Politics Daily


This is an attempt to replace Dr Bryce Edwards’ daily political round-up while he’s taking a break.

I’m not pretending to be balanced.

While I link to a range of news stories, the blogs I link to are usually from the centre to the bluer end of the political spectrum or the more reasonable or witty bits of the pink to red end.

You’re welcome to leave links to other news and blogs in comments.

Electoral Act breaches

Inventory 2 @ Keeping Stock – Some thoughts on Electoral Act breaches

Cameron Slater @ Whale Oil – Why won’t the Police act with complaints from the Electoral Commission?

Cameron Slater @ Whale Oil – Andrew Little just drew a great big target on the backs of his Labour pals


Steven Joyce, Tony Ryall – $78m in health research funding announced

Murray McCully – NZ support for new Pacific eye care centre

Tim Groser – Address to business chambers event – Philippines


Dan Satherley @ TV3 – ACT ‘determined to play straight’ – Whyte

Pete George @ Your NZ – Different impressions of Jamie Whyte

John Banks

TV3 – Sympathy for Banks despite differences

Rob Hosking @ NBR Banks’ departure will clear the air

Michael Fox and Hamish Rutherford @ Stuff –  John Banks’ votes would’ve been rejected

Audrey Young – Conviction delay blindsided Act MP

Tracy Watkins @ Stuff – Banks departure a less messy solution

Danyl Mclauchlan @ Dim Post – Silly Laws

TV3 – IPCA considers John Banks inquiry


Gerry Brownlee – A lawyer’s field day at the taxpayers’ expense

Insurance Council of NZ – Earthquake Court approach misguided

David Farrar @ Kiwiblog – Labour’s insurance court

Pete George @ Your NZ – Labour soul searching

No right Turn – A paucity of vision

Cameron Slater @ Whale Oil – Labour has lost their lost their raison d’etre

Inventory 2 @ Keeping Stock – Comment of the Day – 9 June 2014


Pete George @ Your NZ – Dotcom and citizenship

Russel Brown @ Public Address – Meanwhile back at the polls

Green Party

David Farrar @ Kiwiblog – The Greens want 3D printing for NZ

Cameron Slater @ Whale Oil – Green Taliban’s “3D blueprint” for the future nothing but hype



Hekia Parata – Teachers take role in leadership plan

Inventory 2 @ Keeping Stock – Parata on the IES programme

David Farrar @ Kiwiblog – The “Tea Party” left

Matthew Beveridge – Leaving on a jet plane 2

Matthew Beveridge – A blast from the past

Stacey Kirk @ Stuff –  Civilian Party ‘a joke on taxpayers’

Eric Crampton @ Offsetting Behaviour – Value for Money election broadcasting edition

David Farrar @ Kiwiblog – Joyce rated more valuable than Cunliffe

Cameron Slater @ Whale Oil – Why readers are turned off by main stream media and voting with their dollars

Word of the day


Prate – to talk excessively and pointlessly; babble; to utter in empty or foolish talk; talk at tedious length; talk much and without weight, or to little purpose; to be loquacious;  the act of prating; empty or foolish talk; continued talk to little purpose; trifling talk; unmeaning loquacity.

Day of the journalist


Saturday was the Day of the Journalist, if not everywhere it was somehwere in the world where they speak Spanish.

"Sin periodistas no hay periodismo sin periodismo no hay democracia" #FelizDiadelPeriodista

Rural round-up


Review Panel releases consultation document and plans for travel:

The Independent Forestry Safety Review Panel released its public consultation document today. The document can be found on the Review’s website at www.ifsr.co.nz.

WorkSafe New Zealand statistics showed that between 2008 and 2013, there have been 967 reported instances of serious injury related to forestry and logging. In this time 28 workers died in accidents. That is just one person fewer than were killed in the Pike River mining disaster. The Review is being undertaken to address this very poor safety record.

Panel Chair, George Adams commented that “Forestry in New Zealand is far too dangerous. Everyone in the industry recognises that fact and that’s why the Review has been established. It is clear change must occur to prevent injuries and save lives. The consultation document provides an opportunity for everyone in the industry and the public to have a say in what those changes should be”. . . .

Forestry industry leaders need to own, manage and measure contractor health and safety:

Forestry industry leaders need to make themselves accountable for the health and safety of their contractors if the industry’s poor safety record is to improve, the Business Leaders’ Health and Safety Forum says.

