Word of the day

July 14, 2013

Prolix – extending to a great or unnecessary length; using or containing too many words; tediously lengthy or prolonged; wordy; tending to speak or write at excessive length;


Rural round-up

July 14, 2013

Global forces need smart response – Sally Brooker:

New Zealand dairy farmers and milk processors need robust business structures to withstand market movements, Hayley Moynihan says.

Delivering a keynote address at the South Island Dairy Event in Lincoln on June 24, the Rabobank food and agribusiness research and advisory senior dairy analyst said milk price volatility was not going away. We needed to aspire to where there was opportunity to enter more lucrative markets.

Rising consumer expectations were presenting a continuing challenge, Ms Moynihan said.  . . .

Waikato farmers set the record for Agrecovery:

Federated Farmers is applauding the way Waikato farmers have embraced Agrecovery rural recycling. A record six tonne of hazardous horticultural, agricultural and veterinary chemicals was collected during the Waikato regional collection, finishing last week.

“Farmers are choosing to dispose of their chemical waste responsibly due to the convenience of the service,” says James Houghton, Federated Farmers’ Waikato provincial president.

“It is great to see increasing numbers of farmers using Agrecovery. It is another example of farmers changing their behaviour and working for the good of the environment without the need for legislation. . .

Warm, wet weather inhibits rabbits – Ruth Grundy:

Wet and warm springs and summers are keeping rabbit numbers down across Canterbury.

Environment Canterbury biosecurity team leader Brent Glentworth said for the past two seasons warm, wet weather during the first rabbit breeding cycle had been largely responsible for keeping the population in check.

Young rabbits had a low survival rate in those conditions because they succumbed to pneumonia or coccidiosis – a liver disease ”very prevalent” in warm, wet weather, Mr Glentworth said. . .

Mounting cost to irrigation schemes – Ruth Grndy:

Irrigation companies in the Waitaki river catchment are facing significant clean up bills after last month’s flooding damaged irrigation schemes.

Waitaki residents say the rain and flooding from the storm which lashed the country was the worst seen in decades.

The Danseys Pass bridge was destroyed after about 160mm of rain fell in the space of three days.

Maerewhenua District Water Resource Company chairman Kelvin Weir said the scheme had been ”very lucky” and ”survived pretty well” considering the amount of rain and high river flow. . . .

Irrigation extending potato, onion output – Ruth Grundy:

Easier access to water in Canterbury is not only fuelling dairying production but also a significant growth in the production of potatoes and onions.

The 2012 agricultural production census, conducted by the Department of Statistics, shows the Canterbury potato harvest accounted for half the national harvested area in June 2012.

And, the land put into onions increased from 690ha in June 2007 to 1040ha in June 2012 – about a 50% increase. . .

New ASB sponsorship will improve financial literacy of dairying women:

ASB has confirmed it is a new gold sponsor of the Dairy Women’s Network (DWN). The partnership, which took effect on 1 July, will boost the work already being done by the DWN to improve the financial literacy skills of the country’s dairy farming women.

DairyNZ modelling shows there is an opportunity to improve the industry’s profitability by more than $1B per year, or approximately $1000 per hectare, by improving financial literacy and management capabilities.

The industry body has also identified there is a significant range in profitability between dairy farmers, with a contributing factor being management capability. . .


Imagination

July 14, 2013

Open large picture

Another gem from Story People by Brian Andreas.

 


Either one or t’other not both

July 14, 2013

Dunedin City Councillor Fliss Butcher plans to contest the Waitaki District mayoralty and stand as a councillor in the Corriedale ward.

Success in both would trigger a by-election in the ward.

This is what happened when the sitting mayor, Alex Familton who isn’t standing again, first became the mayor. He also stood, and was elected, as a councillor in the Waihemo ward so his success as mayor necessitated an immediate by-election at a cost of some tens of thousands of dollars.

Butcher shouldn’t risk putting ratepayers to that expense again.

She should stand for one position or t’other, not both.


