Word of the day


Ruth – feeling of pity, distress, or grief; sympathy; compassion.

2013 Agri person – van der Heyden


Former Fonterra chair Sir Henry van der Heyden is the 2013 Agri Personality.

The 2013 Allflex Agri Business Person is Kingi Smiler, Chairman of the Wairarapa Moana Incorporation.

The announcement was made the  Vodafone/Federated Farmers Cream of the Crop Awards, last night.

Feds chair Bruce Wills said:

“The first of Federated Farmers awards to be announced was our own Agri Personality of the Year. This is to recognise the one outstanding personality who, over 2012/13, has influenced New Zealand farming.

“When the Board met to decide the award, Sir Henry van der Heyden was easily the one person who truly stood out over the past 12-months. While he has left Fonterra his influence and mana has not diminished.

“The final award of the evening was the key Allflex Agri Business Person of the Year.

“For this award we assembled an independent panel to review the shortlist. That shortlist was made up of Landcorp’s Chris Kelly, Wairarapa Moana Incorporation/Miraka Chairman Kingi Smiler and Dr John Baker ONZM, of Baker No-Tillage.

“It was a tough decision but Kingi Smiler’s gifted business leadership of Wairarapa Moana Incorporation, a founding shareholder in Māori Dairy Company Miraka Limited, saw him emerge as first among equals.

“Kingi is simply put an outstanding business person, being a former partner in Ernst & Young and holding directorship across the agribusiness sphere. He is the chairman of Tairawhiti Land Development Trust and is currently a director of Mangatu Incorporation, the Wi Pere Trust and Wellington Rugby Union.

“If that is not enough he has also completed 19 Ironman competitions. . .

Rural round-up


US farming group misdirects money to export support:

News reports that the United States’ Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) is to increase export subsidy support to US$60 million, is a misdirection of voluntary farmer levies in the eyes of Federated Farmers of New Zealand.

“We need to clear this has nothing to do with the United States Government,” says Willy Leferink, Federated Farmers Dairy Chairperson.

“Cooperatives Working Together is a voluntary producer-funded national program developed by America’s National Milk Producers Federation. While designed to assist family farms, New Zealand’s farmers know from bitter experience that programmes like this actually hurt family farms. . .

Protecting the integrity of the NZ food system – Nikki Kaye:

It is a pleasure to join you today at this conference.

I would like to acknowledge all of you for the contribution you are making to science and our economic development.

As you know our country is a proud, food exporting nation. Our strong reputation for producing safe, high-quality food is fundamental to our success. We have achieved this success through the work of generations of scientists and trust in the integrity of our food production.

Many New Zealanders are proud of our quality food and beverage production. And many Kiwi families in both rural and urban New Zealand are connected to our food businesses. That is why we must continue to invest in innovation and in our reputation as good food producers.

Our economy relies heavily on the production of food for export, more so than any other developed country. . .

Fonterra contacted by Chinese regulator over milk probe – Paul McBeth:

 Fonterra Cooperative Group, the world’s biggest dairy exporter, has been contacted by the China National Development and Reform Commission as part of an investigation into milk powder prices in the world’s most populous nation.

The Auckland-based company is cooperating fully with the Chinese regulator, which is reviewing a wide range of consumer businesses in the Chinese dairy industry, Fonterra said in a statement. . .

Meat companies look for industry solutions:

New Zealand’s four biggest meat companies are meeting on Thursday under an independent chair to see if they can come up a better way to run the meat industry.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand chairman Mike Petersen told Federated Farmers national conference in Ashburton that the companies will be seeing if they can come up with a proposal to run the meat industry in a more collaborative way. . .

Shareholder commitment will assist with planning for CPW scheme:

Central Plains Water Ltd shareholders have been asked to give an indicative commitment to the scheme by July 12.

Although non binding, the letter of commitment will give CPWL an overview of the number of shareholders who want to be part of the scheme and their geographic location. The indicative commitment is also a precondition set down by CPWL’s funders.