“They need to own this issue, and they need to manage it and measure how well they and their contractors are performing on health and safety,” says Forum Executive Director Julian Hughes.

A consultation document released today by the Independent Forestry Safety Review Panel highlights that there is no simple fix to forestry’s safety problems, Julian says. . .

Time for Silent Majority to be heard:

Forest safety is something that many of the leading forest contractors take seriously. So the next step in the forest safety review process is being welcomed by Forest Industry Contractors Association (FICA) and the many forest workers their members employ.

Several industry associations have a keen interest in ensuring that as many workers as possible get their voices heard by the panel members as they move around the country to discuss forest safety and how it can be improved.

One of the groups, the Forest Industry Contractors Association, represents over 55% of the companies providing forest operations and harvesting services. With staff numbers in the thousands it is important that they find their voice and make sure it is heard by review panel members. . .

TPP to live on in other acronyms even if it fails: Groser – Pattrick Smellie:

(BusinessDesk) – The negotiated positions of parties to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement will be crucial in developing other free trade pacts that are either emerging or on the table now, even if the current negotiations fail, says International Trade Minister Tim Groser.

Speaking in the Philippines as part of a business delegation in the capital, Manila, Groser said the TPP negotiations were now “at a crucial stage”, but that if the talks were to fail, the developments they achieved would still prove useful for the ultimate liberalised trade zone, the Free Trade Area in the Asia-Pacific, otherwise known as FTAAP. . .

Spider venom may hold key to saving bees:

Researchers believe spider venom may hold the key to protecting bees from harmful toxins after finding a bio-pesticide made from a combination of plant proteins and the arachnids poison is harmful to pests but not honeybees.

It is thought that neonicotinoid pesticides are behind the dramatic decline in honeybee populations, and this catastrophe could spell disaster for humans as food production greatly relies on pollinators such as the bees.

A team of Newcastle University scientists tested a combination of natural toxins from the venom of the Australian funnel web spider and snowdrop lectin bio-pesticides and found that it allowed honeybees to forage without harm even when exposed to unusually high doses. . .

Agricultural Fieldays keeps growing:

The sprawling national agricultural fieldays site at Mystery Creek near Hamilton has been a hive of activity as exhibitors get ready for the biggest annual event on New Zealand’s rural calendar.

Most of the major structures are up, but preparations and fine tuning will continue into the late hours on Tuesday night, before the gates open on Wednesday morning.

The exhibition area covers about 50 hectares with more than 900 exhibitors on 1380 sites. . .

Top NZ dairy technology goes on show in China:

For dairy operators in China looking to build new dairy complexes, leading dairy technology innovator Waikato Milking Systems and herd management technology company Afimilk offer total milking solutions.

Whether dairy companies in China’s growing dairy industry want a whole new large-scale milking system, or high-technology products to get more out of their existing milking system, these two companies have the expertise to deliver results. The companies will have a joint display at the World Dairy Expo in Xi’an in China on 13 to 15 June 2014. . . .

Commission begins process for the 2013/14 review of Fonterra’s milk price calculation

The Commerce Commission today released a paper outlining the proposed process and timeline for a review of Fonterra’s base milk price calculation for the 2013/14 dairy season. The base milk price is what Fonterra pays the farmers who supply them milk.

The Commission is required to review Fonterra’s calculation of the base milk price each year and 2013/14 is the second time the Commission will undertake a calculation review. The review will assess the extent to which Fonterra’s approach provides incentives for it to operate efficiently while providing for contestability in the market for purchasing farmers’ milk. The scope of the review is to only look at the base milk price, not the retail price that consumers pay for milk. . . .

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Welcomes Primary Sector Future Capability Report:

Beef + Lamb New Zealand says it’s important to have an understanding of the sector’s workforce requirements, to be well placed to take full advantage of the opportunities ahead.

The Minister for Primary Industries, Hon Nathan Guy, has today launched the ‘Future capability needs for primary industries in New Zealand’ report that forecasts the future workforce needs of the primary industries.

The report says that for red meat and wool, the challenge will be in training and retaining people with market and product-oriented skills as well as cultural and language capabilities. This is because over 90 per cent of the sheepmeat and beef produced in New Zealand is exported to overseas markets. . . .

