Let no one say we are not catholic in our tastes (that's with a small "c"), or that we don't give you variety. From the deeply disturbing news of selling out our last explosives factory, we now offer a beautifully written piece in Cumbria's Business Gazette about farming in the Lakes.
Called, "Clash of cultures that can really blight lives in real world", it is a variation on the theme of the EU schizophrenia we reviewed a couple of days ago, only in a rural setting. It starts softly, the anonymous author telling us a tale about a tractor:
Fastened round the bar that runs across the back of our old tractor's cab is a seal, a lead seal on a wire. Any farmer would probably recognise it, as it was put on by Defra during FMD to "seal" our tractor and stop it being used except for the licensed movement it was about to make.Then, being Cumbria, there is rather a lot about sheep, and the EU's wonderful ideas about ear tagging. It is so well written that it is pointless giving you a précis. Read it yourself, from the link above – and weep.
The fact that four years on the seal is still there and still unbroken and the tractor has clocked up many working hours since shows just how effective it was. But whoever drafted the regulation hadn't a clue about tractors and the hapless official who was faced with the necessity of "sealing" a tractor merely shrugged and got on with the job knowing full well it was meaningless.