan were on board, one with red hair, the other brunette. They managed to get themselves out of bed at 5:45 a.m. and jog through half the city from Islington to catch the double-decker. The bus, they believed, would carry them into the future.
"Dear MPs," its exterior read, "77 percent of us don't want Brexit - signed, Young people." Lucy and Matilda will turn 18 in December. For their birthday, they want a vote. It would be their first.
And perhaps also the most important of their lives.
"We have to live with this the longest time," said Matilda. "But nobody asked us." She was 15 years old when a narrow majority of her compatriots voted to try their luck outside of the European Union. Several members of Matilda's family voted for Brexit. But "not everybody understood what they were voting for," she says.
She claims that it is only now, two-and-a-half years later, do many people realize how much they were misled, lied to and manipulated. She argues that not only her, but the almost one-and-a-half million young people who have reached adulthood since the referendum, have earned the right to a new vote. And Matilda is certain what the result would be. "I am angry."
That sentence can currently be heard, in different variations, across the United Kingdom. If there's anything uniting the generally indulgent Brits right now, it's anger.
For some it's anger at a political class that has made so many promises and kept so few of them. For others, it's anger at the nationalist tempters gambling away the country's future in a quest to reclaim past glory. There is anger at a government that no longer has the power to solve critical social problems. Anger that it's not over yet. And yes, also, self-directed anger.
On Sunday, the remaining 27 EU member states endorsed Theresa May's a divorce agreement and a declaration for a future relationship, after thousands of hours of negotiating. Measured against the historic nature of the move, it represents no less than a diplomatic masterwork. In no small part because the Brexit proposed in that deal would be so soft that it would take years before people really started to notice the change.
But it would also mean that little has been gained -- at least for the UK. Its future will remain as murky as it was before given that no one can predict how things will progress.
Any agreement with Brussels would only survive if most members of the British House of Commons approve it. And nobody knows how that is going to happen. In London, a vicious battle has erupted in the shadow of Big Ben, which is covered in scaffolding, its bell currently indefinitely silenced. The frontlines snake across all parties to the point that they are barely discernable. New, absurd coalitions have emerged. Everyone claims to represent the only truthful position on Brexit.
Britain hasn't been united for a while now. Most Scots, Northern Irish and Londoners voted against Brexit, while a majority of Welsh and English are in favor of it. But all seem to know they will ultimately emerge from the situation in a weakened position.
The rift runs through entire families. In some, people are no longer talking to each other and in others they are talking over one another. Politicians are getting hate mail and death threats. In Westminster, conservative and center-left pro-EU figures are suddenly allying themselves against conservative and left-wing euroskeptics. Rumors of the possible establishment of a new centrist party are making the rounds.
The only thing just about everyone can agree on is that Prime Minister Theresa May must go. But she's still there, and has survived much longer than people expected. A coup against May by members of her own party was announced this week, but then cancelled for lack of plotters. Though perhaps it has only been delayed.
People on the continent are watching with astonishment, some even with condescension, at what is happening in London. In the past, the rest of Europe was certain British diplomats and officials were among the best in their field. And now? An entire country is degrading itself and many EU diplomats believe its political class has turned itself into a laughing stock.
But the situation is serious. The vote in the House of Commons is scheduled for Dec. 11, and the pent-up rage could blow up British politics, either intentionally or by accident. It would be an almost appropriate end to a years-long fight primarily defined by vanity, gross overconfidence and denial of reality.
Anyone trying to follow the trail of clues to its origins in order to better understand Brexit realizes that the politicians, activists and everyday citizens in London, Belfast and Brussels didn't expect this divorce process to be so protracted and painful. At many points in the past years, the right decisions could have been made, but in many cases, weren't. Brexit is mostly the story of hair-raising mistakes.
Mistake No 1: Thinking Brexit Will Be Child's Play
This story also began with a bus. On May 11, 2016, a partly cloudy day, it drove through Cornwall, a pastoral earldom that looks so stereotypically British that cheesy romantic TV shows often film here. When the bus stopped in Truro, a city known for its cathedral, a man climbed out -- a man whose wheat-blond hair always looks like it has just been tousled.
