February 26 in history

26/02/2013

747 BC Epoch of Ptolemy‘s Nabonassar Era.

364 Valentinian I was proclaimed Roman Emperor.

1266 Battle of Benevento: An army led by Charles, Count of Anjou, defeated a combined German and Sicilian force led by King Manfred of Sicily who was killed.

1361 Wenceslaus, Holy Roman Emperor, King of Bohemia, was born (d. 1419).

1564 Christopher Marlowe, English dramatist, was born (d. 1593).

1658 Treaty of Roskilde: After a devastating defeat in the Northern Wars (1655-1661), King Frederick III of Denmark-Norway was forced to give up nearly half his territory to Sweden to save the rest.

1794 Christiansborg Palace, Copenhagen burnt down.

1802 Victor Hugo, French writer, was born (d. 1885).

1815 Napoleon Bonaparte escaped from Elba.

1829 – Levi Strauss, German-born clothing designer, was born  (d. 1902).

1844 Two Wellington lawyers, William Brewer and H. Ross, undertook a duel as the result of a quarrel that had arisen from a case in the Wellington County Court. When the two men faced off in Sydney Street, Brewer fired into the air but ‘received Mr. Ross’ ball in the groin’. He died a few days later.

'Pistols at dawn': deadly duel in Wellington
1846 William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody, American frontiersman, was born  (d. 1917).

1848 The second French Republic was proclaimed.

1852 John Harvey Kellogg, American surgeon, advocate of dietary reform, was born  (d. 1943).

1861  Nadezhda Konstantinovna Krupskaya, Russian revolutionary, Lenin’s wife, was born (d. 1939).

1863 U.S. President Abraham Lincoln signed the National Currency Act into law.

1866 Herbert Henry Dow, American chemical industrialist, was born (d. 1930).

1870 In New York City, a demonstration of the first pneumatic subway opened to the public.

1885 The Berlin Act, which resulted from the Berlin Conference regulating European colonization and trade in Africa, was signed.

1887 – At the Sydney Cricket Ground, George Lohmann became the first bowler to take eight wickets in a Test innings.

1909  Fanny Cradock, English food writer and broadcaster, was born (d. 1994).

1914 Robert Alda, American actor, was born (d. 1986).

1914 HMHS Britannic, sister to the RMS Titanic, was launched at Harland & Wolff shipyard in Belfast.

1916  Jackie Gleason, American actor, writer, composer, and comedian, was born (d. 1987).

1917 The Original Dixieland Jazz Band recorded the first ever jazz record for the Victor Talking Machine Company in New York.

1919 An act of the U.S. Congress established most of the Grand Canyon as the Grand Canyon National Park.

1928 Fats Domino, American musician, was born.

1928 Ariel Sharon, Israeli Prime Minister, was born.

1929 The Grand Teton National Park was created.

1932 Johnny Cash, American singer, was born (d. 2003).

1935 The Luftwaffe was re-formed.

1935 The Daventry Experiment, Robert Watson-Watt carried out a demonstration near Daventry which led directly to the development of RADAR in the United Kingdom.

1936 Adolf Hitler opened the 1st Volkswagen plant in East Germany.

1936 – In the February 26 Incident, young Japanese military officers attempted to stage a coup against the government.

1947 Sandie Shaw, English singer, was born.

1949 Elizabeth George, American novelist, was born.

1950 Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand, was born.

1952 British Prime Minister Winston Churchill announced that his nation had an atomic bomb.

1954 Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister of Turkey, was born.

1954 Ernst August, Prince of Hanover, heir to the deposed Kingdom of Hanover and a husband of Princess Caroline of Monaco., was born.

1955 Andreas Maislinger, founder of Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service, was born.

1958 Susan J. Helms, Astronaut, was born.

1966 Apollo Programme: Launch of AS-201, the first flight of the Saturn IB rocket.

1968  Tim Commerford, American bass player (Rage Against the Machine), was born.

1971  U.N. Secretary Generlal U Thant signed the United Nations’ proclamation of the vernal equinox as Earth Day.

1972 The Buffalo Creek Flood caused by a burst dam killed 125 in West Virginia.

1987 Iran-Contra affair: The Tower Commission rebuked President Ronald Reagan for not controlling his national security staff.

