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“The power is with us”

Greg Hands, a Conservative MP and former Chief Secretary to the Treasury (until he did what Boris had promised to do but ducked out of, and resigned from the Government in protest at plans to expand Heathrow airport), writes in the Evening Standard,

This week I found myself in dispute with the chief official of the European Union, Martin Selmayr, Jean-Claude Juncker’s right-hand man, nicknamed the “monster”. It’s good practice in the UK civil service for senior officials not to give interviews, but Selmayr gave one to his local paper.

Mr Hands speaks German at home and could read it.

In it, he boasted about how good the Withdrawal Agreement was for the EU, and how bad for Britain.

The point is expanded a few paragraphs on:

In other reports, Selmayr told EU sherpas: “The power is with us.” Senior colleagues are also reported to have said: “They must align their rules but the EU will retain all the controls… the EU retains its leverage” and even, “to use a Christmas theme, we want all parties and factions in the British Parliament to feel the bleak midwinter”.

I put together 17 examples of Selmayr and his colleagues boasting how good the Withdrawal Agreement is for the EU, and how bad for Britain. Selmayr took to Twitter to claim my account was “false”, but every single quote came from reputable media outlets.

Mr Hands is almost certainly referring to this article for Conservative Home:

Greg Hands: “The power is with us.” The two EU officials who want to punish Britain, crafted the deal – and claim they are winning.

If one needs one’s sinews stiffened and blood summoned up it is worth a read.

22 comments to “The power is with us”

  • Nico

    The real question is: why is May doing this?

  • No, the real question is: are we prepared to let her get away with it?

  • Mr Ecks

    The real question is –how can we stop her? I don’t need motivation–just a method.

  • In the end, Hitler made Churchill prime minister, despite all the very vigorous efforts of the Tory party establishment (aided by the Labour and Liberal establishments when needed) to stop it. In his memoirs, Churchill notes what great good fortune it was for him personally that every earlier effort to put him in charge foundered on the smart set’s determined opposition, so he became PM on the very day when it was no longer possible to blame the unrolling disaster on him.

    Our own establishment is a deep deep disappointment, but the EU is so much our enemy that, like Adolf, it sometimes does us the office of a friend.

  • pete

    Selmayr is putting on a brave face.

    Brexit is a disaster for the EU, from both an image and financial point of view.

    That is why Brussels is being so obstructive about it.

  • Y. Knott

    – And surely nobody is surprised at any of this. The EU’s mantra from the very beginning has always, only been “MOAR Europe!” They have no interest in an easy, equitable Brexit; and they’ll do their level best to make sure the U.K. suffers to the max, just out of sheer spite.

    – And of course, to discourage the other EU components sidling toward the exit…

  • arkus

    Yet still, some people want to be a part of the monstrosity.
    Some of them are MPs… they should be ashamed of themselves….. and in prison.

  • Horace Dunn

    Our own establishment is a deep deep disappointment, but the EU is so much our enemy…

    There’s no clear dividing line between “our” establishment and that of the EU. They’re the same fucking people. Surely this is obvious by now.

    Sure, there are a few people in Westminster who genuinely support the right to self-determination for British people, but they are a tiny number. The vast majority of politicians are, in effect, part of the EU, as is the civil service, the upper echelons of the public sector, the judiciary, the academies and the BBC and most of the mainstream media.

    This thing will go well for the establishment, and badly for the rest of us. That’s what this whole process is about. The establishment retains its benefits and privileges and the rest of us get reminded that our part is to shut our peasant mouths and get back to work – that wealth that the establishment accrues to itself isn’t going to create itself, you know.

  • Paul Marks

    Nico – Mrs May is doing this because she is, and has always been, a “Remainer”, but leads a political party whose membership and voters are overwhelmingly “Leavers”.

    So Mrs May (and Civil Servants such as Olly Robbins) seek to PRETEND to leave the European Union, whilst still keeping the European Union as the power that makes the laws of this country (including on such things as the campaign of the European Union against Freedom of Speech on the internet – and Mrs May hates Freedom of Speech anyway).

    This is the Establishment effort to “square the circle” – PRETEND to leave the European Union (to please the “ignorant Proles” – the ordinary people) whilst really staying under the power of the European Union.

    Remember that hypocrisy is the mother’s milk of the British establishment – their first priority, in any situation, is to cover their own backsides. For example, when General Douglas Haig lost 20 thousand men dead and 30 thousand wounded IN ONE DAY – July 1st 1916 (and he was actually irritated by that – he wanted to lose MORE men, hence sending home, in disgrace, officers who had stopped attacks rather than throwing away the lives of more soldiers) General Haig was not punished in any way, nor did he resign.

