Policy muddle needs credible solution

From: M Richards, Scarsea Way, Bempton, Bridlington, East Yorkshire.

THE muddle of government policies has reached Defra. On the one hand Owen Paterson, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, announces a commitment to eradicate bovine TB in cattle.

On the other hand. he 
intends to reduce regulations which will result in 12,000 
fewer dairy inspections, 
while at the same time stating 
“there are areas like 
movement of cattle that require real work”.

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What a muddle!

Livestock auctioneers have concerns about the relaxed regulation as they rely on their customers to prevent the 
spread of bovine TB in cattle by having tight bio-security on and off their farms and requiring current accurate health declarations.

The annual badger cull rolled out across the country will only reduce the disease by at most 
12-16 per cent as fortunately 
it is now recognised the assumption of badger guilt is history as the disease is transferable to all “dirty feeders” – for example, cattle, deer, hedgehogs.

Fewer regulations will increase the disease so it’s back to square one. All parties involved are totally fed up. The NFU should lobby for a cattle vaccine which could be administered alongside other routine vaccines, and 
lobby for EU regulations to be changed.

Too much time has been wasted lobbying for a cull and not enough time making a real difference.

Thirty years ago the vaccine 
was “10 years away”. Do something credible and not 
just short-termism for political gain.

From: Ken Holmes, Cliffe Common, Selby, York.

I FULLY support your 
editorial about trying to 
help struggling farmers 
(Country Week, June 22), but being realistic and a bit of a pessimist, I am afraid that only two things help our hardworking farmers.

They are wars and famines.

During the last war there 
wasn’t a politician locally or nationally who didn’t want a farmer as a friend. A dozen 
eggs, a leg of pork, a shoulder 
of mutton or a pat of butter 
really were a source for 
politicians to “ring a 
friend”.

Defra are anything but a 
friend to farmers and today’s politicians are not very good at helping them either.

As for supermarkets, in many ways they are greedy and a 
social evil.

It would be 
interesting to know how many village corner shops and 
butchers have had to close because of them.

I have to count every penny I spend nowadays but I would rather pay a bit more at a 
local butchers, knowing that 
what I was buying was top 
quality and from local 
farmers.

I love horses and I hate to 
think that I may have been eating them.

Nonsense to reject coalitions

From: Don Burslam, Elm Road, Dewsbury Moor, Dewsbury, West Yorkshire.

FOR a man who was at the heart of power in the Thatcher era, Bernard Ingham (Yorkshire Post, June 19) displays a surprising immaturity in his attitude to coalitions. Or maybe it isn’t that surprising after all!

There is nothing inherently wrong or inimical to good government with coalitions. They are familiar features in several countries e.g. the Netherlands, Italy and Germany to name but a few. Of course, coalitions may or may not be effective in running a country but to reject them in principle is clearly nonsense.

Even if one party succeeds in obtaining an absolute majority, they are in effect coalitions of views within the party. The present Conservative party is in effect two (or more) parties and the dissenters from the official policy are so far out of line that they are in fact sailing under false colours. It is difficult to see where they differ from Ukip.

In our situation, differences between the parties are openly thrashed out and where views are irreconcilable, they agree to differ.

This is a far more intellectually honest way of conducting government than nominally supporting a party and sniping from the sidelines. These people are in effect saboteurs.

Although not everyone accepts this, the excesses of Thatcher are a salutary lesson on where unbridled power can lead.

From: Dr Glyn Powell, Bakersfield Drive, Kellington.

PRIME Minister David Cameron wrongly claims that “We’re all in this together”, in relation to the pain endured in reducing the nation’s financial deficit. In truth, it is the poor and disadvantaged who are being hit the hardest, as a consequence of savage benefit cuts and the iniquitous “bedroom tax”. Whereas the wealthy endure little or no pain through taking advantage of tax avoidance loopholes.

I, along with other Unite 
trade union members, have 
been campaigning against 
the aforementioned measures and have been horrified at the effects such measures are 
having on people who are already trying to exist on breadline incomes. It is therefore a national disgrace that thousands of people are only able to survive by receiving food handouts from charities.

Our gratitude 
to Snowden

From: Terry Duncan, Greame Road, Bridlington.

SPY or not, traitor or not, surely we should be grateful to Edward Snowden, the young man the Oval Office is desperate to arrest and gag – if they can find him – because he has uncovered the dirty tricks that the USA get up to by hacking into our private emails and phone calls?

And it goes further, because he has revealed that the UK security service is no better.

We need to be told more, before the young man is either bumped off, American-style, or shut up in a nut house, American-style, for life.