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EU sockpuppets

A few days ago, Universities UK set up its own campaign to support Britain's continuing membership of the European Union - another example of the abuse of state funding for political ends.

Daniel Hannan has responded with this rather amusing video about those, like UUK and our old muckers at Friends of the Earth, who are being so vocal about the necessity of keeping in with Brussels.

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Reader Comments (35)

Quite a few countries also joined the EU for the prospect of free money. One of them is currently learning the real price they paid.

Jul 31, 2015 at 11:15 AM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart


Why is there such naivity about NGOs and their motives?

Jul 31, 2015 at 11:27 AM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

You can see why the green groups want to campaign since they will lose money from the EU if we left.

From a few years ago

Their 2014 accounts have been published, but is doesn't itemise all the routes of funding

They say 90% of their contribution comes from individuals, leaving 10% from non-individuals

Nice to see its senior employees paying themselves - 4 earning a salary between £60,000 to £80,000 - it is hard being green!

They get away with campaigning politically

"Most of our work – campaigning, research, education and publishing – is carried out by Friends of the Earth Trust.
But when the main method of campaigning is political – like influencing political parties – this is carried out by Friends of the Earth Limited in support of Friends of the Earth Trust.
It’s a very important difference. Charities are only allowed to campaign politically as long as it doesn't become the main way they work."

It is amazing the amount of money that comes to these groups via many other routes for example

The sooner the BBC loses its licence levy the better!

Jul 31, 2015 at 11:38 AM | Unregistered Commentercharmingquark

One has to wonder how the universities of, say, Oslo and Geneva manage to make ends meet.

Jul 31, 2015 at 11:54 AM | Registered Commenterjamesp

I suspect the taxpayer handouts won't stop if we "renegotiated" our relationship with the EU. They would still make payments to these NGOs to achieve the same influence. I have said for years the stench of corruptions between the EU & green organisations, is based upon paying them to produce & manufacture "science" to support the cause, so that the EU turns around & says, "we don't want to bring in these regulations & interfere with everybodys lives, but look at the evidence we're being presented with, so we have to!".

I recall one EU Commissar Connie Hedergaard being quoted as saying, "Even if it turns out that the theory of manmade global warming is wrong, isn't it better that we use less of everything?", QED!

Jul 31, 2015 at 12:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan the Brit

I am very surprised that the BBC is not included. One hopes that Mr Hannan's appearance fees are not a factor in the omission.

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:01 PM | Unregistered Commentersrga

"isn't it better that we use less of everything?"

Perhaps Ms Hedergaard would like to demonstrate..?

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:01 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

The EU is very good at giving other peoples money, to people who then campaign on behalf of the continued existence of the EU.

The EU, with all its legal rights legislation, ought to have laws against buying political support. I am sure the UK does.

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:06 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

@srga: Very good point! I seem to recall they did get some money if not still getting it, hence why they promote the EU at every opportunity. Mind you, I got the impression the other day, & I think t was to do with the EU, that they took an almost neutral stance (almost I said) on a report, possibly to show the guvment how "neutral" it is in the light of the fact that the guvment has promised a review if its Charter!

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan the Brit

At the end of this video, there is an option to select others.
Select the video in the lower left corner to hear Daniel Hannan making a briliant
speech in Holland.
Well worth listening too.

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:32 PM | Unregistered Commenterpesadia147

Meanwhile back in the real world:-

Out Of Europe: Steel Industry Plans Great Exodus

" Brussels wants to tighten the EU Emissions Trading Scheme. The steel industry threatens to move abroad......

.......For Heinz Jörg Fuhrmann, the EU Commission’s proposals make the situation even worse. “The raw material steel is always needed – whether we still exist or not,” says the Salzgitter boss who, as steel-President Kerkhoff, appeals to the European Parliament and the national governments in order to stop the Commission’s proposals at the last minute.

Otherwise, steel will no longer be produced in Germany and Europe in the future, but imported from other regions of the world. “And there, much less attention is paid to issues such as environmental protection and pollution control.” For him, the EU’s ES plans are accordingly totally absurd. “They will not help the climate in any case.”