    I doubt Mrs May will resign either – even though everything the lady has said as Prime Minister (over more than two years now) has been exposed as a blatant lie.

    To say “I was wrong”, “this was my fault – I must be punished for what I have done” requires listening to one’s moral conscience – and British establishment people do not tend to do that.

    By the way – a man by the name of James Goddard (I have never met him, and know nothing much about him) has been arrested, for calling Anna Soubry (MP) a “Nazi”, Anna Soubry calls people Nazis and Fascists (and so on) all the time – and de facto excused the PHYSICAL ATTACKS on Nigel Farage because Mr Farage “comes from a different place politically” (to Anna Soubry having anti establishment political opinions somehow seems to justify PHYSICAL ATTACKS and death threats against the family of Mr Farage, at least that is the impression the lady gives).

    Anna Soubry can call people anything she likes – Nazis, Fascists, whatever, and she is NOT arrested. But as soon as anyone answers back and calls Anna Soubry a Nazi, they are arrested (days after the incident – so this was not a “heat of the moment” thing by some “rogue” police officer). One law for the establishment and another, totally different law, for ordinary people. That is modern P.C. (or “Critical Theory” the modern term for Frankfurt School ideas) Britain. And, as a criminal barrister, Anna Soubry knowns there are different systems of law – one for members of the “liberal” establishment such as herself, and another (totally different) system of law for opponents of the “liberal” establishment – for example supporters of the independence of the United Kingdom from the European Union.

    Paul Marks, 4 Northumberland Road, Kettering, Northamptonshire, NN15 6LW – just in case the police wish to arrest me.

    Americans please note – “Big Business” in your own country (the internet cartel, the banking cartel, the “payment processors” and so on) are just the same as Anna Soubry (MP) here. If you think you are free of the “liberal” establishment seeking to utterly exterminate liberty, then you are mistaken.

  • I’m actually hopeful. To see the establishment showing their utter contempt for the voters and democracy as a whole will be a shock to many ordinary people who need to be shocked by it.

    As for BRExit, I am still hopeful that the inability to unite behind a single proposal to screw the electorate will allow BRExit to slip through their slimy fingers, simply because they cannot agree on what is the best approach to screw the electorate.

    Yes, I know that Theresa May COULD do some nasty bit of last minute treachery like withdraw our Article 50 notification or accept a proposal from the EU to defer our exit until some later date, but all of this comes from the reverse Midas touch leader whose default position is to vacillate endlessly.

    Through her natural reluctance to act where there is no clear way forward, we might still get the BRExit we asked for, not because of politicians, but in spite of them.

  • Itellyounothing


    Sign this, get your friends and family to sign. It’s st 325,000 at the moment. Get it to half a million. Write to your MP

  • James Hargrave

    Such is May’s (in)competence, that if she faced ‘there’s a revolver in the draw May, I’m just going out for a few moments’, you can be certain that (1) she wouldn’t shoot herself (2) she would try but fail to shoot the revolver’s owner (assuming, big assumption, that she knew which end the bullet comes out) (3) she would then have the owner arrested under our, shall we say, slightly excessive firearms legislation.

    As was pointed out here before she took over, she is a stupid authoritarian c u next Tuesday, and that is being kind.

  • Patrick Crozier

    Remember that hypocrisy is the mother’s milk of the British establishment – their first priority, in any situation, is to cover their own backsides. For example, when General Douglas Haig lost 20 thousand men dead and 30 thousand wounded IN ONE DAY – July 1st 1916 (and he was actually irritated by that – he wanted to lose MORE men, hence sending home, in disgrace, officers who had stopped attacks rather than throwing away the lives of more soldiers) General Haig was not punished in any way, nor did he resign.

    Actually, it was 40,000 wounded. I have never seen any evidence for the claim that Haig wanted to lose more men. Perhaps Paul could provide it. Not that any of this matters. Even in the First World War strategy trumped tactics and when it came to strategy Haig was right. When he returned to England thousands lined the streets to cheer him.

    As far as backside-covering goes, clear duds like French and Churchill were removed. I don’t know enough about Kut so I can’t comment on Townshend but he was captured anyway. Of course, a lot of good men such as Robertson, Jellicoe and Maurice met the same fate.

    Otherwise, I entirely agree with Paul.

  • Paul Marks

    I have defended Big Business and the rich my whole life – and never been paid to do so.