Boris Johnson wagged around a Cornish Pasty and said things that were too good to be true. Johnson, a former journalist, is a fantastic speaker. He spoke of a country that had sold its soul to Europe and had thus lost the global stature it deserved, of Brussels hucksters who straightjacketed the former empire by regulating pickle curvature. He talked about how quickly the country would thrive if it finally left all that behind it.
There were still six weeks left before the Brexit referendum. The red bus was emblazoned with the claim that the UK transfers 350 million pounds per week to the EU, which in the event of Brexit would be invested in the health system instead. No part of this sentence was true.
But many people in the country liked hearing this kind of thing. After eight years of brutal austerity set off by the global financial crisis, it isn't just the healthcare system that is feeling the pinch. House prices are climbing, wages are stagnating and homelessness is increasing, along with the exasperation felt by many. Johnson, who as mayor of London was partly responsible for the drastic inequality, knew how to channel this frustration. Somehow the EU was responsible for everything. He and his fellow campaigners claimed the block also wanted to incorporate Turkey, which would mean 1 million Turks streaming onto the island.
Brexit sounded so sweet, so promising in comparison. After more than 40 years of "subjugation," leaving the EU would mean only letting in the foreigners the country really wanted, and reactivating the old imperial trade routes to India, Australia and America. It would be a cinch.
Europe would beg not to be shunned by the new old superpower.
For non-Brits, the Brexiteers' chauvinist rhetoric may be hard to understand, but it is part of a long tradition. The Brits only hesitantly joined a united Europe in 1973. At the time, the plan's opponents had similar arguments to today's Brexiteers. Labour Party lawmaker Peter Shore later explained: "What the advocates of membership are saying is that we are finished as a country; that the long and famous story of the British nation and people has ended; that we are now so weak and powerless that we must accept terms and conditions, penalties and limitations almost as though we had suffered defeat in a war."
Irish journalist Fintan O'Toole wrote in his book, "Heroic Failure: Brexit and the Politics of Pain," that even back the decision to enter the union was equated with a delayed defeat by the Germans, that they imagined the European alliance of nations as a kind of "soft-Nazi superstate." Many Brexiteers currently view things similarly.
They believe the country will finally be able to find its way back to its former glory. "EU politicians would be banging down the door for a trade deal on Friday," said Johnson, who would for a brief time later become foreign secretary.
"There will be no downside to Brexit, only a considerable upside," said David Davis, who later have a brief stint as Brexit minister.
"The day after we vote to leave, we hold all the cards and we can choose the path we want," said Michael Gove, who would later become environment minister.
Were these all mistakes. Or lies?
The nostalgic nationalists told them so nonchalantly because none of them seriously expected that a majority of Brits would vote to leave the EU. It was easy to make these mistakes because they primary aim had been to exploit the referendum to win a fight within the Tory party. Ultimately, the people voted 52 to 48 percent in favor of Brexit. While the rest of the Europe unloaded its frustration with the status quo by swelling the ranks of right-wing populists, the Brits found their scapegoat in Brussels.
Mistake No. 2: Red Lines that Can't Hold
The second major mistake began when Theresa May stepped into Lancaster House on January 17, 2017. The classical building in the heart of London looks like it was purpose-built for holding important speeches. Film fans might know its ostentatious gold-and-red foyer from the film adaptation of Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest." The Lancaster House is also a symbol of the old British Empire.
When she stepped in front of the podium, decorated with the words "A Global Britain," May was an uncontested head of government. In the political turmoil that followed the Brexit referendum, all her competitors within the Conservative Party, including Boris Johnson, had eliminated themselves in almost slapstick fashion. May was the most popular prime minister in many years -- and, at the time, she didn't have any natural enemies left.
In the 42 minutes that followed, she was going to explain how, in concrete terms, she imagined Brexit. Given that her country had split almost 50-50 on the issue, she could have suggested a middle path: Leave the EU, sure, but remain as tightly bound to the group of nations as possible, like Norway. Nobody could prevent her doing that.
