Monday, 5 September 2005

Privatising the land

This is what happens when you really value something: you don't ask for government help or ask them to get out the big stick, you just put you money where your mouth is.

A US conservationist has created a huge, private national park in Chile, to immense local opposition. It's a real-life example of what might happen if we sold NZ's national parks. I expect the land will be far better maintained than publicly owned parks, or what passes for New Zealand's conservation estate, and will include voluntary easements for access.

Speaking of NZ's 'conservation estate,' as the pamphlet says that upset Jeanette so much (how the truth hurts), the bureaucrats administering the estate have ensured:
  • Kiwi numbers are in serious decline due to ineffective predator control;
  • 77% of native species in decline;
  • 1080 operations have wiped out birdsong in many areas;
  • Millions of hectares of DoC-controlled land is going to ruin;
  • No possum or stoat control on 85% of the South Island estate;
  • And instead of private conservation initiatives the Greens wish to expand the conservation estate, push lease-hold farmers off the land, increase government control over conservation, and annul private property rights.
No wonder Jeanette got all septic at the chap who wrote the pamphlet. (Have a look at a video of Jeanette's attempt to 'confront' the pamphlet's author rather than argue the facts. It's hilarious.)

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