Cognitive Dissonance and keeping people fed.

Don’t you know there is a war on? What does it take to get people to take things seriously? Do we need Chief Warden Hodges from Dad’s Army storming round Brussels shouting ‘Put that Light Out’?

There is a problem with people. They will continue to believe things even when they’re obviously not true. As an example of this, YouGov do a daily chat, they email it to tens of thousands of people. They will ask various questions on the subject chosen for today, but the fascinating part is that you see the number of people who have agreed with which answer.

So when they asked what precautions people were taking against covid, I took a screenshot of the answer. 47% of people said they were wearing a facemask. I have to ask where? In the comfort and safety of their own home? When they’re in bed? Because they’re certainly not wearing it outside. In the last fortnight I’ve travelled on mainline railways, the London under and over ground, I’ve been in shops and meetings all over the place. People wearing masks form, I would guess, no more than 1% of the population. So why on earth are people ticking the box saying they still wear a mask?

Is it they want the smug glow of being a caring and concerned person who thinks of others, without actually having to go to the effort of being a caring and concerned person who thinks about others? Note at this point I’m not saying do or don’t wear a mask. That is entirely up to the individual and I’m not going to point the finger or mock somebody’s decision on this topic whatever they decide. I just want to know why such a large proportion of the population who obviously don’t wear masks, claim they still do?

But this morning on the radio I heard an even more ridiculous example of an inability to accept the real world. Anybody who has been part of the EU will know that its bureaucracy can take years to catch up with reality. But the Ukrainian war has thrown this into high relief. Ignoring foot dragging by the leaders of wealthy countries who’re so in hock to Russian gas it’s an embarrassment to their citizens, just look at the borders.

In the UK we’re arguing about the Northern Ireland Protocol and the EU is threatening trade wars and all sorts of things. But on the Rumanian frontier with Ukraine, a country they’re trying to help, farmers are trying to get Ukrainian grain out of the Ukraine. This is vital, it is almost ridiculously important, people will starve without that grain. More power to their elbow. Yet the EU is doing the equivalent of standing outside your house and clapping ineffectually.

One farmer has taken four loads (at 25 tons a load) across the border. The queue to get out of the Ukraine with your grain is 20km, the queue to get back into the Ukraine is 15km. He could spend six days in the queue. On the fourth trip, Rumanian customs demanded paperwork that hadn’t been needed on the first three trips.

A picture taken by a Ukrainian farmer of the queue he was stuck in.

The Ukrainian farmers are running out of money, they’re running out of fuel. The EU is managing to do what even Putin couldn’t manage.

And anyway, what sort of utter muppet creates a 20km queue in a war zone where the Russians are targeting civilian infrastructure? How many dead do the EU want? Perhaps if senior bureaucrats were forced to ride in the wagon caps, things might move faster?


What do I know, talk to an expert.

As a reviewer commented, “This is the third collection of farmer Jim Webster’s anecdotes about his sheep, cattle and dogs. This one had added information on the Lake District’s World Heritage status. This largely depends upon the work of around 200 small family farms. Small may not always be beautiful but it can be jolly important. If you want to know the different skills needed by a sheep dog and a cow dog, or to hear tales of some of the old time travelling sales persons – read on! This is real life, Jim, but not as I know it.”

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29 thoughts on “Cognitive Dissonance and keeping people fed.

  1. rootsandroutes2012 May 24, 2022 at 5:05 am Reply

    I’ve long said that it’s obvious the EU should have an input into goods crossing the border between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It should be exactly equivalent to the input the United Kingdom has into the movement of goods between Paris and Marseilles, Rome and Naples, Madrid and Bilbao – well you get the picture. Or perhaps if they take the word ‘union’ seriously, that should be Helsinki and Valetta.

  2. xantilor May 24, 2022 at 5:22 am Reply

    I think YouGov responders are an odd lot and not typical of the population. Years ago I did so many YouGov surveys, I earned £150 from them. Then I noticed I was not getting political surveys any more – I concluded they didn’t want my sort of opinions. I stopped doing their surveys. Others have said the same.

    Shocking about the grain queues. Why aren’t the press covering this?

