Word of the day

April 17, 2013

Stentorian – loud and powerful in sound or of voice.


Rural round-up

April 17, 2013

Beef + Lamb New Zealand CEO smoothing the way for TPP in Mexico:

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Chief Executive Officer, Dr Scott Champion is in Mexico to talk with Mexican sheep and beef industry interests about the opportunities that will occur when the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is agreed.

Dr Champion is meeting a range of Mexican sheep and beef farmers and representatives from their processing and retail sector to assure them that while he expects that there will be opportunities for New Zealand beef in the Mexican market, the TPP will provide expanded market access for all.

“We want to dispel any myths that New Zealand will swamp the Mexican market with beef. The amount of beef we produce is limited by the land available and production here has been more or less steady over the past 10 years. TPP will not change that,” he said. . .

Finalists Line Up In 2013 Dairy Awards:

The finalists lining up in the 2013 New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards are evidence of the huge opportunities and varying pathways available to progress in the dairy industry.

The 34 finalists in the New Zealand Sharemilker/Equity Farmer of the Year, New Zealand Farm Manager of the Year and New Zealand Dairy Trainee of the Year competitions are now all known after the completion of 12 regional award programmes last week.

“The finalists have a range of backgrounds and experience in the industry, but are all working hard and achieving great results in their various positions. This is helping them to progress their career and grow their equity to take the next step in the dairy industry,” national convenor Chris Keeping says. . .

Just add water for more food – Jill Galloway:

Availability and access to water resources are the keys to increasing global food production and for New Zealand this means more irrigation is needed, says infrastructure company GHD.

It has appointed Palmerston North-based Robert Sinclair as its food and agriculture business leader, because it sees irrigation as important for promoting growth.

GHD is a global engineering consultancy company with 7000 employees working in the areas of water, energy and resources, environment, property and buildings, transportation and food and agriculture. GHD has 16 staff in its Palmerston North office. . .

Farmer’s gift to land that united family – Jon Morgan:

Tom Hartree is a vigorous 78 and has no intention of being culled for dog tucker anytime soon. But he knows what he wants to happen when his time comes.

He wants his ashes to be mixed with those of his dearly missed wife Dora and scattered in a grove of 45-metres-tall redwoods.

He and Dora planted the redwoods in 1969, in the bottom of a deep gorge carving through Te Motu, one of three farms he and son Greg and his wife Rachael farm at Dartmoor and Patoka in the hills west of Napier. . .

Ngai Tahu sees future in farming – Alan Wood:

South Island iwi Ngai Tahu is partnering with Lincoln University to help get young Maori further involved in dairy and agricultural development in Canterbury.

Today Ngai Tahu Property, Lincoln University and Te Tapuae o Rehua signed a memorandum of understanding on an initiative focused on supporting more local Maori into agriculture.

The memorandum marks the beginning of a project known as “Whenua Kura”, Ngai Tahu says.

The project follows on from dairy development work already started by the tribe. The commercial arm of the iwi, known as Ngai Tahu Holdings Corp, has a number of pilot dairy farms in Canterbury. . .

Big turnout predicted for meat industry meeting

Farmer feedback points to a big turnout of farmers tomorrow for the Meat Industry Excellence (MIE) meeting in Christchurch, says Blair Gallagher, the local organising chairman.

“We even have farmers coming down from the North Island to attend this meeting,” he says.

A committed group of Canterbury farmers has been working hard to ensure the success of this meeting, as their future relies on a nationwide mandate of farmer support so as to move forward as one united farmer group, Gallagher says.

MIE chairman Richard Young will present a five point strategy plan at the meeting, which he believes will give farmers some direction on how to move forward if a NZ wide farmer mandate is achieved. . .

Sheep, beef leaders focus on environment:

Twenty-five sheep and beef farming leaders will attend the first Beef and Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) Environmental Leadership Forum in Wellington next week.

 The B+LNZ-funded forum will be delivered by the New Zealand Farm Environment Trust. It is based on the trust’s successful programme for dairy farming leaders run in partnership with DairyNZ.

B+LNZ chief executive officer, Dr Scott Champion says it will equip the farmers with some of the skills they need to engage with regional councils and take on leadership roles within their communities. . .


WFO backs break-through trade policy

April 17, 2013

The World Farmers Organisation has backed a break-through trade policy:

“While we haven’t agreed with 100 percent of everything in this WFO trade policy, the policy is a major pro-trade breakthrough and a huge step in the right direction,” says Bruce Wills, Federated Farmers President, speaking from Japan where the WFO is meeting.

