Word of the day

15/11/2013

Vorfreude – intense, anticipative joy derived from imaging the future; the joyful anticipation of imagining future pleasures.

#gigatownoamaru is full of vorfreude about this weekend’s Victorian Heritage Celebrations and the prospect of becoming the southern hemisphere’s first gigatown.


Childish people trying to play grown-up

15/11/2013

Quote of the day:

”. . . As much of an attraction as the Moeraki Boulders are, I’m happy to lay a sizeable wager that when the first boat does arrive in New Zealand waters, it won’t be sailing past the West Coast, rounding Stewart Island, and making its way up to Oamaru.

”These are childish people trying to play grown-up. If they want to spend their days walking up and down the beach staring at the ocean, perhaps they could do something useful and bring a rubbish bag to tidy up while they’re at it.” Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse.

He was responding to reports that Right Wing Resistance New Zealand (RWR) had delivered pamphlets seeking men to form ”armed coastal patrols” to ”protect” the coast from ”people smugglers” and ”illegal foreign fishing”.

The Minister was supported by Waitaki Mayor:

Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher said Mr Chapman and his group were ”a joke” and the idea of armed boat patrols was ”just more idiocy from a group of people that are really not bright enough to know what they are doing”.

Quite.

If #gigtownoamaru becomes the southern hemisphere’s first gigatown  it will be even more attractive to immigrants but it is not in need of this sort of defence.


Rural round-up

15/11/2013

 

Indonesia – islands of opportunity for New Zealand agriculture:

Indonesia is emerging as a market which needs large volumes of food and agricultural products to satisfy its fast-growing consumer demand. And New Zealand is well placed to capitalise on this demand and grow trade with Indonesia – a significant neighbour – according to new industry report.

In the report, ‘Indonesia – islands of opportunity’, global agricultural banking specialist Rabobank says the economic transformation underway in Indonesia – which is seeing the country emerge as an economic and political powerhouse in South-East Asia – is leading to rapidly-increasing demand for consumer goods, including food.

And with pressure on its natural resources limiting the country’s ability to boost local food production, Indonesia will continue its reliance on imported agricultural commodities. . .

One voice vital for infant formula industry:

New Zealand’s infant formula industry must speak with one voice if it is to achieve best practice and regain the faith of export markets, Infant Nutrition Council (INC) Chief Executive Jan Carey said in Dunedin today.

Ms Carey was speaking at the Global Food Safety Forum Meeting which was being held in New Zealand for the first time. 

She said achieving best practice in the industry depended on a number of vital ingredients. . .

Maximising the productive value of heifers:

Some heifers are calving at only 82% of their mature weight rather than the target of 90%, recent dairy industry statistics reveal.

With some farmers struggling to keep condition on stock during the drought last year, further support may be required to assist heifers to reach target weights.

SealesWinslow Nutritionist Wendy Morgan says that the strategic use of animal feed can assist heifers to reach their target weight by the time they calve, resulting in the animals being more profitable in the herd, using the nutrients and energy from pasture for production of milk solids, rather than for growth.  . . .

2013 New IPO Opens Dairy Sector to Retail Investor:

New Zealand’s leading dairy farm manager MyFarm today launched an initial public offer (IPO) of shares in the first new dairy farm investment to be immediately quoted on its new securities trading platform, MyFarm Trading.

The IPO of GCF Investments Limited will for the first time give New Zealand retail investors access to both a MyFarm syndicate investment, and a facility to trade that investment, overcoming one of the principal barriers to investment in the dairying sector. . .

Wolf Blass tops off outstanding year:

Wolf Blass tops off an outstanding year being named ‘International Winemaker of the Year’ at the 2013 International Wine and Spirit Competition.

Leading Australian winery, Wolf Blass, has been named International Winemaker of the Year at the 2013 International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) in London overnight.

This is the third time that Wolf Blass has won this highly acclaimed award, the first being 1992 followed by 2002. . .

Remarkable success continues for Gibbston Valley School House Pinot Noir at the 2013 Air New Zealand Wine Awards

Multi award-winning Gibbston Valley Winery is celebrating once again after receiving its fourth consecutive Pure Gold Medal for its premium 2012 School House Pinot Noir at the Air New Zealand Wine Awards.

The results of this year’s awards were issued earlier this week (November 13 2013) by the New Zealand Winegrowers Association marking an unprecedented success for the winery. . .


