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Re: palm oil

This seems to be used because it is a cheap solid fat with a long shelf life. It has invaded the formulations of "classic" biscuits - no room for sentiment there.

Being grown on clearcut forest gives it an advantage, of course. The soils are highly organic - but how long do they last?

@ Pcar blueberries on the Pentland Hills: these were perhaps bilberries, a close relative. (There are also cowberries, & occasional hybrids.) As far as I know all these species like dry feet, & are signs of good drainage when they are found on the moors.

Nov 16, 2018 at 9:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterJit

Re Sabine Weyand's comments:

"Brexit deal: EU says it ‘will retain all control’ under Theresa May’s agreement, leaked note shows
Brussels believes UK will also have to 'swallow' compromises for access to EU markets"

Brussels will “retain all the controls” over swathes of British regulation under the Brexit deal struck by Theresa May, EU negotiators have told member states.

A leaked diplomatic note from a meeting between Commission officials and ambassadors from the EU’s 27 countries reveals how Brussels views the “level playing field” rules signed up to by the prime minister.

“We should be in the best negotiation position for the future relationship. This requires the customs union as the basis of the future relationship,” deputy chief negotiator Sabine Weyand said, according to the note seen by The Times newspaper.

“They must align their rules but the EU will retain all the controls. They apply the same rules. UK wants a lot more from future relationship, so EU retains its leverage.”

The binding clauses would mean the UK would be tied to EU rules on workers’ rights, environmental protections, and state aid while the so-called backstop applies – which everyone in Brussels believes it will for quite some time.

The provisions are enraging some Tory Brexiteers, who see Britain’s departure from the EU as an opportunity to strip out what they see as excessive regulations and rights for workers.

“She hasn’t so much struck a deal as surrendered to Brussels and given in to everything they want and tried to frustrate Brexit that it’s not so much a vassal state anymore as a slave state,” unofficial rebellion leader Jacob Rees-Mogg said, articulating the views of many of Ms May’s MPs.

Remainers also rounded on the leak. Dominic Grieve QC, a Tory MP and the former attorney general, said: “Speaking in private Sabine Weyand has been brutally honest about what the Prime Minister’s deal will really mean.”

He added: “I could not look my constituents in the eye and say this would be a better deal than the one we have as a member of the EU and so I will vote against it and instead I will vote to hand the final decision back to the public. A choice between this miserable Brexit and no deal is no choice at all. The British public deserve a real choice between leaving the EU on these terms or sticking with the deal we’ve got inside the EU.”

But speaking on Wednesday morning Theresa May loyalist William Hague urged Tories to ignore the “leak overnight from somebody you have never heard of before” and to back the plan, arguing that Brexit could be thwarted if it was ditched.

The leaked written account of the meeting seen by the newspaper also suggests that Britain “would have to swallow a link between access to products and fisheries in future agreements” for the future relationship. The claim is political dynamite because some Brexiteers want the UK to be able to exclude EU fishing boats from British waters after the country leaves.

[All this from an anti-Brexit newspaper, which reports on the same page:

The Independent has launched its #FinalSay campaign to demand that voters are given a voice on the final Brexit deal.]

Nov 16, 2018 at 9:04 AM | Unregistered CommenterMark Hodgson

At least someone has noticed it.
And that owl isn't overly phallic. The ears would make an unusual deformity.
Guess it's all in the eye of the beholder.

Nov 16, 2018 at 8:59 AM | Registered CommenterM Courtney

John Redwood's politics and mine are rather different, but I find it difficult to argue with this brief summary from his website today:

"So as we feared the ECJ has a big role, we cannot unilaterally leave the customs union and may have to stay in for a long time if there is no mutually agreed exit deal. All the government has achieved is the elimination of the Article 50 right to leave we currently enjoy.

Our negotiating power would be dramatically reduced by giving away the money in advance of a deal, and binding ourselves into the customs partnership and law codes of the EU. Remain voters will say being in the EU is better than this, and Leave voters say this is not Brexit. As yesterday in the Commons made clear there is nowhere near a majority for this one sided and damaging Withdrawal Agreement

The Irish backstop treats one part of the UK differently from the rest and is already being used by the SNP against the Union. The huge payments buy us nothing we want and mainly relate to staying in for longer than we wish. Why would the EU bother to agree a good future partnership when they will control us and take our cash without such a deal?

The resignation of 7 more following the 8 who resigned after Chequers must be a record number for a single policy. It makes the defeat of these proposals even more likely as they will all presumably vote against."

Nov 16, 2018 at 8:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterMark Hodgson

M Courtney and others; Paul Homewood is on to that ECJ judgment and its effect on our energy supply:

Rather topical at the moment!

Funnily enough, I can't find it being reported anywhere by the BBC, not even on the Europe page of their website (I've tried politics, business, science and environment too, since they like to put stories about "green" energy there). However, clearly it's not that important, since the BBC's Europe page sees it omitted in favour of vital stories such as "'Phallic' owl statue mocked in Serbia" and "Denmark halts aid to Tanzania amid gay row".

Nov 16, 2018 at 8:52 AM | Unregistered CommenterMark Hodgson

"It's true. Reported all over msm.

With no attribution that I've seen .... although tbh I ain't looked much.... there's too much chaff in the air.

OT - I did see this though and it triggered me.... long haul flights stuck between fatties - there'd be uproar if they did the same with livestock ... looks like the Daily Mail is going PC .... they're censoring comments.

Nov 16, 2018 at 1:14 AM | Registered Commentertomo

@AK, Nov 15, 2018 at 2:00 PM

Re: Jacob Rees-Mogg ITV News

Either of these?

Nov 16, 2018 at 12:31 AM | Registered CommenterPcar

@tomo, Nov 16, 2018 at 12:13 AM

Sabine Weyand, deputy to EU chief negotiator...reportedly told EU ambassadors "the aim is to keep the UK in the customs union for ever.”

If this is true - and I do think we need to see her confronted over it - our Rolls-Royce civil service looks a bit crap... the spooks must have a recording / copy of the memo...

It's true. Reported all over msm. May's surrender agreement states UK can only leave Customs Union if EU agrees.

Nov 16, 2018 at 12:26 AM | Registered CommenterPcar

@AK, Nov 15, 2018 at 11:46 AM

Do blueberries grow on wet peaty soils? I've seen (and eaten) them on Pentland Hills "mountainsides" where there was virtually no soil.

Nov 16, 2018 at 12:21 AM | Registered CommenterPcar

@stewgreen, Nov 15, 2018 at 11:40 PM

"Right wing WWF and Palm oil cheap filler food, not oil/[fat]"?

Citations please

Nov 16, 2018 at 12:20 AM | Registered CommenterPcar

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