Word of the day

July 20, 2012

Concinnity –  studied elegance and facility; harmony or elegance of design especially of literary style in adaptation of parts to a whole or to each other; a balanced, graceful, polished quality, especially in a literary work.


Friday word fun

July 20, 2012

Beef + Lamb NZ is asking on Facebook, how many other  words can you make from: Beef and Lamb Quality Mark.

They’ve started with yum.


Rural round-up

July 20, 2012

Westland Milk Products Celebrates 75 years:

New Zealand’s second biggest dairy cooperative, Westland Milk Products, this week celebrates 75 years of being an indomitable ‘David’ in the ‘Goliath’ that is New Zealand’s dairy industry.

The Hokitika-based company, which also has an office and plant in Rolleston, will not only be looking to its colourful past this week, but also celebrating its future as a highly successful independent, award-winning dairy co-operative.

Dairy farming has been present on the West Coast for almost 150 years with the Hokitika Dairy Company formed in 1868. Other, often quite localised, dairy co-operatives followed. Westland Cool Storage and Dairy Company Ltd, Kokatahi Co-operative and Waitaha Co-operative formed the nucleus of the Westland Co-operative Dairy Company in 1937. Other Coast dairy companies folded or joined over the ensuing years, the latest being Karamea which joined the Westland Co-operative in 1987. . .

NZ just 11th on global food security index:

New Zealand sits at just 11th on the Global Food Security Index, dragged down by ranking 18th for quality and safety – and 16th for affordability.

However, it is seventh on the third criteria, availability.

The index found that the US, Denmark, Norway and France led the world in food security, thanks to ample supplies, high incomes, low costs for food relative to other expenditure and significant research and development concentrated on food production . .

Farm succession start the crucial conversation – Pasture to Profit:

The OneFarm (www.onefarm.ac.nz) Farm Succession Summit brought 80 NZ & International rural professionals together who all work with farmers on Farm Succession.

 It’s very important that these Farm Family Facilitators, Accountants, Consultants & Solicitors specializing in Farm Succession all work as a team rather than in isolation. 
ANZ Bank data suggests that most farmers believe it is a very important issue to be discussed, planned & implemented yet fewer than 10% have a Farm Succession Plan. . .

CRT reaches new heights:

New Zealand farmer-owned co-operative CRT has posted its best ever annual result, setting new heights in both turnover and operating profits in 2012.

Revenue growth of $200 million, (18%), was achieved to create a new record of $1.292 billion, while operating profit grew 55% to $13.149 million.

Chairman Don McFarlane announced that a record bonus rebate of $9.75 million would be distributed to shareholders. This was the biggest bonus distribution CRT had made in its 49 year history, and was consistent with recent years in representing 75% of the annual operating surplus. . .

Growing Green – Transformation of farming, forestry and fishing:

This not-to-be-missed event will explore whether the primary production sector needs to lift its game to maximize productivity and minimize its footprint.

Register now to secure your place!

One of our international speakers, Paul Gilding, will be introduced by Bruce Donnison, Group General Manager Global Sustainability at Fonterra Co-operative Group.

Paul will address the topic Feeding the world and saving the planet: can we do both? . . .

Potatoes NZ farewell key industry leader:

This week Potatoes New Zealand business manager Ron Gall announced his resignation after 22 years working with the industry representative.

His resignation from Potatoes New Zealand and Horticulture New Zealand will come into effect from 21 December 2012 and concludes one of the most distinguished industry careers undertaken by a horticulture business manager. . .

New Spokesperson for Soil & Health Association – Organic NZ:

The Soil & Health Association – Organic NZ have announced the appointment of Debbie Swanwick as their new spokesperson.

The Association has been in operation for seventy years advocating “Healthy Soil – Healthy Food – Healthy People” to create an organic New Zealand. It is the largest membership organisation supporting organic food and farming in New Zealand. . .

Quad sales continue to grow:

Figures just released by the Motor Industry Association show that quad bike sales for the first half of 2012 were up nearly 20% on the same period last year.

“These numbers confirm continuing strength in the agricultural sector”, said Mr Clive Hellyar, Manager of the Motor Cycle Division of the Motor Industry Association. “This is also evident in the two wheeled off road sector where the reduction in sales compared with 2011 is principally recreational off road bikes while two wheeled farm bikes sales are continuing at much the same level as 2011. Some of the growth in quad sales can also be attributed to an increase in the number of side by side quad vehicles which are used mainly in agriculture.” . . .


