Word of the day

May 8, 2011

Matripotestal – of or pertaining to the authority exercised by a mother or a mother’s blood relatives; maternal control.


7/10

May 8, 2011

7/10 in  Stuff’s  Biz Quiz.


Rural round-up

May 8, 2011

 Go Mr McGill – rivettingKate Taylor writes:

Good news and another step up the politicial ladder for my friend Paul McGill.

 Current Nuffield Scholar, former Kellogg’s Scholar, convenor of this year’s Grand Final of The National Bank Young Farmer Contest in Masterton….. he’s now also president of Wairarapa Federated Farmers. . .

The price of milk – Claire Browning on food security:

The true price of milk is its cost, in distracting us from the bigger issue: what policy and regulation is needed, to secure quality food for ordinary — all — New Zealanders

Why assume milk guzzling is such a good thing? Why should it not cost, since it does? . .

Focus on farm jobs educators urged – Mark Hotton writes:

The public perception of agriculture and other primary industries must change to make them more attractive to Southland’s brightest young people, high school heads of department were told yesterday.

In a presentation designed to encourage teachers and career advisers to recommend careers in primary product industries to students, Lincoln University lecturer Dr Jon Hickford said Southland’s economy was heavily reliant on the rural sector so it was vital skilled people were being encouraged into the industry.

There was a real need to encourage young people into the sector because that was where the province’s wealth was being generated, he said.

Hat tip: Tony Chaston who wrote:

It is ironic this story broke on the same day the government announced a $55 million youth employment, and job training package aimed at building the skills of our young people for the future.

This site last year expressed concerns about lack of funding at Lincoln University to allow agricultural lecturers to properly cover the three areas of teaching, extension and research. Following  up on these issues it appears a significant turnaround has been achieved and new appointments should improve the quality of that service.Thats good news but how much of that $55million will be directed to agriculture I ask? . .

Red meat strategy shows a path to sustainable sector profitability – Beef+ Lamb NZ;

The Meat Industry Association (MIA) and Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) have today released the Red Meat Sector Strategy with the Prime Minister, the Rt Hon John Key and the Minister of Agriculture, the Hon David Carter. The strategy reflects broad recognition of the underlying challenges to the sector’s sustainable profitability, but also clearly identifies the opportunities for the sector to realise its full potential and continue to be a principal driver of New Zealand’s economy.

“While the sector currently generates nearly $8b annually in export earnings and forms the basis of the visual and social landscape of New Zealand, over time its profitability has been inconsistent and often unsatisfactory, as is reflected by conversion of sheep and beef farm land to other uses such as dairy farming and forestry,” said Mike Petersen, B+LNZ Chairman.

In this context, MIA and B+LNZ initiated the development of this sector strategy – with unprecedented input from the sector and underpinned by extensive data and in-depth analysis by Deloitte – to identify ways of achieving sustainable profitability and promote re-investment in the industry. . .

Largest in the world – from Rural News:

 THE NEWLY-OPENED New Zealand Ruminant Methane Measurement Centre (NZRMMC) is the largest purpose-built facility of its kind in the world.

Opened last week by Agriculture Minister David Carter the Palmerston North-based facility provides New Zealand scientists with an opportunity to accurately measure methane emissions from more than 25 ruminant animals at the same time. . .

Locals can’t rival Crafar bid – Richard Rennin in NZ Farmers Weekly writes:

Despite increased confidence in the dairy industry it looks unlikely individual sales of Crafar farm properties would raise more than if they are sold as one.

` The prospect of another Chinese company bidding for the 8000ha Crafar portfolio has had local farmers like Raetihi’s Gerry Dekker asking why the farms could not be sold off individually.

Dekker’s concerns, expressed in a letter to The New Zealand Farmers Weekly, have been echoed by Federated Farmers dairy head Lachlan McKenzie. . .

Farming families honoured – Helena de Reus writes:

Families who have owned the same farm for more than a century will be honoured at the New Zealand Century Farm Awards in Lawrence next Saturday.

Twenty-two families from around the country will attend the official function at the Simpson Park complex, with four receiving sesquicentennial awards (150 years). . .

Passion for High Country and painting – Sally Rae writes:

 High country artist Norman Sinclair is looking forward to a trip to the Waitaki Valley next week.

Not only is he having an exhibition at the Kurow Museum – coinciding with the South Island sheep dog trial championships at nearby Hakataramea – but he will also fit in some duck-shooting in the Hakataramea Valley. . .


Don’t give up on the children Kerre

May 8, 2011

Friends had a celebration for several milestones at Easter – they are both turning 60 this year and his father will be 90.

All his parents’ descendents were there- children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. A few close friends had the pleasure and privilege of joining them for a barbeque on the Sunday evening.

Next day our great niece and great nephew (aged 9 and 10 months respectively) came to have lunch with us. They brought their parents, grandparents and an aunt.

On both occasions I looked at the children, recognised the love and support which surrounded them and wondered how it could be any other way.

Just a few days later news broke of yet another baby killed as a result of  “non-accidental” injuries. That’s what you and I would call deliberate abuse and it’s something with which New Zealand is sadly all to familiar.

