On Thursday night I had the misfortune to watch a TV One News attack piece on the planned protest by farmers. It was very strongly implied that farmers are a threat to the environment and therefore must change their ways. The inference was that it is the farmers who are being unreasonable, not the government.
This was followed on Friday by an online article titled “Farmers around NZ protesting lack of consultation on environmental regulations” (Notice the subtle lie by admission. Farmers aren’t just protesting lack of consultation on environmental regulations. That’s just one of many things they’re protesting about, such as how they’re being treated by the government and the direction the country is heading in).
Thousands of farmers are expected to turn out across the country today, fed up with the flood of new environmental regulations being brought in.
[…]Organised by farming group Groundswell, they’re wanting the Government to change its approach to cleaning up land and waterways.
It comes after a wave of regulations to do with freshwater, indigenous biodiversity, vehicles and climate change.
[…]Central Otago farmer Jan Manson said that many from the rural community feel “rattled” by having been left out of the conversation around the regulations.
[…]She told Breakfast, people on the ground need to be consulted about what works for local communities on issues where change is needed.
[…]While environmentalists like Forest and Bird say the farming sector only has itself to blame for the new rules, stating many from the sector have been part of the consultation.
Forest and Bird head Kevin Hague told 1 NEWS yesterday that while many farmers are feeling anxious about the wave of change underfoot, the industry is at a “breaking point”.
“These particular changes have been developed in consultation with farmers and with environmentalists so there’s been good progress.
This is pure “Have you stopped hitting your wife?” stuff. The implication here is that farmers are a threat to the environment when no evidence is given to show that they are.
“If these are not the changes that farmers want to see, then let’s see their proposals which would achieve the same end as quickly.
The article is TVNZ trying to hide their bias by attempting to be “balanced”. The problem is in order for reporting to be “balanced”, both sides must have equal credibility. Here we just have the word of one side against another. Were farmers consulted? From reading the article we don’t know. If they were consulted, how extensively were they consulted? Were they consulted on the ute tax? And if they were consulted, how much were they listened to?
Farmers, the media are your enemy.
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