Kate Wilkinson - Asshole of the Week | The Jackal

22 Sept 2012

Kate Wilkinson - Asshole of the Week

Yesterday, Stuff reported:

New Zealand is the only country to vote against further protection for the critically endangered Maui's dolphins at the world's largest conservation summit.

A motion, aimed at stopping the extinction of the world's rarest dolphins and porpoises, including New Zealand's Hector's and Maui's dolphins, was put forward at the IUCN's World Conservation Congress in Korea last week.

Some 576 members, including governments and NGOs, voted for the motion. New Zealand is the only country to vote against.

Clearly all the other countries are able to comprehend the value of saving the Maui Dolphin and as a country that has an economic reason for increasing its chances at survival, New Zealand should have voted differently. Only 55 adult Maui Dolphins are left in the world and as such New Zealand has a moral obligation to do all we can to protect the endangered species.

In my opinion there should be no consideration to commercial fishing interests in the Maui Dolphins habitat. What is the worth of selling a few fish compared to losing a unique and iconic species? There is none... The Maui Dolphins extinction wouldn't just be a conservation disaster; it would impact on our clean green brand and ultimately cost us economically as well.

Our standing on the world stage will have been greatly reduced by the National government's continued ignorance of the evidence that shows protecting the Maui dolphin from fishing impacts is paramount to its survival. That's why every other country bar New Zealand voted the way they did at the IUCN World Conservation Congress in South Korea, the world's largest conservation meeting.

Conservation Minister Kate Wilkinson's reprehensible decision shows that National isn't interested in democracy and that makes them largely an illegitimate government. Nobody could successfully argue that the general public would support such a short-sighted decision... That means National isn't undertaking to properly represent the people's interests. Without a public mandate, National in many regards has lost its right to govern.

Election to power shouldn't allow a government to do anything it likes. Consideration must be given to New Zealand's interests, our environment and especially what the general public wants on any given issue. National has arrogantly ignored both the economic benefit and our conservation ideals by voting not to save the Maui Dolphin, and that makes them a bunch of assholes through and through.