Applications Open for Fonterra Farmers to Lock in Guaranteed Milk Price:

Following last week’s announcement of the 2014/15 forecast Farmgate Milk Price, applications are now open for Fonterra farmers to lock in a price for a percentage of their milk.

Building on the success of the Guaranteed Milk Price (GMP) pilot in the 2013/14 season, Fonterra has further developed the programme to give farmers even more flexibility to help manage the effects of commodity price volatility and give greater income certainty.

There will now be two opportunities in the 2014/15 season to secure a GMP on 60 million kgMS – up to 40 million kgMS is available in June, and up to 20 million kgMS is available in December. There is also a new approach to determine each GMP and allocate the available volume. . . .

Leading New Zealand wine brand celebrates a new beginning:

Matariki, one of New Zealand’s most prestigious wine brands has formally announced its return to market with the launch of its ultra-premium 2009 wines.

Now under the ownership of Taurus Wine Group Limited, the wines remain under the stewardship of John O’Connor and the watchful eye of the mother and her six daughters that form the visible stars in the Matariki constellation, appropriately re-appearing in the night sky on June 28 heralding the Maori New Year.

Matariki is marking its new beginning with the release of its flagship red blend, Quintology and single varietal range Les Filles (The Daughters), all from the 2009 vintage. . .

SATO Signs Master Service Agreement with Fonterra:

SATO, a leader in barcode printing, labeling, and EPC/RFID solutions, announced today that it has signed a Master Service Agreement (MSA) with Fonterra Cooperative Group Limited, a leading global dairy company based in New Zealand, to provide supplies, services, and support for barcode systems in Fonterra’s factories and distribution centers worldwide.

SATO has been working closely with Fonterra in New Zealand and Australia, playing an instrumental role in standardizing their barcoding systems and configurations. Furthering this partnership, SATO Holdings Corporation and Fonterra have signed an MSA which will cover all countries Fonterra operates in, allowing SATO’s global subsidiaries to better offer localized services matching the requirements of Fonterra operations in each country. Key applications that can be provided under the agreement include product traceability solutions, product anti-counterfeiting solutions, label management and printing solutions, wireless infrastructure solutions, and many more. . . .

Grand Final tickets selling out:

The showcase event of the rural community is just weeks away and tickets for events are selling out fast.

New Zealand Young Farmers members, supporters and competitors will descend upon Christchurch for the 2014 ANZ Young Farmer Contest Grand Final, 3-5 July.

Over a demanding three days the seven Grand Finalists will be put through their paces in a number of challenges, tested on all facets of New Zealand agriculture and farming.
Lincoln University Library will play host to the Official Opening, Thursday 3 July, 4.30pm, as the Grand Finalists come together for the first of two head-to-head challenges. Free for spectators. . .

Time for a whole new competition


Perhaps the America’s Cup was once a race on the water where crews and their yachts competed with a fair chance of winning.

In recent years there’s been a lot more action in board rooms and courts.

One reason for that is the defender’s ability to rig the rules and the latest rigging is the last straw.

Paul Lewis says it’s time for a replacement America’s Cup:

Let’s start a replacement America’s Cup.

A proper one, with one set of rules for everyone and genuine competition. Not some heavily-rigged pretence at sport which is actually a play for power and money. That’s what Oracle Team USA served up with their protocol for the 35th America’s Cup this week.

This is a jack-up so obvious it should be called the Jack Cup. This went beyond the usual America’s Cup defender giving themselves an advantage. This is the US Army, armed with nukes, drones and heat-seeking missiles versus Spongebob Squarepants waving a sharp teaspoon. This is ensuring retention of the Cup under the banner of taking sailing to the masses and making it more commercial. Translation: more of everything for Oracle. . . .

A new event would be cheaper, fairer and more accessible. It could be staged in Australia or New Zealand, or even both, and would eventually grow to be its own event, maybe even overshadowing the Cup which could stand proudly in the Golden Gate Yacht Club trophy cabinet – forgotten and uncontested. . . .

Let’s have a yacht race that has clear rules which gives everyone the same chance and is decided on the water by the skill of the crews.

14-yr-old Fieldays’ Young Inventor of the Year


Fourteen- year-old entrepreneur Ayla Hutchinson is the 2013 Fieldays Young Inventor of the Year:

“If you have a dream keep working at it until it comes true and whatever you do DONT GIVE UP!”

