Sounds like an extension of the "If you can't dazzle with brilliance, baffle with bullshit" approach. Also used to great effect by large companies to limit bonuses, raises, promotions of their own employees, justify bonuses, raises of management, justify the appointment of manager's mate to high-level role, by governments when enacting new 'security' laws...
That list was supposed to be small, but I can think of so many examples on the spur of the moment that it's depressing.
Oh be fair. At least with a government you're able to vote against them, and if enough people do that then there's a change of ruling party, and possibly a change in law too.
Can't do that with Google. You can buy shares in them, but all the openly traded ones don't give you voting rights. So as a member of the public you have even less ability to change Google's behavior than your own government's...
I must say that this looks like a spectacular fail on Google's part. This new data law has been in the cards for yonks, and surely it must have crossed their minds that what they're doing is probably illegal. Did they consult a European lawyer, or rely on an American interpretation?