Derek Crombie, CEO of CPWL, said that while the design for Stage 1 was well advanced, information gathered now would help designers with the overall scheme design. . .

Sam Knowles joins Board of Synlait Milk:

Former Kiwibank Chief Executive Sam Knowles has been appointed a Director of Synlait Milk Limited and will become an Independent Director on the planned listing of the Company later this month.

Mr Knowles completes the requirement of the Company’s constitution for there to be three Independent Directors on the Board upon listing.

Welcoming the appointment, Synlait Milk Chairman Graeme Milne says Mr Knowles experience in establishing and growing Kiwibank into a significant New Zealand-owned and operated bank will be valuable to the Company as it implements growth initiatives expected to cost around $183 million. . .

Helping Bring Clever Idea to Life for Young Inventor:

Catching up on a week’s worth of school work because she was away at Fieldays was worth it for Ayla Hutchinson to launch her household innovation, the Kindling Cracker, to more than 100,000 people who might want to buy one, help her manufacture it or sell them in New Zealand and around the world.

14-year-old Ayla was the winner of the James and Wells Intellectual Property Award at the event in June, which gives her $3000 worth of IP strategy advice from the experts on how to own, protect her idea and commercialise it. Ayla went on to win the prestigious Young Inventor of the Year Award. . .

Friday’s answers


Thursday’s questions (Maori language week edition) were:

1. What does this mean: He aha te mea nui? He tangata. He tangata. He tangata?

2. What is a tīwaiwaka?

3. Who was the earth mother and sky father?

4. what do katau and mauī mean?

5. Do you have a tūrangawaewae?

Points for answers:

Andrei gets a bonus for honesty.

Paranormal gets one and a bonus for humour.

Robert wins an electronic chocolate sponge with five right and a bonus for pedantry, which in this case is encouraged.


1. What is the most important thing? It is people. It is people. It is people.

2. Fantail.

3. Papatuanuku and Ranginui (Papa and Rangi.

4. Right and left.

5. North Otago, specifically Mount Doment, Kakanui and Waitaki Rivers for me.

This should always have been the case


The next stage of our welfare reforms come into effect later this month.  Among them – this change to beneficiaries with outstanding arrest warrants. What do you think? http://www.national.org.nz/Article.aspx?articleId=41412


The idea that someone who is evading the law has been able to be supported by public money is ludicrous.

Vote for Oamaru


Oamaru used to be a small town you had to pass through to get from Christchurch to Dunedin.

It’s still in the same place but it’s becoming a destination.

The little blue penguins, yellow eyed penguins, historic buildings, steam punk, good restaurants, the Vanished World fossil trail, Alps to Ocean cycle trail and many other natural and (wo)man made attractions have made it a destination in its own right.

It is one of five towns selected for Seven Sharp’s focus on sharp towns.

Oamaru will feature this evening and your vote will help it become the Sharpest Town.

The winning town will be revisited by the Seven Sharp team for the filming of a live show.


How to make a wee party


How do you make a wee party?