Ayla Hutchinson the Inventor of the Kindling Cracker, which provides a safer faster and easier way to split kindling, has stuck by her saying over the last year and she has proven that with hard work and determination your dreams can come true.

This young entrepreneur displayed her amazing invention at the Fieldays last year where she was awarded the 2013 Young inventor of the year as well as the James and Wells intellectual property award. “It was a privilege to win the ‘2013 Fieldays Young Inventor of the Year Award’ last year and I am excited to find out which new exhibitor will win this award for 2014”.

Ayla also had many others highlights including receiving the New Zealand Innovation ’Most Inspiring Individual Award’ and the Buy NZ Made ‘Rising Star Award’ and most recently being selected to be part of the Hyundai ‘Pinnacle Programme’ for talented young New Zealanders.

Ayla has had “heaps of offers” of investment but the young entrepreneur wanted to financially try to go it alone.

After a long tiresome year of building up her business while also keeping up with her school work and sports Ayla has her product in full production and is selling them on her website where they are proving to be very popular.

Ayla will be at the Fieldays again this year where she is entered into the Launch New Zealand category.
She was excited when she found out that she was one of 20 finalists to be part of the Soda Innovation Den again this year but then decided that she would rather another contestant have this chance. “After thinking long and hard about it I decided to let someone else have this great opportunity this year as I know how hard it is in the beginning and they might really need the help” she said.

If you are going to be visiting the Fieldays this year be sure to go see Ayla and her Kindling Cracker in the Innovation Centre, site 22.

Short product Description:
The Kindling Cracker allows people to make kindling without dangerously wielding an axe past their hands. Safe and easy to use due to its unique design which includes a safety ring, the kindling cracker operates by tapping wood with a mallet onto a stationary blade that splits it. It requires less force to split wood than using an axe and is suitable for people with arthritis and other disabilities too.

The Kindling Cracker website is here.

Labour logo a liability?


Remember last election Labour MPS and candidates left their then-leader Phil Goff’s photo off their billboards?

It was a sign they had no faith in him and regarded him as a liability

This time, the party’s candidate for Waitaki appears to regard the Labour logo as a liability.

On her Facebook page she says she’s the Labour candidate but this is what she shows:



A picture paints a thousand words and none of the words this picture paints is Labour.

National MP Jacqui Dean holds the seat with 61.45% of the votes cast and a majority of 14143.

The boundary has changed and the electorate is a little smaller than it was three years ago but that’s unlikely to have much, if any, impact on the election result.

Alexander hasn’t a hope of winning the electorate and it would appear she’s not even trying for the party vote.

Making NZ home


One of the defining images of the 2008 election campaign was the empty stadium illustrating the number of people heading across the Tasman to live.

It got worse after that as the global recession bit, but now it’s getting better.


Our growing economy means fewer New Zealanders need to look across the Tasman for job opportunities.
There’s nothing wrong with people going overseas to learn and work.

There’s nothing wrong with people who do so choosing to stay because they want to.

The problem is when people feel they have to leave and/or can’t come back.

Thankfully we’ve got a government that understands that and has policies that give people something to stay for and return to.

They’re policies that make them able to choose to make New Zealand home.

In a global world where they are free to call almost any country home, they choose New Zealand.

Compounding moral bankruptcy


John Banks served as an electorate MP and Minister, retired then returned to parliament representing a party with whose principles and philosophy he had something in common but which weren’t best matched to his own.

Laila Harre served as a list MP and Minister, retired and is now seeking to return to parliament leading a party which doesn’t appear to have much in the way of principles.

Worse it’s led by man whose actions appear to be diametrically opposed to all she professes to believe in.

As Trans Tasman pointed out last week:

. . . It is possible, back when she was an ardent campaigner for feminism and against capitalism, racism and corporatism, Harre foresaw the day she would sign up to front a party funded by a convicted German fraudster who made much of his money from pornography and who also has a fetish for racist, not to say outright Nazi, humour. Harre wasn’t even elected: she was anointed by the aforementioned convicted German fraudster who has trafficked in pornography and who thinks n-word jokes are hilarious.

There are many terms for this sort of thing, none of them complimentary. We will avoid the ‘h’ word – not just because MPs are not allowed to use the term hypocrisy in the House, but mostly because hypocrisy is part of the human condition. All of us fall short of our ideals. But this is not mere hypocrisy, not a minor falling short. This is moral bankruptcy of a particularly shameless kind. . .

At least Banks had some positive things in common with Act.

All Harre has is negative – the aim to get rid of John Key and National.

And Banks wasn’t bought by anyone.

Harre is accepting Kim Dotcom’s money – a salary of more than $100,000 for herself and millions for the party.

If she thinks he won’t expect her to dance to whatever tune he calls, she’s compounding the moral bankruptcy with stupidity.


How far back should inquiry go?


Labour wants an independent inquiry into recent investigations and prosecutions involving politicians, in the wake of the John Banks scandal.

How recent?

Should it go back to the pledge card?

Should it go back even further to Helen Clark and the painting?

The current system isn’t working.

It takes far too long for the Electoral Commission to refer matters to the police and far too long for their investigations.

We need electoral law that is much more responsive and effective.

But Labour should be careful what they wish for in asking for an inquiry into recent prosecutions – depending on how recent, recent is, they might not like what it finds.

Of chips and planks


If John Banks was the answer, Act had asked the wrong question.

They needed someone to win Epsom, but they also needed someone who could get rid of the confusion over what it stood for and unite it on the foundation of liberal values on which it was founded.

He proved he could win Epsom, but wasn’t able to do anything more for the party and almost caused its demise.

Like another former Act MP who had first entered parliament in another party, Roger Douglas, Banks showed it’s almost always a mistake to go back.

His term wasn’t entirely wasted. He achieved the introduction of partnership schools and children who failed in the conventional system have been given a chance to succeed in another.

No doubt he also did the work for his constituents that almost always goes unnoticed, except for the people who seek their MPs help when all other avenues have been exhausted.

But sadly, for him, his party and constituents, his term has finished prematurely and in shadow.

He had a dreadful childhood and could well have followed his parents into a life of crime.

He chose a far better path,  succeeded in business and spent decades in public service.

Had he not decided to return to parliament he would have carried on succeeding and also helping people, out of the public eye.

Instead, his achievements and the good he did have been overshadowed by a court case and a guilty verdict.

There will be no comfort in the knowledge that had he followed the letter of the law and used a trust there would have been no case and that by choosing to observe its spirit he opened himself to the charge which was laid and the court case that ended in a guilty verdict.

The premature end to his career does seem a very high price to pay when so many others have manipulated electoral law in far worse ways and gone unpunished.

In saying that I’m not excusing what was done or criticising the verdict and I hope those who are crowing at the outcome and pointing out the chip in Banks’ eye will examine the planks in their own.

Among them are those who know a lot about the theory of poverty, let’s remind them he knows about it in practice.

Let this be his legacy – that je overcame disadvantage, cruelty and poverty and did indeed, as he aimed to, balanced the family ledger.


If you prefer reading, here is the transcript from Hansard:

Hon JOHN BANKS (Leader—ACT) :Tēnā koe, Mr Assistant Speaker. The seeds of my political philosophy lie in my background. I am not sure how much the previous speaker, Hone Harawira, knows about child poverty. I know a lot about child poverty. I know what it is like to live in a house with no power and no running water; having a bath once a week in a 44-gallon drum cut in half; sleeping on straw covered with sacks; going to bed every night hungry, piddling the bed every night—psychologically disturbed—and being thrashed every morning for piddling the bed every night. I know what it is like going to school every day in an ex-army uniform with no shoes; spending all day, every day, out of the classroom stealing other kids’ lunches; going home to bread and milk—at best—at night, cooked over an open fire with sugar on top; if I am very lucky, taking Weet-bix covered in dripping to school each day; and living in a very dark hole. That is child poverty.

If I thought that the policies of the previous speaker from the Tai Tokerau would work against that—and they do exist; they do exist—I would go to the other side of the House and support him. I would be the first to line up to support him. Why would I not be the first to line up to support Hone Harawira if he had the answers to this country’s deep, deep vein of underprivilege, desperation, desolation, and despair that so many of our kids live under? If I thought that his policies were the answer, I would line up with him and I would say so.