1990 The Sandinistas were defeated in Nicaraguan elections.

1991  Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein announced the withdrawal of Iraqi troops from Kuwait.

1993 World Trade Centre bombing: A truck bomb parked below the North Tower of the World Trade Center exploded, killing 6 and injuring more than a thousand.

1995 The United Kingdom’s oldest investment banking institute, Barings Bank, collapsed after a securities broker, Nick Leeson, lost $1.4 billion by speculating on the Singapore International Monetary Exchange using futures contracts.

2000 Mount Hekla in Iceland erupted.

2001 The Taliban destroyed two giant statues of Buddha in Bamyan, Afghanistan.

2003 War in Darfur started.

2004 – F.Y.R.O.M. President Boris Trajkovski was killed in a plane crash near Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

2005 Hosni Mubarak the president of Egypt ordered the constitution changed to allow multi-candidate presidential elections before September 2005 by asking Egyptian parliament to amend Article 76.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.


Word of the day

25/02/2013

Dryasdust – a boring, dull, pedantic speaker or writer.


Rural round-up

25/02/2013

Joyce hints at more partnerships – Tim Fulton:

Science and Economic Development Steven Joyce has hinted at more partnerships between Lincoln and the private sector, calling his unspecified plan a crucial part of the tech-transfer story.

Joyce was at the university’s dairy research farm launching the second stage of the Pastoral 21 programme, highlighting the importance of places like Lincoln for information-sharing.

There had been a lot of talk over the years about the Lincoln campus developing and becoming a true agri-technology hub, he said.

Now, despite the cost of repairing earthquake damage, the university had a unique opportunity to take that role. . .

To feed the world we need to fix the politics not the environment – Milking on the Moove:

They say there will be 9 Billion people in 2050. The popular question is “how can we feed that number of people?”

There is literally not a day go by where I’m not confronted with some sort of report, program or video about the challenge of feeding the world.

The common theme is we need to increase agricultural productivity to meet this massive demand. The view that we have limited resources that will make food production more expensive or difficult in the future is widely popular.

Some people who belong to the environmental movements, like to use the growing demand to push their causes, one such cause is to promote the vegan lifestyle as less cattle will reduce CO2 emissions. 

Businesses also jump on the band wagon, because it allows them to get subsidies that keep their business profitable when it otherwise would not be, solar panel manufacturers spring to mind. . .

Eco-n suspension blow for Ravensdown – Tim Fulton:

Ravensdown is usually on full show at Lincoln farming events but last Thursday it was fronting up in a different way, explaining its position after suspending sales of its nitrogen inhibitor. Tim Fulton reports. 

ECO-N was introduced to the market on Lincoln University’s dairy research farm in February 2004, Ravensdown’s Richard Christie reminded farmers at the same spot on Thursday. . .

Irrigation company establishment board announced:

Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy has announced that experienced director Alison Paterson will oversee the establishment of a new Crown company to invest in irrigation.

The new company, which is to be established by 1 July, will act as a bridging investor for regional water infrastructure development, with $80 million to be set aside in Budget 2013.

“I’m pleased to have people of high quality and balance to work on what is a critical area of New Zealand’s growth,” says Mr Guy.

“Well-designed storage and irrigation infrastructure has the potential to deliver a major boost to our primary industries and support new jobs, which will have a flow-on effect for all New Zealanders. If current proposals are advanced there could be another 420,000 hectares of irrigated land available over time. . . .

Surprise at lack of interest in carbon credit trading:

Associate Professor Euan Mason of Canterbury University is surprised more hill country farmers are not showing an interest in carbon credit trading as they stand to boost their incomes while at the same time helping the environment.

Professor Mason said he is perplexed that some farmers have a negative attitude towards carbon trading and the climate change issue. . .


Fonterra shares too expensive for farmers?

25/02/2013

The grapevine tells us that more than 30 dairy conversions are underway in Canterbury and none will be supplying Fonterra.

