Word of the day

October 14, 2011

Nugatory–  of little or no value or importance, trifling; useless, futile; having no force, ineffective.

Bettors still backing blue

October 14, 2011

iPredict’s weekly update shows the grounding of the Rena has led to a weakening of support for National with increased support for Labour and the Green Party.

The Rena grounding has hurt National and helped Labour and the Greens, iPredict’s first weekly snapshot since the disaster suggests. According to the online predictions market with its 5000 registered traders, National’s forecast party vote has plunged from 50% last week to just 46% this week, potentially costing it five MPs compared with last week, while its Bay of Plenty MP, Tony Ryall, is now expected to suffer a reduced majority. Labour is up from 28.5% to 31.0%, which would give them 39 MPs, while the Greens are also big winners from the disaster, increasing their forecast party vote for the fifth week in a row to 11.1% which would deliver them 14 MPs.

The decline in support for potential coalition partners – Act, United Future and the Maori party, makes it likely National would have to do better than it did in 2008 to retain power. However iPredict is still forecasting the party would be able to govern with just one coalition partner.

Forecast party vote shares are now: National 46.0% (down from 50.0% last week) Labour 31.0% (up from 28.5% last week), the Greens 11.1% (up from 10.7% last week), New Zealand First 4.7% (up from 3.6% last week), Act 3.1% (down from 3.2% last week), UnitedFuture 1.6% (up from 1.1% last week), the Maori Party 1.2% (down from 1.4% last week), the Mana Party 1.1% (up from 1.0% last week), the Conservative Party 1.0% (up from 0.9% last week), and the New Citizen Party 0.5% (steady).

Based on this data, and the electorate results above, Parliament would be as follows: National 58 MPs, Labour 39 MPs, the Greens 14 MPs, Act 4 MPs, the Maori Party 3 MPs, UnitedFuture 2 MPs, and the Mana party just 1 MP. There would be 121 MPs, requiring a government to have the support of 61 MPs on confidence and supply. John Key’s National Party would be able to govern with any one of the Greens, Act or Maori Party.

Given New Zealand First’s proximity to MMP’s 5% threshold, iPredict has also analysed what might happen should New Zealand First win 5.0% of the vote. Under this scenario, Parliament would be as follows: National 56 MPs, Labour 37 MPs, the Greens 13 MPs, New Zealand First 6 MPs, Act 4 MPs, the Maori Party 3 MPs, UnitedFuture 2 MPs, and the Mana Party just 1 MP. There would be 122 MPs, requiring a government to have the support of 62 MPs on confidence and supply meaning John Key’s National Party would require the support of the Greens, or Act and one of the Maori or UnitedFuture parties.

Punters betting through Centrebet are still putting their money on a National win.

Money is continuing to come in hard for the National Party government to win the November 26 NZ election, bets in the last few hours include $10,000.00 and $3,000.00 at $1.11!

“It’s seemingly all one-way traffic now, with National into a hot $1.09 favourite, and embattled Labour out to $7.00,” Neil Evans said.

“This is obviously the biggest the Opposition has been since the head-to-head betting market was launched at the start of the year!”

Both Australian and NZ-based punters are taking the short odds on National, which now holds 92% of the stakes!

But there is still a month and a half until the election and as David Farrar pointed out in his Herald column events can undermine support for even a very popular government.


October 14, 2011

13/15 in Stuff’s kids’ quiz.

Centrewood Spring Fete

October 14, 2011

Last year’s inaugural Centrewood Spring Fete lived up to its promise of quality stalls, delicious food and fine wine.

This year’s, which is being held tomorrow, should be at least as good:

There will be plenty of entertainment for the children with Punch and  Judy performed by natural magic. The Nor’Wester Morris  Dancers will dance round the Maypole in the gardens.

For the adults, there will be a fashion show by  Smith & Boston of Christchurch and superb local vocalist Vanessa  Kelly will entertain the crowds with Jazz and Blues on the  lawn.

Foodies will have plenty to get their teeth into with seasonal  products from the Food Hall – including a food  demonstration by Alison Lambert of  Dunedin.

Within the established gardens of this first class venue, shoppers  will be presented with superior, quality products from a selected group of fabulous stallholders.

Centrewood Estate, an historic house set in beautiful established gardens, is a short distance from Waimate in South Canterbury.



October 14, 2011

8/10 in NZ History Online’s quiz.

Friday’s answers

October 14, 2011

Thursday’s questions were:

1. Who said: “Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life has not. In some schools they have abolished failing grades; they’ll give you as many chances as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING.”

2. Who has just resigned as coach of the Silver Ferns, who has replaced her?

3. What is Spinacia oleracea more commonly known as and who ate it for strength?

4. It’s espoir in French; speranza in Italian, esperanza in Spanish and awhero, wawata or manawa ora  in Maori, what is it in English?

5. Where was Richie McCaw born and where was his childhood home?

Points for answers:

Andrei got three, a general okay though not sepcific for #5, and a bonus for good memory.

James got three and a half.

David got three and a bonus for added information.

PDM got two witha  obnus for could-have-been for #1 and fair comment for #5

GD got 4 with a near-enough by giving more than required to get a point for #5 plus a bonus for extra information which wins this week’s electronic bag of black jelly beans.

Paul got three and a near enough for #5 with a bonus for trying with #1.


Answers follow the break:

Read the rest of this entry »

Stomach knotted, brow knitted

October 14, 2011

Is a knotted stomach an inner luck-bringing contortion in the nature of the outer display of digit crossing?

If so, we should be right because the nation’s stomachs are knotted and brows knitted too as an extra precaution.

That doesn’t mean we can relax though, because any unknotting of stomachs, unknitting of brows and uncrossing of digits could be tempting fate and fate has a way of acting capriciously enough without any encouragement from us.

If none of this makes sense – pop over to read Jim Hopkins’ diary of a column and see if that helps.



%d bloggers like this: