Griff Reece Jones sees poetry doctor


Happy birthday Griff Reece Jones.

Monday’s quiz


1. Which mountain’s name means the five treasures of the snows?

2. Who said: “Why was I a writer? Why hadn’t I gone in for soemthing easy like running the country?”

3. Who wrote the poem which begins A little piece of heaven fell from out the sky one day.It landed in the ocean not so very far away. . . and ends  . . . But that wouldn’t bring three million, seven hundred, and sixty eight people back. Would it?

4. What is a korimako?

5. What is New Zealand’s oldest daily newpaper and who was its first editor?

The subsidy myth


Business New Zealand has released a paper analysing claims that farms and other businesses will be subsidised by households under the proposed emissions trading scheme.

Chief Executive Phil O’Reilly says :

The subsidy myth is based on the mistaken belief that ‘households are good and business is bad’ and that business should be punished for any emissions.

“The truth is not so one-sided. In reality, we are all in this together. Businesses are consumer-driven, and consumers need to see a price signal on carbon in order for carbon emissions to be reduced.

“By making an early start on emissions trading we will be putting NZ export companies in a vulnerable position – they will have to compete against companies overseas that won’t be paying any carbon charges. Allocating carbon credits is simply a way of reducing that vulnerability in the short term, and is in the interest of all New Zealanders.

“Once other countries also adopt emissions trading that vulnerability will cease, reducing the need for carbon credit allocations. So, alarmist publications about ‘decades of subsidies’ are wrong in fact as well as assumption.

“Emotive statements about ‘bludging business’ have the effect of undermining confidence in emissions trading. They reflect an anti-business attitude that could harm our future prosperity.

“We have an altogether more positive view on how businesses and consumers can adapt to carbon pricing,” Mr O’Reilly said.

The Subsidy Myth paper is here.

One of the questions about the ETS no-one seems able to answer easily, is where will the money go? Paul Henry tried to get an answer from carbon credit expert Seeby Woodhouse on Breakfast this morning, but he wasn’t entirely successful.

If no-one can say where they money’s going how can anyone know if it will do any good?

Especially when, as Matthew Hooton pointed out in Friday’s NBR (print edition not online) that any government which seriously proposes paying a liability will be kissing re-election goodbye.

ECan review team announced


Environment and Local Body ministers, Nick Smith and Rodney Hide, have announced the members of the review teams to investigate Environment Canterbury’s poor performance.

Former Deputy Prime Minister Wyatt Creech, Doug Martin of MartinJenkins and Associates and independent consultant Greg Hill will look at ECan’s resource management performance.

Civil engineer Doug Lowe, consultant Julie Clausen and economist Alison Dalziel will look at the regional council’s governance, policy functions and relationships with other councils.

Did you see the one about . . .


Oh the things I learn . . . BK Drinkwater disproves the wisdom of crowds.

Florence Nightingale was a statistician Alison Campbell at Sciblogs posts on how the pioneering nurse won her case with numbers.

Also at Sciblogs: Visual illusions, change blindness and autism – Grant Jacobs asks how much of what we see is really there?

Philanthrocapitalism: How giving can save the world Take Part reviews a book that shows money does good.

Kitten demand exceeds supply – The Visible Hand applies economic theory to the pet market.

Incentives Matter: football helmet file – Anti Dismal finds trying to make sport safer may make it more dangerous.

Pies, cutting etc – Progressive Turmoil compares the market performance of comapnies in Australia & New Zealand.

APN chicken out – Cactus Kate reveals media impotency by financial decree.

Gotcha! TRM funding cut – Whaleoil claims another scalp.

And a new (to me) blog: Southern Squall – a gale of views from the south.

Whose tree is it?


The ODT reports that Dunedin property owners are waiting anxiously for the decision on an application to fell a tree.

It’s a 27m Sequoiadendron giganteum which could grow to 90m.

It’s a 1,000 acre tree on a 1/4 acre section which is causing problems for the property owners and neighbours.

But it’s listed as a significant tree which means its the council which decides on its fate, not the owners.

But whose tree is it?

Free trade with US tiny step closer


It might be only a tiny step with many giant steps needed before anything actually happens, but President Obama’s support for a Trans-Pacific Partnership is a welcome move towards a free trade agreement.

It follows last week’s the announcement of a New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, closer economic partnership (CEP).

It’s frustrating that so much time and energy goes into these country by country negotiations when it would be so much better to have a global agreement.

But bit by bit is better than nothing at all.


November 16 in history


On November 16:

1384  Jadwiga was crowned King of Poland, although she was a woman.

1532  Francisco Pizarro and his men captured Inca Emperor Atahualpa.

Ataw Wallpa portrait.jpg

1840 New Zealand officially became a British colony.

1896  Joan Lindsay, Australian author (Picnic at Hanging Rock), was born.

1914 The Federal Reserve Bank of the United States officially opened.

1938  LSD was first synthesized by Swiss chemist Dr. Albert Hofmann at the Sandoz Laboratories in Basel.

1940  the Nazis closed off the Warsaw Ghetto from the outside world.


The wall of ghetto in Warsaw, being constructed by German order in August 1940.

1945 UNESCO was founded.

1953 Griff Rhys Jones, Welsh comedian, writer and actor, was born.

Griff Rhys Jones IOW cropped.jpg

1973  Brendan Laney, New Zealand born Scottish rugby player, was born.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.


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