Going Home


Happy birthday Hank Marvin – 69 today.

Word of the day


Charientism – an artfully veiled insult; a taunt softened by jest.

Sentence of the day


“Problems are bad, and badness is wrong, so we should all do something random immediately in order to stop this wrong badness from causing problems.”
                                                                                   TimT at Will Type For Food.



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

Family’s grace an inspiration


It’s hard enough to accept the death of a child from illness when no-one is at fault. It must be so much more difficult to come to terms with it when it’s the result of someone’s actions even if they weren’t deliberate.

I am humbled by the grace shown by Emma and Duncan Woods towards Ashley Austin who lost control of his car and killed the Woods’ four-year-old son Nayan.

Emma Woods said she had forgiven Austin.

“Nayan was loved so much and is missed by many people. He loved to laugh and make everyone else laugh. We learned a lot from him and he will continue to influence us. It’s easy to raise voices in anger and condemn others for their mistakes.”

However she said mistakes were human nature and the family had forgiven Austin since they had got to know him since the incident.

The Wood have every right to be angry, even bitter. Instead, from the very early reports, they have shown inspirational grace and capacity for forgiveness.

Without that Austin would have almost certainly been jailed. Instead he’s been sentenced to six months community detention, a weekend curfew, 200 hours community service and a three year ban on driving.

Nothing the court could do would be worse than the knowledge that his actions led to the death of a child.

He has shown true remorse and some good can come from this tragdey if he lives in a different, better way than he would have. The  grace and forgiveness of the Woods family have given him an opportunity to do that.

Parker mistaken about Labour’s mistakes


David Parker has admitted he got something wrong:

Parker now says he approved too many land sales when he was Land Information Minister in the Labour government and that Labour “didn’t get it right on farm sales”.

That statement would have a lot more validity if he gave examples of which sales were a mistake and why. What are the new owners doing to their properties and its produce that makes him think the land would be better in New Zealand ownership?

He was concerned about the growing asset inequality in NZ. “Assets ought to be priced within reach of ordinary NZers.”

“Before the global financial crisis most successful bidders for Kiwi land were NZers, Parker said. Since the crisis there had been a significant change and the only way to sustain high prices was to sell on the international market, effectively shutting out the average NZer.

What he omits to say is that one of the successful bidders for a large amount of New Zealand farm land between 1999 and 2008 was the government which paid well above market rates for high country properties. Most notable was St James Station, which the Labour government bought for $40 million, plundering the Nature Heritage Fund in the process.

This is the mistake he ought to be admitting. While he’s doing a mea culpa he could admit the tax and spend policies his government practised were also wrong. They contributed to the blowout in bureaucracy and the housing bubble which contributed to asset inequality by putting urban property prices out of the reach of many.

With no evidence to support his statement on lands sales, he’s mistaken in thinking he made a mistake by approving too many. He’s  mistaken again in not admitting Labour’s mistake in paying far too much for high country farms and poor policies which put the productive sector into recession long before the global financial crisis.

October 28 in history


On October 28:

306  Maxentius was proclaimed Roman Emperor.

Maxentius02 pushkin.jpg

312  Battle of Milvian Bridge: Constantine I defeated Maxentius, becoming the sole Roman Emperor.

Dream of Constantine Milvius BnF MS Gr510 fol440.jpg

1510  Francis Borgia, Spanish duke and Jesuit priest, was born (d. 1572).

1516  Battle of Yaunis Khan: Turkish forces under the Grand Vizier Sinan Pasha defeated the Mameluks near Gaza.

1531  Battle of Amba Sel: Imam Ahmad ibn Ibrihim al-Ghazi again defeated the army of Lebna Dengel, Emperor of Ethiopia.

1538  The first university in the New World, the Universidad Santo Tomás de Aquino, was established.

1628  The 14-month Siege of La Rochelle  ended with the surrender of the Huguenots.

Siege of La Rochelle 1881 Henri Motte 1846 1922.jpg

1636  A vote of the Great and General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony established the first college in what became the United States, today known as Harvard University.