But she decided to take a different route.
May was home secretary before she became Britain's leader. In the previous years, she had done a lot to create, as she called it, a "hostile environment" for immigrants. People close to her said this was the only subject the often-wooden politician was passionate about. Remaining too closely connected to the EU would mean the UK would have to continue tolerating mass immigration from the continent. May didn't want that.
And so she chose the difficult option.
To the surprise of many, May formulated 12 clear goals at Lancaster House. The most important, in brief, were that the country was to exit the single market, get out of the customs union and out of the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. And foreigners? They were also to get out. In the future, the number of immigrants allowed into the country was to be no more than five figures.
May would later say that her stance represented what "British people want." But that wasn't true. The people were asked whether they wanted to leave the EU -- not how. Clearly, there wasn't just one way people wanted that to happen. And the more time that passed, the more it became clear that these many potential ways of exiting the EU were irreconcilable.
To give herself more freedom, May called for surprise elections in spring of 2017.
Mistake No 3: That New Elections Would Strengthen May
She had always said she wouldn't do it, but the temptation ultimately became too great. The conservatives had been 20 points ahead of the quarreling Labour Party in the polls. A landslide victory would have guaranteed enough support for May that ardent anti-EU and pro-EU politicians wouldn't stand a chance of pressuring her in the upcoming Brexit negotiations. Win big, and govern decisively, that was May's plan.
Rarely has a leading British politician miscalculated the situation so catastrophically. For May, it would become the most disastrous mistake of her leadership.
On June 8, 2018, after an abysmal campaign and an impressive showing by Labour, May lost her authority and her party lost its absolute majority. Instead of her bringing parliament under her control, the reverse happened. And even worse for her, the prime minister became dependent on the 10 MPs of the ultra-nationalist Northern Irish DUP party to keep governing.
From that point onward, the parliament, May's own fellow party members and the DUP would make each step she took toward Brexit torture. It was almost like the Tories were cursed: After Margaret Thatcher, after John Major, after David Cameron, another Tory prime minister was in danger of stumbling toward political annihilation over issues relating to the European Union.
But there was no replacement in sight. Even the man who clearly believed he would be a better prime minister didn't have a plan for his "glorious" Brexit.
Mistake No. 4: It Will Be Possible to Split Europe
At this point, Boris Johnson was still foreign secretary, and one evening far away from home, he was chatting with a small group when the subject came to Brexit. One of the people present was David McAllister, who was the head of the European Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs, and, potentially more importantly for Johnson, someone with the ear of German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
It got late, talk became looser, and at one point, Johnson asked McAllister: Ultimately, the Germans are going to help us, aren't they?
Johnson's question revealed an almost naïve misunderstanding of political rules -- and spoke to the Brits' fourth major mistake. For a long time, they believed Brexit talks would be conducted like negotiations within the EU -- a contract would be prepared by officials or a problem would be worked over for months, and then the 28 state representatives would cut the Gordian knot with Merkel at their center.
The EU took this approach to several problems during the euro crisis. A similar 16-hour marathon summit decided the fate of the Greeks in June 2015. With Merkel's approval, the country was allowed to stay in the euro zone. May told European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker during a Brexit dinner in April 2017 that she imagined Brexit negotiations would be similar in nature. She said she thought the first major issue, the future of EU citizens living in the UK, could be taken care of during the next summit.
With this, May made it very clear that despite all of those years of membership, she understood little about the EU.
When London's negotiators realized there was no way around EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier in Brussels, they tried to bypass him through special diplomacy and reach out to the conciliatory, but tough French. At one point, they approached the government in Warsaw, which was worried about the future of the hundreds of thousands of Polish workers in the UK. On another occasion, they sounded out Berlin.
Many people in London believe to this day that the key to Brexit lies in the German capital. If push comes to shove, they firmly believe, the German car industry would call Merkel to reason. It didn't. And the British attempts at splitting up EU member countries came to nothing.
