Word of the day

July 7, 2013

Heterodox – not conforming or agreeing with accepted or orthodox standards, beliefs or doctrines; contrary to or differing from some acknowledged standard; holding unorthodox opinions.


Rural round-up

July 7, 2013

Scientist’s ‘outstanding contribution’ recognised – Sally Rae:

AbacusBio managing director Neville Jopson has been recognised for his ”outstanding contribution” to animal production in New Zealand.

Dr Jopson was awarded the McMeekan Memorial Award at the New Zealand Society of Animal Production’s conference in Hamilton this week.

The award, presented annually, recognises an outstanding contribution to New Zealand animal production or the society in the past five years. . .

Red meat risks being bit player in economic revival:

One of the historical foundation stones of the New Zealand economy, the beef and lamb industry, is at risk of being an insignificant player in the country’s economic recovery, says the country’s biggest rural lender ANZ Bank.

“The soft commodity outlook is improving. The food and beverage sector is thriving. Businesses which develop NZ primary production into desirable products are the new stars of the economy. Among all this, beef and lamb – the red meat sector – is stuck in its ways and won’t benefit unless bold action is taken,” said Graham Turley, ANZ’s Managing Director Commercial & Agri.

He said the third annual Red Meat Sector Conference, which starts on Sunday, came at a critical moment in the industry’s history. . .

Landcorp and Massey University commit to Chinese partnership:

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy says a memorandum signed today between Landcorp Farming and Massey University and their Chinese counterparts will further strengthen the close ties between China and New Zealand in the agricultural sector.

The memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Anhui Agricultural University, Anhui Anxin Husbandry Development Limited and Anhui Provincial Government Decision-Making Cultural Exchange Centre provides collaboration on sheep farming and pasture growth opportunities in Anhui province.

Landcorp will provide sheep farming expertise while Massey University will contribute technical consultancy services. . . .

Westland Milk Products Processes More Milk Despite Drought:

Westland Milk Products finished the 2012/13 season with a 5.3% increase in milk processed compared with the previous season, in spite of the impact of the drought on West Coast dairying.

This compares with a 2% drop in the total New Zealand milk production for 2012/13.

CEO Rod Quin says Westland, New Zealand’s second biggest dairy cooperative, processed nearly 670 million litres of milk, most of which is processed into various powder-based products for export.

“The production figure is a credit to the resilience of our shareholder/suppliers in what has been a tough season for many, and to staff who have initiated changes at the Hokitika factory to allow milk processing all year round without the traditional shut-down period.” . . .

Fitzgerald to step down from NZYF post – Annette Scott:

After 12 years as chief executive officer of New Zealand Young Farmers (NZYF), Richard Fitzgerald had decided to call it a day.

Fitzgerald has told the NZYF board he will step down but expects to be with the organisation for a few months yet as he works through the process of finding his replacement, scheduled to be in place by mid-September, and the transition period. . . .

 


Chocolate is medicine . . .

July 7, 2013

. . .  Well, it can be good for you:

A new Australian study has found dark chocolate may increase calmness and contentedness through the polyphenols found in cocoa.

Polyphenols are found naturally in plants and are a basic component of the human diet. These compounds have been shown to reduce oxidative stress, which is associated with many diseases, and may also have beneficial psychological effects.

Anecdotally, chocolate is often linked to mood enhancement,” Matthew Pase, a PhD candidate at the University of Swineburne in Melbourne and lead author of the study, says. . .

“This clinical trial is perhaps the first to scientifically demonstrate the positive effects of cocoa polyphenols on mood.” . . .

Sadly I don’t think this is the sort of medicine to which you can apply the rule that if some is good, more is better.


Oamaru – the living is easy

July 7, 2013

Some more reasons why Oamaru should be New Zealand’s sharpest town:

You can vote here.

You can watch the Seven Sharp video of the town here.


Not on the job sheet

July 7, 2013

Contractors were clearing culverts as directed by the council.

They’d done the ones on the job sheet but one of them had noticed another which was blocked further up the road.

He suggested they clear it before heading back to base.

But no, they couldn’t do that because it wasn’t on the job sheet.

They, the truck and digger headed back to base.

Another day they all trundled back to the same road with the truck and the digger to clear the last culvert.

If contractors can’t have some autonomy or flexibility in what they do, they ought to be able to check in with someone in authority when they see a job that needs doing for permission to do it.

It would save staff time and ratepayers’ money and encourage workers to be proactive.


Sunday soapbox

July 7, 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.

 


July 7 in history

July 7, 2013

1456 A retrial verdict acquitted  Joan of Arc of heresy 25 years after her death.

1534 European colonization of the Americas: first known exchange between Europeans and natives of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, in New Brunswick.