The reason given is that the shares have become too expensive.

. . . Many councillors agreed the Fonterra Shareholders Fund unit price was too high ($7.25 on Friday) and that was stifling trading on the share market.

Brown agreed before the dairy council meeting in Waitangi last week unit fund trading was driving share value, because farmers hadn’t started trading yet.

“Only one half of the market is working at present,” he said, before the interim result is declared in March and the six-month moratorium, which began on November 30, is over. . .

Fonterra is facing stiffer competition from dairy companies which aren’t co-operatives and don’t require suppliers to buy shares.

Conversion is an expensive business and not having to buy shares is an easy way to reduce costs.


Minister to decide Milford projects

25/02/2013

Conservation Minister Nick Smith will decide the fate of two projects seeking concessions for development in Fiordland National Park.

Proposals for the Milford Dart Tunnel through Fiordland and Mt Aspiring National Parks and the Fiordland Link Experience of a catamaran, all-terrain vehicle track and monorail through the Snowdon Forest are major development projects.

” . . . I have decided that given the scale of these Fiordland projects and the huge public interest it is not appropriate for these decisions to be delegated to a departmental official. These are public lands and it is proper that these decisions are made by a publicly elected and accountable official,” Dr Smith says.

This decision is consistent with the powers of delegation dating back to 1997, where the Director-General of Conservation shall refer matters of national interest, or involving significant environment, social or economic implications, to the Minister.

“The decisions on the Milford Dart Tunnel and Fiordland Link Experience will be difficult. Parks and reserves are much loved areas of New Zealand set aside for conservation and recreation. There is a particularly high threshold for projects in our National Parks. However, New Zealand also needs jobs and economic development.

“I have taken advice on ensuring a robust process. My primary advisor will be the Department of Conservation and its advice will be a matter of public record. I expect to receive the Department’s reports on the Milford Dart Tunnel soon and on the Fiordland Link Experience in the next few months.

“I will visit the affected areas and meet with the commissioners who heard the public submissions after I have received each Departmental report. I also intend to meet with the applicants of each project and seek the advice of the New Zealand Conservation Authority before making a decision.

“I will be taking a careful and considered approach and I am very conscious of the importance of coming to a fair and balanced decision.”

Both proposals have attracted a lot of opposition.

The minister will be in for a lot of lobbying.


Mayor’s office $10,000/day

25/02/2013

It costs around $10,000 to run the office of Auckland mayor Len Brown.

Total annual expenditure for its second year increased 8.3% and travel costs were up by 435%.

Auckland Councillor for Orakei Cameron Brewer requested the official information for the second year running. He says the Mayor is clearly not walking his talk of council constraint and cut-backs.
 
“He’s going around assuring people that he’s supposedly prudent, but his own office costs point to some worrying escalation in the past couple of years. . .

“This is not any ordinary office, this is a ratepayer-funded campaign machine and people wonder why no one’s prepared to stand against him and his army of advisors and consultants.”

This is New Zealand’s biggest local authority but the size and cost of the office seem to be excessive.

I wonder how these figures compare on a per capita basis with other local authorities.

 

 


The point

25/02/2013

“How big will those trees grow?”

“One day they’ll be about twice as tall as the house.”

“How long will that take?”

“Oh, maybe 100 years or more.”

“But you won’t be here then.”

“No, that’s the point.”