But let me give him one ticket out of child poverty that he might like to think about. That one ticket is twofold: living in a home with unconditional love—and I never knew about that—and a world-class education. I did get that—a world-class education. If every one of his people lived in a home with unconditional love and access to a world-class education, then in a generation we would get rid of the deep vein of social deprivation and child poverty in this country. That is the ticket. That is the only ticket—not welfare, not big Governments, not more borrowing, and not more handouts. It is instilling in people that having children is a God-given right but an awesome responsibility, that love goes a long, long way, and that a world-class education is a ticket to the future for so many of these people whom the previous speaker talked about and represents to the best of his ability in this House. But he is misguided.

In a couple of weeks we are going to open the first charter school—they call it—in Northland. I do not mind whether they call it a charter school or whether they call them partnership schools, but this is what I can tell you. The first partnership school in Whangarei will open in 2 weeks’ time. As a private provider for the last 4 years it has taken 40 Māori boys and girls from the poorest, poorest families in the whole of the Tai Tokerau. It has boarded them in Whangarei, and it has given them an opportunity to go to the best State schools in Whangarei, mostly Whangarei Boys High School, and after school they are tutored. They get in that collective home unconditional love every day of the week and tutoring every night of the week. They feel a sense of purpose and direction.

Those young people sit National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) level 1 with a 100 percent pass rate, I say to the Minister of Finance, a 100 percent pass rate in that partnership school in Whangarei for the last 4 years, a 100 percent pass rate in NCEA level 1 in Whangarei with Māori boys who come from places that the previous speaker represents and knows nothing about. The previous speaker has a doctrine he peddles in this House that is bankrupt—more borrowing, more welfare, and less responsibility. He does it because he thinks there are votes in it. There are no votes in representing people who have no hope, and that member will not get up on his hind legs and say to this House: “I’m going to support the partnership school that has served my mokopuna in Tai Tokerau for so, so long.” That member and the Labour Party have promised to close down that school, which gets a 100 percent—100 percent—pass rate in NCEA level 1.

That is the ticket out of deprivation. That is the only way, the one-way street, the only way out of poverty in this country. It will take a generation, but this is what this Government is working on. It stands for bringing those people up. It is like high tides raising all boats. Lift the standards at the bottom and the high tide will rise and raise more boats—all boats. We have tried throwing money. We have tried borrowing money. We have tried big welfare. And what we do know is that any Government big enough to give you everything you want is a Government big enough to take from the hard workers everything they have.

So if we want to deal with the deep vein of social deprivation—and I do because I know what it is like, and it is a dark place, a very dark place—then we have to deal with the fundamentals of human behaviour: taking responsibility for your family, giving them unconditional love regardless of your status or your wealth, taking advantage of a world-class education that is there for you at the school down the street, and encouraging young people to do that. It will be a generation, but it will lift them out. If we want to empty the jails, we have got to educate the young people. If we want to get the health lists down, we have got to teach young people what it is like to be in charge of yourself and take responsibility for your own actions. Then we will make progress. But borrowing from the savings of offshore people to hand out to others in a country and mounting up the debt to the next generation is not the way we deal with poverty in this country.

Of course I support sandwiches and food in schools—by God, I would have loved some sandwiches and some food in school—but that is not the answer. The answer is getting the fundamentals of the New Zealand economy so that we are internationally competitive. I pay tribute to Bill English, whom I have worked with closely these last 2 years, who has done a remarkable job of turning this economy round. I give praise to the Prime Minister and Cabinet and the National Party caucus—my coalition partners—for taking tough decisions. The answer to child poverty, I say to the parliamentary Opposition, is not about taking others’ money and throwing it at a problem, because we have tried that and it has failed.

The answer is education. The answer is giving everybody the opportunity of the dignity of work, and you can have a job only if you are educated. And you can get educated only if you go to school. And you can go to school only if you come from a home that loves you. And the corollary to that is a dark place, and I know about living in dark places. So if we want to deal with the fundamental issues of about 20 percent of this country’s young people coming from dysfunctional homes and families, we have to deal with the causes, not with the political side effects for the purposes of getting a few votes.

June 9 in history


53  Roman Emperor Nero married Claudia Octavia.

62  Claudia Octavia was executed.

68  Roman Emperor Nero committed  suicide, after quoting Homer’s Iliad..

721  Odo of Aquitaine defeated the Moors in the Battle of Toulouse.

1310  Duccio‘s Maestà Altarpiece, a seminal artwork of the early Italian Renaissance, was unveiled and installed in the Siena Cathedral.