Friday’s answers

15/11/2013

Thursday’s questions were:

1. Who said: The happiness of life is made up of minute fractions – the little, soon forgotten charities of a kiss or a smile, a kind look or heartfelt compliment.?

2. The Taming of the Shrew was involved in which Cole Porter musical?

3. It’s bise in French, bacio in Italian, beso in Spanish and  kihi in Maori, what is it in English?

4. Philematology is the study of what?

5. Should we follow Latin and other countries where greetings and farewells among friends are more tactile?

Points for answers:

Alwyn wins an electronic punnet of strawberries for a clean sweep and a bonus for poetry. I have a vague memory from English lectures that he was on opium when he wrote that poem.

Grant gets four with bonuses for Greek and Roman.

Andrei also gets four and a bonus for correcting my spelling, and jogging my memory – I think that question was the only one of those you posed which I got right.

I forgot to ask a question to which #gigatownoamaru could have been the answer.

Answers follow the break:

Read the rest of this entry »


What would happen?

15/11/2013

From UK Farmers Weekly:

Dear Farmers Weekly,

I’ve been reading the Farmers Weekly October 25 about the robot tractors’s I think that they should band banned because they are dangerus and there will be no jobs for me when I get older. So I think we should stick to the tractors. What would happen if a robot tractor went home through a town like Bury?

From Charlie Sellers age 8.

Letter


Closing immunisation gap

15/11/2013

Good news on the immunisation front:

There has been an unprecedented increase in the Maori immunisation rates over the past four years.

Immunisation rates for Maori children have improved so much in the past four years that the Maori rates are now equal to or better than the New Zealand European rate in more than half of the country’s district health boards (DHBs).

Two-year-old Maori children have higher immunisation rates than New Zealand European children in Bay of Plenty, Hawkes Bay, Lakes, Northland, Tairawhiti, Wairarapa, Waitemata and West Coast DHBs. And equal rates in Canterbury, Hutt Valley, Southern and Taranaki DHBs.

Health Minister Tony Ryall says results for Pacific communities are even better.

“Immunisation rates for Pacific children are equal to or better than the New Zealand European children in 17 DHBs. Even more impressive, in eight of these DHBs every single Pacific child was fully immunised at two years of age,” says Mr Ryall.

End of financial year data from the Ministry of Health shows 90 per cent of Maori children and 95 per cent of Pacific children were fully immunised by their second birthday.

In 2007, only 59 per cent of Maori children and 63 per cent of Pacific children were fully immunised – this equates to a 50 per cent improvement.

“This is a tremendous result and a tribute to the hard work of general practice teams, Well Child providers, community outreach teams, midwives, district health board staff and the national immunisation programme team.

“For the past four years these immunisation teams have taken our country from having one of the lowest immunisation rates in the world to having one of the highest. They have also removed the significant difference in rates between different groups that we had in the past,” says Mr Ryall.

Over at Sic Sci Blogs Helen Petousis Harris writes:

. . . This is bloody amazing and we should feel really proud. Most health care services have equity gaps and we have shown in immunisation that these are not inevitable but can be overcome. . . .

In the mid-90s the NZ government decided to solve the problem and over the next decade or so lots of talking and reports and strategies happened. Coverage slowly started to improve thanks to increased awareness of the problem, a united belief that we can and will fix it, champions of the cause at the national, regional and local levels, and improved reporting so that providers had a better idea of their performance. But the real game changers came when firstly, immunisation coverage was placed on a list of health priorities and then targets were set.  Alongside this the institution of the National Immunisation Register in 2005 was the essential tool required to monitor progress and find the children missing out.  Immunisation coverage rates have tracked rapidly upward ever since for a whole range of reasons: overall a priority focus at all levels, working together, improving organisational performance, feedback loops and teamwork. Amazing how that motivates people!!  In particular real credit must go to general practice where the bulk of the service delivery occurs, and to the unsung heroes – the practice nurses – for all the commitment and hard work!

This needs repeating: But the real game changers came when firstly, immunisation coverage was placed on a list of health priorities and then targets were set.

That’s not rocket science but it’s made a significant improvement.

This is  is good not just for those immunised but those who can’t be.

Herd immunity requires most people to be immunised and the higher immunisation rates are the smaller the risk of disease outbreaks.

On a related note, the count-down was on for the eradication of polio internationally but now there’s been an outbreak in Syria:

At least 22 people – most of them babies and toddlers – are now believed to have contracted polio in Syria, the World Health Organization has reported.

If confirmed, it would be the first outbreak of the disease there in 14 years. Syria’s Health Ministry began an immunisation drive on Thursday.

