Now we know what happens when efforts to clean up the environment encounter somebody’s kaupapa.
We get a racial divide and shit hits the fan.
Alf can only record his bemusement as members of several groups – intent on protecting waterways from cow poop – consider how best to proceed.
They had been planning to take action on dirty rivers.
More than that, they had claimed to comprise a new environmental group and they were aiming (they said) to expose dirty dairying around the country.
The announcement was reported just a few days ago.
The Environmental River Patrol has forty volunteer members and says it will be monitoring New Zealand’s rivers, and taking photos of stock in the country’s waterways, and posting the information online.
Environment River Patrol spokesman James Muir says regional council’s are both underfunded and understaffed, so his group will be their eyes and ears.
Mr Muir says the group will be reporting the locations of stock in the country’s rivers.
This James Muir feller, as it happens, is also the director of an award-winning environmental film, River Dogs.
Mind you, that information comes from James Muir and Alf has no idea what River Dogs is about.
The Environmental River Patrol plan inevitably pissed off Federated Farmers, who warned that the group could add to problems if it makes ill-informed assumptions.
Federated Farmers spokesman Anders Crofoot says the majority of farmers are responsible, and told Radio NZ that it’s not helpful when people go into areas they don’t understand.
This is at odds with a MAF report in December 2011 which found that only 42 percent of Fonterra farmers have made the effort to fence their stock out of rivers.
The River Patrol mob will clean things up.
Or will they?
Next thing you know, the bloody do-gooders have run foul of a Millan Ruka and/or his kaupapa.
Ruka is distancing himself from his fellow fighters against the fouling of waterways.
And it seems he is laying claim to ownership of the organisation they thought they were joining or had joined.
A Radio NZ report explains that –
Mr Ruka spoke at a meeting in Wellington last weekend, about setting up a national network of river patrol groups.
But he has now asked those leading the meeting to resign from his organisation, Environmental River Patrol Aotearoa, saying they were not committed to following his kaupapa.
This report describes James Muir as a Coromandel film-maker and says he chaired the meeting.
He is quoted as saying a national network needs to be driven by the voices of the community, not by one person with total control.
But he says he has immense respect for Mr Ruka and hopes he will continue to advise the new network.
So what’s the difference between Ruka’s kaupapa and Muir’s way of tackling cow poopers?
We get a hint from the Radio NZ report.
Mr Muir says in contrast to concerns expressed by Mr Ruka, the organisers of the river patrol network will not be taking a confrontational approach to their task.
Ah. So Ruka apparently favours confrontation.
But not only is he confrontational with the producers of the dairy shit that is upsetting him.
He is confrontational, also, with earnest environmentalists who are keen to do something about it.
Mind you, he probably will say he is not being confrontational.
He will invoke his kaupapa which (has Alf got it right?) is knowledge that validates a Māori world view
… and is not only Māori owned but also Māori controlled. This is done successfully through te reo Māori, the only language that can access, conceptualise, and internalise in spiritual terms this body of knowledge…this Kaupapa Māori knowledge is exclusive too, for no other knowledge in the world has its origins in Rangiātea.
As such it is the natural and only source for the development of a mechanism which aims to transmit exclusively Kaupapa Māori knowledge.
This is another good example, Alf suspects, of what lies in store under the co-governance arrangements being encouraged by tossers who brandish the Treaty of Waitangi and refer to it as a blueprint for drawing up a constitution for the country.