“Getting 50 countries to agree a policy is challenging and you do not get perfect outcomes, however all recognised the need to free up the trade of food to meet the needs of a growing global population has been grasped by the world’s leading farmer organisations.

“The WFO’s guiding principles commit the WFO to the parallel elimination of all forms of export subsidies and disciplines on all export measures with equivalent effect. It all boils down to improved market access.

“The WFO also wants a substantial reduction in trade-distorting domestic support but with special and differential treatment for developing countries and the least developed.

“The feeling from the WFO is that strengthened rules should apply to export prohibition/restriction and export taxes too.

“Proper protection of geographical indications as provided for under the WTO agreement on trade in intellectual property and recognition of country-of-origin requirements that allows countries to distinguish their products without distorting trade is also important.

“The WFO strongly supports the World Trade Organisation and believes that multilateral negotiations leading to a comprehensive trade agreement is the best way to pursue these objectives.

“That said bilateral and regional trade agreements, like the Trans Pacific Partnership, also work. So long, I should say, that they contribute towards these objectives in a WTO compatible way respecting the WFO’s Guiding Principles.

“Farmers everywhere need a fair, transparent and predictable trading environment but international trade itself needs to be guided by some fundamental principles and the WFO has taken a huge stride forward by the adoption of this trade policy” Mr Wills concluded.

New Zealand farmers have been unsubsidised since the 1980s.

We’re stronger for it and the New Zealand taxpayer is better for it.

Our customers also benefit because we have to produce what the market wants at competitive prices.


So much for supporting women

April 17, 2013

Dame Susan Devoy got no support from the left-wing sisterhood when she was appointed Race Relations Commissioner.

Now the appointment of another woman, Dr Jackie Blue, to the role of Equal Opportunities Commissioner, is being labelled  cronyism.

Justice Minister Judith Collins is being accused of cronyism for appointing National MP Jackie Blue as the next Equal Employment Opportunities Commissioner.

Opposition parties and the Council of Trade Unions are criticising the appointment, saying Ms Blue has supported legislation that disadvantages women.

“It’s yet another example of cronyism from the Government,” said Labour MP Sue Moroney.

“Hard on the heels of Dame Susan Devoy’s appointment as Race Relations Commissioner, the Government is fast turning the Human Rights Commission into a recruitment agency for its supporters.”

Both positions are part of the Human Rights Commission.

Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei says cronyism is a legitimate description of Ms Blue’s appointment.

“It’s very unusual for a sitting MP to be appointed to a position like this,” she told reporters.

“Jackie Blue has voted for legislation that has harmed women… she needs to explain how she is going to undo the harm.”

These women can’t see past their left-wing bias to celebrate the success of another woman.

But Dr Blue does have the support of Breast Cancer Aotearoa Coalition (BCAC) which welcomes her appointment:

The Mt Roskill MP was instrumental in securing public funding for a twelve-month treatment programme of Herceptin for New Zealand women with HER2-Positive breast cancer.

BCAC chairperson, Libby Burgess, says Dr Blue’s actions in advocating for the Government funding of Herceptin demonstrate her commitment to women’s health.

“Dr Blue is a passionate advocate for New Zealand women and her drive to see that women with HER2-Positive breast cancer received life-saving treatment in the form of Herceptin was inspirational.

“She has a clear sense of fair play, a firm commitment to equality for all and a desire to see New Zealand develop as a better society. We firmly believe Dr Blue will fulfil her new role with the energy and dedication it deserves,” Ms Burgess says.

I’d take the view of an organisation which backs up its view with evidence over the politically motivated criticism by opposition MPs and the Council of Trade Unions.


GDT price up .6%

April 17, 2013

The trade weighted index went up .6% in this morning’s GlobalDdairyTrade auction.

This is the ninth increase in a row and follows two big increases.

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

GDT Trade Weighted Index Changes

gdt16.4

 

The price of anhydrous milk fat increased 5.9%; butter went up 6.8%; butter milk powder rose 1.3%; cheddar increased 3.4%; rennet casein was up by 7.2%; skim milk powder dropped 3.2%; and whole milk powder increased 2.4%.

 


Two Conservative candidates referred to police

April 17, 2013

The Electoral Commission has referred two Conservative Party candidates to the police.

On 12 April 2013, the Electoral Commission referred Larry Baldock and Peter Redman, Conservative Party of New Zealand candidates at the 2011 general election, to Police for filing a false Candidate Election Expenses and Donations Return.