February 25 in history

25/02/2013

138 The Emperor Hadrian adopted Antoninus Pius, effectively making him his successor.

1570 Pope Pius V excommunicated Queen Elizabeth I.

1778 José de San Martín, Argentine general and liberator of South America, was born  (d. 1850).

1793 George Washington held the first Cabint meeting as President of the United States.

1797 Colonel William Tate and his force of 1000-1500 soldiers surrendered after the Last Invasion of Britain.

1836 Samuel Colt received an American patent for the Colt revolver.

1841  Pierre-Auguste Renoir, French painter, graphic artist and sculptor, was born  (d. 1919).

1845 George Reid, fourth Prime Minister of Australia, was born (d. 1918).

1861 Rudolf Steiner, Austrian philosopher and educator, was born (d. 1925).

1870 Hiram Rhodes Revels becamethe first African American to sit in the U.S. Congress.

1873  Enrico Caruso, Italian tenor, was born  (d. 1921).

1890 Dame Myra Hess, English pianist, was born (d. 1965).

1890  Vyacheslav Molotov, Soviet politician, was born (d. 1986).

1901 Zeppo Marx, American actor, was born  (d. 1979).

1901 J.P. Morgan incorporated the United States Steel Corporation.

1908 Frank G. Slaughter, American novelist, was born (d. 2001).

1912 Marie-Adélaïde, the eldest of six daughters of Guillaume IV, becomes the first reigning Grand Duchess of Luxembourg.

1917 Anthony Burgess, English author, was born (d. 1993).

1919 Oregon placed a 1 cent per U.S. gallon tax on gasoline, becoming the first U.S. state to levy a fuel tax.

1921 Tbilisi, capital of the Democratic Republic of Georgia, was occupied by Bolshevist Russia.

1925 Glacier Bay National Monument (now Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve) was established in Alaska.

1928 Charles Jenkins Laboratories of Washington, D.C. became the first holder of a television license.

1932 Adolf Hitler obtained German citizenship by naturalisation, which allowed him to run in the 1932 election for Reichspräsident.

1933 The USS Ranger (CV-4) was launched, the first US Navy ship to be built solely as an aircraft carrier.

1935 Sally Jessy Raphaël, American talk show host, was born.

1941 February Strike: In occupied Amsterdam, a general strike was declared in response to increasing anti-Jewish measures instituted by the Nazis.

1943 48 Japanese prinsoners and one guard were killed in the Featherston Prinsoner of War riot.

49 killed in Featherston POW riot
1943 George Harrison, English musician (The Beatles), was born.
1945 Elkie Brooks, English singer, was born.

1945  Turkey declared war on Germany.

1946 Jean Todt, French executive director of Scuderia Ferrari, was born.

1947 State of Prussia ceased to exist.

1948 The Communist Party took control of government in Czechoslovakia.

1950 Néstor Kirchner, President of Argentina, was born  (d. 2010).

1951 The first Pan American Games were held in Buenos Aires.

1953 José María Aznar, former Prime Minister of Spain, was born.

1954 Gamal Abdul Nasser was made premier of Egypt.

1956 In his speech On the Personality Cult and its Consequences Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev denounced the cult of personality of Joseph Stalin.

1971 The first unit of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station, first commercial nuclear power station in Canada, went online.

1973 Julio Iglesias, Jr., Spanish singer, was born.

1976 – Simon O’Connor, MP for Tamaki, was born.

1980 The Suriname government was overthrown by a military coup initiated with the bombing of the police station from an army ship of the coast of the nation’s capital; Paramaribo.

1985 Benji Marshall, New Zealand rugby player, was born.

Benji Marshall (26 April 2009).jpg

1986 People Power Revolution: President Ferdinand Marcos of the Philippines fled after 20 years of rule; Corazon Aquino became the first Filipino woman president.

1991 Gulf War: An Iraqi Scud missile hit an American military barracks in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia killing 28 U.S. Army Reservists from Pennsylvania.

1992 Khojaly massacre: about 613 civilians were killed by Armenian armed forces during the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan.

1994 Mosque of Abraham massacre: In the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron Dr. Baruch Kappel Goldstein opened fire with an automatic rifle, killing 29 Palestinian worshippers and injuring 125 more before being subdued and beaten to death by survivors. Subsequent rioting kills 26 more Palestinians and 9 Israelis.

2009  BDR massacre in Pilkhana, Dhaka, Bangladesh. 74 People were killed, including more than 50 Army officials, by Bangladeshi Border Guards.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

Ralph Hotere 1931 – 2013

24/02/2013

Dunedin-based artist Ralph Hotere ONZ, has died.

The 81-year-old, who is regarded as one of New Zealand’s most important artists, was made a Member of the Order of New Zealand in 2011.

Governor-General Lieutenant General Sir Jerry Mateparae conferred the honour in the Dunedin Public Art Gallery.