At EU summits, a degrading ceremony became habit: When the heads of state met over lunch or dinner, May was allowed, like an amuse bouche, to make supplications or threats, and was then politely escorted out of the room. At one point, Hungarian head of state Viktor Orbán said he felt ill that the EU is "treating a lady in this way." That was the extent of the group's protectiveness of her.
Mistake No. 5: The Ireland Issue Won't Be Decisive
The Brits' fifth and most fatal mistake, however, lay just beyond their own front door, on the island of Ireland. As happens quite often in Britain, Ireland hardly played any role at all when the Brits held the Brexit referendum. In the minds of many Brexiteers dreaming of reclaiming the UK's superpower status, the former colony was still a kind of backyard where, if in doubt, British rules would prevail.
Some thought the Irish would best follow their neighbor's lead and leave the EU. An Irexit -- why not? "We joined on the same day. Why assume we couldn't leave on the same day?" one Brexiteer tweeted. What ensued, as was so often the case, was not at all what they expected.
The hall at the Institute of Technology was filed to the brim, the atmosphere was tense. It was a Monday in April 2018. Michel Barnier was visiting Dundalk, a small city in Ireland, a few kilometers from the border to Northern Ireland. He wanted to see with his own eyes what was at stake if the border fences between Ireland and Northern Ireland were to go back up.
The location was well chosen, because when the Brits leave the EU on March 29, 2019, the people in Dundalk will suddenly be living on the EU's external border. Businesspeople could lose their delivery workers, commuters could be stuck in traffic for hours, but that wouldn't even be the worst of it.
In Northern Ireland, Brexit is a question of war and peace. The Catholic half of the population has been fighting for decades for unification with the Republic of Ireland to the south. The Protestant half is just as passionate about wanting to remain a part of the United Kingdom. For 30 years, both sides led a brutal civil war against one another, leaving around 3,500 people dead.
It was only through the Good Friday Agreement that "The Troubles" finally ended in 1998. That peace has largely survived to this day, in part because Ireland and Northern Ireland are EU members, and the border between the two is barely discernable. It runs through cemeteries and apartment buildings. Billions in EU subsidy payments also played a large part in calming both sides' tempers.
In Dundalk, Barnier chose his words carefully, then said: "To be clear: without a backstop, there can be no Withdrawal Agreement." And, furthermore, "This is an EU issue, not only an Irish issue."
That statement drew hefty applause. This was what the people here were waiting for: The EU declaring Ireland's open border to be non-negotiable. Barnier had drawn his own red line to counter London's. Ireland had, then if not before, become the central point of conflict in Brexit negotiations -- and it would continue to be right to this day.
To prevent a hard border, the EU said that Northern Ireland could remain in the customs union and part of the single market for a certain period of time, the so-called backstop solution. It would only come into force if no free-trade agreement were reached between London and Brussels.
But who could guarantee that would happen? With the backstop, a customs border would run through the Irish Sea, and Northern Ireland would remain a de facto member of the EU and inch a little bit closer to the Republic of Ireland. Those notions were just as unacceptable to the Brexiteers as they were to the DUP, the Northern Irish nationalists.
For the British, it was an unfamiliar situation. Only rarely in the UK's history have the Irish held the levers of power -- and now they were negotiating with the UK as an EU member, part of a group of nations with 450 million inhabitants.
The hardliners were blustery but had few counterproposals. Their alternative was an invisible high-tech border control that would first need to be developed and thus far exists only in their imagination. Boris Johnson, May's biggest opponent, considered the Ireland issue to be, in any case, totally exaggerated. He argued it was a problem akin to managing London's congestion charge for cars driving in the city center. He may have a mind for pretty words, but not for details.
The British have become trapped by their numerous misapprehensions and contradictions - and by their wishful thinking, which continuously bumps up against reality. Now, the country is paying the price for the fact that, from the very beginning, nobody really had a plan for Brexit because nobody really believed it would ever come.