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:41 PM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

IEHO the UK prospered for many years by dominating the flow of trade in the Empire, and then the Commonwealth. When that dried up in the 60s and it was increasingly shut out of Europe, the UK tried to organize the European Free Trade Agreement as a counterbalance to the EEC/EU. With its trade advantages with the Commonwealth shrinking further and trade with the seven dwarfs not amounting to much, the UK joined the EU.

So the real question is what countries replace the EU if the UK adopts the Scots option or does the UK go Greek, not making much and not having much to sell that anybunny wants to buy.

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

When the UK joined the EU it was a basket case, times have changed, trade with the EU is currently decreasing as Europe deflates and the Financial side in London is a prime target for EU to get their grubby hands on. Trade barriers put up against the UK could not be any higher than they are against China and they are set at 2 to 3% except for anti dumping.

Jul 31, 2015 at 2:14 PM | Registered CommenterBreath of Fresh Air

As for the Universities, they are truly off piste on this one, as we are a net contributor why do they think any loss of income from the EU could not be made up in full or even increased if we pulled out. Muppets !!!

Jul 31, 2015 at 2:47 PM | Registered CommenterBreath of Fresh Air

So, Breath, London will prosper selling Matt King Coal and Fred the Shred's smoke and mirrors, but where does that leave the Midlands?

Jul 31, 2015 at 3:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

Eli, sorry but you can not rewrite UK/European history since WW2, with quite the same ease as rewriting climate science's history over the last 30 years. Climate science has yet to admit any wrongdoing in its own downfall, at least not on oath.

Jul 31, 2015 at 3:09 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Eli 3:01, should we all celebrate the Mann-No-Pause as a positive change in climate science as it matures?

Jul 31, 2015 at 3:19 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


Daniel Hannan speech

What can I say, except: "It is worse than we thought!"

Jul 31, 2015 at 5:12 PM | Unregistered Commentergraphicconception

And don't forget the millions in EU funding the BBC tried to hide

First exposed in 2004

Jul 31, 2015 at 5:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterAnoneumouse

Pesadia 147 - Yes an excellent speech by Hannan, Thanks for suggesting watching it.

Jul 31, 2015 at 8:40 PM | Unregistered Commentermike fowle

Profits of doom

The European Commission has paid environmental campaigners directly to carry out its political agenda. In 1999, at a cost of about EUR500,000, it set up a new group, the European Environmental Bureau, while also paying both the Friends of the Earth and the WWF EUR250,000 each to set up offices in Brussels. On another occasion, the Climate Action Network was given EUR140,000 for "capacity building". In fact, the Commission funnels about EUR3 million (£2.48 million) a year to environmental groups that it favours.

But that's a drop of oil in the Gulf of Mexico compared with the amounts that private foundations in the US are estimated to provide each year to environmental causes. The sums involved run into the hundreds of millions of dollars. One green organisation - the Tides Foundation - had net assets of $142,007,356 in 2006. Local green groups may rely on "flapjack and organic-soap fundraising mornings" - but real campaigns are funded by a very different and largely invisible mix.

Jul 31, 2015 at 9:18 PM | Unregistered Commenteresmiff

Jul 31, 2015 at 11:54 AM | Registered Commenterjamesp

I've had some experience of EU-funded collabarative research projects. Partners included both Norwegian and Swiss institutes. UUK can safely be ignored. As can Eli Rabett.

Jul 31, 2015 at 9:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterDaveS

Jul 31, 2015 at 1:53 PM | Eli Rabett

Your ignorance is showing.

Jul 31, 2015 at 11:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterBilly Liar

Much as i love Farage and hate the EU and its corruption we cant leave we,re too far in and would have to Pull Rolls Royce in Derby out of Airbus.

Aug 1, 2015 at 11:50 AM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

Interesting link Billy. To quote from page 4

Over the period, the US and Germany have remained the UK’s main export market for
goods. However, the tables also show how the UK’s main export markets have shifted away
from the Commonwealth countries to the EU Member States.

Trade with the Commonwealth went from ~40% of UK exports and imports in the 1950s to about 10% today, dropping sharply in the 1950s.