1534 Jacques Cartier was the first European to discover the Saint Lawrence River.

1595 King Wladislaus IV of Poland, was born (d. 1648).

1650  The Harvard Corporation, the more powerful of the two administrative boards of Harvard, was established,  the first legal corporation in the Americas.

1667 The Raid on the Medway by the Dutch fleet began.

1732  James Oglethorpe was granted a royal charter for the colony of Georgia.

1772  The British ship Gaspee was burned off the coast of Rhode Island.

1781 George Stephenson, English mechanical engineer, was born (d. 1848).

1798  Irish Rebellion of 1798: Battle of Arklow and Battle of Saintfield.

1815  End of the Congress of Vienna.

1856 Five hundred Mormons left Iowa City and headed west for Salt Lake City carrying all their possessions in two-wheeled handcarts.

1863  American Civil War: the Battle of Brandy Station, Virginia.

1868 – Titokowaru’s war began with the killing of three settlers near Ketemarae, north of Hāwera, by Ngā Ruahine warriors acting on the orders of the spiritual leader Titokowaru.

1873  Alexandra Palace burned down after being open for only 16 days.

1885  A peace treaty was signed to end the Sino-French War.

1891 Cole Porter, American composer and lyricist, was born  (d. 1964).

1909  Alice Huyler Ramsey, a 22-year-old became the first woman to drive across the United States. With three female companions, none of whom could drive a car, in fifty-nine days she drove a Maxwell automobile the 3,800 miles from Manhattan to San Francisco.

1915  William Jennings Bryan resigned as Woodrow Wilson’s Secretary of State over a disagreement regarding the United States’ handling of the sinking of the RMS Lusitania.

1922  First ringing of the Harkness Memorial Chime at Yale University.

1923 Bulgaria‘s military took over the government in a coup.

1928  Charles Kingsford Smith completed the first trans-Pacific flight in a Fokker Trimotor monoplane, the Southern Cross.

1930  Chicago Tribune reporter Jake Lingle was killed during rush hour at the Illinois Central train station by the Leo Vincent Brothers, allegedly over a 100,000 USD gambling debt owed to Al Capone.

1934  Donald Duck made his debut in The Wise Little Hen.

1941 Jon Lord, English musician (Deep Purple), was born.

1944  World War II: 99 civilians were hung from lampposts and balconies by German troops in Tulle in reprisal for maquisards attacks.

1944  World War II: the Soviet Union invaded East Karelia and the previously Finnish part of Karelia, occupied by Finland since 1941.

1946 King Bhumibol Adulyadej ascended to the throne of Thailand. He is currently the world’s longest reigning monarch.

1953 Flint-Worcester tornado outbreak sequence: a tornado spawned from the same storm system as the Flint tornado hit in Worcester, Massachusetts killing 94.

1954 Joseph Welch, special counsel for the United States Army, lashed out at Senator Joseph McCarthy during hearings on whether Communism had infiltrated the Army – giving McCarthy the famous rebuke, “You’ve done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?”

1956 Patricia Cornwell, American author, was born.

1957  First ascent of Broad Peak (the world’s 12th highest mountain).

1958 Queen Elizabeth II officially opened London Gatwick Airport.

1959  The USS George Washington was launched, the first submarine to carry ballistic missiles.

1961  Michael J. Fox, Canadian-born actor, was born.

1967  Six-Day War: Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria

1968 U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a national day of mourning following the assassination of Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

1973  Secretariat won the Triple Crown.

1978  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints opened its priesthood to “all worthy men”, ending a 148-year-old policy excluding black men.

1979 The Ghost Train Fire at Luna Park, North Sydney, killed seven.

1985  Thomas Sutherland was kidnapped in Lebanon.

1986  The Rogers Commission released its report on the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster.

1999  Kosovo War: the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and North Atlantic Treaty Organization sign a peace treaty.

2008 – Two bombs exploded at a train station near Algiers, Algeria, killing at least 13 people.

2008  Lake Delton drained as a result of heavy flooding breaking the dam holding the lake back.

2009 – An explosion killed 17 people and injures at least 46 at a hotel in Peshawar, Pakistan.

2010 – At least 40 people were killed and more than 70 others wounded by an explosion  at an evening wedding party in Arghandab, Kandahar.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

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