27.6 C
Byron Shire
February 5, 2023

Bentley farmer cuts up Nationals membership card

Latest News

Natural history

While I have not the informed authority to confirm John Bradley’s musings on the birds that seem to be...

Other News

Pothole protest gets immediate results

Psst: want to get Council staff to do something about the appalling state of roads in your neighbourhood? Organise a...

Family and domestic violence leave comes into force tomorrow

New laws to provide 10 days paid Family and Domestic Violence Leave will come into force tomorrow for workers...

Environment law fails to protect threatened species

A University of Queensland finding says that the federal environmental laws are failing to mitigate against Australia’s extinction crisis.

Trove runs out of funding in June. How will the loss of the service affect Australian and Pacific research?

Most of Trove’s 22 million annual page visits come from members of the public: family historians, students, and general browsers interested in the six billion records it houses. But over the past 14 years, the archive has also become a crucial resource for academic work.

60 farmers blockaded Santos trucks and oppose CSG

More than 60 farmers blockaded Santos trucks on Saturday and police were called to a state forest near Gunnedah amid disputes over potential water extraction and fracking.

Oil spill on M1 near Byron, traffic backed up to Brunswick Heads exit

An accident on the M1 has brought southbound traffic to a standstill from the Brunswick Heads exit at Gulgan Road and Tweed Street.

Card carrying Nat, Bentley farmer Meg Nielsen says she has had enough. Photo Tree Faerie.

Eve Jeffery

As we count down the days to the pointy end of the New South Wales election, politicians and voters alike are saying what they really feel, in an effort to the steer the outcome.

One woman says she has had enough of the National Party. She’s cutting up her voting card, and her membership, in disgust over the party’s policies.

Having farmed in the Northern Rivers for 45 years, Bentley resident and card-carrying Nats member Meg Nielsen resigned from the National Party last week.

Meg says it was a conversation with Nationals candidate Austin Curtin outside last Monday that was the last straw.

‘I saw Austin outside the pre-poll and he asked me if I was going to stay with the National Party,’ said Meg. ‘My response to him was, “are you going to change your policies?”‘

Mrs Nielsen says she told Mr Curtin that all of the current National Party polices are damaging to the Earth.

‘I can’t support any party that doesn’t put the Earth first. It has to have policies to transition from fossil fuels to renewables, policies to protect our forests – stop logging the public native forests, stop coal and gas mining and protect the water.

‘Any party that hides behind the quoted terms “Biodiversity” and “Conservation” in the Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) and Integrated Forestry Operations Approvals (IFOAs), is either a fool or a liar,’ says Meg.

‘Now I hear the DPI [Department of Primary Industries] have done a deal with Japan to export our forests to be pelletized and burned for their electricity!’

To punctuate the scissor snip, Mrs Nielsen says she has composed a very long letter.

‘My resignation will not come as any great surprise to you,’ she wrote.

‘…This once great party which used to represent the interests of farming communities and the bush is now rife from top to bottom with fossil fuel lobbyists and only interested in serving the donors; totally abandoning farmers who rely on water resources and a stable climate to grow the nation’s food.

‘…I can no longer tolerate the National Party’s ignorance and arrogance, whether it be genuine ignorance or feigned in order to support the vested interests of the lobbyists and donors. Either way, I’ve had enough.

Yours Sincerely,

Meg Nielsen, Bentley NSW.’

Mrs Nielsen was seen at the Lismore pre-poll last week, handing out how to vote material for another party.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


  1. Good article! It’s time to call for a spade and bury the Nationals.The choice now is between progressives and regressives.

  2. Good on Meg great letter from the heart and the world’survives of the planet nothing else matters. The modern child is more aware than the liberals and nationals.

  3. Good on you Meg! Obviously a thinking person. I don’t know why anyone would still vote for the Nationals. What have they ever done for this electorate, apart from throw money around at election time? They and the corporate buddies they serve are destroying our future. The majority of Nationals voters seem to have one foot in the grave, so maybe that’s why they don’t care about the future of our planet. But surely they must have children and grandchildren they care enough about to want to leave them a healthy world to live in? They need more to look forward to than oceans full of plastic, dead rivers, climate that’s incompatible with life, clear-felled forests, extinct wildlife, un-rehabilitated mine sites.