GIbbston Valley’s 25th harvest

July 20, 2012

Gibbston Valley Winery is celebrating its 25th commercial grape harvest with an anniversary dinner:

As part of the celebration and the company’s ongoing commitment to its local community, Gibbston Valley Winery is proud to announce that national charity Cure Kids will be the beneficiary of the night. . . 

Guest speakers on the night will include founding Gibbston Valley winemaker Alan Brady and current Gibbston Valley winemaker Christopher Keys, both of whom will sign the bottles going up for auction, making them real collectors’ items.

Mr Brady was first to plant and commercially produce wines in Gibbston Valley, harvesting pinot noir, pinot gris and a ‘dry white’ blend in 1987, while Mr Keys has been at the winemaking helm for the last six years.

Gibbston Valley Winery was one of the early pioneers of what became the ‘pinot noir phenomenon’, a wine that’s now the second-largest variety in New Zealand to sauvignon blanc.

Twenty-five years later, a dream run of weather producing high quality fruit has the winery predicting an outstanding 2012 vintage. . .

Over the years, Gibbston Valley Winery has won more than 300 national and international awards, helping put the Central Otago wine region on the map.

Thanks to the pioneering spirit of those such as Gibbston Valley Winery founder Alan Brady, the Central Otago region now has approximately 2000 hectares of vines and over 100 producers, and this year’s total harvest is expected to be about 7000 tonnes. . .

Alan Brady was one of Central’s wine pioneers and Gibbston Valley has led the way in combining fine wine and fresh food.

We’ve stopped for lunch at Gibbston several times on our way to or from Queenstown and usually pop in for a visit when we’re hosting friends from overseas.

Every meal has been delicious, complemented by the wine and the service which is always relaxed and professional,even when the restaurant is very busy as it often is.


Is affordable or wantable the problem?

July 20, 2012

When I first left flatting there wasn’t a great deal of difference between the house I lived in and my parents’ home.

The flat wasn’t as well built and the home was a bit bigger but it was just an ordinary three bedroom, one bathroom houses with few bells and whistles, as most houses were back then.

I was only renting but had I been looking at buying that’s the sort of house I’d have been looking at too.

Now the difference between what many young people are used to in their parents’ houses and what they can afford to buy as a first home is much greater.

Their parents probably started in modest houses, and only after saving a good proportion of the price for a deposit. Then by dint of hard work and saving upgraded to something  bigger and better.

It’s so much easier to go up than down and it’s understandable that people accustomed to designer kitchens, multiple bathrooms and other domestic comforts don’t want to do without them.

But it’s unrealistic for most young people to expect to start out where their parents finished.

Cactus Kate points out:

Until my generation (X) and younger realise that they cannot afford to live in the sort of homes in their 20’s and 30’s as their parents do in their 50’s and 60’s then housing affordability will always ultimately cause disappointment because somewhere and somehow we all want to own or rent a bigger home in a nicer area that we are stretched to afford.

Don Brash has a point about the supply of land on which to build impacting on prices .

Some towns and cities do have a land supply problem which pushes up the price.

But buyer expectations are also part of the problem.

If would-be home owners lowered their sights a bit and a little less demanding in defining what’s a wantable house they might find it’s a more affordable one.


Unions rule not OK

July 20, 2012

The Labour Party has agreed to constitutional changes which give unions even more power over it:

. . . Labour will adopt a similar approach to its international counterparts of an “electoral college” in which the MPs, party members and unions all get to vote.

For NZ Labour, that split will give 40 per cent of the vote to MPs, 40 per cent to members and 20 per cent to the trade union affiliates. . .

Trans Tasman points out:

. . . Labour and the teacher unions are largely the same body (and the change in the party’s way of voting for a leader announced this week, expanding it to members and to unions, is going to make Labour more, not less, beholden to the country’s school teachers).

How can a party with so little regard for true democracy in its own organisation expect to govern democratically?

Union rule and a constitution which makes some members more equal than others might be okay in the Labour Party but it is not okay for the country.


July 20 in history

July 20, 2012

356BC Alexander the Great, Macedonean king and conqueror of Persia, was born (d. 323 BC).

70 Siege of Jerusalem: Titus, son of emperor Vespasian, stormed the Fortress of Antonia. The Roman army was drawn into street fights with the Zealots.