Before Syria’s civil war began in 2011, some 95% of children were vaccinated against the disease.

Now, Unicef estimates 500,000 children have not been immunised. . .

Polio has been largely eradicated in developed countries but remains endemic in Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Worldwide, polio cases have fallen from an estimated 350,000 at the start of a WHO-led immunisation campaign in 1988 to just 223 reported cases last year.

There is no known cure, though a series of vaccinations can confer immunity. Young children are particularly susceptible to paralytic polio, the most serious form of the disease.

Rotary International is working to eradicate polio.


Manufacturing a crisis

15/11/2013

The opposition has been doing its best to manufacture a crisis on manufacturing.

The facts don’t support their emotion:

The manufacturing sector expanded for the 11th month in a row in October.

The latest BNZ-Business New Zealand performance of manufacturing index rose 1.5 points to 55.7. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

Compared with 12 months ago, the index is now at the highest level since 2007.

BNZ economist Craig Ebert says unusually, all the parts that make up the index were in expansion mode. . .

If there’s a worry it’s not the demise of manufacturing its lack of capacity to cope with expected demand.


Case for convention centre

15/11/2013

The International Convention Centre Bill passed its third reading this week.

“The New Zealand International Convention Centre Bill is another example of this Government’s drive to create new investment, jobs and growth for New Zealanders,” Mr Joyce says.

“It gives effect to the 368-page agreement signed in July between the Government and SkyCity to build a world-class convention centre in Auckland that will be a major asset for New Zealand.

“The 3500-seat Convention Centre will generate significant spin-off benefits including a projected $90 million annual injection into the economy; an estimated 1000 jobs during construction; and 800 jobs once it is up and running.

“For the last 20 years the tourism industry and business sector have been seeking an international-sized convention centre to be built in New Zealand to ensure we compete with Australia and Asia by tapping into the growing market of high-value business visitors.

“The New Zealand International Convention Centre is part of the Government’s Business Growth Agenda of building a more competitive and productive economy that creates jobs, lifts incomes, and boosts the standard of living for Kiwi families.

“Parties in favour of jobs for New Zealanders have supported the Bill and the building of the convention centre. Parties that don’t care about jobs for Kiwis have opposed it. In the case of the Labour Party, that’s despite being supportive of a similar deal for a much smaller convention centre back in 2001 when they were in Government.

“For little, if any, investment by taxpayers, New Zealanders will reap the benefits of a $402 million international-standard convention centre including an increase in GDP, new jobs, improved competitiveness as a business events destination and the attraction of more investors to New Zealand.”

The combination of tartan genes and  a Presbyterian upbringing protect me from the supposed allure of gambling and casinos are my idea of purgatory.

But I don’t have any problem with people betting providing they can afford it and they’re not addicted to it.

Given he danger of addiction and the harm it does, I’d prefer the strictly regulated and controlled environment of a casino than the unmonitored and more accessible pokies which can now be found in most pubs.

convention

Photo: This week National passed legislation that allows a world-class convention centre to be built in Auckland. This is just one of around 350 initiatives in our Business Growth Agenda to create jobs and help our economy grow.

http://www.national.org.nz/Article.aspx?ArticleID=42506

November 15 in history

15/11/2013

655 – Battle of Winwaed: Penda of Mercia was defeated by Oswiu of Northumbria.

1315 – Battle of Morgarten the Schweizer Eidgenossenschaft ambushed the army of Leopold I.

1515 – Thomas Wolsey was invested as a Cardinal.

1532 – Commanded by Francisco Pizarro, Spanish conquistadors under Hernando de Soto met Inca leader Atahualpa for the first time outside Cajamarca.

1533 – Francisco Pizarro arrived in Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire.

1708 William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, was born (d. 1778).

1769 The British flag flew in New Zealand for the first time.

British flag flies for first time in NZ

1777 – American Revolutionary War: After 16 months of debate the Continental Congress approved the Articles of Confederation.

1791 – The first U.S Catholic college, Georgetown University, opened its doors.

1854 – The Suez Canal, linking the Mediterranean Sea with the Red Sea, was given the necessary royal concession.

1859 – The first modern revival of the Olympic Games in Athens.

1861 The first issue of the Otago Daily Times was published.

First issue of <em>Otago Daily Times</em> published

1864 – American Civil War: Union General William Tecumseh Sherman burned Atlanta, Georgia and started Sherman’s March to the Sea.