    I have always stood for lower taxes for both companies and wealthy individuals – and for rolling back regulations (the “who protects the consumer?” and “who protects the worker?” stuff).

    And look how most of Big Business is behaving….

    It is not “just” their (most of them anyway) support of European Union ruling this country (what is a little bit of TREASON – nothing to get upset about), they (most of them anyway) openly support the Frankfurt School doctrines of “Diversity” and “Social Justice” – they are utterly committed to liberticide, to the crushing of such things as Freedom of Speech – in support of the “Social Justice”, “Diversity” agenda. They will not tolerate Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Association, Freedom of Religion – none of the basic liberties..

    I go into a bank (Lloyds) and I see a Frankfurt School style video playing on a screen on the back wall “I have two mommies” and all the other race, gender, sexuality tropes (I would have laughed if anyone had told me this would happen – but it is happening). I turn on the television (or just pass a bus shelter) and there are far left ravings from another bank (HSBC). I watch the police arrest people for insulting politicians – even though the politicians used THE SAME INSULTS themselves.

    Most of Big Business, in both Britain and the United States, seems to be utterly committed to liberticide – to the European Union, to the United Nations Agenda 21 (now called Agenda 2030), to the “Migration Pact” (especially its provisions crushing Freedom of Speech) and on and on….. to the whole “Diversity” “Social Justice” “World Governance” agenda of Collectivism.

    At some point even someone like me, who has defended Big Business their whole life, has to say BLANK YOU, YOU UTTER AND COMPLETE SWINE.

    “the power is with us” is not only from government officials (such as this European Union official) it is also from Corporate Managers – because they are THE SAME SORT OF PEOPLE, they are educated in the same sort of places and they have the same OPINIONS.

    Why should, for example, anyone defend “Big Business” and “the rich” when they give hundreds-of-millions of Dollars to make Nancy Pelosi Speaker of the House of Representatives? The same Nancy Pelosi whose political hero was the head of the Longshoreman’s union in San Francisco, who was on the Central Committee of Communist Party USA and was appointed by the Soviets.

    The alliance between Marxists and Business interests that one sees in the European Union (look at the background of so many E.U. officials) is also seen in California and New York.

    How can it be explained?

    Perhaps it can be explained by such factors and “Silicon Valley” not being a business area in the normal sense – there are vast companies worth zillions of Dollars, but (like Hollywood) the companies do not make PROFITS – indeed they regard the word PROFIT as a dirty-word, they (like Hollywood) are there to “promote Social Justice and Diversity” – and they get endless money (“finance”) even though they do not tend to make big profits.

    Where does this endless “finance” come from? It comes from the financial services industry – the “champagne socialists” of New York, San Francisco (and so on), but how do they get their money?

    They invent it – the banking and financial services industry is a vast “Castle in the Air” it just creates money from nothing – it does not “put savings to work” after all Americans (like British people) do not really save anymore.

    A vast banking and financial services industry with very little Real Savings. Financing Silicon Valley where the word “profit” is considered a DIRTY word.

    Perhaps there is no great mystery – perhaps the reason why so many “capitalists” hate capitalism and back the socialists, is because THEY ARE NOT REALLY CAPITALISTS.

    It may be that the “modern economy” is a vast SCAM – a CONFIDENCE TRICK.

    Yes there are still real capitalists who make things – such as Charles and David Koch and Jon Huntsman (senior), but these people are not really in charge (not of the “modern economy”).

    I remember Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin pointing out that he was the only manufacturer in the Senate (1 out of a 100) and that few other people there even seemed to understand what making things and selling them for a profit was about. The “businesses” of “modern” people seemed to be about getting endless “finance” producing nothing, and not really making a profit. But then (for no honest reason) being a billionaire.

    Very much a thing the European Union (or rather its class of officials and corporate managers) would love.

  • Paul Marks

    Patrick – why did Haig send home, in disgrace, certain officers after July 1st 1916.

    He sent them home, in disgrace, because they (the officers sent home) called off attacks after losing very large numbers of men – for no gain.

    Did Haig “produce any evidence” (your words) that continuing the attacks on the first of July would have produced something of value, no he did not (because he knew that, for example, the North Midlands Division continuing its attack in full force would just have got the North Midlands Division WIPED OUT as so many other units effectively were wiped out).

    Ockham’s razor comes into play here.

    A commander (in this case General Haig) sends officers home (in disgrace) for not continuing in full force attacks he knew (after the day) that the attacks had no chance of success – no chance of taking something of military value.