For many in the UK, the EU was an excellent scapegoat over the years. Now, it's suddenly gone. Who could have possibly realized that it would be so complicated to cut off overnight a relationship that had grown over the course of decades and resulted in thousands of joint laws and umpteen thousand shared regulations?
At some point, May began realizing that she would not be able to defend the red line she had once so categorically drawn in her speech in Lancaster House. In early December 2017, she largely submitted to the EU proposals and the two sides agreed to a 15-page paper so that the negotiations could continue at all.
Point 49 of that paper marked the first appearance of a passage that remains contentious today. It reads: "In the absence of agreed solutions, the United Kingdom will maintain full alignment with those rules of the Internal Market and the Customs Union which, now or in the future, support North-South cooperation, the all-island economy and the protection of the 1998 Agreement." The reference here, of course, is to Ireland and Northern Ireland.
By agreeing to the document, May bought herself some EU goodwill. It would take months for the Brexiteers to realize that their dream of a return to British world dominance was illusory. And when they did finally get it, they began screaming "treason!" But it was too late. May had long since charted a course for the softest Brexit possible.
Conclusion: There Will Be No Hard Break
Even if the realization came too late, May ultimately recognized that she couldn't make everybody happy. Her options through mid-October 2018 were extremely limited: Either surrender UK unity or give up on the idea of a "Global Britain."
The prime minister is nothing if not tenacious, and she could have tackled the situation powerfully if only she hadn't pressed ahead at the wrong time. If only. As it turned out, though, she spent the summer and fall of this year scampering through London and Brussels -- a "dead woman walking," as her adversaries sneered -- unable to make decisions. She made herself vulnerable to coercion from all sides: from supporters of the EU, EU skeptics, the DUP, the Scots and the opposition.
She knew she would ultimately have to reveal her cards, particularly on the Ireland question. But she also knew that doing so could ruin her, her party or her country -- and she knew that she wouldn't be able to save all three. So she dragged her feet.
Months passed during which negotiations stalled. Even Michel Barnier, the consummate diplomat, lamented at one point: "To negotiate effectively, you need to know what the other side wants."
In Britain, meanwhile, a new illness began spreading which came to be known as "Brexit fatigue." In a September survey, a majority of respondents agreed with the sentence: "I am not interested in the details of Brexit negotiations, I just want those responsible to get on with it."
But May continued to dither, until it was almost too late. Only in early November did the clarity emerge that Barnier and his team had long been pleading for: May had decided to prioritize UK unity over the Brexiteers' vainglorious dreams of domination.
In order to maintain the status quo in Northern Ireland, the entire UK will likely have to remain part of the EU customs union and in large parts of the single market for years to come. May has accepted a situation in which Britain will continue to be bound by EU rules pertaining to the environment, job protection, state subsidies and more. All those bureaucratic hurdles, in other words, the pro-Brexit camp blames for holding the country back from achieving its true greatness. Furthermore, Britain will have to continue paying billions into the EU budget.
The Continent and the UK will remain bound to each other. There will be no hard break.
The UK will, however, soon be able to curtail the influx of foreigners from EU member states. Many of those who voted in favor of Brexit are particularly adamant on that issue. May is aware of that and has emphasized that she considers it to be a critical issue as well. "This is the best possible deal," she insists.
In London, though, she is largely alone with that assessment. Those in British parliament who are positively inclined toward the EU have been left wondering what is good about a Brexit deal in which the country will have to essentially remain a part of the bloc without having any say in its rules. EU skeptics, meanwhile, believe that May has broken every single promise she made in the Lancaster House speech.
Brexiteers are complaining that their country will not regain complete control of its money, laws and borders for years to come. And who knows if it ever will? After all, the joint political declaration from the two sides on their future together is so brief and so vague that it is difficult to discern a single guarantee. Conservative Brexit hardliner Jacob Rees-Mogg has passed judgment by saying that the UK will become a "slave state" of the European Union.
