One is, of course, fully aware of the great advantages and boosts to the New Zild economy that have been provided by the industry formerly known as farming. For many years we rode on the butter boxlid and came away from the cream bowl with what can only be described as a self-satisfied smirk.
"But do things not change?" I hear you ask in your wavering revisionist voice."Does not the tide of history go in and out like a whatsit and the like" you conclude somewhat lamely having exhausted your marine metaphors.
And, yes, is the answer, unlike the raisin and mackerel slices in Mrs Miggins Pie Shop and Tractor Museum things do move on and up in a ever greatening arc of getting more gooder. Except maybe for dairying in this fair land where I have it on good Facebook authority 1/2 of the country thinks farmers want to kill them. This was news to me and startled many of my acquaintances who were unprepared for my accusations of "playing the victim card." As described on Facebook.
But now comes news of the Farming Fightback as 4100 good people in the area of the town known as Havelock North have fallen sick due to foolishly drinking the water that comes out of their taps or faucets as some "cheerful in their own way" folks call them.
Now, aside from the pros and cons of drinking contaminated water when you live in Havelock North due it being only slightly more exciting than cheesecloth, it is a very bad look to have so many people poisoned by their municipality. Bad form, what.
Gradually the story has unfolded. There are three bores for Havelock North (those of us who have been there frankly exclaimed "Yeah, right" at that) and two of them have never had any trouble in the way of hidden extras. Bore no.3 is, of course, the troublemaker and has had two former E.coli reports in 2012 and 2014. After each report the bores were chlorinated and BAD No.3 was not even used. "What's that?" you say thumbing through "Water Quality of Southern Hawkes Bay Towns: Why you should stick to straight Whiskey, 2nd ed." "Chlorinated? Surely this water is chlorinated all the time". There follows a long, embarrassing, silence.
Er, well, you see, there have never been any problems before, except for those two times and er, well. Is that a squirrel?
But those good folks of Havelock North who can venture more than 3 metres away from a toilet have been carefully and seriously advised of what is going on by their local government representatives. Well, basically, told to boil their drinking water and it's really tricky finding out who is to blame for the contamination of the water. So tricky, with two councils involved and there being no way of communicating between them beyond wandering puppet shows performing allegorical plays. Luckily the central Government leaped into the breach and the local MP went on National Radio to say that "Frankly, I am angry". Golly Moses that showed 'em.
How has the contamination occurred? You might well ask, since the aquifer is way down in the earth and has a hard sort of cap over the top of it. Scurrilous people have pointed out the explosion in population numbers for dairy cows in the region what with dairying being more profitable than cocaine, in Havelock North anyway. These people will be laughed out of decent society and told to get a flamin' life you Commies because a bit of cow poop never hurt no one and anyway, who's to say it came from cows??? Naughty old Microbiologists is who, they have confirmed that the most probable cause of the contamination are ruminant animals. Disturbingly, there are no camels in the Havelock North greater metropolitan area otherwise we could blame them and their nomad owners and feel all white victim privileged.
And here one puts on one's lab coat, turns to the camera and says "I think NZ should get prepared for more of this. Local governments are being disbanded by the central government which doesn't give a rat's arse about NZ, much of NZ is being turned into Cowshit Creek and we, collectively, have the brains of a flatworm".
Disclaimer removed on smack my head advice.