  • Start with a bigger one.
  • Change from a united group with a common purpose to a disjointed collection of separate interest groups.
  • Use public funds for your election campaign then ask your members to help you pay back the money.
  • Lose touch with your base.
  • Stay in power for nine years, the last three with policies which increase the burden of state and put the country into recession before the rest of the world.
  • Have your leader announce her resignation the night she loses the election and anoint a successor.
  • Continue with policies which show you haven’t learned from mistakes made while in power.
  • Don’t go for renewal.
  • Look inward and let the internal disquiet spill out.
  • Keep most of the old wood.
  • Oppose every policy the government puts forward to increase economic growth, reduce welfare dependency and improve public service efficiency and effectiveness while reducing costs without putting forward any viable alternatives.
  • Keep your old high tax and spend policies and add to them.
  • Put your main campaign effort into opposing a single policy of your major opponent.
  • Lose another election.
  • Change your leader to someone who is not a fluent and confident speaker and is generally ill-equipped for the job of leading the Opposition.
  • Play yeah-me-too to policies put forward by another wee party which drags you from the centre.
  • Continue opposing a single government policy when it’s too late by trying to get a politicians’ initiated referendum and fail to get enough signatures.
  • Become second, or even third fiddle in an orchestra led by your potential coalition partners.
  • Look inward and let the internal disquiet spill out again.
  • Undermine your leader.
  • Change your rules to give unions even more power.
  • Continue undermining your leader.
  • Announce a policy to build cheap houses which can’t be backed up with reliable costings.
  • Continuing opposing every government initiative to improve the lot of New Zealanders without putting up viable alternatives.
  • Announce a power policy which drags you further left and which unbiased people in the industry can say won’t work.
  • Continue undermining your leader.
  • Keep most of the dead wood.
  • Get headlines for things that don’t matter – temper loss, swearing, gender quota for caucus. . .

Why all the fuss


The media fascination about Kim Dotcom has bemused me.

I’m pleased to find that Trans Tasman is similarly unimpressed:

You could fire a shotgun down the corridor of Parliament’s press gallery offices on Wednesday afternoon and not hit anyone. Not, one hopes, you would want to do such a thing, although it is possible the thought brings a gleam to the eye of more than few MPs.

But most of the gallery media team was crammed into a committee room waiting for the Man of the Decade, Kim Dotcom Superstar, to make his appearance.

Dotcom managed to walk in, like a normal mortal, rather than appear in a puff of smoke, manifest himself in a burning bush, or be beamed down like some character from science fiction. Which was disappointing, in its way. It wasn’t the only disappointment.

The panting enthusiasm for Dotcom and all his works takes a great deal of explaining… no: actually, it is beyond explanation. The hope was, of course, the internet entrepreneur and convicted fraudster would appear before the Intelligence and Security Select Committee and say rude things about the Prime Minister.

As it is not too difficult to find people to say rude things about the Prime Minister, it was never clear just what the big deal was. Hell, most of the media write or broadcast rude things about the Prime Minister on an almost daily basis. If Dotcom had any revelations to make it would have been different but of course he doesn’t know any more than any of us: only he was spied on and he is not happy about it.

He was rather keen on democracy, and not keen on the GCSB, he told MPs. The most exiting events of the hearing were the Dotcom Megastar sweated: the Prime Minister blushed.

Neither is really worth making headline news.

I think this is the first time I’ve written a post about Dotcom because I’ve been unable to find anything that justifies one except the question of why the media has given him so much attention.

July 5 in history


1295  Scotland and France formed an alliance, the beginnings of the Auld Alliance, against England.

1316  Battle of Manolada between the Burgundian and Majorcan claimants of the Principality of Achaea.

1321 Joan of The Tower, Queen consort of Scotland, was born (d. 1362).

1610  John Guy set sail from Bristol with 39 other colonists for Newfoundland.

1687  Isaac Newton published Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica.

1755 Sarah Siddons, British actress, was born (d. 1831).

1770  Battle of Chesma started, between the Russian Empire and the Ottoman Empire.

1775  United States Congress adopted the Olive Branch Petition.

1803 The Convention of Artlenburg led to the French occupation of Hanover.

1809  Battle of Wagram started.

1810 P.T. Barnum, American circus owner, was born (d. 1891).

1811  Venezuela declared independence from Spain.

1813  War of 1812: Three weeks of British raids on Fort Schlosser, Black Rock and Plattsburgh, New York began.

1814 War of 1812: Battle of Chippawa – American Major General Jacob Brown defeated British General Phineas Riall.

1830 France invaded Algeria.

1833 Admiral Charles Napier defeated the navy of the Portuguese usurper Dom Miguel at the third Battle of Cape St. Vincent.

