Sunday, 29 March 2009
Wednesday, 25 March 2009
Yet that is what the Jersey dairy industry already does and it is all because the Jersey cow is pretty, petite and has sexy eyelashes. The milk she produces is far too rich in fat to be used by most people these days and has to be modified into fat reduced and skimmed varieties to pass the most basic health or marketing tests. And the methane that the lady pumps into the air and urine and excrement that she deposits on the land and into water courses is just not mentioned in polite company.
100 years ago there were 12,000 Jersey cows in Jersey when the human population was about 50,000. Now there are 3,500 cows in milk (plus a few thousands more on standby being impregnated etc) for a population of 90,000 people – so it doesn’t take much imagination to realize that the herd is doomed for extinction sometime soon – even if foot and mouth, bluetongue or anthrax doesn’t do that job first.
Left to market forces, nobody in their right mind would buy the super expensive Jersey milk and it is only by prohibiting the import of cheaper and probably healthier alternatives from nearby France or England that the Jersey product survives at all.
That there are non-animal alternatives like Soya or Rice milk too and that these promote all sorts of world-wide benefits does not seem to be even considered in Jersey.
Those who can remember the 1960’s will also recall that Jersey milk with its disgusting fatty globules and rich in antibiotics was deemed the worst in western Europe so the notion that there is some ancient and proud pedigree behind this particular “Jersey icon” is just a delusion.
More recently of course it has been agreed to allow imported semen to be imported to further boost the milk production of the wretched machine cows because it is now necessary to extract ever more of the unwholesome liquid from ever fewer animals. The Jersey gene pool has become so depleted that it is now apparently impossible to maintain the local herd without importing fresh blood from foreign freaks that produce milk in monsoon quantities. Animal welfare is not, so it seems, a priority in this accountant led business.
Unfortunately, like Marilyn Monroe, it is the Jersey cow’s good looks that are the ultimate cause of her downfall. She is just too pretty for her own good. Once upon a time when foolish men wanted a “lawn cow” to decorate their English gardens, the Jersey cow was favourite. Now the poor beast is just a lawn cow in her own island. These days the Jersey cow is a symbolic decoration in the island countryside and serves to pacify the Jersey traditionalists that life goes on in the old fashioned way although the Island is now a Tax Haven where agriculture is of virtually no economic importance at all.
But, there is the hidden agenda too because the Jersey cow serves as the symbolic protector of the “green countryside” against building development. On the basis of the totally false argument that it is necessary to preserve a dairy industry in Jersey the pretty cow is used to resist development – especially housing development – in the country parishes. So that, whilst the cow can enjoy 2 acres of green field or 100,000 sq ft per animal – the planning policies of the island demand that houses for working people shall be built within established built up areas. In other words, the ever increasing human population is to be housed almost exclusively in the “St Helier Ghetto” where they can expect to enjoy about 250 sq ft of space in a block of flats.
Unfortunately, Jersey’s so called “environmentalists” have fallen for the pretty cow too together with the argument that it is necessary to resist development of her sacred green fields.
They are, so it seems, quite happy that Jersey still has a population of 10,000 working adults without housing qualifications at all besides the many thousands of others already in the housing needs queue and they willingly perpetuate the myth that the Jersey dairy herd is more deserving of accommodation and space than human beings.
It is evident that Jersey is rapidly being divided into north and south – or town and country - zones with the wealthy living in the countryside parishes, alongside the cows, whilst working people are stuffed into St Helier, out of sight and mind, alongside all the unsavoury activities of refuse disposal, metal scrap yard, sewer treatment, fuel farm and even the slaughter house where the pretty cows end their days.
It is also evident that horses are now being welcomed into the countryside (there are now about 1500 equine animals in Jersey) and land is being allowed to be taken out of agricultural use, in order to accommodate these toys of the rich whilst the housing needs of thousands are still ignored.