911 Rollo laid siege to Chartres.

1304 Wars of Scottish Independence: Fall of Stirling Castle – King Edward I  took the stronghold using the War Wolf.

1402  Ottoman-Timurid Wars: Battle of Ankara – Timur, ruler of Timurid Empire, defeated forces of the Ottoman Empire sultan Bayezid I.

1656  Swedish forces under the command of King Charles X Gustav defeated the forces of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth at the Battle of Warsaw.

1712 Riot Act took effect in Great Britain.

1738  French explorer Pierre Gaultier de Varennes et de la Vérendrye reached the western shore of Lake Michigan.

1810 Citizens of Bogotá, New Granada declared independence from Spain.

1822 Gregor Mendel, German scientist, father of modern genetics, was born (d. 1884).

1864 American Civil War: Battle of Peachtree Creek – Confederate forces led by General John Bell Hood unsuccessfully attacked Union troops under General William T. Sherman.

1866 Austro-Prussian War: Battle of Lissa – The Austrian Navy , led by Admiral Wilhelm von Tegetthoff, defeated the Italian Navy.

1881 Indian Wars:Sioux Chief Sitting Bull led the last of his fugitive people in surrender to United States troops at Fort Buford, North Dakota.

1885  The Football Association legalised professionalism in football under pressure from the British Football Association.

1893 George Llewelyn-Davies, English Peter Pan character model, was born (d. 1915).

1898  Spanish-American War: A boiler exploded on the USS Iowa off the coast of Santiago de Cuba.

1902 Jimmy Kennedy, Irish composer, was born (d. 1984).

1903 Ford Motor Company shipped its first car.

1907 A train wreck on the Pere Marquette Railroad near Salem, Michigan killed thirty and injured seventy.

1917  World War I: The Corfu Declaration, which led to the creation of the post-war Kingdom of Yugoslavia, was signed by the Yugoslav Committee and Kingdom of Serbia.

1918  Cindy Walker, American singer, was born (d. 2006).

1919  Sir Edmund Hillary, New Zealand mountaineer and explorer, was born (d. 2008).

1921 Air mail service began between New York City and San Francisco.

1921 – Congresswoman Alice Mary Robertson became the first woman to preside over the US House of Representatives.

1922 The League of Nations awarded mandates of Togoland to France and Tanganyika to the United Kingdom.

1924  Teheran, Persia came under martial law after the American vice-consul, Robert Imbrie, was killed by a religious mob enraged by rumors he had poisoned a fountain and killed several people.

1925  Jacques Delors, French President of the European Commission, was born.

1926 A convention of the Southern Methodist Church voted to allow women to become priests.

1928 The government of Hungary issued a decree ordering Gypsies to end their nomadic ways, settle permanently in one place, and subject themselves to the same laws and taxes as other Hungarians.

1930 Sally Ann Howes, English-born singer and actress, was born.

1932  In Washington, D.C., police fired tear gas on World War I veterans part of the Bonus Expeditionary Force who attempted to march to the White House.

1932  Crowds in the capitals of Bolivia and Paraguay demanded their governments declare war on the other after fighting on their border.

1933 Buddy Knox, American singer and songwriter, was born (d. 1999).

1933  Vice-Chancellor of Germany Franz von Papen and Vatican Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli sign a concordat on behalf of their respective nations.

1933  In London, 500,000 marched against anti-Semitism.

1933  Two-hundred Jewish merchants were arrested in Nuremberg and paraded through the streets.

1934  Police in Minneapolis fired upon striking truck drivers, during the Minneapolis Teamsters Strike of 1934, killing two and wounding sixty-seven; Seattle police fired tear gas on and club 2,000 striking longshoremen, and the governor of Oregon called out the National Guard to break a strike on the Portland docks.

1935  A Royal Dutch Airlines plane en route from Milan to Frankfurt crashed into a Swiss mountain, killing 13.

1936 The Montreux Convention was signed in Switzerland, authorising Turkey to fortify the Dardanelles and Bosphorus but guaranteeing free passage to ships of all nations in peacetime.

1938    Dame Diana Rigg, English actress, was born.

1938 Natalie Wood, American actress, was born (d. 1981).

1940 – U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Hatch Act of 1939, limiting political activity by Federal government employees.

1941 Soviet leader Joseph Stalin consolidated the Commissariats of Home Affairs and National Security to form the NKVD and named Lavrenti Beria its chief.

1942  World War II: The first unit of the Women’s Army Corps began training in Des Moines, Iowa.

1943  Chris Amon, New Zealand racing driver

AmonChris19730706.jpg

1943  Wendy Richard, English actress (d.2009).

1944   World War II: Adolf Hitler survived an assassination attempt (known as the July 20 plot) led by German Army Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg.

