Another Father’s Day in which I have been spoilt with some wonderful gifts. I am always touched by the high esteem in which my children and Jackie always hold me in.
Yesterday evening we had a delightful meal in our local restaurant to celebrate Sam’s 18th birthday, Father’s Day, Sam obtaining a place at The Royal Agriculture University and Sophie passing all her second year medical exams. It was a very jolly evening had by all and the conversation flitted from local through to national and international affairs dominated by the main talking point which was the birthday gift my daughter Sophie was about to present to her brother Sam, which was an imminent climb of the O2 arena. Listening to them, their excitement was quite palpable. It is amusing how even now as they are getting bigger that their gifts to each other excites us all in the same way as the gifts that were bestowed on them as they were growing up by their mother and I.
An interesting development this week came from the Humane Society International UK urging farmers to reject the Badger cull and to become more Badger friendly instead, because clearly protecting the species is one of the best ways of mitigating the risk of infection spreading. The call follows the publication of new research by Jon Bielby and his colleagues suggesting that even small scale Badger culling might increase rather than reduce the spread of Bovine Tuberculosis. Research has shown that culling a single Badger from a family can cause a perturbation that spreads TB. Quite ironic how behaviour of ignorance can cause such dire deprivation not just in nature, but the whole of life in general.
I listen to the miserable news now coming out of Iraq. It was in the early nineties with the operation of Desert Storm led by “Storming Norman” Schwarzkopf to end one of the world’s most brutal regimes of Saddam Hussein’s. His statue in Baghdad was eventually toppled on April 9th 2003 and here we are in 2014 and Iraq is one of the most dangerous places on earth. The disturbances throughout the Arab uprising, Egypt in particular springs to mind. When the West cries out for regime change hoping in their naivety it will make the peoples’ lot in that particular country so much better when in reality, it is the total reverse. Whereas in these dictatorships the majority of law abiding people can bring up families and have a certain degree of stability in their day to day lives and a degree of certainty of when the next bottle of water can be obtained and the next loaf of bread can be placed on the table. Democracy is the finest old wine of them all. It takes hundreds of years to get it right, in the UK’s case, just over four hundred years. But we seem to have an appetite to blast democracy into countries that realistically are simply not ready for it. Democracy is an evolution. It is an evolution of fairness, justice for all and above all else, humanity. So many peoples’ and families’ hopes have been given an expectation that realistically could never ever have been achieved on a timescale that quite honestly is literally comic book. A Hollywood type of leadership has been brought in to world affairs where the bigger the crash, bang, wallop the quicker these sad situations would be resolved, when in reality it is time, education, patience, nurturing and very often help, the type of help that is tangible to these fledgling democracy economies that is needed. Simply an economy that filters that particular country’s wealth and resources from the great to the humble is the most fundamental attribution to any democracy.
Speaking of democracies, my Badger sett practices nature’s democracy in the woodland on a daily basis. The cubs are now almost the size of their parents and the play fighting and wrestling is a constant source of entertainment. A pecking order is found and an equilibrium is practiced to the degrees of tolerance that a lot of world societies would be happy to call their own.Please watch my short film of my Badgers wrestling and frolicking in a Cotswold woodland.
Badgers wrestling in the woodland.