Tax breaks better than subsidies

July 14, 2013

Quote of the day:

. . . If you believe that politicians, those who direct such subsidies, are knowledgeable, clever and honest beings, striving only to do what is right for the common weal, then you might well argue that they should direct, in detail, where the taxpayers’ money goes. If you’re over the age of seventeen you will have been disabused of that notion, that politicians are honest, knowledgeable and clever, and so would prefer that politicians do not direct in detail. Rather, we might accept that public goods exist, that they should be subsidised in some manner, but having done that we want to keep the politicians as far away as possible from the details of what happens next. I would go further too. A tax break means that anyone who meets the rules gets the tax break. A grant making system means only those who suck up to the politicians get the grants. . . Tim Worstall.

It bemuses me that politicians are usually, and not always fairly, regarded pretty unfavourably but some people still want to direct out money where they see fit by way of subsidies.


Sunday’s soapbox

July 14, 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 14 in history

July 14, 2013

1223 Louis VIII became King of France upon the death of his father, Philip II of France.

1698 The Darien scheme began with five ships, bearing about 1,200 people, departing Leith for the Isthmus of Panama.

1769 The de Portolá Expedition established a base in California, and set out to find the Port of Monterey.

1771 Foundation of the Mission San Antonio de Padua  by the Franciscan friar Junípero Serra.

1789  French Revolution: Citizens of Paris stormed the Bastille and freed seven prisoners.

1790  French Revolution: Citizens of Paris celebrated the constitutional monarchy and national reconciliation in the Fête de la Fédération.

1791  The Priestley Riots drove  Joseph Priestley, a supporter of the French Revolution, out of Birmingham, England.

1798  The Sedition Act became law in the United States making it a federal crime to write, publish, or utter false or malicious statements about the government.

1834  James Abbott McNeill Whistler, American painter (d. 1903).

1858  Emmeline Pankhurst, English suffragette (d. 1928)

1865  First ascent of the Matterhorn by Edward Whymper and party, four of whom died on the descent.

1868  Gertrude Bell, English archaeologist, writer, spy, and administrator, was born (d. 1926).

1872 Albert Marque, French sculptor and doll maker, was born (d. 1939).

1881 Billy the Kid was shot and killed by Pat Garrett outside Fort Sumner.

1853 New Zealand’s first general election began.

NZ's first general election begins

1900 Armies of the Eight-Nation Alliance captured Tientsin during the Boxer Rebellion.

1902 The Campanile in St Mark’s Square, Venice collapsed, also demolishing the loggetta.

1903 Irving Stone, American writer, was born (d. 1989).

1910 William Hanna, American animator, was born  (d. 2001).

1911  Terry-Thomas, British actor, was born  (d. 1990).

1912 Woody Guthrie, American folk musician, was born (d. 1967).

1913 Gerald Ford, 38th President of the United States, was born (d. 2006).

1916 Start of the Battle of Delville Wood as an action in the Battle of the Somme.

1918  Ingmar Bergman, Swedish film and theatre director, was born (d. 2007).

1921 – Leon Garfield, English children’s author, was born (d. 1996).

1928 Nancy Olson, American actress, was born.

1930 Polly Bergen, American actress, was born.

1933 Gleichschaltung: In Germany, all political parties were outlawed except the Nazi Party.

1940 Susan Howatch, English author, was born.

1943  The George Washington Carver National Monument became the first United States National Monument in honor of an African American.

1948  Palmiro Togliatti, leader of the Italian Communist Party, was shot near the Italian Parliament.

1950 Sir Apirana Ngata died.

Death of Sir Apirana Ngata

1958  Iraqi Revolution:  the monarchy was overthrown by popular forces lead by Abdul Karim Kassem, who becomes the nation’s new leader.

1965  The Mariner 4 flyby of Mars took the first close-up photos of another planet.

1969  Football War: after Honduras lost a soccer match against El Salvador rioting broke out in Honduras against Salvadoran migrant workers.

1969  The United States $500, $1,000, $5,000 and $10,000 bills were officially withdrawn from circulation.

1984 – David Lange led Labour to election victory.

David Lange celebrating 1984 election victory

1992  386BSD was released by Lynne Jolitz and William Jolitz beginning the Open Source Operating System Revolution.

2000 A powerful solar flare, later named the Bastille Day event, causef a geomagnetic storm.

2002  French President Jacques Chirac escaped an assassination attempt unscathed during Bastille Day celebrations.

2003  The United States Government admitted the existence of “Area 51“.

2007  Russia withdrew from the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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