Typically, (and as already referred to on voiceforjersey.blogspot.com in previous blogs) the current Minister for Planning has decreed that social housing and the desperate housing needs of thousands, will only be met through cramming more and more units of accommodation into St Helier. The plan is fundamentally flawed just as it is morally dubious. By his own actions the Minister has turned 3 agricultural fields over to equine use alongside his own very grand and spacious SSI house in rural St John yet he has the cheek to demand that thousands of people shall be condemned to a miserable existence in ever deteriorating urban areas with the barest minimum of amenity space. Such hypocrisy has been the foundation of Jersey planning for decades and Senator Cohen will soon put his name to the latest Island Plan which will perpetuate the same unfairness and inequalities. We must resist and protest. The Jersey cow is NOT sacred.
Submitted by Thomas Wellard.
Monday, 23 March 2009
As always, our Jersey government doesn’t want an local critics speaking to such an investigative body directly and that seems to be the same tactic among Caribbean governments too. The team has recently been to Bermuda and the Caymans and is headed for Anguilla, the BVI and the troubled Turks and Caicos Islands soon but only meetings with official government delegations seemed to be planned.
How predictable that such an investigation will not apparently speak with the people most affected - the ordinary peoples of these threatened territories - and just what sort of a report will be produced?
The new link - Caribbean Net News - on this site gives a Caribbean perspective on this and many related issues and is well worth a visit (see the entry for Anguilla for starters).
Also worth a visit is - Crushing Fools - the blog of Allan Palmer in Bermuda who is an “independent thinker” and believes that “the greatest accomplishment is to be a positive influence in the life of a child (any child) and the greatest responsibility that is bestowed upon any one is that of being a parent….”
He also warns about those who seek independence for their little islands;
“Today there are many of these territories with ambitious men who possess burning, inflated, testosterone compressed ego; that feed that fetish to be a part of positive history and hell bent on thrusting independence onto people who they were elected to serve….”
Unfortunately Crushing Fools is slow to load – but is worth the wait if you want to learn something different about the big wide world of which we are a tiny but integral part.
Submitted by Thomas Wellard.
Sunday, 22 March 2009
Our own Parliamentary freshmen and women visited London this week to meet the old girl – but whether they were impressed at what they saw and heard has not been much reported. They don’t have blog sites to keep their electorates informed – so we cannot easily enter into an electronic dialogue with them on this or any issues. Of course we can phone or e-mail or hang around the Royal Square, but did any come back with the message that virtually ALL Westminster MPs have active blog sites (paid for out of specific expenses) and that public participation is actively encouraged?
But what would we want to communicate with our elected representatives about? Well, once again I would implore you to look at the LINKS on this site and just read what peoples all over the world – living in little places just like Jersey – are concerned about.
Just take a few minutes out to see what is going on in Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Bermuda and Gibraltar and even the Isle of Man and be amazed that they have just the same worries and problems as we have in Jersey and they have the same frustrations with their elected representatives, the administration of justice, collapsing tourism, threatened Tax Haven status, free speech, child abuse and crime etc etc. What does this say about US and our relationships with the UK and the EU and the rest of the world and what should we make of this universal network of bloggers expressing their frustrations for all to see……..
Except that its not quite universal, because there is no really interesting blog coming out of Guernsey, Alderney and Sark that I can find and must wonder if the people of that Bailiwick are so contented with their lot that they have nothing to say except how nice the weather is…….
Submitted by Thomas Wellard.
Wednesday, 18 March 2009
The campaign is of course universal and in Jersey we at “The Voice” are battling to secure our rights to video and blog - the ever diligent Deputy Bob Hill has tabled a challenging question for the next States meeting - but there are other threats too from the likes of Senator Perchard who wants to stifle blogging (see voice for jersey and voice for children links on this page).
BUT don’t just take our word for it – look at the campaign in Bermuda too for open government and freedom of information and have a LOOK at that island’s simple 10 point plan for legislation here
Our problems are not unique. Small communities all over the world are facing just the same difficulties as we are and many of them are Tax Havens too.
So, spare a few minutes to look beyond the horizon of this island and see what is going on in other places. Learn by their examples. Broaden your knowledge. Don’t just accept the stuff churned out by the JEP, CTV and BBC Jersey and the Jersey government spinners. There really is more. Protest if necessary. It is your right to know.
