National working in and for the south #34

August 17, 2014

Fantastic fact # 34:


Word of the day

August 17, 2014

Scofflaw – a person who flouts the law, especially one who fails to pay fines owed or by failing to comply with a law that is difficult to enforce effectively; one who habitually ignores the law and/or court summonses; a person who flouts rules, conventions, or accepted practices.


Rural round-up

August 17, 2014

Aerial topdressing scheme flies away with top award  – Sue O’Dowd:

A safety programme developed by the agricultural aviation industry to protect the environment has won a major award.

The New Zealand Agricultural Aviation Association (NZAAA) Aircare programme received the Richard Pearse Trophy for Innovative Excellence in the New Zealand Aviation Industry, named in honour of the New Zealand pioneer aviator and inventor, at last month’s Aviation New Zealand conference.

Aircare was an integrated environmental safety and flight safety programme that stopped contamination of waterways by fertilisers and sprays, NZAAA chairman Alan Beck, of Eltham, said. . .

Northlander takers Young Grower crown

Northland kiwifruit and avocado specialist Patrick Malley was crowned Young Grower of the Year at an awards function in Christchurch last night.

The 30-year-old contracting manager from Onyx Capital kiwifruit and avocado orchard in Maungatapere, Northland, secured his place at the national competition after being named the Bay of Plenty Young Fruit Grower in June.

In the final phase of the competition he topped three other regional champions in a series of practical and theory challenges testing their industry knowledge and skills. . .

Ngai Tahu appeals dairying decision:

South Island iwi Ngai Tahu is appealing against a decision declining an application to develop large scale dairy farms in North Canterbury.

In July this year, commissioners on behalf of the Canterbury Regional Council granted only partial consent to convert 7000 hectares of Hurunui forest to irrigated dairy farming and another 617 hectares for dryland dairy farming.

The decision was based on the unacceptable adverse effects the full development would have on the environment and the water quality of the Hurunui River. . .

Cow lameness costs farmers – Tim Cronshaw:

Cow lameness could be higher than 10 per cent a year nationally and cost dairy farmers an average of $500 for each case of a cow out of production.

Accurate figures are not kept for lame cows because not every incident is reported, there can be repeat cases for the same cow and the extent of lameness can vary.

DairyNZ animal husbandry extension specialist Anna Irwin said lameness was more difficult to measure than mastitis or other animal health issues because it was not routinely measured by all farmers, had different treatments and few cows needed medical treatment. “We have industry estimates of somewhere around 10 per cent and it could be as high as 15 per cent and that’s incidents for the whole year.” . . .

Call for whitebait sock net ban:

Whitebaiters in Buller on the West Coast are demanding an end to the use of large sock nets to catch the delicacy in their area.

Lynley Roberts said she’s collected close to 400 signatures on a petition calling on the Department of Conservation to ban sock nets.

Whitebaiters in Buller on the West Coast are demanding an end to the use of large sock nets to catch the delicacy in their area.

Photo: PHOTO NZ

She said the use of the nets, which she says can catch up to 200 pounds a tide, is greedy.

Ms Roberts said there won’t be time to make any changes before the season starts in Buller on 1 September. . .

Where have all the whitebait gone?:

Whitebait season opened today and many whitebaiters may be asking themselves, “where have all the whitebait gone?” With predictions that it will be only an average season, it’s a very pertinent question.

Whitebaiting has long been a contentious issue, with feuds over the best positions on the river sometimes lasting through generations of whitebaiters.

These days, with whitebait numbers dwindling further and further, the arguments go beyond who has the best spot. Debate now includes the question of where they have all gone, who’s to blame for the declining numbers and if we should still be allowing people to catch whitebait at all. . .

Nominations open today for the 2014 Fonterra Elections:

This year elections are being held for three shareholder-elected Directors for Fonterra’s Board of Directors, two members of the Directors’ Remuneration Committee, and 22 members of the Shareholders’ Council.

Candidates must satisfy shareholding requirements in order to be elected and further procedural requirements are specified in the Election Rules. These include a requirement for Candidates to be nominated and seconded by Fonterra shareholders.

Nomination Papers and Candidate Handbooks are now available by phoning the Election Hotline on freephone 0508 666 446 or emailing elections@electionz.com. Nominations must be received by the Returning Officer, Warwick Lampp of http://electionz.com/ by 12 noon on Friday, 5 September 2014. . . 


Vote Compass

August 17, 2014

TVNZ has a Vote Compass to help people work out where they fit on the political spectrum:

ONE News is hosting Vote Compass – an interactive online tool allowing voters to engage with public policy in a way they’ve never done before.

TVNZ’s Head of News and Current Affairs, John Gillespie, explains: “We want to help people connect with the issues that matter to them this election, and Vote Compass is a really empowering and engaging way to do that. It puts the power in voters’ hands, so they can get a clear picture of how their views match with the different parties.”

Visit onenews.co.nz/votecompass and give your views on a range of policy areas.