1543  French troops invaded Luxembourg.

1575  Raid of the Redeswire, the last major battle between England and Scotland.

1585  Treaty of Nemours abolished tolerance to Protestants in France.

1770 The Battle of Larga.

1777 American Revolutionary War: Battle of Hubbardton.

1798 Quasi-War: the U.S. Congress rescinded treaties with France sparking the “war”.

1799  Ranjit Singh‘s men took up their positions outside Lahore.

1807 Napoleonic Wars: Peace of Tilsit between France, Prussia and Russia ended the Fourth Coalition.

1846 Mexican-American War: American troops occupied Monterey and Yerba Buena (now San Francisco), beginning the United States conquest of California.

1851 Charles Tindley, American gospel music composer, was born (d. 1933).

1860 Gustav Mahler, Austrian composer, was born  (d. 1911).

1863  United States began first military draft; exemptions cost $300.

1892 Katipunan: the Revolutionary Philippine Brotherhood was established leading to the fall of the Spanish Empire in Asia.

1898  President William McKinley signed the Newlands Resolution annexing Hawaii as a territory of the United States.

1915 Margaret Abigail Walker Alexander, African-American novelist and poet, was born (d. 1998).

1915 World War I: end of First Battle of the Isonzo.

1916 The NZ Labour Party was founded.

NZ Labour Party founded

1915  An International Railway (New York – Ontario) trolley with an extreme overload of 157 passengers crashed near Queenston, Ontario, killing 15.

1917  Russian Revolution: Prince Georgy Yevgenyevich Lvov formed a Provisional Government in Russia after the deposing of the Tsar Nicholas II.

1919 Jon Pertwee, English actor, was born (d. 1996).

1922  Pierre Cardin, French fashion designer, was born.

1924 Arthur Porritt won a bronze medal for New Zealand in the 100 m at the Olympic Games (portrayed as Tom Watson in the film Chariots of Fire).

'Tom Watson' wins bronze for New Zealand

1924 Mary Ford, American singer, was born (d. 1977).

1927 Doc Severinsen, American composer and musician, was born.

1928  Sliced bread was sold for the first time by the Chillicothe Baking Company of Chillicothe, Missouri. It was described as “the greatest forward step in the baking industry since bread was wrapped”.

1930  Industrialist Henry J. Kaiser began construction of the Boulder Dam (now known as Hoover Dam).

1933 Sir Murray Halberg, New Zealand runner, was born.

1937 Sino-Japanese War: Battle of Lugou Bridge – Japanese forces invaded Beijing.

1940 Ringo Starr, English drummer and singer (The Beatles), was born.

1941  Bill Oddie, English comedian and ornithologist, was born.

1941 World War II: U.S. forces landed in Iceland to forestall an invasion by Germany.

1941  World War II: Beirut was occupied by Free France and British troops.

1942 Carmen Duncan, Australian actress, was born.

1946  Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini became the first American to be canonized.

1946   Howard Hughes nearly died when his XF-11 spy plane prototype crashed.

1947 Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, King of Nepal, was born.

1947 Alleged and disputed Roswell UFO incident.

1953 Che Guevara set out on a trip through Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, and El Salvador.

1956 Fritz Moravec reached the peak of Gasherbrum II (8,035 m).

1958 President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Alaska Statehood Act into United States law.

1959  Venus occultes the star Regulus. This rare event is used to determine the diameter of Venus and the structure of the Venusian atmosphere.

1967 Beginning of the civil war in Biafra.

1969  In Canada, the Official Languages Act was adopted making French equal to English throughout the Federal government.

1974 West Germany won the FIFA World Cup, beating Netherlands 2-1 in the Final.

1978 The Solomon Islands became independent from the United Kingdom.

1980  Institution of sharia in Iran.

1980 The Safra massacre in Lebanon.

1983 Cold War: Samantha Smith, a U.S.  schoolgirl, flew to the Soviet Union at the invitation of Secretary General Yuri Andropov.

1991  Yugoslav Wars: the Brioni Agreement ended the ten-day independence war in Slovenia against the rest of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

2002 News reports accused MI6 of sheltering Abu Qatada, the supposed European Al Qaeda leader.

2005  A series of four explosions  on London’s transport system killed 56 people, including four alleged suicide bombers and injured over 700 others.

2011 – The roof of a stand in De Grolsch Veste Stadium in Enschede which was under construction collapsed, one killed and 14 injured.

2012 – At least 171 people were killed in a flash flood in the Krasnodar Krai region of Russia.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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