Kerre Woodham blames the mothers:

. . .  let’s turn the spotlight on those mothers who are abject failures. All those mothers who haven’t got a clue who their children’s sperm donors were. All those mothers who have children because they get paid to – and, let’s face it, they wouldn’t get paid to do anything else. Those mothers who stay with men who hurt them and their kids because they’re so pathetic and useless that any shag – even when it comes with a biff – is better than being alone.

This Mother’s Day, I would plead that every mother who has had a child that they don’t care about or can’t cope with gets the help that they need.

If they can’t cope with the children, ring family – or ring the Cyfs helpline if they can’t trust their families.

If they’re in an abusive relationship where they’re being harmed and their children are being indelibly scarred, again, seek the help of family and friends or seek the help of the multitude of agencies that are there for you.

I appreciate that breaking the cycle is difficult if you’ve always been the victim, but come to terms with what being a mother is. My definition, and that of all the mothers I know, is to love your babies and keep them safe. And yet so many women in this country fail at the job of being a mother.

It’s not that simple.

A friend met a young, unmarried mother through sport. She’d grown up in a violent home and deliberately got pregnant when she was 16 so she could get away from home.

What does it say about her home and her life that education and work didn’t appear to be options that would give her independence; and that pregnancy and bringing up a child on a benefit were the only way she could see to have a better life?

If “normal” isn’t the love, support and encouragement of extended family; if your sense of self-worth is so low that violence and abuse are better than life alone; if your experience and personal resources are so limited you can’t see any opportunities for change and improvement you simply don’t know there is a better way for yourself and your children.

Kerre’s had enough:

When you look at the hundreds of thousands of dollars being spent by desperate women going through IVF procedures to become mothers, and the millions of dollars being spent by the taxpayer because dumb, stupid, needy, dysfunctional slappers are failing at being mothers, surely even Christians must wonder if there’s a god.

I’ve been writing columns and banging on on talkback for more than 13 years about this and I am so, so sick of railing against the abomination that is child abuse in this country.

So this will be my last column on the subject. What I do is utterly futile. . .

No it’s not. Words aren’t enough but they are something.

Radio is a powerful medium.  Who knows who might be listening, a mother or child, someone in the wider family, a neighbour, someone, anyone who knows something untoward is going on and who might then be prompted to seek help.

As  Lindsay Mitchell says:

 Fight back and keep fighting. Not for a return to the past but for a new approach. Women today have so much more opportunity. They don’t need these state crutches which if anything turn them into victims rather than empowered beings.

Take a breather and wait for the energy to return. It will.

Edmund Burke said all it takes for evil to succeed is for good men to do nothing.

Child abuse is evil. Talking about it, by itself, won’t stop it. But if we don’t talk about it, keep saying it isn’t normal and condemn it we will be admitting defeat.

If  people who know what’s wrong give up, we’ll be abandoning children to those who don’t know what’s right.

UPDATE: Dim Post suggests:

She could educate herself on the numerous policy solutions to the problem of child abuse and advocate for them. I’ve written before about how identifying at-risk children and funding home nurse visitations has a huge impact on child abuse rates, in addition to other negative outcomes. If someone who had, say, a weekly column in a major newspaper wrote about projects like that they might effect some real change.


5/10

May 8, 2011

One better than last week – 5/10 in the NZ History Online quiz.


Ducks don’t know date or law

May 8, 2011

Ornithologist Andrew Crossland reckons ducks don’t know the date.

The Press (not online) reports him saying that 25 years of data from the Avon River, Brooklands lagoon and Bromley oxidation ponds which are closed to hunting, showed no notable increase in ducks in May. He thinks any increase in ducks in public gardens is because of an abundance of acorns not fear of hunters.

I can’t argue with his data but it doesn’t explain the behaviour of the ducks on our irrigation dam.

In late April and early May the duck population on the dam increases and they get more flighty. At other times of the year they don’t take much notice when I walk past but in the lead-up to the opening of the duck shooting season they take flight.

That doesn’t show they don’t know the date, but it does show they don’t know the law. It’s illegal to shoot ducks on the water. They’d be a lot safer if they stayed put.


Thanks Mum

May 8, 2011

Thanks Mum,

No-one talked about role models when I was growing up but I appreciate now that I had such a good one in you.

Thanks for that and so much more.

Thanks for being gentle, kind, patient, selfless and wise.

Thanks for teaching me right from wrong not just by what you said but even more through what you did and how you did it.

Thanks for setting me boundaries and, although I wouldn’t have appreciated it at the time, thanks too for making me face the consequences when I crossed them.

Thanks for showing restraint and thanks for showing there’s a time and place for righteous anger.

Thanks for forgiving and forgetting.

Thanks for listening  and thanks for not judging.

Thanks for showing me it is important to know what you believe in and  to work for what you want.

Thanks too for the optimism and encouragement, for believing in me and helping me believe in myself.

Thanks for passing on your love of words, spoken and written.

Thanks for being able to appreciate little things, see the funny side of almost any situation and  for the wit and laughter.

Thanks for being generous – not just materially but also, and even more, with your energy and time.

Thanks for your strength and courage, for showing me that life can be for better not just in spite of but also because of the worse.

Thanks for the compassion.

Thanks for being there.

Thanks for the unconditional love.

Thanks most of all  for being the mother and grandmother those of us who knew and loved you can aspire to emulate.


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