‘Mr President, Remove This Incompetent Commissioner’

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An open letter from president of the European Milk Board Romuald Schaber to the president of the European Commission Jean-Claude Junker, calling for Commissioner Phil Hogan’s resignation.

European Milk Board calls for removal of Commissioner Hogan (Agriland)

Thanks Gemma

45 thoughts on “‘Mr President, Remove This Incompetent Commissioner’

  1. martina

    Big Phil showing the EU his particular set of skills: incompetence, bluster and general pig headedness.

  2. Frilly Keane

    Fine Gael Boyo

    Like they give a ûck

    They’re only waiting ta’line up another one’ve their dopes

    The rest of us need to be reminded of the objections to his appointment during the confirmation process

    1. Sido

      Oh yeah – are you from round here? That sort of thing would be water of a ducks back to our Phil.
      That being said he would probably have been a bit happier if they had made European commissioner for Indifference.

  3. Kolmo

    Phil “Livin’ the dream’ Hogan.

    *clicks fingers, “Pierre! givvus another bottle of that Brut, quick as you like there, and a tray of that paté stuff while you’re at it ….nom nom nom”
    “Jays, this Brussels place is great!”

  4. Condescending Nana

    1) what did you expect from this country, a competent politician?
    2) too much milk obvs. convert grazing land to other uses and stop exploiting animals instead of expecting someone else to sort out the poor choices in your life, what do you thing this is, Ireland?

    1. Lan

      Yea let’s plough the last refugee of European grasslands, rip out the hedgerows that serve as nature corridors & slaughter all our cows just so we can lose money a different way (tillage is still not profitable and veg production is not able to compete with cheaper production in warm countries like Spain)

      1. Drive By Driving By

        Dairy’s fierce greenhouse-gas intensive, and there’s this climate change thing we’re supposed to do something about.
        Which is why official Irish agriculture strategy for the next decade is, basically, “more cows! Lash that milk out there!”
        *sigh*

        1. Lan

          Its a bit more than ‘more cows, lash the milk out’.

          Is dairy GHG intensive? Yes. But is Ireland the best in the EU at producing it with the lowest carbon footprint? Yes

          Increased demand is happening worldwide. So is it better to come from Ireland with a low co2/kg or from say Brazil (with its deforestation) with a very high co2/kg or even say Spain where due to heat stress they’re much less efficient.

          But yes I agree we need a much more advanced GHG mitigation policy, we’re already measuring which is the first step, including increasing efficiency and reducing per cow emissions.
          Ploughing up land and producing veg at a loss though damn sure isnt the answer

    1. Bingo

      You’ve cleverly set-up a joke there.

      He’s a right one, is Phil.
      His bully boy attitude is one of the many reasons I’m binning the IW invoices that drop through my letterbox.

  5. Shockabilly

    Milk quota’s are gone so does that not effectively mean that it’s now a free market… Lobby away horny fingered sons of toil but I subscribe to Moore McDowell’s ‘so what’ thoughts on this one – if I was any other sort of SME and my business was in trouble I’d be allowed to go under – don’t want to see farmers go bust but don’t see why they should be bailed out either.

    Oh and if you don’t like market volatility then like all producers of commodities – put strategies to manage your volatility…

    Or look at adding value or diversify or if you can’t make your business work then do what all other businesses do when they aren’t viable – close.

    That isn’t an endorsement of big Phil BTW- he may well be a bungling dope for all I know (or care)

    1. scottser

      …and cut to 2060 when milk sold in ireland comes from russia and what were once farms are now all empty apartment blocks owned by foreign investment companies.

      you know, a little protectionism isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

      1. Shockabilly

        ehhh bit of jump into the apocalyptic there?

        A little protectionism may well be defensible and may well be warranted before we reach your ‘somewhat of a leap’ vision of rural Ireland (though it does seem just a tad improbable that we would reach a point where one if the bulkiest most perishable products on the market would be imported from a country 3000kms away…) I would argue that subsidizing a certain class of uneconomic units just cause we’ve always done it that way is wrong.

      2. classter

        We could debate the virtues of protectionism in general if you want but if Irish farmers cannot compete over a longer term, despite the excellent climate, the long-established dairy culture, the support given by the likes of Teagasc, etc. then so be it. We (in Ireland & in Europe more generally) have long given the farmers a disproportionate level of government attention & tax monies.

        The farmers, btw, supported the lifting of the quotas, At the time commodity prices were higher & farmers thought they’d clean up.

        1. Lan

          Ok where to start…I know: the EMB=European Milk Board (read not the Irish Milk Board) also Schaber is hardly a strong Mayo name now is it?

          So your point about Ireland being a good climate for milk (it’s probably the best!) doesn’t really stand as this group represents farmers from frozen Finland to burnt Spain. These farms are suffering more than we are (not that we’re not suffering too)

          So on protectionism vs free market economics. Not all dairy farmers were equally as ecstatic as they were made out to be to see the end of a stabity measure altogether. In fact France wanted to bring in quite a good one and contrary to what RTE would have you believe some farmers weren’t against it.

          But recent days has shown farm representation isn’t as easy and straight forward a thing. Policies which do not benefit all farmers (or even a majority of farmers) are often supported. Reforms many farms would like don’t always get pushed for.

          The above image of Ireland’s countryside might be apocalyptic but it’s not far off trends. Land abandonment is one of the major threats to farmland ecology on the West of Ireland mostly cos farmers can’t make a return. So options are sell out or intensify. While you can intensify sustainability it’s very difficult and not always possible in those places.

          So question is would you rather see scottser’s vision of Ireland eventually come through, or the rise of mega farms owned by foreign investors?
          Or would rather see supports go to the only real indigenous & irreplaceable business Ireland has?

          1. Shockabilly

            It’s not a business if it’s not profitable though, is it (over the long term I mean).

            Is land abandonment (to a limited extent) such a bad thing? marginal land would be the first to be returned to nature as is the case in many other EU countries- I’d prefer to see large sections of marginal land turning back to nature and all the benefits that could bring in terms of wildlife diversity and tourism rather than subsidize farming in those instances where the farms are never going to be really viable.

            Okay, unique areas like the burren would be exceptions where the unique ecology of the area needs the presence of cattle to be sustainable. Aside from that there’s hundreds of small uneconomic farms up and down the west that will never provide a decent living for a family without subsidies.

            Not a lifestyle I would personally chose but many of those small farmers want to continue farming – it’s hard often financially unrewarding work but they love farming. The problem is if it ain’t economic then there’s money coming out of the public purse to underwrite their lifestyle. Unless you can find a niche then small farming as a economically sustainable lifestyle is a thing of the past – without subsidies it would have died out long ago.

          2. Drive By Driving By

            Land abandonment means wild overgrowth in furze and/or bracken, which isn’t going to help wildlife or tourism. Grassland needs some grazing to maintain it – do we import and release deer, or what?

          3. Lan

            Yes but dairying is profitable over the longterm. The problem is short term cost cutting are much more problematic.
            For instance if a business is losing money this year a company could lay off some staff or put them on part time.
            Part time for cows would mean starvation, firing would mean….well you cant breed cows as fast as you can hire staff. This form of inconsistency has lead to big problems and encouraged the rise of mega farms in the US aware from the farm family model. Why is the family model important? Because its the easiest way to distribute wealth through a community rather than allow to rise into the hands of a small number of individuals.

            Ah yes the “rewilding” argument.
            Yes there are some who argue it but its rarely considered as a realistic by serious conservationists. Normally promoted by ideological proponents with other reasons to suggest (including dislike of farming), there are some exceptions (E. O Wilson) but most

            There is numerous reasons that rewilding has so few proponents here, specific to Ireland it will mean two things: 1. a decline in the a number of red listed species, namely farm birds, which rely on extensive farming, 2. an incomplete ecosystem as many of the important elements, apex predators and keystone species, that existed in pre-human Ireland are extinct and can’t return: mega fauna and wolves for example. Rewilding is an argument where you have a linked ecosystem like on the continent where these animals can move from one place to another.
            In Ireland full succession would not be possible and in the mean time you can kiss species like ground nesting birds such as Curlew, Red Grouse or Corncrake goodbye for a place to be overrun by introduced species like rabbits or rats and crows to run wild
            The idea of this being a argument of ecosystem/habitat vs farms is a false one. Many ecosystems in Ireland are related to agricultural activity. Yes the BurrenLIFE project, an biodiversity project that depends on farming & encourages a return to grazing is somewhat of a unique habitat but the new AranLIFE is based on a similar concept. Much of the west of Ireland is home to either species rich grassland or HNV (High Nature Value) farmland.
            Thats the ecological argument

            The economic argument is very different, the fact is tourists come here to see our uniquely extensive agricultural landscape, all those green fields separated by linear woodland (hedgerows) is quite a shock after looking at the monoculture monotony of France, Germany or US (forest or agricultural). So why would they come here for a poor imitation of the wilderness they could find in Sweden, Norway or the Black Forest for example?
            That isnt to say we dont need natural features or things like national park, its just not why people visit here.
            Also how would you pay the farmers who own the land? If you’re going to remove the subs and let it because abandoned you put hundreds of farmers (and thousands of associated worker in agri food) onto the dole. We cant all be tour guides or rangers nor B&B owners.
            Instead you would lose one of the biggest draws in Ireland for tourists the small traditional towns full of local people who’ll now lose their economy

            In reality these hard working small farmers get a disportionately small percentage of the CAP payments compared to much larger intensive farmers. Saying that we dont need these small farmers is simply ignoring the principle of common good in preference to the worst form of free market economic, the type that crushes people and communities

  6. Mayor Quimby

    loving the idiots here who think Hogan should prop up milk prices.

    The gombeen is the guy writing the letter you clowns are suffering from Irish Water derangement syndrome and can’t see it.

    The more things change the more they stay the same.

    Gombeens, gombeens look in the mirror.

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