Letters, Malcolm Cox, April 7, 2017

Russian President Vladimir Putin watches USA play Russia during their Preliminary round match at the Bolshoy Ice Dome, during the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin watches USA play Russia during their Preliminary round match at the Bolshoy Ice Dome, during the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

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Thanks to John Filowat for his reply of March 24.

I am always keen to learn of the experiences of others. However, much of your complaint was summed up by Nick Vinehill’s reply of the same date, a bull’s eye response in my view. But I do not know which of my letters you were replying to. In both of my letters on this subject I clearly quoted names and dates.

Your reply simply mentions a local farmer who is at number 15 on East Anglia’s rich list and “ is worth £165m who received half a million in EU subsidies.” I agree that is bonkers. In the interests of credibility should you not be more precise, who are your describing?

On Countryfile, March 26, we heard Welsh hill farmer Tony Davis forecasting tough times for hill farms who will lose their subsidies with Brexit. “The whole of the rural economy will suffer.” Economist Sean Rickard, not a farmer, gave an alternative view with sentiments such as farming must become “intensive and competitive.” The NFU’s Minette Batters noted countries across the world support agriculture. While I am at it I cannot help wondering if you buy a daily tabloid newspaper. Maybe not but it is worth noting that the editor of the Daily Mail has been blessed with £460,000 of EU subsidies since 2011 towards maintaining his Scottish land and the owner, Lord Northcliffe, of course, cleverly but legally avoids UK taxes. Reforms are required everywhere. The break-up of the EU is welcomed by Vladimir Putin which speaks volumes. Putin has desperately tried to derail the efforts of Serbia and Montenegro, including assassination to join the EU. If the EU is so bad why are former dictatorships keen to join? On March 26 we witnessed widespread anti-corruption demonstrations in Russia.

Moreover in a reply to other anti-EU letters I have clearly written that the EU is far from perfect. It requires reform which takes in all of those fundamentals listed by Nick Vinehill.

Malcom Cox

Terrington St Clement