Submitted by Thomas Wellard.
Tuesday, 17 March 2009
Something fishy? Coy Carping at International publicity.
Being labelled a “Tax Haven” does funny things to Jersey’s normally publicity hungry economy because the island’s promoters go all shy.
Nick Mathieson, Business reporter for the London based Observer Newspaper was in Jersey along with many other International Journalists for the March 12th Tax Havens “Past, Present and Future” manifestation. But the event was boycotted by virtually all the local Finance Industry and senior Jersey Politicians.
However, Nick Mathieson here expresses the wider world view. Tax Havens like Jersey must expect to be subjected to much more examination and scrutiny in the future…..so wake up Terry, Phil and co!
PS does anybody need a few hundred thousand square feet of empty office space, with wonderful sea views, soon to be completed?
PPS MEANWHILE in the Turks and Caicos islands Westminister has seized back control of the islands because of corruption - see Angullian Bloglink on the left of this page.
Submitted by Thomas Wellard.
Saturday, 14 March 2009
Elsewhere on this blog, the problem of radio noise on buses is dealt with but many people will develop hearing problems because they have their own personal noise machines plugged into their heads or spend too much time in noisy places like discos or with their noses under the bonnet of a revved-up V8.
But we officially neglect the hearing needs of so many people. Take the public gallery at the States Chamber or the public seating areas in the Royal Court where it is almost impossible to hear the proceedings.These are in fact supposed to be "hearings" but for the general public they most certainly are not and so it is at so many Parish Halls and public meetings all over the Island.
Justice must not only be seen to be done - it must be heard to be done - and if hearing loops are installed, there should be sign to indicate this and EVERY RECEPTION desk in the island should have its own hearing induction loop.
We are promised ANTI - DISCRIMINATION laws in Jersey soon but is anybody listening to this most basic PROTEST!
Wednesday, 11 March 2009
Our first offering for this new site is a short "sound-bite" of Senator Ben Shenton's views on Blogging, Bloggers and Citizens Media.
Senator Shenton appears to recognise that Blogging is "here to stay" and believes the States are "going to have to change the rules to accommodate them". If only a few more of our esteemed leaders recognised this!.
A fuller interview with Senator Shenton that deals with (recent) restrictions placed on Bloggers will be published in the next day or so on http://voiceforjersey.blogspot.com/
Tuesday, 10 March 2009
BIG money is involved and no doubt some pop stars and publishing businesses will be getting a pay-rise soon. Obviously though, the musicians deserve to be paid for their work.
BUT there is no need to go on YouTube to experience the same problem because wherever recorded music is played in public in Jersey there is a liability to pay a royalty fee through the Performing Rights Society (PRS).
AND if you travel on a Connex Bus in the near future you will probably discover that it is agreeably more quiet because the radio has been thrown out of the window.
At least one local customer has dared to complain of the excess noise and having found the usual smug company complacency or driver rudeness at local level, and little interest from the TTS Minister, the matter has now been raised with PRS. AND lo and behold it seems likely that neither Connex nor TTS has the appropriate licences for each vehicle as the law requires.
SO stay tuned to this blog - not to the bus radio - to discover what happens next. BUT once again you might like to ask just who should be responsible for ensuring that the law is complied with in Jersey on this matter? AND you might also like to consider whether we really do need to have music or Roger Bara played to us on the buses, or in taxis and cabs ad nauseum AND we might also like to consider whether people with hearing impairments might find the noise especially unpleasant?
Of course the licensing requirement also applies to cafes and pubs and offices, in fact any public access places where more than a few people are gathered together.
Those people who cannot tie their shoe laces or clean their teeth unless they have noise blasting in their ears will have another excuse to moan but for those who dread the thump thump of mindless music, there might be some hope of a more considered use of background audio in future. There is nothing quite like the payment of money to inhibit freebie misuse and if we enjoy the music then we should pay the musicians their due.