Paul Foster-Bell MP to be?

April 22, 2013

A media release from  former MP Paul Quinn says he will not return to parliament when list MP Jackie Blue retires to become Equal Opportunities Commissioner in May.

With the resignation of my former colleague Dr Jackie Blue I am the next eligible member of the National Party list to fill the vacancy her resignation has created.

While I enjoyed the term I spent in Parliament from 2008 to 2011, I do not wish to take up the list place available to me. Since leaving Parliament I have been engaged in a series of commercial projects that are very absorbing and satisfying and I am now fully committed to my expanding business interests. . .

Paul Foster-Bell who stood in Wellington Central is the next person on National’s list.


Word of the day

April 22, 2013

Distrait – distracted or absent-minded; inattentive or preoccupied; divided or withdrawn in attention, especially because of anxiety.


Rural round-up

April 22, 2013

More North Island areas move out of drought:

Weekend rain has brought further relief to farmers in drought areas.

While some say it’s been enough to break the back of the drought for them, others say they are not out of trouble yet and follow up rain over the next few weeks will be critical.

Most of Bay of Plenty had moved out of drought last week before the latest rain which caused flooding in a number of areas.

Waikato and most of Taranaki have also had good falls. . .

Papakaio  sharemilker  pair winners – Sally Rae:

Farming and family go together for Morgan and Hayley Easton.

Mr and Mrs Easton, who are 50% sharemilkers at Papakaio, on the lower Waitaki Plains, were recently named the 2013 Canterbury-North Otago Sharemilker-Equity Farmers of the Year.

The couple have spent the past five years developing the 365ha property, owned by Mr Easton’s parents David and Clare, and have increased cow numbers from 450 to 1350. . .

Vet believes NZ sheep farmers deserve recognition for gains – Sally Rae:

South Otago vet John Smart reckons New Zealand sheep farmers have not had enough recognition for improvements made over the years.

Now in his 37th year in the veterinary profession, he said there had been ”quite massive gains”.

He believed New Zealand did it as well as, if not better, than most other countries.

He recalled the days when farmers were producing 13kg lambs and struggling to achieve a 100% lambing. There had been vast improvements since then. . .

Research bias has no sense – Jenny Taylor:

Anyone could be forgiven for thinking the only breed of dairy cattle being farmed in New Zealand is holstein-friesian.

A DairyNZ trial looking for the cows that convert their feed into milk most efficiently involves only holstein-friesian cows.

Can someone forward the memo which explains the mass withdrawal of other breeds?

The national dairy statistics for the 2011/12 season show jerseys make up 12.2 per cent, ayrshires 0.7 per cent and other breeds (which include brown swiss, milking shorthorn, guernsey) 8.1 per cent of the national population. Crossbred animals are 40.8 per cent which leaves holstein-friesian at 38.2 per cent. . .

Helping to ease country stress levels:

When the Scott Guy murder trial unfolded, Invercargill social worker Gavin Booth felt he had to do something to help farming families work through their problems.

Ewen Macdonald was found not guilty of killing his brother-in-law, 31-year-old Guy, outside his Feilding property in 2010, over tensions about the future of the family farm.

Farm progression and succession planning were a common trigger of stress and anxiety among farmers, particularly in the face of land use change towards dairying, Booth said.

“That’s huge. And it can break up families. It started me thinking I have to do something.”

Farmers are not only faced with changing land use but higher debt ratios, a drop in lamb prices, more complex farming systems, and weather-related issues. . .

 


Why are they doing it?

April 22, 2013

Why is LabourGreen powering back to the socialist 70s?

* It’s political – they want to sabotage the Mighty River Power float.

* It’s political – they want to differentiate themselves from National.

* It’s political – they want back in power and are prepared to put their ambition ahead of the country’s interests.

* It’s political – they don’t understand business and investment.

* It’s political – they don’t care about the consequences of plummeting share prices for Kiwisaver and other superannuation funds, ACC, community trusts, other institutional and private investors.

They realise that voters have accepted the sense of National’s insistence on getting back to surplus.

They realise that means they can’t spend their way back to power with our money and so they’re going to try to bribe people by taking over assets instead.

It’s political, it’s stupid and it’s wrong.


What are they doing?

April 22, 2013

For all the rhetoric about the failed policies of the 80s and 90s from Helen Clark and her caucus, they didn’t reverse them.

They made other mistakes as they taxed and spent the country into recession before the Global Financial Crisis.

But while they tinkered at the edges they made no substantial changes to the policies which got the country out of the economic mire into which we’d sunk.

That was partly because they couldn’t and partly because they understood the dire consequences of trying.

The LabourGreen power play walks away from that.

It ignores the hard lessons that were learned from the socialist policies which led to huge deficits, high interest rates, high inflation and low or negative growth.

It shows a woeful ignorance of the hard work the National-led government has done and why it had to be done.

It illustrates their disdain for investment and businesses confidence which are needed for growth and the jobs that follow.

What are they doing?

They’re abandoning the centre and  striding to the left.

Hopefully they’ll be scaring moderate, thinking voters to the right in the process.


Why not nationalise councils?

April 22, 2013

LabourGreen policy is to nationalise wholesale power in a misguided effort to control prices.

Quite how reducing competition will do that when they say that too little competition is one of the causes of prices rises, hasn’t been explained.

But if price rises is the problem, why stop at power?

Federated Farmers points out that power price rises have been eclipsed by run-away price increases in the less productive non-tradable sector, with near triple digit council rate increases since 1998.

If nationalising power will reduce the price, why not nationalise councils to bring down rates?

Either that, or replace them all with teddy bears.


Five years of blogging

April 22, 2013

Today is the fifth anniversary of the launch of this blog.

In that time there’s been: 12,431 posts and 25, 778 real comments.

There’s also been, sigh, 921, 144 spam comments. Why do they bother?

Thank you to all who read, to other bloggers who link to my posts and especially to all of you who join the conversation.


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