Word of the day

February 8, 2013

Cheeky – impudent or irreverent, typically in an endearing or amusing way; slightly rude or showing no respect, but often in a funny way;impertinently bold.


Hakwesby tribute to Holmes

February 8, 2013

Newstalk ZB paid its final tribute to Sir Paul Holmes by broadcasting his funeral service live and commercial-free.

I was driving home from Christchurch and was moved by the tributes paid by his friends.

Among them was John Hawkesby. TV3 has the  video here.

TVNZ has extracts for that and other tributes here.

 


Labour/Green crocodile tears

February 8, 2013

It’s the Opposition’s job to oppose and the Labour and Green parties are particularly good at opposing any initiatives that will lead to investment, growth and jobs:

Once again the hypocrisy of the Labour-Greens opposition is exposed by their criticism today of the need to welcome new business investment in New Zealand, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce says.

“Both parties have made it clear that they oppose ‘hands-on’ decisions made by this Government to encourage both domestic and international investment for jobs in the New Zealand economy,” Mr Joyce says.

The list of areas where they have opposed investment separately or together is long and varied. It includes:

• Opposed law changes to allow the Hobbit movies to be produced here
• Opposed resource management law changes to speed up investment decisions
• Opposed the plans to build the Auckland Convention Centre
• Opposed oil & gas exploration on the East Coast
• Opposed hydraulic fracturing
• Opposed the investment by Haier in Fisher & Paykel Appliances
• Opposed speeding up Bathurst Resources consents at Denniston
• Opposed Chinese investment
• Opposed international investment generally
• Opposed tax changes to encourage productive investment
• Opposed increased irrigation and intensification of agriculture
• Opposed moves to lessen the ETS costs on trade-exposed businesses

“Every one of these Government moves, and others, are designed specifically to help grow more jobs in New Zealand for New Zealanders,” Mr Joyce says.

“If we want more jobs in New Zealand, we must be prepared to encourage more investment in this country by both domestic and international investors.

“The Prime Minister has made it clear New Zealand needs to become a magnet for new investment to grow jobs and incomes for New Zealand families. I invite opposition parties to join in with that aim.”

IF the Labour/Green opposition to progress which is only talk is bad, a Labour/Green government which could enact their tax and spend, anti-investment, anti-growth, anti-jobs policies would be far, far worse.


Friday’s answers

February 8, 2013

Thursday’s questions were here a an entertaining, educational and eclectic bunch they were.

Alwyn wins the electronic jam for stumping everyone.

That’s assuming the answers given to other questions were correct, if not, the poser can collect the jam by leaving the answer in the comments here.

Rob, whose question would go well on Matinee Idle/Idol is right. That Andrei deserves jam too, and a spot on QI.


No remorse

February 8, 2013

Lucy Lawless has declared her sentence for boarding a drilling ship a total victory.

She shows no remorse.

Perhaps the $650 fine and 120 hours community service, which is a pretty light sentence, just reinforces her apparent conviction that doing wrong is justified if you think you’re Regard regardless of the risks and costs to others.


Like bad old days

February 8, 2013

We’re now nearly three decades from the bad old days when farming was governed by subsidies.

Farmers in other parts of the world haven’t made the tough but necessary change to standing on their own feet.

Among them are the Welsh whose reliance on subsidies is behind their plea for Britain to stay in the European Union:

Welsh farming could be ruined if the UK leaves the European Union and its common market, warned Farmers’ Union of Wales president Emyr Jones.

Speaking at a FUW lunch at the Houses of Parliament on Wednesday (30 January), Mr Jones said 80% of Welsh farm income was dependent on payment support from the European Union and access to EU markets, a sum worth up to half a billion pounds. . .

Market access from free trade among member states is one of the EU’s strengths but political union isn’t the only way to get rid of trade barriers.

The subsidies are one of its big weaknesses.

Subsidies encourage inefficient farming, add costs to both tax payers and consumers, and blind producers to market signals.

Farmers here used to be heavily subsidised. The abrupt introduction to the real world by the reforms of the 1980s was painful but necessary and no good farmer would want to go back to the bad old days.


Herstory of Waitangi

February 8, 2013

Trans Tasman has suggests the history of the Treaty of Waitangi might be being re-written as a herstory:

There’s a generation of school kids growing up under the impression the Treaty of Waitangi was signed between Governor Hobson and Titewhai Harawira.

This is not so much an indictment on our school system: more on the way Harawira manages to plant herself at the epicentre of our annual national day.

It isn’t clear quite how this happened. True, she managed to make Helen Clark cry, and for some of us there’s always a hope Titewhai – who has become a sort of Kiwi version of a fierce Wodehousian aunt as imagined by one of the more bizarrely gothic Dutch painters – would have a similar impact one of Clark’s successors. There doesn’t seem much chance with the current lot.

If she were to try such a stunt today, John Key would either declare himself relaxed about it, or just have one of his memory lapses. Labour’s David Shearer probably would not notice, unless a staffer or his autocue told him about it. NZ First’s Winston Peters and Act’s John Banks would respond with inarticulate belligerence, and United Future’s Peter Dunne probably with a milder, if more articulate, form of same.

The only ones discombobulated would be Green co-leaders Russel Norman and Metiria Turei: they are more used to being part of protests than being on the receiving end of them.

So what does Waitangi Day, our national day, tell us about ourselves – you know, apart from the fact we are suckers for being bullied by stroppy old ladies?

Well, we’re still working on this treaty stuff, and we’re not very comfortable about the whole race issue. But also we’re not ignoring it and we’re kind of muddling our way through it all, if a little noisily and apologetically.

Apropos of understanding the history of the treaty, I have to confess that I went through school under the impression it ended the land wars.

It was only when I did a New Zealand history paper at university that I learned that wasn’t the case.


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