Sir Jerry said at the time that the award “speaks of service, merit, endeavour, perseverance, commitment, excellence and, above all, mana”. . .

Born in Northland and of Te Aupouri iwi descent, Hotere’s hometown of Mitimiti played a key role in his work.

He was based in Otago for a number of years.

The citation for Hotere’s Order of New Zealand said that as a painter, sculptor and collaborative artist, he had reacted to social and environmental issues through his work.

His art is dominated by black, both in colour and in the artworks’ titles, and makes extensive use of words, often quoting poets and his conversations with them.

He dealt with key New Zealand historical events such as the Springbok tour, the Rainbow Warrior sinking and the Aramoana massacre. . . 


Word of the day

24/02/2013

Adventitious – added extrinsically; arising or occurring sporadically or in other than the usual location; not essentially inherent or innate; happening or carried on according to chance rather than design; coming from outside, imported, not native; accidental or acquired; not natural or hereditary; adventitial.


Things I’ve learned #1

24/02/2013

Sun bleaches scorch marks out of carpet.

In a fit of domestic rearrangement the mat which had been in front of the fire found a new home beside a French door. It’s basked there in sunlight all summer and the scorch marks have faded away.

P.S.
I wasn’t responsible for the scorching nor even at home when it happened but I have grounds to suspect impatience during fire lighting and a bottle of maths meths were involved.


Family dairy farm wins BoP environment award

24/02/2013

Tauranga dairy farmers Dennis, Judith and Gordon McFetridge have been named Supreme Winners of the 2013 Bay of Plenty Ballance Farm Environment Awards (BFEA).

The McFetridges, who farm two separate dairy units on Omanawa Road, just outside Tauranga, received the region’s top environmental prize at a BFEA ceremony on February 22, 2013.

BFEA judges described the family’s farming business as a well-rounded operation that is “meeting economic, social and environmental objectives”.

But 32 years ago it was a much different story. In 1981, one of the McFetridge farms was submerged under millions of tonnes of sludge after a canal on the Ruahihi power scheme collapsed. This was a devastating blow for Dennis and Judith and it has taken many years of hard work to rectify the damage.

They now run the operation with the help of their son Gordon, a Lincoln graduate, who returned to the farm after five years in the rural banking industry. He manages the farms, which are leased from the family trust, with the help of two full-time staff. Casual workers, including university students, are also employed when required.

McFetridge Farms Ltd milks 260 cows on the 70ha (effective) ‘Top Farm’ and 180 cows on 60ha effective ‘Lower Farm’.

The rolling to steep contour on Lower Farm is well suited to younger cows while the Top Farm, which has flat to rolling contour, is better suited to older cows (four years and older).

Judges said the properties are “aesthetically pleasing and highly productive” and the challenging topography has been wisely developed for dairy farming.

Difficult sidlings and gullies have been either left in native bush or planted in woodlots.

Both farms have extensive shelterbelts. Riparian plantings have been used to protect and enhance waterways. Areas of native bush have been fenced and now contain a diversity of species. An ongoing specimen tree planting programme is also in place.

BFEA judges were impressed with the McFetridges’ approach to farm management. Instead of increasing cow numbers they aim to run a lower stocking rate while lifting per cow production. This has been achieved through improved feeding, better grazing management and a strong focus on animal health.

About 8-10% of the farm is regrassed annually with improved pasture species. Poorer performing paddocks are successfully cropped with Turnips.

Judges also noted the McFetridges’ excellent financial control, well-kept herd records and sound relationships with staff.

They said the family’s experience and acquired skills in areas like rural banking and water management had been of great benefit to the farming operation.

The McFetridges demonstrate a good understanding of their soils. Their low stocking rate helps to sustain soils and pasture. Regular pasture walks are used to assist with grazing management and cropping decisions. Erosion issues have been addressed with assistance from the Regional Council.

Judges were also impressed with the family’s “very effective” effluent management system, which utilises pond storage, eco pumps and travelling irrigators.

The McFetridge family have farmed in the district for three generations. Dennis, a JP, and Judith have strong associations with the local community and farming organisations.

