Friday, November 26, 2010

Rabid greenie councillor getting children to do dirty work

I wish they would do something quite brave: go and visit the farmer who has poisoned the tussock land on the north face of the Hokonui Hills, which overlooks their small country school, and tell him that his actions are harming the environment, risking serious erosion and giving farming a bad name

Shame on you Robert Guyton. If your regional council has an issue with a farmer working his land, his private property, do not get children to do your dirty work via underhanded suggestions. Property rights reign supreme.


robertguyton said...

Dear PM of NZ

To correct some of your wrong assumptions -
'my council' hasn't an issue with 'a farmer working his land', so far as I know. My comment is my own view and wasn't made 'on behalf' of anyone else. Commenting publically as an individual is perfectly acceptable behaviour, according to the background research that I have done, given that I have been commenting on environmental issues through the letters to the editor section of the Southland Times for several years now, on a fairly regular basis. I am not encouraging the children of Otama school to do any 'dirty work' - on the contrary, their efforts to improve their local environment have been exemplary and I'm encouraging them to go a step further. I visited their school on Wednesday to see all that they were doing and saw that they have developed a very sound programme of improvements to their surroundings. The poor practice evident in the surrounding hills doubtless concerns them as much as it does me. That said, I don't really expect them to take action on this issue - rather that their work should be seen in contrast to that carried out on the steep and vulnerable slopes of the surrounding hills. It will be a 'real time, real life' example for them to consider. As a teacher myself, I know the value of connecting learning to actual experience.
Property rights may indeed 'reign supreme' but considerations for the wider community and for the environment 'downstream' of one's property have to be considered as well, in my own opinion. Just as you have used a public forum (your blog) to express your thoughts, so have I, through the letters to the editor column.

Anonymous said...

Property rights in this country?

PM of NZ you must be joking!


pdm said...

What has this farmer supposed to have done?

PM of NZ said...

pdm - if you look at the letter to the editor - the implicit inference is that the farmer has poisoned the landscape. (I assume in the course of normal spraying operations, the hillside had gone brown.) And that the kids at some local school should front the farmer for what are probably normal farm operations on his private property.

robert - What really upsets me is the inference that normal farming operations on private property are worthy of attack. By schoolchildren no less. You may not have expected any further action by the children, but the seed is sown that farming is evil through your teachings.

We have the same issues usurping property rights with the local regional council round here with their much despised 'One Plan' anti-farming utopia. A bureaucratic travesty being hijacked by every feral greenie nutter in the area and local councils, completed with brainwashing the local school children that all farming is evil. And that property rights do not exist as far as their bureaucracy is concerned.

robertguyton said...

Dear PM of NZ
I have and had no intention of interfering with anyones property rights. I've merely commented on the appearence of a highly visible block of tussock land that has been sprayed with herbicide, resulting in a browned face to a slope that, in my opinion, was protected from erosion by the tussock cover. Should land owners (and I am one) be immune from criticism (positive or negative)? Are the public bound to silence, no matter what they see or think?
As for your claim that I'm promoting a 'farming is evil' meme amongst the children, you are quite wrong. Farming and land use of all sorts is my main interest and the focus of most of my activities day to day. I've promoted farming: horticulture, agriculture, aquaculture, permaculture, orcharding, vegetable growing, riparian planting and so on for years and years to school children. I was disturbed to see the results of this particular 'land management technique' and felt it was worth noting. I believe that feedback from the wider community is important where such large areas of land are involved and the potential effects of that management so significant to the wider community.
If the land owner wants to criticise my land management methods (many have) I'd be willing to debate publically or privately.

Anonymous said...

So what? Tussock was sprayed not humans!