    We know Haig wanted more full force attacks on July 1st – indeed he sent home the commander of the Division (and a few junior officers) because they did NOT do that (they scaled back their attacks in response to losing very large numbers of men).

    No chance of the North Midlands Division taking things of military value – but officers punished for not continuing attacks in full force?

    That is a problem with only one solution – General Haig wanted more men (more of his own men) killed on July 1st 1916 – as continuing the attacks in full force by the North Midlands Division on July 1st 1916.

    “No, no, no Paul – Haig was not thinking straight”.

    That is the only alternative solution – that he was not thinking rationally and wanted attacks of no military value launched WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING that this would lead to more men dying, for no purpose.

    But that would mean that Haig was not fit to command – lacking any understanding (even that of a layman on the street).

    I would have told him this to his face Patrick.

    “You want more of the Division killed for no purpose – you want to kill our own men”.

    And I would also have said this to Douglas Haig.

    “You are, in effect, calling me a COWARD – when I was the first man into Khartoum after the death of General Gordon, in the same war. the Sudan, you took the credit for General Broadwood’s deeds as your own – so I will make you a proposal…..

    I will lead the North Midlands Division on the attack in person tomorrow morning – on one condition……

    YOU, Douglas Haig, walk next to me as we personally lead the Division on the attack. Then Douglas we will see which of us is the coward”.

  • Paul Marks

    Of course I agree with you Patrick, if you are about to point it out, that Edward Montague Stuart-Wortley (crikey what a name) Commander of the North Midland (no s) Division, was not the man he had been.

    For example, the previous year (1915) at the Battle of Loos, he had correctly pointed out that an infantry attack on the Hohenzollern Redoubt would just butcher BRITISH soldiers – not Germans. That the only way to destroy such a position was with the direct (not general area – direct, on the actual position itself) intense fire of artillery or (a fairly new idea) BOMBING from the air.

    However, when General Richard Hanking ordered him to order the attack anyway – he did, KNOWING he was just going to get masses of his own men killed for no-military-purpose.

    In many ways the Battle of Loos of 1915 was a smaller scale disaster for the larger scale disaster of the Somme in 1916 – and, essentially, Edward M.S.W does nothing to prevent it – even though he knows what is going to happen.

    In Wellington’s army the solution would have been obvious – one would have “called out” the commander, sword or pistol (of course the commander could have refused to fight – but that would have destroyed their reputation, they would have been finished).

    But by 1914 the British Army was (contrary to the myth) no longer really an aristocratic army ruled by personal honour (although the Earl of Cavan, Commander of the Guards Division, would have fitted the old pattern) – it had become a bureaucratic machine, made up of “educated” commanders.

    If one had “called out” General Haig he would not have appeared on the Field of Honour (having chosen sword or pistol), he would have HAD YOU ARRESTED.

    The Britain of 1914 was already well on the way to being the Britain of Anna Soubry (MP), the person who screams insults at her opponents, but when they scream THE SAME insults back at her, she HAS THEM ARRESTED (days later).

    Haig would have acted in the way as Anna Soubry – if one had said to his face “you want me to continue attacks that will only result in more British solders being killed for no purpose – that is what you must WANT to happen, you must WANT more British soldiers to be killed for no military reason”. Haig would not have taken this as a challenge to a duel – he would just have HAD YOU ARRESTED.

    I believe that blood, one own blood, pays for a lot of sins.

    For example, if Czar Nicholas had personally led the Imperial Guard Army in the battle in which most of them were killed in 1916 (a worse slaughter than July 1st for the British Army) and had been killed – which he would have been….. There would have been no Revolution – Russians admire personal courage. Nicholas, in spite of his folly, would have been a hero and a martyr. No Revolutionary would have dared say a word against him – and his wife and children would have been SACRED to Russians.

    “If I do this I am going to get killed” – yes, and sometimes (sometimes) that can be the correct thing to do.

    When men of the Ulster Division found John Redmond’s son stricken on the field of the Somme, it was clear he was going to die – but they took him back anyway, as the Germans shot them down.

    Why die taking back the wounded son of your OPPONENT back home in Ireland, especially when it clear he is likely to die anyway?

    If anyone asks that question, there is no point in replying to them – because they would not understand the answer.

  • Paul Marks

    In terms of military tactics a good case can be made against a certain charge of the Parachute regiment during the Falklands War of 1982 – but never say that to a “Para”, because the officer who ordered that charge (Colonel H. Jones) died leading the charge.

    There were a lot of such officers about even in 1914-1918 (including Generals) – but Douglas Haig was not that sort of person. He was a soldier of the bureaucracy.