1944  Franklin D. Roosevelt won the Democratic Party nomination for the fourth and final time at the 1944 Democratic National Convention.

1944   Fifty are hurt in rioting in front of the presidential palace in Mexico City.

1944 Attempt to assasinate Adolf Hitler at his Rastenberg headquarters as part of Operation Valkyrie.

1945 John Lodge, English musician (The Moody Blues), was born.

1945 The US Congress approved the Bretton Woods Agreement.

1946 World War II: The US Congress’s Pearl Harbor Committee said Franklin D. Roosevelt was completely blameless for the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and called for a unified command structure in the armed forces.

1947  Police in Burma arrested former Prime Minister U Saw and 19 others on charges of assassinating Prime Minister U Aung San and seven members of his cabinet.

1947 – The Viceroy of India said the people of the North-West Frontier Province overwhelmingly voted the previous day to join Pakistan rather than India.

1948  U.S. President Harry S. Truman issued a peacetime military draft amid increasing tensions with the Soviet Union.

1948 Twelve leaders of the Communist Party USA were indicted under the Smith Act including William Z. Foster and Gus Hall.

1949 Israel and Syria signed a truce to end their nineteen-month war.

1950 Cold War: In Philadelphia, Harry Gold pleaded guilty to spying for the Soviet Union by passing secrets from atomic scientist Klaus Fuchs.

1951  King Abdullah I of Jordan was assassinated.

1953 Dave Evans, Australian singer (AC/DC), was born.

1953 Marcia Hines, American-born Australian singer, was born.

1954  Otto John, head of West Germany’s secret service, defected to East Germany.

1954 – An armistice was signed that ended fighting in Vietnam and divided the country along the 17th parallel.

1955 Jem Finer, English musician and composer (The Pogues), was born.

1958 Mick MacNeil, Scottish musician (Simple Minds), was born.

1959  The Organization for European Economic Cooperation admitted Spain.

1960 Ceylon elected Sirimavo Bandaranaike Prime Minister, the world’s first elected female head of government.

1960 – The Polaris missile was successfully launched from a submarine, the USS George Washington, for the first time.

1960  The head of the Physics Department at the Israel Institute of Technology, Kurt Sitte, was arrested for espionage.

1961  French military forces broke the Tunisian siege of Bizerte.

1964 Vietnam War: Viet Cong forces attacked the capital of Dinh Tuong Province, Cai Be, killing 11 South Vietnamese military personnel and 40 civilians (30 of whom were children).

1964 – The National Movement of the Revolution was instituted as the sole legal political party in the Republic of Congo.

1968  Special Olympics founded.

1969 Apollo Program: Apollo 11 successfully landed on the Moon.

1969 – A cease fire was announced between Honduras and El Salvador, 6 days after the beginning of the “Football War

1974 Turkish occupation of Cyprus: Forces from Turkey invaded Cyprus after a “coup d’ etat”, organised by the dictator of Greece, against president Makarios.

1976  The Viking 1 lander successfully landed on Mars.

1977 Johnstown was hit by a flash flood that killed80n people and caused $350 million in damage.

1982   The Provisional IRA detonated two bombs in Hyde Park and Regents Park killing eight soldiers, wounding forty-seven people, and leading to the deaths of seven horses.

1984 Officials of the Miss America pageant asked Vanessa Lynn Williams to quit after Penthouse published nude photos of her.

1985  The government of Aruba passed legislation to secede from the Netherlands Antilles.

1989 – Burma’s ruling junta put opposition leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest.

1992 Václav Havel resigned as president of Czechoslovakia.

1996  In Spain, an ETA bomb at an airport killed 35

1999 Falun Gong is banned in China, and a large scale crackdown of the practice is launched.

2000 – In Zimbabwe, Parliament opened its new session and seats opposition members for the first time in a decade.

2000  Carlos the Jackal sued France in the European Court of Human Rights for allegedly torturing him.

2001  The London Stock Exchange Group plc  went public.

2001  The 27th Annual G8 summit opened in Genoa and Carlo Giuliani, was shot by police.

2002  A fire in a discotheque in Lima, Peru killed more than 25 people.

2003  Sixteen people were injured after two bombs exploded outside a tax office in Nice.

2006 Ethiopian invasion of Somalia Ethiopian troops entered Somalian territory.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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