Battle Hymn of the Baby Boomers


The thoughts expressed in this clip are not those of the poster – but it did make me smile.

German mag gets real


Brigitte, Germany’s highest circulation women’s magazine, is banning professional models  and will be using “real” women whose shapes and sizes are more like those of its readers.

The magazine’s editors said the move is a response to readers increasingly saying that they are tired of seeing “protruding bones” from models who weigh far less than the average woman.

I hope real women embrace this opportunity to show the fashion industry and media that’s what we want.

A fashionista interviewed during last month’s fashion week said designers use models to make their clothes look their best because that encourages people to buy them.

I don’t think she knows the market.

When I see stick-thin women I worry about their health and take no notice of the clothes, knowing that anything they wear wouldn’t go near me.

It’s time for the fashion industry and media to embrace real women, cellulite, bulges, wrinkles and all.

There’s nothing wrong with trying to look your best, but the fashion industry’s approach to unrealistic and unhealthy body shapes isn’t about looking your best. It’s thinly veiled misogyny.

Is this all there is to economics?


. . . “if you could teach a parrot to say the words ‘supply’ and ‘demand’ you could give it a mortar board and call it a professor of economics”.

This comment came from Barclays Bank agricultural specialist Martin Redfearn at  Tuesday’s HGCA outlook conference in London.

Hat tip Phil Clarke.



If the law is to respected there needs to be consistency in the consequences imposed for breaking it.

The abuse of power and trust by Phillip Field was serious and deserved serious consequences.

But it is difficult to understand why the crime he was found guilty of led to a sentence of six years in prison when people found guilty of violent crimes get lesser sentences.

The only consistency in this whole sorry saga is Labour’s refusal to say sorry for backing Field and obstructing attempts by then opposition Immigration spokesman Lockwood Smith to get to the truth.

There are times when Doing the right thing must always come before political considerations and party loyalty. This case is not just a sad reflection on Field, it’s also a very sorry reflection on his colleagues who defended the indefensible and set up the Ingram inquiry to fail.

This point is well made by Kiwiblog, Adolf at No Minister.

More food less carbon


One of the criticisms of carbon emissions’ policy is the impact on agriculture and the need to increase food production.

Trade and Associate Climate Change Minister Tim Groser discusses this in an article published in the Wall Street Journal.

Reducing agricultural emissions cannot be at the expense of food production, however. To feed the world, food production will need to double by 2050. This is the same time frame in which the science tells us global greenhouse gas emissions will need to be halved if we are to limit global warming to two degrees centigrade. Already the food system is struggling to feed the world’s population, and food security will always take priority over climate-change considerations.

Groser says there are commercial reasons for reducing emissions and that the Global Alliance which New Zealand is promoting could find the answer to growing food without growing emissions.

If it doesn’t any attempts to reduce emissions will have to exclude agriculture because the need for food today will always win against the good of the environment tomorrow.



Bulibahsa  by Witi Ihimaera is the story of a family feud.

One of the most memorable passages is a description of a shearing competition which is the most exciting sports commentary I’ve ever read.


dairy 10015

 Day 8 in the post a day for New Zealand Book Month challenge.

book month logo green

Deborah at In A Strange Land is reading My Cat Likes to Hide in Boxes by Eve Sutton, ilustrated by Lynley Dodd.

Feds vs Canada Geese


Federated Farmers say Britain’s declaration of an open season on Canada Geese should provide the impetus for New Zealand to classify the birds as pest.

“These fetid vermin defile crops, pasture, waterways and wildlife habitats,” says Donald Aubrey, Federated Farmers pest management spokesperson. 

“In Britain, the birds pose a similarly significant threat. The wildlife advice body, Natural England, has now given farmers troubled by the geese permission to kill them with a shotgun or rifle, or trap them in a cage or net from January 1 2010.

“Here in New Zealand, geese numbers are completely out-of-control and their excrement is having a serious impact on water quality and pasture growth. A single Canada goose produces more excrement than a sheep, with most of that ending up in our waterways.

Fish and Game has a statutory obligation to control the birds’ population but hunters aren’t making a dent in the rising numbers.

“In the South Island alone, geese numbers have climbed by an alarming 44 percent in just ten years. Fish and Game’s failure to publicly release the latest June count figures, as required under the South Island Canada goose management plan, is typical of its attempt to hide the pest’s increasing population figures.

“I’m sure South Island farmers who witness these ‘winged rabbits’ munching through hectares of feed within hours would very much like to see those figures.

“The Federation wants the Department of Conservation to go a step further than Natural England. We want Canada geese declared a fully fledged pest so farmers can destroy them without requiring an excuse.

Conservation Minister, Tim Groser, is considering the status of Canada Geese and is expected to release his final decision soon.

“I sincerely hope, for the good of the country, Minister Groser ensures this pest is correctly managed. At the very least, DoC should directly oversee Fish & Game’s management of the pest.”

“Farmers, environmentalists and the country’s airports no longer have confidence in Fish & Game’s ability to manage Canada geese. “

Britain has declared open season on ring-necked parakeets, monk parakeets from South America and Egyptian geese too on the grounds they pose some threat to wildlife, crops, public safety or public health, according to Natural England.

Dog laws to be reviewed


Farm working dogs are exempt from the law which requires canines to be microchipped.

The logical consequence of that is that there has been a very elastic application of the term working to many dogs in the country.

The exemption was a compromise when the law was changed as an emotional reaction to dog attacks on people. I suspect the generous interpretation of working  isn’t the only reason it hasn’t worked as intended.

Local Government Minister Rodney Hide has doubts about it too. He’s calling for a review of dog control laws and one of the reasons for that is he’s not sure about the cost-benefit analysis of microchipping:

Good law is not made on the basis of emotion. Good law is not made on the basis of unclear facts.

I am concerned that some key elements of the present dog laws were made in this way.

Microchipping and the dogs’ database provide some help to owners who lose their dogs, and assist councils in keeping track of dangerous or menacing dogs that are moved from area to area. We also get some useful data about dogs and their breeds that I hope the private sector accesses and makes use of.

But is it good value for money? Does it help us deal with the worst criminal use of dogs by gangs? I’ll be looking for real evidence in any review of our dog control laws.

This is a refreshing change from the emotion which drove the law change in the first place.

Hide says reviewing dog laws isn’t a priority but he expects a review to be carried out in 2011.

He’s also musing on licensing dog owners. I agree with goNZoFreakpower and Macdoctor who reckon that idea’s barking mad.

October 8 in history


On October 8:

1821 The government of general José de San Martín established the Peruvian Navy.

1895 Juan Perón, Argentinean President, was born.

1932 The Indian Air Force was established.

Ensign of the Indian Air Force
Ensign of the Indian Air Force

1939 Paul Hogan, Australian actor, was born.

1941 Stan Graham  shot dead three policemen, fatally wounded another two men and escaped into the bush.

1941 US civil rights activist Jesse Jackson was born.

1943 US actor Chevy Chase was born.

Chevy Chase at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival.JPG

1943 US children’s horror writer R.L (Robert Lawrence) Stine was born.

1978 Australia’s Ken Warby set the current world water speed record of 317.60mph at Blowering Dam.


Model of Spirit of Australia in which Ken Warby set the world water speed record in 1978 on Blowering Dam

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.

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