As well as winning the Supreme title, the McFetridges also collected the LIC Dairy Farm Award, the Massey University Discovery Award, the WaterForce Integrated Management Award and the Meridian Energy Excellence Award.

A BFEA field day will be held on their farm on March 26.

Other winners in the 2013 Bay of Plenty Ballance Farm Environment Awards were:

Supreme Winner, LIC Dairy Farm Award, Massey University Discovery Award, WaterForce Integrated Management Award and Meridian Energy Excellence Award: Dennis, Judith and Gordon McFetridge, McFetridge Farms Ltd.

Ballance Nutrient Management Award: Ian and Georgina Lawrence, Braewood Holdings Ltd and Snowhill Trust.

Beef+Lamb New Zealand Livestock Farm Award: Landcorp Rotomahana, Matthew and Annabell Lane, Landcorp Farming Ltd.

Hill Laboratories Harvest Award and PGG Wrightson Land and Life Award: Ben and Heidi Rosewarne, Blueberry Corner.

Donaghys Farm Stewardship Award: Karl and Maggy Buhler, Pukemarama.

Zespri Kiwifruit Orchard Award: Jeff and Shirley Roderick, Kytui Orchards.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council Environmental Award 1: Jeremy and Sharon Cotter, Te Kominga.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council Environmental Award 2: Walter and Mary van Rossum, Exlo Jersey.

The Ballance Farm Environment Awards are barely noticed outside farming circles.

But they are a wonderful showcase for best practice and the winners become mentors for others who aspire to emulate them.


Imagine the stink

24/02/2013

Whanganui District Council has been battling a stench from its sewage treatment plant.

The solution on Friday was to pump raw sewage out to sea.

Imagine the stink if a dairy farmer did that.

I am not suggesting that dumping dairy effluent in the sea, or any other waterway, would be acceptable, just pointing out the double standard.

Farmers have been prosecuted for ponding of effluent which could enter a water way while councils get away with deliberately pumping raw sewage into rivers and the sea.


Sunday soapbox

24/02/2013

Sunday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation.

You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, to muse or amuse.

:) kindest, Boris


February 24 in history

24/02/2013

303 – Galerius, Roman Emperor, published his edict that began the persecution of Christians in his portion of the Empire.

1387  King Charles III of Naples and Hungary was assassinated at Buda.

1538 Treaty of Nagyvarad between Ferdinand I and John Zápolya.

1582 Pope Gregory XIII announced the Gregorian calendar.

1607 – L’Orfeo by Claudio Monteverdi, one of the first works recognised as an opera, premiered.

1711 The London première of Rinaldo by George Frideric Handel, the first Italian opera written for the London  stage.

1739 Battle of Karnal: The army of Iranian ruler Nadir Shah defeated the forces of the Mughal emperor of India, Muhammad Shah.

1786 Wilhelm Grimm, German philologist and folklorist, was born (d. 1859).

1803 The Supreme Court of the United States, in Marbury v. Madison, established the principle of judicial review.

1804 London‘s Drury Lane Theatre burnt to the ground, leaving owner Richard Brinsley Sheridan destitute.

1822 The 1st Swaminarayan temple in the world, Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Ahmedabad, was inaugurated.

1826  The signing of the Treaty of Yandaboo marked the end of the First Burmese War.

1831 The Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, the first removal treaty in accordance with the Indian Removal Act, was proclaimed. The Choctaws in Mississippi ceded land east of the river in exchange for payment and land in the West.

1839 William Otis received a patent for the steam shovel.

1848 King Louis-Philippe of France abdicated.

1868 The first parade to have floats was staged at Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

1868 – Andrew Johnson became the first President of the United States to be impeached by the United States House of Representatives.

1875 The SS Gothenburg hit the Great Barrier Reef and sank off the Australian east coast, killing approximately 100.

1877  Ettie Rout, New Zealand activist, was born  (d. 1936).

1893 The American University was chartered by an act of the Congress.

1895 Revolution broke out in Baire beginning the second war for Cuban independence.

1899 Western Washington University was established.

1902 The Battle of Langverwacht Hill ended.

1909 – The Hudson Motor Car Company was founded.