Once you’ve finished, Vote Compass compares your answers with the policy positions of the parties then displays your position on a grid, showing where you stand in the overall political landscape. If you wish, you can choose to share your results page on social media. Your results may surprise you!

ONE News will take this anonymous data as a snapshot, to identify the key policy issues that matter to New Zealand voters then report the findings as part of our overall election coverage.

Vote Compass was developed by political scientists from the University of Toronto in Canada. It is an independent, non-partisan initiative operated by university researchers and data scientists. They have worked together with a group of New Zealand academic advisers and ONE News to create a database of key political issues, based on an analysis of the party platforms, leading news sources and public input via social media.

ONE News also asked viewers on-air and online what issues they were interested in hearing more about in the lead up to the election. These responses have helped form some of the questions that make up the survey. . .

You can try it out here.

My results were:

tvvc1

tvnzvc

National MP Maurice Williamson was at a meeting in Mosgiel yesterday and in explaining that we don’t get multiple votes to cover individual issues mentioned that even Keith Holyoake admitted to being in agreement with 80% of National’s policies. That puts me  good company with 82% in agreement with National.

This is similar to the result I got on the Australian version and this NZ one too.

This TVNZ Vote Compass has given me a far more accurate result than One The Fence.

Probably because Vote Compass allows you to answer on a spectrum rather than the more binary approach of OTF.

Hat tip: The Polly Jar, a welcome addition to rational discussion on the blogosphere.

 

 

 


Good Jumper

August 17, 2014

 

Open large picture

I’m a good jumper, he said, but I’m not so good at landing. Maybe you should stay closer to the ground then, I said & he shook his head & said the ground was the whole problem in the first place.

©2014 Brian Andreas

You can sign up for a daily dose of whimsy like this be email at the link above.


Class Act

August 17, 2014

Prime Minister John Key presented certificates to the ODT’s Class Act recipients on Friday.

He told the 58 outstanding pupils from 29 secondary schools it was the sixth time he had attended the Class Act ceremony at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, and he looked forward to it each year because it was an opportunity to celebrate each new generation of New Zealanders coming through.

”They will be great leaders for our nation in the years ahead.”

Mr Key praised this year’s award recipients and gave credit to their parents and teachers for guiding them in the right direction.

He also shared some sage words of advice: ”Have really big dreams and big ambitions.”

”My big thing for you would be for you to go on and become a great leader in New Zealand.

”There’s lots and lots of potential that you have and we have a great need for what you’re doing.”

Otago Daily Times editor Murray Kirkness said events such as Class Act provided a ray of light in a world where more newspapers were sold if they were filled with trauma and tragedy, tears and fears.

”So, to our Class Act 2014 recipients I say: You may not realise it, but you already inspire and encourage those of us around you.

”The world is yours for the taking. Grasp your opportunities. Continue to strive to achieve.

”Refuse to yield. Be humble. But most of all, keep the sun shining.”

Class Act was established in 2000 by former Otago Daily Times editor Robin Charteris because the newspaper felt, and continues to feel, excellence should be encouraged.

As such, the criterion given to schools when nominating Class Act recipients is simply, excellence.

Academic, sporting, social, artistic or cultural excellence, leadership qualities, or a combination of those, was the standard by which pupils were nominated.

The 2014 award winners now join the ranks of the 837 other Otago school pupils who have won Class Act awards since they were established in 2000. . .

Last Saturday’s print edition of the ODT included a supplement celebrating the recipients achievements.

The overwhelming impression was of talented, well rounded young  people who provide a wonderful contrast to the often negative portrayals and stereotypes of the youth of today.

A photo of all the recipients, with their names and schools is here.

 


Working for every man and his dog . . .

August 17, 2014

The left like to demonise the National Party as being interested only in the top end of town.

They couldn’t be more wrong.

The party is a very broad church with people of all ages, occupations and incomes.

To achieve its vision of a safe, prosperous and successful New Zealand that creates opportunities for all New Zealanders to reach their personal goals and dreams it has to have policies that work for all of us.

That must take account of the fact that some, for a variety of reasons, will need more help than others.

This is why the government has focussed on the quality of its spending – to make sure scarce public money is spent where it is needed most and where it will do most good.

One example of this is the wrap-around care being given to teenage parents on benefits.

They get one-to-one support from someone who gives them the help they need to help themselves and their children.

Helping these young women care for themselves and their children, get educational qualifications and ultimately jobs has social and financial benefits.

These families are less likely to be long-term beneficiaries with the risks that go with it including poorer education and health outcomes and a greater likelihood of being involved in crime.

Putting them on a more positive pathway is better for them and for the rest of us.

This isn’t cheap. But spending more money at the start will lead to bigger savings in the long term.

National is working for New Zealand and all New Zealanders – every man, woman and their dogs – and at least one dog is working for National:

National is working for all New Zealanders, even four-legged ones! #TeamKey


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