Rees-Mogg recently called on his supporters to revolt. Everyone who loves their country, he urged, should call for a vote of no confidence against May. Thus far, though, the revolutionaries have been unable to muster sufficient numbers for the effort.
So often in the past several months, May's adversaries have fired at her anonymously, saying, for example, that she had entered the "killing zone" and should "bring a noose" to a meeting with Conservative Party lawmakers and that "she'll be dead soon." May condemned the attacks -- and continued to stay the course.
May will now present her deal to parliament before its Dec. 11 vote. And it looks unlikely she will achieve the necessary majority the first time around. EU leaders also see that as the most likely scenario.
As such, 10 Downing Street is apparently working on a highly risky plan that is, according to the London Times, being referred to internally as the "kamikaze solution." The idea is that, immediately following a parliamentary vote rejecting the current Brexit plan, the markets will plunge, as will the British pound. The country will teeter for a moment on the edge of the abyss. The resulting fear would break the resistance once and for all, according to the idea, allowing May to come back to parliament with minimally changed deal.
It would be an extremely daring maneuver, the kind of thing no British premier has ever attempted before. And what would happen if it went wrong? Would a "no-deal Brexit" become an inevitability?
Interestingly, it was May herself who mentioned the possibility of a third alternative on several recent occasions: No Brexit. May has introduced the concept as a kind of warning, given that she too has noticed that the movement for a second Brexit referendum has been gaining momentum in recent months. In late October, around 700,000 people from around the country marched through London to underscore their desire for a new referendum. And their primary argument cannot be dismissed out of hand: Given that the fabulous Brexit Boris Johnson and Co. once promised now looks completely different, it is essential that British voters be allowed to pass their judgment on it.
It is primarily younger voters who have become increasingly adamant about ensuring their voices are heard in the debate over Britain's future. A number of initiatives have joined together under the umbrella organization People's Vote, which has its headquarters in London's Millbank Tower.
In mid-November, leftover jack-o'-lanterns were still on desks and cans littered the floor, the apparent remnants of a carnival game. A picture of David Cameron hung on the wall, looking as though it may have been a dart-throwing target. The offices were full of young people.
One of them was Richard Brooks, 26, who temporarily put his career on hold to ensure he remains an EU citizen. Let's be honest, says Brooks, founder of the For Our Future's Sake group. "All advocates of Brexit, basically old white men, will eventually be gone. We will still be here."
Despite all of its problems, Brooks says, the European Union is a project worth fighting for. "Europe is a concept I believe in. The EU binds countries together that were trading bombs are are now trading goods. After all, that's progress." Brexit is personal for him. And he said he knows many people of his age who feel similarly.
Brooks believes there is now a roughly 50 percent chance Brexit can be stopped. "If the alternatives are May's bad deal or a catastrophic no deal, then a People's Vote might be the only way out." According to a recent survey, 56 percent of Brits hold a similar view.
Even if Brexit were avoided, though, calm would not immediately return to this troubled country. In the decades-long debate over Europe, numerous leading British politicians have spent massive amounts of money and even more political capital on the issue.
There is much to suggest that a second Brexit referendum would produce a similarly narrow result as the first -- this time, though, with a slight victory for the Remain camp. The pro-Brexit crowd, though, would almost certainly not go away quietly. A revival of the right-wing UKIP party or a different populist group would be more than likely in such a scenario. An increase in xenophobia, already at uncomfortably high levels, would be probable as well.
Whatever happens, there will still be a lot of angry people out there, says pro-EU Conservative Anna Soubry, who just last week received a death threat because she expressed support for holding a second referendum. She says she is appalled and ashamed about what has become of her country.
The battle over Brexit has poisoned the United Kingdom. At some point in the not-too-distant future, it will be taught as a case study for political failure. Planning for a Brexit museum is likewise underway. Several activists have joined forces for the project, hoping to show how the United Kingdom took back its "sovereignty." Or not. Who knows, perhaps the museum will ultimately be home to a blue bus and a red bus.
It isn't clear when the museum will become reality. The initiators say they only want to open it once the wounds have healed. In other words, maybe never.