It is an offence under section 205N of the Electoral Act 1993 for a candidate to file a false return.

The Electoral Commission has also referred Larry Baldock for paying, or arranging another person to pay, election expenses in excess of the $25,000 maximum specified in section 205C of the Electoral Act 1993. This is an offence under section 205F of the Act.

As this matter is now with the Police, the Electoral Commission will not be commenting further.

Referrals to the police for electoral offences don’t usually go very far but they should.

The rules about donations and expenses could be improved but that’s no excuse for not adhering to them.

 


April 17 in history

April 17, 2013

1397  Geoffrey Chaucer told the Canterbury Tales for the first time at the court of Richard II.

1492 Spain and Christopher Columbus signed the Capitulations of Santa Fe for his voyage to Asia to acquire spices.

1521 Martin Luther spoke to the assembly at the Diet of Worms, refusing to recant his teachings.

1524 Giovanni da Verrazzano reached New York harbour.

1555 After 18 months of siege, Siena surrendered to the Florentine-Imperial army. The Republic of Siena was incorporated into the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

1620 Marguerite Bourgeoys, founder of the Congregation of Notre Dame, was born (d. 1700) .

1797  Sir Ralph Abercromby attacked San Juan, Puerto Rico in what became one of the largest invasions of the Spanish territories in America.

1820 Alexander Joy Cartwright, Inventor of the Modern Game of Baseball, was born (d. 1892).

1837  J. P. Morgan, American financier, was born  (d. 1913) .

1861 American Civil War: Virginia seceded from the United States.

1864 American Civil War: The Battle of Plymouth began.

1865 Mary Surratt was arrested as a conspirator in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.

1880 New Zealand’s first inter-city brass band contest was held.

First inter-city brass band contest

1885 Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen), Danish author, was born (d. 1962) .

1895 The Treaty of Shimonoseki between China and Japan was signed. This marked the end of the First Sino-Japanese War, the defeated Qing Empire was forced to renounce its claims on Korea and to concede the southern portion of the Fengtien province, Taiwan and the Pescadores Islands to Japan.

1905 The Supreme Court of the United States decided Lochner v. New York which held that the “right to free contract” was implicit in the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

1907 The Ellis Island immigration centre processed 11,747 people, more than on any other day.

1918 William Holden, American actor, was born  (d. 1981).

1924 – Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios was formed by the merger of Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures, and the Louis B. Mayer Company.

1929 James Last, German band leader, was born.

1941 World War II: The Kingdom of Yugoslavia surrendered to Germany.

1942 French prisoner of war General Henri Giraud escaped from his castle prison in Festung Königstein.

1945 Brazilian forces liberated the town of Montese, Italy, from German forces.

1949 At midnight 26 Irish counties officially left the British Commonwealth. A 21-gun salute on O’Connell Bridge, Dublin, ushered in the Republic of Ireland.

1957  Nick Hornby, English author, was born.

1961 Bay of Pigs Invasion: A group of CIA financed and trained Cuban refugees landed at the Bay of Pigs in Cuba with the aim of ousting Fidel Castro.

1964 The Ford Motor Company unveiled the Ford Mustang at the New York World’s Fair.

1964  Jerrie Mock became the first woman to circumnavigate the world by air.

1969 Sirhan Sirhan was convicted of assassinating Robert F. Kennedy.

1969 Czechoslovakian Communist Party chairman Alexander Dubček was deposed.

1970 Apollo 13 returned to Earth safely.

1971 The People’s Republic of Bangladesh formed, under Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

1971  Sierra Leone became a republic.

1973 German counter-terrorist unit GSG 9 founded.

1974 Victoria Beckham, English singer (Spice Girls), was born.

1975  The Cambodian Civil War ended. The Khmer Rouge captureed the capital Phnom Penh and Cambodian government forces surrendered.

1982 Patriation of the Canadian constitution in Ottawa.

1984  Police Constable Yvonne Fletcher was killed by gunfire from the Libyan People’s Bureau in London during a small demonstration outside the embassy. Ten others were wounded.

1986 The Three Hundred and Thirty Five Years’ War between the Netherlands and the Isles of Scilly ended.

2006 – Sami Hammad, a Palestinian suicide bomber, detonated an explosive device in Tel Aviv, killing 11 people and injuring 70.

2012 – Ilias Ali, organizing secretary of Bangladesh Nationalist Party and a former MP, disappeared from Dhaka with his chauffeur, allegedly abducted by government forces.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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