Aug 1, 2015 at 11:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

Eli, the UK trade in goods is net negative. We buy more than we sell.

Aug 1, 2015 at 1:17 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Britain is the sewer of Wall Street and the money laundering capital of the galaxy and beyond. Thank you Big Bang.

Former head of London-based AIG Financial Products led team that created high-risk credit default swaps

Federal prosecutors look ready to end their investigation into the near collapse of the American insurance group AIG without bringing any charges against the former head of its UK operation, Joseph Cassano. London-based AIG Financial Products created many of the complex insurance-like products – called credit default swaps – that landed AIG with huge liabilities when financial meltdown ensued after the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008.

Britain's £100bn-a-year money-laundering problem: police only acted forcefully on seven reports of grand corruption last year

Britain is failing to prosecute corrupt officials laundering their money through front companies, banks and luxury houses here, because the police lack the resources and the legal processes are woefully inadequate.
That is the conclusion of a report from the biggest anti-corruption NGO, Transparency International, into why so few money-laundering investigations and asset seizures happen in the UK despite Britain’s status as one of the biggest centres in the world for the cleaning of ill-gotten gains.

Aug 1, 2015 at 1:50 PM | Unregistered Commenteresmiff

Eli, quoting from pro-EU propaganda, funded by the EU, is not enhancing your own grasp of reality. How others perceive your grasp of reality, is for them to decide.

You may not be aware how many pro-Europeans thought the UK should join the Euro. Probably Gordon Brown's finest ever achievement, in a disastrous career, that nobody in the UK wishes to be reminded of.

The UK's future is looking brighter now the damage known as the Climate Change Act, is being addressed, and the population breathes easier, contrary to what you choose to read.

Aug 1, 2015 at 5:52 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

EU sockpuppets would be useful, if they could be used as socks.

Having the EU logo keeping my feet warm, would be more than their energy directives achieve. A pair of nice thermal socks for all those forced to endure cold winters, to appease the egos of eurocrats, would be a fair exchange for all those eurocrats. Though I am not sure how to recycle unwanted eurocrats. Polar bear food?

Aug 1, 2015 at 10:52 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Climate issues are not even a side show wrt the UK in the EU. Let us get serious here.

Aug 1, 2015 at 11:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

In a niche, this way from the Egress, savage Lyin' Mann tamers perform.

Aug 2, 2015 at 1:53 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Eli Rabett said: "So the real question is what countries replace the EU ...". Well, what about Germany, France, Netherlands, Italy etc etc? It is only europhile propaganda that claims that all trade with European nations will be cut off just because we leave the EU and the EEA.

UK - EU trade will continue because it is in everyone's interest that it does. Unless Mr Rabett thinks either the EU will cut off it's collective nose to spite itself, or that our "friends" turn out to be not so friendly(*) when we stop bribing them with our cash. (*) And if that is so, then it is a good reason to leave the EU anyway.

Aug 2, 2015 at 5:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterBudgie

You mean that collection of provinces in the continent ruled by Germany?
I've just finnished Connolly's book "The Rotten Heart of Europe". A very insightful analysis of the fight for the domination of Europe and a prescient description of the state Europe is now.
Who wants to be part of that?

Aug 3, 2015 at 7:35 AM | Registered CommenterPatagon

Should there be an BRexit, trade with the continent will be subject to more restrictions, adding costs. Won't go to zero but will shrink. Cripes, does Eli always have to be the reasonable bunny in this funny farm?

Aug 3, 2015 at 5:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

Eli Rabett, No, it is not a condition of EU and EEA exit that trade "will be subject to more restrictions". It depends on the subsequent negotiations for free trade. Moreover it is in the interests of the EU to keep the "restrictions" to zero because they sell more to us than we sell to them.

Even if the EU is spiteful enough to impose some restrictions what we buy from them is only about 10% of UK GDP. In the meantime the c80% of UK GDP that is internal trade (trade within UK shores) will be freed of the acknowledged restrictions of EU rules. A much greater gain.

So, Mr Rabett, you are neither reasonable nor accurate on this subject.

Aug 4, 2015 at 10:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterBudgie

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