  4. The Nat’s are the true environmentalists – they have supported farmers more than any other party for a longer time – the land keeps producing and feeding our population as farmers know best how to manage their land – not the city elites that dominate green votes in inner city Sydney and Melbourne…
    When will the greens tell farmers to quit using “fossil fuels” like petrol and oil to run their tractors??? It is only a matter of time until they want to impose the amish lifestyle for everyone…

    • We need to use fossil fuels only where other energy sources cannot be used. The market is moving ahead of dinosaurs who don’t realise that.

      I hope voters send a clear message to Abbott, Morrison and all candidates who do not act to promote renewable resources.

    • Yo Nathan, have you not been paying attention. The farmers at the coalface ( oh dear, very poor choice off word ) I should have said actually on the land, know very well what the impact of Climate Change is all about. They are living it directly. As opposed to the National Party MP’s like Canavan, Joyce etc that just spruik Coal, Coal and more Coal. The National Party should rename itself…The National Coal Party….it is coal that The National Party now represents, the farmers have been abandoned. The most precious resource in the world is water. The river communities along the Darling have been thrown under a bus by Barnaby Joyce who when responsible for water allowed Big Irrigation to ‘thieve’ water. And who is now suffering as a result….farmers and communities. The National Coal Party is here to help…Big Coal and Big Irrigation.

    • Nathan, your comment doesn’t make much sense as our fantastic Green’s candidate is a local farmer.

      Just because any party once held certain values doesn’t mean we should blindly follow along forever. Times change and if the parties don’t, move on.

      Well said Meg, you are a beacon of hope and inspiration.

    • No Nathan Jones, the Nats aren’t the ‘true environmentalists’. Not unless your idea of ‘environment’ is bare, eroding hills, weed infested paddocks, degraded streams, clear-felled forests, CSG and coal mines…….Are the Nats looking after their farmer friends on the Murray-Darling? In the Pilliga? The Darling Downs? The Hunter?……the list goes on.

    • Farming practices have changed from the good old days.Farmers now use Bayer/Monsanto Roundup and other toxic weed killers,artifical fertilisers and turn the soil at least 9 times.There is no natural enrichment left in the soil.It is dead, no worms or insects.All corporate/government sponsored.When it rains the toxic runoff ends up in the local streams and rivers out to sea.This practice is Australia wide today.Might find pure water at the top of a snow mountain on our Great divide.

  5. Good one Meg.

    Conservation not exploitation is the only way out of the mess that capitalisation has managed to get us into.

    For the Earth!

  6. Good for you, Meg Nielsen. The Nats represent no-one but miners, corporate irrigators and trans-national agribusiness. It’s long past the time all farmers turned their backs on the Nats. After all, they abandoned you long ago.

  7. Wonderful Meg. And to Nathan, We did not move out of the stone age because we ran out of stone; we just developed better more efficient technology. I’m surprised you think that progressives want to return to some previous “dark ages”. It is they who have been in the forefront of change, usually for the better.

  8. Nathan Jones is trying to take Mandy Nolans job as a comedian. Too funny Nathan. Great to have some comic relief these days. 🙂

  9. “she told Mr Curtin that all of the current National Party polices are damaging to the Earth”. Oh ffs grow up..Good…maybe you can spend some time learning how to grow up and act your age. Don’t let the door hit ya on the way out..children leading children.

  10. I congratulate Meg on her enlightenment. I must ask the question though, is it the failure of current National Party Policy to properly address the real issues of today which is the basis of her, and other’s move away from the party? Or, is it the overdue realisation that this particular brand of politics is a one sided biased policy machine that has always been in existence to prop up a small part of the community at the expense of the larger majority.
    Good to see progression is not an ingrained ideal, but can actually be learned from education and information.
    Good on you Meg, and let’s hope the downward slide of regressive, conservative policy continues!

  11. An ‘Amish’ lifestyle suits me far better than
    a lot of the rat-bag futurism we seem to
    need today. There’s progress – an unstable
    word – that can mean just about anything.
    Think Cold War 2. I don’t want to live &
    breathe on the ‘dark side of the moon’.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Community advocacy

I am a small business owner of Byron Central Apartments. Tamara Smith MP has recently supported us on two separate occasions advocating effectively with...

Swivel by name, drivel by nature

The lack of authenticity of Byron Councillor, Mark Swivel, does not come as a surprise from this side of the fence. A well-to-do lawyer...

Land values rise

Your cover story on 25 January claims that land valuation rises could herald increases in Council rates. This is potentially misleading. A council’s total...

Go Thistles!

Lismore Thistles Soccer Club has launched the Thistles Acceleration Program, in the process becoming the city’s only player development academy.