1664  The Duke of York and Albany’s Maritime Regiment of Foot, later to be known as the Royal Marines, was established.


1707  The 1707 Hōei earthquake caused more than 5,000 deaths in Honshu, Shikoku and Kyūshū.

1776  American Revolutionary War: Battle of White Plains – British Army forces arrived at White Plains, attacked and captured Chatterton Hill from the Americans.


1834  The Battle of Pinjarra  in the Swan River Colony – between 14 and 40 Aborigines were killed by British colonists.

1848  The first railway in Spain – between Barcelona and Mataró – was opened.

1885 Thomas Twyford built the first porcelain toilet.

1886  President Grover Cleveland dedicated the Statue of Liberty.

The Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor

1890 – New Zealand’s first Labour Day celebrations were held.

First Labour Day celebrations


1891  The Mino-Owari Earthquake, the largest earthquake in Japan’s history, struck Gifu Prefecture.

1893 Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6 in B Minor, Pathétique, received its première performance in St. Petersburg, only nine days before the composer’s death.

1903  Evelyn Waugh, English writer (d. 1966)

1918 Czechoslovakia was granted independence from Austria-Hungary marking the beginning of independent Czechoslovak state, after 300 years.

Flag Coat of arms

1918 – New Polish government in Western Galicia was established.

1919  The U.S. Congress passed the Volstead Act over President Woodrow Wilson’s veto, paving the way for Prohibition to begin the following January.

1922  March on Rome: Italian fascists led by Benito Mussolini marched on Rome and take over the Italian government.

1927 Dame Cleo Laine, British singer, was born.

1929  Black Monday, major stock market upheaval during the Wall Street Crash of 1929.


1936 U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt rededicated the Statue of Liberty on its 50th anniversary.

1940  World War II: Greece rejected Italy’s ultimatum. Italy invaded Greece through Albania, marking Greece’s entry into World War II.

Ethnos newspaper 28 October 1940.jpg

1941 Hank Marvin, English guitarist (The Shadows) was born.

1942  The Alaska Highway (Alcan Highway) is completed through Canada to Fairbanks.

1948  Swiss chemist Paul Müller was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his discovery of the insecticidal properties of DDT.

1954  The modern Kingdom of the Netherlands is re-founded as a federal monarchy.

1955   Bill Gates, American software executive, was born.

1960  Landon Curt Noll, Astronomer, Cryptographer and Mathematician: youngest to hold the world record for the largest known prime 3 times, was born.

1962  Cuban Missile Crisis: Soviet Union leader Nikita Khrushchev announced he had ordered the removal of Soviet missile bases in Cuba.

1965 Nostra Aetate, the “Declaration on the Relation of the Church with Non-Christian Religions” of the Second Vatican Council, was promulgated by Pope Paul VI; it absolved the Jews of responsibility for the death of Jesus, reversing Innocent III’s 760 year-old declaration.

1965 – Construction on the St. Louis Arch was completed.

1967  Julia Roberts, American actress, was born.

1970   Gary Gabelich set a land speed record in a rocket-powered automobile called the Blue Flame, fueled with natural gas.

1971  Britain launched its first satellite, Prospero, into low Earth orbit atop a Black Arrow carrier rocket.

Prospero X-3 model.jpg

1982 Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party won elections, leading to first Socialist government in Spain after death of Franco. Felipe Gonzalez became Prime Minister-elect.

1985  Sandinista Daniel Ortega became president of Nicaragua.


1995  289 people were killed and 265 injured in Baku Metro fire.

1998  An Air China jetliner was hijacked by disgruntled pilot Yuan Bin and flown to Taiwan.

2006  Funeral service  for those executed at Bykivnia forest, outside Kiev, Ukraine. 817 Ukrainian civilians (out of some 100,000) executed by Bolsheviks at Bykivnia in 1930s – early 1940s were reburied.

2007  Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner became the first woman elected President of Argentina.

2009 The 28 October 2009 Peshawar bombing killed 117 and wounds 213.

2009 – NASA successfully launched the Ares I-X mission, the only rocket launch for its later-cancelled Constellation programme.

AresIX patch02.svg

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

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