Word of the day


Knismeisis – light, feather-like tickling.

Applications wanted for rural leaders


Applications for next year’s Kellogg Rural Leaders’ Promgramme have opened.

Through residential workshops, seminars and individuals study over 11 months it develops emerging agribusiness leaders to help shape the future of New Zealand agribusiness and rural affairs.

Phase 1 takes place at Lincoln University from January 19 -29. Phase 2 from February to October requires particiapnts to complete their individual projects at home. Phase 3 from November 13 to 18 is held at Lincoln and Wellington.

The programme caters for up to 24 people who live and work in rural New Zealand in each intake. Applications close on October 18.

I did the programme in 1994 and while the formal sessions are very helpful, at least as much benefit comes from the friendships which develop and contacts made.



9/10 in this week’s Dominion Post political trivia quiz.

Undone by the dollars being spent on the military.

Milk price down 1.3%


The trade weighted price for all milk dropped 1.3% in Fonterra’s globalDairy Trade auction this morning.

Given that production is increasing in the USA, Euorpe and Australia that’s not surprsiing.

Anhydours Milk Fat went up 1.4%; Butter Milk Powder was up 2.8%; Skim Milk Powder dropped .9%; and Whole Milk Powder was down 2.1%.

Are you working while you sleep?


A court case last year ruled that IHC had to pay staff when they were on night shift.

That faced the charity with a $176m liability for wages as a result of which two of its subsidiaries –  Idea Services and Timata Hou – have been put into statutory management pending an appeal.

If the staff were on awake and on active duty, of course they should be paid. If they are woken and have to help any of the residents they are paid for a minimum of two hours.

But if the residents require no assistance and the staff sleep all night, are they really earning normal hourly rates of pay?

I don’t think so. In most of the houses they are there in case of accident, illness,other emergency or to assist residents when required and most aren’t required to do anything most nights.

It’s fair that they are paid to be there but not the same amount they’d earn if they were working all night unless they are not just on call but on duty..

This case has implications beyond IHC and other providers of residential care for intellectually disabled people. Rest homes, boarding schools, hospitals and any other workplaces where people are on call but not actually working could find they too are liable to pay night staff when they’re asleep.

October 6 in history


On October 6:

105 BC Battle of Arausio: The Cimbri defeated the Roman army of Gnaeus Mallius Maximus.

69 BC Battle of Tigranocerta: Forces of the Roman Republic defeated the army of the Kingdom of Armenia led by King Tigranes the Great.

68 BC Battle of Artaxata: Lucullus defeated Tigranes the Great of Armenia.

1600  Jacopo Peri‘s Euridice, the earliest surviving opera, received its première performance in Florence, signifying the beginning of the Baroque Period.


1683  William Penn brought 13 German immigrant families to the colony of Pennsylvania, marking the first immigration of German people to America.


1762  Seven Years’ War: conclusion of the Battle of Manila between Britain and Spain, which resulted in the British occupation of Manila for the rest of the war.

1769 Ship’s boy Nicholas Young received a gallon of rum and had Young Nick’s Head named in his honour for being the first aboard the Endeavour to spot land.

Young Nick sights land

1789  French Revolution: Louis XVI returned to Paris from Versailles after being confronted by the Parisian women.

1849  The execution of the 13 Martyrs of Arad after the Hungarian war of independence.


1854 The Great fire of Newcastle and Gateshead started shortly after midnight, leading to 53 deaths and hundreds injured.


1884  The Naval War College of the United States Navy was founded in Newport, Rhode Island.

1889  Thomas Edison showed his first motion picture.

1903  The High Court of Australia sat for the first time.

Australian Coat of Arms.png

1906  The Majlis of Iran convened for the first time.

Coat of arms or logo.

1908 Austria annexed Bosnia and Herzegovina.

1910 Barbara Castle, British politician, first woman to be First Secretary of State, was born (d. 2002).


1914 Thor Heyerdahl, Norwegian explorer was born.

1927  Opening of The Jazz Singer, the first prominent talking movie.

1928  Chiang Kai-Shek became Chairman of the Republic of China.

1930 Richie Benaud, Australian cricketer, was born.
Richie Benaud 1956.jpg

1939  World War II: The  Polish army was defeated.

1942 Britt Ekland, Swedish actress, was born.

1945 Billy Sianis and his pet billy goat were ejected from Wrigley Field during Game 4 of the 1945 World Series (see Curse of the Billy Goat).

1948 Gerry Adams, Northern Irish politician, was born.

1973  Egypt launched a coordinated attack against Israel to reclaim land lost in the Six Day War. The Ramadan War Yom Kippur War started at 2:05 pm that day.

1976  Cubana Flight 455 crashed into the Atlantic Ocean after two bombs, placed on board by terrorists with connections to the CIA, exploded. All 73 people on-board were killed.

1976 New Premier Hua Guofeng ordered the arrest of the Gang of Four and associates and ended the Cultural Revolution in China.


1976   Massacre of students gathering at Thammasat University in Bangkok, Thailand to protest the return of ex-dictator Thanom, by a coalition of right-wing paramilitary and government forces, triggering the return of the military to government.

1977  In Alicante, Spain, fascists attacked a group of MCPV militants and sympathisers, and one MCPV sympathiser was killed.

1977 The first prototype of the MiG-29, designated 9-01, made its maiden flight.


1979 Pope John Paul II beaome the first pontiff to visit the White House.

1981 President of Egypt  Anwar al-Sadat was assassinated.


1985  PC Keith Blakelock was murdered as riots erupted in the Broadwater Farm suburb of London.

1987  Fiji became a republic.

1995 51 Pegasi was discovered to be the first major star apart from the Sun to have a planet (and extrasolar planet) orbiting around it.


2000 Yugoslav president Slobodan Milošević resigned.


2000  Argentine vice president Carlos Álvarez resigned.

2002  The French oil tanker Limburg was bombed off Yemen.

2007 Jason Lewis completed the first human-powered circumnavigation of the globe.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

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