  • Patrick Crozier

    So, there is no direct evidence that Haig wanted more men killed for the sake of getting men killed. Nothing in his correspondence, nothing in his diary, no reported conversation. This claim is entirely based on inference apparently concerning one incident involving one division and one commander on one day.

    Unfortunately, there is not enough information here to base any judgement. What correspondence took place between Stuart-Wortley and Haig? Did any? given that there were 2 levels of command between them.

  • Paul Marks

    Patrick – I have said what I meant by “wanted more men killed”.

    If a man sends home, in disgrace, officers for NOT getting more men killed, then it is logical to assume that he WANTED more men to be killed.

    Otherwise why send home, in disgrace, officers for NOT getting more men killed.

    I repeat that Haig, at no point, produces any evidence that continuing the attacks by the North Midland Division on July 1st 1916 would have produced any positive military results – would have taken anything of military value.

    Yet he, Haig, sends home (in disgrace) officers for NOT continuing those attacks with full force – i.e. NOT getting the North Midland Division wiped out.

    Therefore, if Haig is a logical thinker (a big assumption – I ADMIT THAT THIS MAY BE A WRONG ASSUMPTION Patrick) the only logical conclusion is that Douglas Haig WANTED the North Midland Division to be wiped out.

    On-top-of – the more than 50 thousand British soldiers killed or wounded on July 1st 1916.

    Hence the words “Haig wanted more British soldiers killed, and sent home, in disgrace, officers for NOT getting more of the men killed”.

    Losing more than 50 thousand men (killed and wounded) in one day was NOT ENOUGH for Douglas – he wanted to have lost more men, and punished officers for not getting more of their men killed.


    Douglas Haig is not a rational thinker – does not have clear logical aims, and does not understand the law of cause and effect (for example that sending more men on attacks with no possibility of success will get more men killed for no purpose).

    Take your pick Patrick – it is the first option, or the second option.

  • Paul Marks

    Short version – Douglas is bad or Douglas is mad.

    Although not mad in the sense that one of the commanders sent to command the Suvla Bay operation in 1915 was mad – he had just been released from a home for the mentally ill and spent his time at Suvla Bay in his tent screaming (in short he was literally mad – for some reason the establishment did not think that was a disqualification for military command).

    This gentleman does NOT do the most damage at Suvla Bay – he does not give any good orders, but he gives no bad orders either. Unlike General Mahon who, on observing that some British soldiers had taken some high ground overlooking Suvla Bay ORDERED THEM BACK – because he had not ordered them to take this ground. As for the General in overall command – General Stopford just stayed on the ship (“my leg hurts”) and played no active role.

    Some ten thousand British soldiers land facing (at most) 900 Turks further inland – the British actually land on the correct beach (unlike earlier in the Gallipoli campaign when allied forces, notably the Australians are delivered to the WRONG beach) but then, basically do NOTHING for more than a day – whilst the Turks (and their German “advisers”) rush in reinforcements and build defences.

    As Winston Churchill pointed out – if anything like the effort had been made to succeed at Suvla Bay as was made to take the (insignificant) village of Loos on the Western front – then Constantinople itself would have fallen to the Allies.

    But one can turn that round AGAINST Churchill – it is no good having a good idea if you do not INSIST on personally picking the commanders who are going to carry out that idea.

    To allow the army establishment (who were AGAINST the entire campaign) to pick the commanders was insane. The establishment basically picked the worst commanders they could find.

    “There you go – we told you the operation would fail” – of course it did, the establishment made “jolly” sure it would fail.

    And the establishment are doing exactly the same with “Brexit” (independence) right now.

    Yes I am saying that the British establishment are doing all they can to make the independence of this country fail.

    I am accusing them of treason.

  • Paul Marks

    What would a soldier like Patton have done? Or a Marine like “Chesty” Puller?

    At least they would have understood such ancient military laws as “slow=dead”, and that the job of a soldier is not to “die for his country” but, rather, to “make the other son-of-a-bitch die for his country”.

    Are American officers still like that? Or has the bureaucratic machine taken over? As it did with Britain.

    In the 2nd World War one of Churchill’s success is the “Toy Shop” – the independent group of scientists coming up with new ideas for the military and PUTTING THOSE IDEAS INTO PRACTICAL EFFECT.

    What is the very first thing the establishment (led by the Ministry of Supply) do when Churchill is voted out of office? They CLOSE DOWN the “Toy Shop”. Its success was actively resented by the Civil Service.

  • Should be on the end of a rope.

    Fixed it for you.