1889 – Brazil was declared a republic by Marechal Deodoro da Fonseca and Emperor Pedro II was deposed in a military coup.

1891 Erwin Rommel, German field marshal, “The Desert Fox”, was born (d. 1941).

1903 – Stewie Dempster, New Zealand cricketer, was born (d. 1974).

1905 Mantovani, Italian-born composer, was born (d. 1980).

1920 – First assembly of the League of Nations was held in Geneva.

1923 – The German Rentenmark is introduced in Germany to counter Inflation in the Weimar Republic.

1926 – The NBC radio network opened with 24 stations.

1932 Petula Clark, English singer, was born.

1935 – Manuel L. Quezon was inaugurated as the second president of the Philippines.

1939 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt laid the cornerstone of the Jefferson Memorial.

1942 Daniel Barenboim, Argentine-born conductor and pianist, was born.

1942 – First flight of the Heinkel He 219.

1942 – The Battle of Guadalcanal ended in a decisive Allied victory.

1943 – Holocaust: German SS leader Heinrich Himmler ordered that Gypsies be put “on the same level as Jews and placed in concentration camps”.

1945 – Roger Donaldson, Australian- born New Zealand film producer/director, was born.

1945 Anni-Frid “Frida” Lyngstad, Norwegian (By Birth) singer (ABBA) was born.

1948 – Louis Stephen St. Laurent succeeded William Lyon Mackenzie King as Prime Minister of Canada.

1949 – Nathuram Godse and Narayan Apte were executed for assassinating Mahatma Gandhi.

1951 – Greek resistance leader Nikos Beloyannis and 11 resistance members, were sentenced to death.

1966 – Gemini 12 splashed down safely in the Atlantic Ocean.

1966 – Pan Am Flight 708 crashed near Berlin, killing the three people on board.

1967 – The only fatality of the X-15 program occurs during the 191st flight when Air Force test pilot Michael J. Adams lost control of his aircraft which was destroyed mid-air over the Mojave Desert.

1968 – The US Air Force launched Operation Commando Hunt, a large-scale bombing campaign against the Ho Chi Minh trail.

1969 – The Soviet submarine K-19 collided with the American submarine USS Gato in the Barents Sea.

1969 – 250,000-500,000 protesters staged a peaceful demonstration against the Vietnam War, including a symbolic “March Against Death”.

1969 – In Columbus, Ohio, Dave Thomas opened the first Wendy’s restaurant.

1971 – Intel released world’s first commercial single-chip microprocessor, the 4004.

1976 – René Lévesque and the Parti Québécois took power to become the first Quebec government of the 20th century clearly in favour of independence.

1978 – A chartered Douglas DC-8 crashed near Colombo, Sri Lanka, killing 183.

1979 – A package from the Unabomber Ted Kaczynski began smoking in the cargo hold of a flight from Chicago to Washington, forcing the plane to make an emergency landing.

1983 – Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus was founded. Recognised only by Turkey.

1985 – A research assistant was injured when a package from the Unabomber addressed to a University of Michigan professor exploded.

1985 – The Anglo-Irish Agreement was signed at Hillsborough Castle by British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and Irish Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald.

1987 – Continental Airlines Flight 1713, a Douglas DC-9-14 jetliner, crashed in a snowstorm at Denver, Colorado Stapleton International Airport, killing 28 occupants, while 54 survive the crash.

1987 – In Braşov, Romania, workers rebelled against the communist regime of Nicolae Ceaușescu.

1988 – In the Soviet Union, the unmanned Shuttle Buran was launched on her first and last space flight.

1988 – Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: An independent State of Palestine was proclaimed by the Palestinian National Council.

1988 – The first Fairtrade label, Max Havelaar, was launched in the Netherlands.

1989 – Sachin Tendulkar made his debut as an international cricketer.

1990 – Space Shuttle Atlantis launched with flight STS-38.

2000 – A chartered Antonov An-24 crashed after takeoff from Luanda, Angola killing more than 40 people.

2003 – The first day of the 2003 Istanbul Bombings, in which two car bombs, targeting two synagogues, explode, killing 25 people and wounding about 300.

2005 – Boeing formally launched the stretched Boeing 747-8 variant with orders from Cargolux and Nippon Cargo Airlines.

2007 – Cyclone Sidr hit Bangladesh, killing an estimated 5000 people and destroyed the world’s largest mangrove forest, Sundarbans.

2012 – Xi Jinping became General Secretary of the Communist Party of China and a new 7-members Politburo Standing Committee is inaugurated.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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