Friday, 21 May 2010

Welsh Assembly Government security lunacy

The Welsh Assembly Government has started sending staff onto private land without the landowner's permission in order to identify badger setts so that they can come back and kill the badgers. The irony is that the surveyors wear balaclavas and have id badges with no names on, and refuse to remove the balaclavas so that the landowner can check that they are who they say they are! One man took the ID cards so that he could phone WAG to clarify if these were really who they claimed to be - and even though it was his only option under these barmy circumstances, he was arrested for theft! (Thanks to Peter Black, AM, for covering the issue - the last two links go to his blog.)

Later these people will return armed with guns, again without permission, and probably at night, wearing balaclavas and with no means of identifying who they are and what they are doing. The lunacy of this resembles something from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The Welsh Assembly Government has granted itself laws which enable it to over-rule human rights, and which mean any armed men can wander round with balaclavas and fake id. The Welsh Assembly Government is acting like a right-wing dictator, removing our rights and using Blair-like spin in an attempt to make anyone who disagrees with their unjust laws a criminal, whilst instilling a culture of fear. This all adds up to a violation of landowners' rights to privacy, security, peace of mind, property, and freedom from trespass.

Do these look like terrorists to you? WAG has been portraying these peaceful and legal-minded citizens as 'terrorists' - but it is WAG's own staff who are going round the countryside in balaclavas and carrying guns with death on their minds

Who supports the cull?
The Welsh Assembly Government loves to call objectors a 'minority', when in reality the supporters - a small proportion of farmers (and only those involved with dairy cow exploitation) - are the minority. The vast majority of people object, either because of compassion, or concern over social justice, or because of the massive costs of the cull (£6,000 per badger), or because science shows the cull to be only a costly political gesture. Even comments on an article on the Farmer's Guardian website are all against the cull! Many points are excellent, see below. So what is the answer? Object to the The Welsh Assembly misGovernment, and stop eating dairy products! Some of the comments we refer to:

"The UK is ALREADY spending millions of pounds (now approaching £100 million annually) on bovine TB (bTB) and trying to eradicate a disease where the risks are hypothetical. [...] It has been refreshing to see that scientists are beginning to question the current policy. ‘Public Health and bovine tuberculosis – what’s all the fuss about’ is a recently published report by Dr Paul R Torgerson and Professor David J Torgenson. They conclude that bTB control in cattle is irrelevant as a public health policy and there is little evidence either for a positive cost benefit in terms of animal health of bTB control. It suggests that such evidence is required; otherwise there is little justification for the large sums of money spent on bTB control in the UK. [...] The cull in Wales is to cost a staggering £10 million (equating to over £6500 per badger culled, based on the estimated 1500 target quoted in the local press!) (and this excludes policing and legal costs regarding challenges) to achieve just 6-9% reduction in bovine TB for only 2 years following the five years of the cull. The Welsh Assembly has not even undertaken any proper cost benefit analysis. Will a cost benefit analysis be undertaken to justify the costs, which include any indirect costs to businesses if an angry public opt for boycotts? Will farmers ultimately bear the brunt of such an unpopular and expensive cull that is not properly backed up by scientific evidence?"

"Culling badgers is just a way of being seen to be doing something. Personally I have responded by giving up dairy produce."

"Funnily enough with (on current estimates) 20%+ of our UK adult badger population dying as the result of traffic accidents, we already have a pretty efficient cull going on, year on year for free. Still we are not talking about a cull here in Pembrokeshire, It is extermination they are aiming at. Either way someone is getting rich out of wasting our taxes."

"This disgusting plan will not secure the eradication of bTB in cattle but merely satisfies a desire for vengeance within the dairy farming community. [...] To add some piquancy to this scenario, the scientific justification behind the proposal is to say the least unbalanced and one senses the weight of vested interests behind the promotion of badger culling as a realistic option for eradicating bTB. As an additional bonus for the rural community, this medieval and barbaric project will also sanction the behaviour of those people who get gratification from slaughtering wild animals. Look out fur and feather, Boggis, Bunce, Bean and co will be dealing with you later, once the final solution has been achieved with the badgers."

"I emailed the Libs and Cons prior to the election to tell them that due to their stance on culling (go ahead), and the Cons stance on hunting with dogs (go ahead) they lost my vote and the votes of my families and friends. We are not alone in such action - the general public is becoming sickened with such matter-of-fact attitudes toward wildlife by such politicians."

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