    • jwebster2 May 24, 2022 at 5:27 am Reply

      It’s only agriculture, who understands? 😦
      As for the YouGov, you do get the feeling with the daily ones that they are all left wingers working from home 🙂
      They seem to dislike Starmer as much as Boris 🙂

  3. Eddy Winko May 24, 2022 at 6:02 am Reply

    We hosted a Ukrainian family for a month or so early on in the conflict and suggested they get registered in Poland to receive the benefits that are available to them, but as they had entered Poland though Slovakia they had to go back into Ukraine (17 hour queue) to join the queue to come back (2 day queue) We started to worry!
    Not that I’m defending the EU but this paperwork was a requirement of the Polish government, so it wouldn’t surprise me if Romania are creating half the problem in this case. But you are right, whoever is reasonable needs to get it sorted asap.
    Now I’m going to see if I can find out what’s happening on the Polish border now 🙂

  4. OIKOS™- Art, Books & more May 24, 2022 at 6:49 am Reply

    I only can say, the EU now since 2019 is represented by Ms. v. d. Leyen, a German, and some months later the first evil has taken place. 😉 This was more than predictable. If you are interested in, you should read the only in German available work of v. Coudenhoven-Kalergi, published in 1925. Maybe this not only for me tells about some secret German behavior, or the behavior of some secret Germans? You can decide! 🙂 Here its on Best wishes, Michael

    • jwebster2 May 24, 2022 at 2:14 pm Reply

      It has to be confessed that Ms. v. d. Leyen has not covered herself with glory, even as German defence minister 😦

    • alphaandomega21 June 30, 2022 at 8:51 pm Reply

      Quite. The Germans, or perhaps it should really be Nazis/Marxists have been at it for decades. Both groups came out of Germany of course. We now have a fourth Reich, the EU, the back up plan for Germany when WW2 didn’t go quite as planned.

      We now follow a pattern after WW2 only 80 years ago making it June 1942. At this time the Germans and Russians were fighting in the east not so very far from the Ukraine as the Germans pushed towards the Caucasus.

      History repeating itself. It has to, as nobody was properly listening the first time.

      • OIKOS™- Art, Books & more July 1, 2022 at 1:03 pm

        Lets hope there will be a way to stop it. Maybe France has investigated the plan. xx Michael If you are interested in this, a noble man named Richard Nikolaus von Coudenhove-Kalergi wrote about it in 1922. The book “Der Adel” is available for free at It’s just the way the EU was planned, and now should be realized. Africa as one of the new “old” colonies included. 😉

      • jwebster2 July 1, 2022 at 1:16 pm

        A lot of German stuff from between the wars was lost or buried and some of it deserves looking at again

      • alphaandomega21 July 1, 2022 at 2:53 pm

        Many thanks indeed. I was vaguely aware of this chap having seen his Wikipedia entry before. I must look into it more.

        As regards stopping it, this is going on as I write. It will just take time that’s all.

        In fact as we follow a pattern after WW2 only 80 years ago, making us in equivalent of 1942, the tide will turn this year as it has started to do.

  5. Jane Sturgeon May 24, 2022 at 8:50 am Reply

    I can’t add anything to the sensible comments above or your post, Jim. Only, please can common sense prevail and pray these brave farmers are safe. There is much behind the flour I am about to bake a cake with….. ❤

    • jwebster2 May 24, 2022 at 2:12 pm Reply

      We see barely a tenth of the chain

      • Jane Sturgeon May 24, 2022 at 2:25 pm

        I can believe that, Jim.

  6. M T McGuire May 24, 2022 at 12:19 pm Reply

    I am actually, generally, for the EU but I am NOT in favour of this sort of malarkey. It’s mad. Then again, I believe there’s something similar going on along the M20. So much stupidity. Especially as in this case, it’s going to result in people starving when they don’t have to. Just sod the paperwork. Jeez, if they’re that hell bent on the paperwork, can they not just put the grain somewhere within the EU and sort out the admin once it’s out of the war zone.

    • jwebster2 May 24, 2022 at 2:12 pm Reply

      That would demand common sense and bureaucratic flexibility 😦

      • M T McGuire May 24, 2022 at 2:15 pm

        Yeh. Sigh.

      • alphaandomega21 June 30, 2022 at 8:54 pm

        An oxymoron of course. Bureaucrats are morons. They left common sense locked in the bureau and now can’t find the key.

  7. Stevie Turner May 24, 2022 at 2:05 pm Reply

    I don’t care that Sam and I will probably be the only ones wearing a mask when we go to the Queen and Adam Lambert concert in a few weeks time. I’d rather be safe than sorry.

    • jwebster2 May 24, 2022 at 2:12 pm Reply

      It’s not my place to judge. It’s up to people to do what they think is sensible

  8. Jack Eason May 27, 2022 at 5:31 am Reply

    Reblogged this on Have We Had Help? and commented:
    From Jim…

    • jwebster2 May 27, 2022 at 5:56 am Reply

      Glad you found it interesting

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