Mike Vickers' Blog

July 27, 2019

One Man and his Quad Bike

Filed under: Sheep, Shetland — derryvickers @ 8:43 pm

One Man and his Quad Bike

Not I suspect to be featured on BBC TV.  One Man and his Dog is more charming

But Shepherds on Shetland now use quad bikes to assist in rounding up their sheep for sheering.

The dogs are still there and can keep up with the fast moving bikes and do help in the rounding up, but equally they enjoy a ride on the back of the bike as the actual rounding up work.

In the photo you can see several planticrubs, stone squares; the cabbages and kale start life in them protected from the strong winds to be transplanted when old enough to Kale Yards.  Planticrubs and Kale yards were built from the plentiful stones. .

One Man and his Quad Bike

One man and His Quad Bike with Planticrubs


For more on the original stone made planticrubs and kale yards go to:






Modern planticrubs are of steel and plastic sheeting; more like polytunnels

A Modern Planticrub

A Modern Planticrub







And here is a sheep that didn’t want to move even encouraged by the shepherds and the dog and the dunes were too hilly for the quad bike.  BTW eventually the sheep was carried ‘home’ on the back of a quad bike.

The Reluctant Sheep

The Reluctant Sheep


The UK’s Fate

Filed under: Britis Empire, Europe, Politics, Trump — derryvickers @ 9:28 am

Patrick Cockburn says it all


The UK will be increasingly be bound to the US

And to Trump.


Johnson: Not Pericles but Alcibiades

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Greece, Johnson — derryvickers @ 7:18 am

Johnson: Not Pericles and certainly not Alexander but Alcibiades

If you read only one thing this week do not miss Simon Jenkins in the Guardian:


But Pericles’s external diplomacy was a disaster. It arrogantly incurred the hostility of surrounding states, who took their revenge by aiding Sparta in the Peloponnesian wars, and eventually crushing Athenian democracy. Pericles listened for advice only to his formidable mistress, Aspasia. He is an odd mentor for a modern leader’

Johnson’s tenure as PM ‘will have nothing to do with Pericles. Alcibiades is now in charge’


July 26, 2019

Jaw, Jaw rather than War, War; Brexit needs a resolution by the UK

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Jaw, Jeremy Corbyn, Johnson, Politics, War — derryvickers @ 9:00 pm

I understand that Churchill said ‘Jaw, Jaw is preferable to War, War.

And I wholly agree.

I do note that despite his thesis he put his whole effort in applying his whole effort into our war with Nazi Germany; he did not follow up Neville Chamberlin’s appeasement.

We are now faced with Johnson itching for war with the EU.

Should we applaud?

Johnson is the self-acclaimed Churchill look alike

I suggest No.

The EU is no Nazi Organisation.

The EU is the stanch upholder of the United Nations Charter of Human Rights; indeed, the EU has its European Charter too.

Jaw should triumph over war as long as the target is with the Human Rights Charter.

BTW I worry that the UK could now revoke membership for the European Charter under Patel.

The elevation of Johnson to PM is a disaster, none of the papers I read says otherwise, only the Tory Rags appal. The Johnson Cabinet is a Cabinet of Horrors.

Yet I accept that there needs some resolution of Brexit. There needs to be some Jaw; Jaw rather than the current standoff.
Resolution is not going to come from the EU.

If I go back the the Churchill War cabinet, much of the success politically was the inclusion of the Labour Party led by Clement Atlee; and as well as winning the war, we had the Beveridge Report – foundation of the UK Social State.

I ask why can’t the Tories and Labour recognise the total mess that is the UK and work together. May, to her credit, tried to but the two sides would not compromise or had not the guts to stand up to their own party members.

Compromise is the essence to good government as long as it remains with is the boundaries of the Charter of Human Rights.

Let’s have some Jaw, Jaw rather than War, War within the Westminster Parliament.
Equally true in Holyrood also and even at the Council level where one party proposes and the other has to oppose on principle.

BTW It grieves me to say so that Johnson responded well at his first Question Time even if I disagree with his answers.

Perhaps hope even at this time for a Government of National Unity to avoid outright War with the EU.  Though whether Johnson or Corbyn are anywhere near the calibre of Churchill or Atlee remains in doubt.

July 25, 2019

Cabinet of Horrors

Filed under: Johnson, Politics, UK Parliament, Westminster — derryvickers @ 10:10 pm

Are you sitting comfortably?

Here is your cabinet. Nothing cosy kitchen about it.

Hand picked by our PM and who would trust him to help us rather than help himself.

One can only hope they turn in on themselves rather than us.


Cabinet of Horrors

Chamber of Horrors

Trump and Turbines

Filed under: Land Ownership, Shetland, Trump, USA — derryvickers @ 4:21 pm

Leaving Aberdeen for the Shetlands

Donald Trump’s Aberdeenshire estate is in the distance beyond the turbines.

Why does he complain?

Turbines off Aberdeen

Turbines off the Trump Estate

Boris: Remember Versailles

Filed under: Brexit, Johnson, Scotland, Westminster — derryvickers @ 6:23 am

Johnson will brook no criticism

The critics sent to the Back Benches.  They will group and take revenge

The Guardian says it all



July 24, 2019

Boris Johnson – Prime MInister – What Shall We Do

Filed under: Brexit, Britis Empire, economics, Europe, Johnson, Trump — derryvickers @ 6:33 am

The Prime Minister

with apologies to Roger McGough

I wanna be the Prime Minister
I wanna be the Prime Minister
Can I be the Prime Minister?
Can I? I can?
Promise? Promise?
Yippee I’m the Prime Minister
I’m the Prime Minister

OK what shall we do?

July 22, 2019

Welcome The Lord High Executioner

Filed under: Europe, In Our Time, Johnson, Westminster — derryvickers @ 9:19 am

how Boris Johnson, barring a serious upset, is about to become prime minister, first lord of the Treasury, and generally in charge of everything.

Welcome The Lord High Executioner.


July 3, 2019

Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Greta Thunberg talking together

Filed under: AOC, Climate Change, Greta Thunberg — derryvickers @ 8:57 pm

A Discussion between

AOC and GT

The two drivers for Saving the Environment

on Climate Change Action to save the Environment


Interesting if only because it brings together the two Global Personalities on the Climate and the need to save it for posterity.

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