1912: The hull of TSS Earnslaw was launched in Kingston.

The TSS <i>Earnslaw</i> hull cruises on Lake Wakatipu in 1912 on its way to Queenstown. The hull was launched 100 years ago today. Photo from Lakes District Museum.

1917 The U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom was given the Zimmermann Telegram, in which Germany pledged to ensure the return of New Mexico, Texas, and Arizona to Mexico if Mexico declares war on the United States.

1918 – Estonian Declaration of Independence.

1920 The Nazi Party was founded.

1926  Jean Alexander, English actress, was born.

1942 Battle of Los Angeles: a UFO flying over Los Angeles caused a blackout order at 2:25 a.m. and attracted a barrage of anti-aircraft fire, ultimately killing 3 civilians.

1942 Paul Jones, English singer (Manfred Mann), was born.

1945 Egyptian Premier Ahmed Maher Pasha was killed in Parliamen.

1948 Dennis Waterman, British actor, was born.

1968  The Tet Offensive was halted; South Vietnam recaptured Hué.

1970 National Public Radio was founded in the United States.

1976 Cuba’s national Constitution proclaimed.

1981 Buckingham Palace announcedthe engagement of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.

1981 – An earthquake registering 6.7 on the Richter scale hit Athens, killing 16 people and destroying buildings in several towns west of the city.

1989 – Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini offered a USD $3 million bounty for the death of The Satanic Verses’ author Salman Rushdie.

1989 – United Airlines Flight 811, bound for New Zealand from Honolulu, Hawaii, ripped open during flight, sucking 9 passengers out of the business-class section.

1999 – A China Southern Airlines Tupolev TU-154 airliner crashed on approach to Wenzhou airport killing 61.

2006 Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo declared Proclamation 1017 placing the country in a state of emergency in attempt to subdue a possible military coup.

2007 Japan launched its fourth spy satellite.

2008 Fidel Castro retired as the President of Cuba.

2010 – Sachin Tendulkar scored the first double century in One Day International cricket.

2011 – Final Launch of Space Shuttle Discovery (OV-103).

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia and the ODT.


5/10

23/02/2013

Only 5/10 in Stuff’s Biz Quiz.


Saturday’s smiles

23/02/2013

Prompted by this week’s news that Gareth Morgan’s war on cats has extended to SPCA staff:

Why don’t cats play poker in the jungle? Too many cheetahs.

What is a cat’s way of keeping law & order? Claw Enforcement.

Did you hear about the cat who swallowed a ball of wool? She had mittens.

Did you hear about the cat which drank five bowls of water? She set a new lap record.

What do you call the cat that was caught by the police? The purrpatrator.

Why is the cat so grouchy? Because he’s in a bad mewd.

What do cats like to eat for breakfast? Mice Krispies.

Where is one place that your cat can sit, but you can’t? Your lap.

Why did the cat run from the tree? Because it was afraid of the bark.

How many cats can you put into an empty box? Only one. After that, the box isn’t empty.

How do cats end a fight? They hiss and make up.

What does a cat like to eat on a hot day? A mice cream.

What do you get when you cross a chick with an alley cat? A peeping tom.

If lights run on electricity and cars run on gas, what do cats run on? Their paws.

What do you call a cat that lives in an igloo? An eskimew.

 


10/10

23/02/2013

10/10 in the Herald’s politics quiz.


Only one life

23/02/2013

A friend died last weekend.

At his funeral yesterday we heard of many accidents and escapades which could have cost him his life, but like a cat with nine, he survived.

One of those left him in a coma which he wasn’t expected to survive. When he came round he had multi disabilities but he overcame them, learned to walk and talk again and the only long-term impact was a tendency to slur his words.

However, his death was the result of another accident and as no-one knew exactly where he was working it took Search and Rescue a long time to find him.

There are several lessons to be learned from this life cut short.

The biggest is that we all have only one life.


Saturday soapbox

23/02/2013

Saturday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation.

You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, to muse or amuse.


%d bloggers like this: