Cattle, sheep and even pets are now in the sights of deranged eco-warriors.
One of the more disappointing developments in British politics over the past two decades – apart from the strange desire of most parties to pander to the tiny transvestite vote, never seen as vital in the past – has been the decline of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party, after the death of its founder, Screaming Lord Sutch, in 1999. Still, with the Greens behaving in an increasingly unhinged manner, maybe they might merge? Green is such a lovely colour – not a bit descriptive of a party which seems, like the nature it worships, increasingly red in tooth and claw. The late lord’s party’s handle seems far more appropriate.
The latest eco-insanity comes from Ireland, where the government has proposed a mass cull of cattle in order to meet its Net Zero targets. Ireland has often held somewhat eccentric views in recent times, such as that unmarried mothers should be treated as dangerous criminals and set to work in forced labour camps. Brendan O’Neill has written of Ireland’s eagerness to jump from one bad religion to another, from Catholicism to transgenderism, both of which are linked by magical thinking and the belief in transubstantiation. And it seems Ireland has embraced the modern green religion, too.
The Irish department of agriculture has suggested spending around €600million on killing 200,000 dairy cattle. This is to punish them for being flatulent and thus accounting for more than half of Ireland’s greenhouse-gas emissions. Considering that Ireland is an agrarian society, this doesn’t seem a very clever move. Its dairy industry makes more than €13 billion a year. As a baffled farmer complained to national broadcaster RTÉ News: ‘We’re being made out as if we’re killing the planet.’ They’ll come for the beef cattle next, no doubt, meaning that cheap beef from Brazil will be flying across the world, when once could have been sent a few miles down the road in a lorry.
Was ever an animal as blameless as the cow? ‘Bovine’ means dull, but that’s not fair. Cows just know their limitations, don’t ask for much from life and, as people often say of fat girls, they’ve got lovely eyes. No, the real problem greens have with dairy cows is that they give humanity something it loves – cheese – and any animal which does this is obviously a collaborator and needs to be executed.
Animals give humans pleasure in all kinds of ways. Some people – not me – get pleasure from eating them, which is admittedly a little one-sided. But they also provide us with clothing. You’d think that a sheep was even less evil than a cow, but mean greens like eco-maniac George Monbiot have been gunning for them for quite some time, calling them ‘the white plague’. He claims that sheep have done more damage to the ecology of Britain than all the buildings, all the pollution and all the climate change put together. But I think he’s just angry at the thought of all those lovely Christmas jumpers they’ve contributed to, which bring smiles to our little faces as we celebrate a festival he probably believes should be banned because of all that demonic wrapping paper.