Anyone with half a brain has known and often cringed when they see the 100% pure advertising claims. If they have travelled even a few kilometres they would see that this is simply not true. If they drove to a river where industry or big time dairy farming is the predominant factor then they would be doubly cynical about the claims. Check out the figures for faecal matter at many of our city beaches and they would not go swimming at times.
Along comes an honest guy who dares to question NZ’s ‘Greenness’ and what happens. Politicians call him an ‘economic traitor.’ I don’t. Perhaps it is most timely that he has reminded us of the falseness behind the claims we make about our environment. I am not saying that NZ is polluted to the extent of many other countries or that life is hazardous here or that we risk our health every time we go for a swim or drink from a mountain stream, but I am saying that it is about time that we woke up and owned that which is less than good.
Yes, New Zealand is a beautiful and outwardly green country but we have many aspects of our environment that need addressing. Only when that has been achieved, should we use that 100% claim and then we should back it up with the facts that such a claim requires. The claim has been silly to say the least from the beginning of the campaign. We would be much better off slowly forgetting it or at least pulling back from its ‘sanctimonious embellishment of what is not true.
Let’s embrace the words of the brave man who has brought this to our attention and move towards that position as the greenest country in the world. In the meantime, shall we just pretend to be hobbits living under mountains with fresh (not pure!) running streams and bathing our hairy little feet as we sit on a non-rock-snot encrusted boulder?