1853 Cecil Rhodes, British founder of Rhodesia was born (d. 1902).

1865  The Salvation Army was founded in the East End of London.

1878 The coat of arms of the Baku governorate was established.

1881 A poll tax was imposed on Chinese people in New Zealand.

Poll tax imposed on Chinese

1884  Germany took possession of Cameroon.

1902 Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., American diplomat, was born (d. 1985)

1911 Georges Pompidou, French politician, was born (d. 1974).

1934 ”Bloody Thursday” – Police opened fire on striking longshoremen in San Francisco.

1935  The National Labor Relations Act, which governs labour relations in the United States, is signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

1937  Spam, the luncheon meat, was introduced into the market by the Hormel Foods Corporation.

1937  Highest recorded temperature in Canada, at Yellow Grass, Saskatchewan: 45°C (113°F).

1940  World War II: The United Kingdom and the Vichy France government broke off diplomatic relations.

1941  World War II: German troops reached the Dnieper River.

1943  The Battle of Kursk, the largest full-scale battle in history started.

1943 – World War II: An Allied invasion fleet sailed for Sicily.

1945 World War II: Liberation of the Philippines declared.

1946 The bikini was re-introduced in Paris.

1947 Larry Doby signed a contract with the Cleveland Indians baseball team, becoming the first black player in the American League.

1948 National Health Service Acts created the national public health systems in the United Kingdom.

1950  Huey Lewis, American musician (Huey Lewis and the News), was born.

1950 – Michael Monarch, American guitarist (Steppenwolf), was born.

1950 Korean War: Task Force Smith – First clash between American and North Korean forces.

1950 The Knesset passed the Law of Return which granted all Jews the right to immigrate to Israel.

1951 William Shockley invented the junction transistor.

1954 John Wright, New Zealand cricketer, was born.

1954 Jimmy Crespo, American guitarist (Aerosmith), was born.

1954 The BBC broadcast its first television news bulletin.

1954  Andhra Pradesh High Court was established.

1958 Bill Watterson, American cartoonist, was born.

1958 First ascent of Gasherbrum I, 11th highest peak on the earth.

1962  Algeria became independent from France.

1962 The Late Late Show, the world’s longest-running chat show by the same broadcaster, aired on RTÉ One for the first time.

1970 Air Canada Flight 621 crashed near Toronto International Airport killing 109 people.

1971  The Twenty-sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution, lowering the voting age from 21 to 18 years, is formally certified by President Richard Nixon.

1973 Catastrophic BLEVE (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion) in Kingman, Arizona, following a fire that broke out as propane was being transferred from a railroad car to a storage tank, killed 11 firefighters.

1975  Arthur Ashe became the first black man to win the Wimbledon singles title.

1975  Cape Verde gained its independence from Portugal.

1977  Military coup in Pakistan Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto the first elected Prime Minister of Pakistan was overthrown.

1979  Shane Filan, Irish musician (Westlife), was born.

1987 First instance of the LTTE using suicide attacks on Sri Lankan Army. The Black Tigers were born.

1989  Iran-Contra Affair: Oliver North was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gerhard A. Gesell to a three-year suspended prison term, two years probation, $150,000 in fines and 1,200 hours community service.

1995 Armenia adopted its constitution, four years after their independence from the Soviet Union.

1996  Dolly the sheep became the first mammal cloned from an adult cell.

1999 – President Clinton imposed trade and economic sanctions against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.

2003 SARS was declared to be contained by the WHO.

2004  First Indonesian presidential election by the nation.

2009  Roger Federer won a record 15th Grand Slam title in tennis, winning a five set match against Andy Roddick at Wimbledon.

2009 The largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold ever discovered, consisting of more than 1,500 items, was found near the village of Hammerwich, in Staffordshire.

2009 Ethnic rioting broke out in Ürümqi, Xinjiang, China.

2012 – The Shard in London was inaugurated as the tallest building in Europe, with a height of 310 metres (1,020 ft).

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

%d bloggers like this: