Word of the day

September 5, 2014

Howff – a favourite meeting place or haunt, especially a pub; an abode; a familiar shelter or resort.


How’s your temper?

September 5, 2014

How’s your temper?

Cool

You have a steady temperament. You’re assertive, not aggressive. You may be slow to anger but you do get angry now and then. And, unlike a lot of people’s, your temper can actually spur you to take useful and necessary action. But you’re never out of control.

Well I wouldn’t go so far as to say never out of control, but I’m working on hardly ever.


Rural round-up

September 5, 2014

New forestry body provides unity – Alan Williams:

The linking of the forest products processing and manufacturing sector in one industry organisation should set it up to be internationally competitive, the group says.

It would also allow the Government to see the sector as a major industry entity, in the same way it sees Fonterra in the dairy sector, Wood Processing and Manufacturing Association (WPMA) chief executive Jon Tanner said.

The new association was launched officially in Wellington last week but has been operating for a couple of months. 

It links the entire processing supply chain outside the forest boundary – businesses involved in pulp and paper, packaging, solid wood, engineered wood, and a lot else, including the Frame and Truss Manufacturers Association, which will continue as a separate entity within the overall umbrella. . . .

A2 cornerstone shareholder Freedom Foods buys $589k of shares after dilution – Paul McBeth:

 (BusinessDesk) – ASX-listed Freedom Foods Group bought almost one million shares of A2 Milk Co this week for about $589,000 after its stake was diluted in the past year due to the issue of partly-paid shares.

The Sydney-based food company bought 942,500 shares in four transactions in A2 this week at an average price of about 62.5 cents, according to a substantial shareholder notice filed to the NZX. Freedom Foods holds about 117.9 million shares, or 17.9 percent of A2, leaving it as the biggest shareholder in the milk marketing company.

Because A2 issued partly-paid shares to executives earlier this year, Freedom Foods’ stake was diluted down from 18.1 percent when it made its last disclosure in December 2012. . . .

Venison prices on the move:

European market prices for chilled New Zealand venison are reported to be up about 5 per cent on last year, with exporters hopeful of reduced competition from European game meat supplies. But prices to farmers are currently being held back by a stronger New Zealand dollar.

Venison exporters have recently indicated they see the venison schedule potentially reaching $8/kg for 55-60 kg AP stags. This would be similar to the 2012 national average published schedule peak of $7.95/kg and much better than last year’s peak of $7.40/kg.

The main factor restraining prices to farmers at this point in the traditional chilled game meat season is currency, with the Kiwi dollar 8.4% stronger against the Euro than at the same time last year. This is reflected in an average schedule that is 7% weaker. . . .

Look for rooks :

 Thousands of eyes on the ground are needed to help Otago Regional Council (ORC) eliminate rooks.

Its rook control programme has begun and runs until November. The council is asking people to look out for rooks and their rookeries.

Anyone noticing rooks in Otago can call Malcolm Allan on 027 278 8498, or ORC on 0800 474 082 or email info@orc.govt.nz

At their peak there were several thousand nesting rooks in Otago but their numbers have been drastically reduced through the council’s control programmes.

Rooks, part of the crow and raven family, are larger than magpies and totally black. . . .

New Ballance director brings new dimension:

Ballance Agri-Nutrients has appointed Genesis Energy Chief Executive Albert Brantley as a new independent director to its board.

The farm nutrient co-operative reconfigured its board in 2012 to include three appointed directors to work alongside six regional directors elected by its farmer shareholders.

Ballance Chairman David Peacocke says independent directors are crucial to the governance of the co-operative with its turnover of close to $1 billion and profits of $90 million.

“We have come a long way from being a simple fertiliser company. We have divisions including complex fertiliser and feed manufacturing, we are developing leading edge farm technology and we are an integral part of the agricultural sector which drives our economy. A combination of farmer directors and appointed directors ensure we have the balance of skills, experience and perspectives for good governance. We take our commitment to performing consistently for our farmer shareholders seriously, and having strong governance is an essential component of this.” . . .

 

 New Zealand Avocado Launches New Campaign at Asia’s Largest Fresh Produce Trade Show:

 New Zealand’s avocado industry will launch its new export market promotional material at Asia’s leading fresh fruit and vegetable trade show Asia Fruit Logistica (AFL) this week in Hong Kong.
Jen Scoular, Chief Executive of New Zealand Avocado, says the new marketing collateral positions New Zealand avocado as a premium product promoting quality, safety and health.

“The unique property of New Zealand grown avocados that we will promote in Asia is time. New Zealand grown avocados hang on the tree for much longer than in other producing countries – at least a year, during this time they are fed by the generous rainfall and sunshine all the while being nurtured by our dedicated growers,” says Scoular. . . .


Friday’s answers

September 5, 2014

Thursday’s questions were:

1. Who said: The one pervading evil of democracy is the tyranny of the majority, or rather of that party, not always the majority, that succeeds, by force or fraud, in carrying elections.?

2. In what year did women in New Zealand gain the right to vote?

3.  In which year did New Zealand first vote under MMP?

4.  Name two of New Zealand’s three longest serving Prime Ministers/Premiers.

5. How many years should each of our parliamentary terms be?

Points for answers:

Rob got four right.

Andrei wins an electronic chocolate cake with five right (though Clark wasn’t right you needed to give only two for #4 and the other two you gave were right).

Gravedodger also got 4, and was right to remove Burke but that still left Mills who wasn’t the one who said it.

Alwyn also gets an electronic chocolate cake for five right; and a wry grin for the sigh.

J Bloggs got four.

 

Answers follow the break.

Read the rest of this entry »


National working for and in the south # 16

September 5, 2014

Fantastic Fact # 16:


Foreign ownership boosts wages:

September 5, 2014

Trans Tasman on foreign ownership:

The proposed sale of the 13,800ha Lochinver Station, near Taupo to Shanghai Pengxin, which bought the Crafar Farms in a joint venture with Landcorp, reignited the political debate about foreign investment and purchases of Kiwi land. Labour has promised to block the sale if it is not approved before the September 20 election and stop land sales over 5ha except in rare circumstances. Finance spokesman David Parker says land sales to foreigners do not increase output and do not release capital to be reinvested by the NZ owner to create new jobs. Finance Minister Bill English, however, reckons the Govt has struck the right balance between attracting foreign investment and tightening the rules for overseas investment in sensitive land.
Public Disquiet. Chinese investors have been making other investments in the farm sector: they have a minority stake in Blue Sky Meats and the Overseas Investment Office is considering an application to buy Prime Range Meats. Farm leaders have become disquieted. Federated Farmers supports positive overseas investment in NZ’s farming system but is concerned there would be little benefit to NZ if the Lochinver deal is clinched. President William Rolleston says “NZ absolutely needs foreign investment” but only if it benefits the local and national economy. He wants a “substantial and identifiable” benefit test incorporated in overseas investment eligibility criteria. Public opinion survey results this week suggest a majority of voters similarly approve of farm sales to foreigners only when it brings a significant advantage over an NZ buyer such as jobs. Almost 33% want farm sales to foreigners banned.

National raised the already high hurdle foreign buyers have to jump before a purchase is approved and benefits above and beyond those sales to domestic buyers would provide is one of the criteria.

 Better For Workers. An upcoming working paper by Motu Economic and Public Policy Research economists throws some light on the economics by examining how employment in foreign-owned firms affects NZ workers’ earnings. Using data from Statistics NZ’s Integrated Data Infrastructure, which tracks workers as they move between firms, the researchers found workers in foreign firms tend to receive, on average, around 14% higher monthly starting earnings than workers in domestically-owned firms. Compositional differences are the main explanation: foreign firms tend to be bigger and employ workers who would have received relatively high wages regardless of where they worked. The authors also found under-25 year olds get greater gains from joining a foreign firm and smaller losses on exit than older groups, while more highly skilled workers attract a stronger wage premium while working in the foreign-firm sector. In short, foreign firms not only tend to hire more highly skilled workers; they also remunerate these workers more generously.

A very small percentage of land  – around 2% – is in foreign ownership now.

The problem is one of perception based on emotion taking no account of the facts and benefits which include better wages for staff employed by foreign owners.


Clear and simple

September 5, 2014

National will be announcing its economic policy next week.

When it does the leader and finance spokesman will understand it and agree on the details, which is more than Labour seems capable of.

But then in another contrast with Labour, National’s economic plan is clear, it’s simple and it’s working for New Zealand:

Join the team that's working >> http://nzyn.at/teamkey


Answer’s maybe and that’s final

September 5, 2014

David Cunliffe has given five different answers to the question of whether or not CGT will be due on the family home when your parents die.

The answer is maybe and that’s final as far as he’s concerned because whether it is or whether it isn’t he’s got a problem.

If it is it will be a death tax by stealth which would be politically unsellable.

New Zealand families will be distressed to learn that Labour would force them to sell their deceased parents’ home within a month of their death or face a punitive capital gains tax, National Party Finance Spokesman Bill English says.

“The more David Cunliffe tries to explain his complicated capital gains tax, the more he ties himself in knots and confuses New Zealanders,” Mr English says.

“Last night on NewstalkZB, he contradicted his finance spokesman by saying Labour’s capital gain tax would apply to a family home after the death of a parent, unless it was sold within a month.

“In other words, he would force families to rush through the sale of their parents’ family home at a distressing time in their lives, or penalise them with a new tax.

“Just hours earlier, on RadioLive David Parker said the capital gains tax would not apply.

“If David Cunliffe and David Parker cannot get their story straight, it is little wonder that New Zealanders are confused and uncertain about Labour’s higher tax agenda.

“This is just one of five new taxes Labour and the Greens would impose on New Zealanders. This would stall New Zealand’s good economic momentum, creating uncertainty and costing jobs

“By contrast, National’s clear economic plan is successfully supporting higher wages and more jobs. It is steering New Zealand back to surplus this year and ensuring government spending is invested wisely to deliver better results,” Mr English says.

But if CTG isn’t levied on the family home when your parents die the tax take won’t live up to their projections which will leave a big hole in their budget.

Voters have a right to know the answer before the election.

Prime Minister John Key stepped up his attack on Labour’s capital gains tax today, suggesting it will create a headache for grieving children who inherit a house on the death of their parents. . .

Mr Key said: “You’d have to say by any definition it’s a complete and utter mess.”

Mr Key said Mr Cunliffe had yesterday told New Zealanders “that if they don’t sell the family home of their deceased parents, then within one month they will have to start paying a capital gains tax”.

“‘That is a horrifying thought for New Zealanders to be put in that position. Probate wouldn’t even come through within one month.

“I think everyone would accept the number one priority when your parent or parents pass away is not whether you should be out there flogging off the family home so you don’t have to pay a capital gains tax, it’s dealing with all the emotions and stress and issues that go with losing a loved one.”

Labour’s policy states the tax is payable only on the gains since inheritance and only when the home is sold.

Mr Cunliffe this morning said the fine details of when an inherited home would be liable for the tax would be worked out by and expert advisory group.

“Other countries have a range of periods — Aussie uses two years, some countries from the point of death, others from the point of settlement.”

Mr Key said Labour should have the answers now.

“We are now a couple of weeks out from an election this is a key policy for Labour and they can’t tell New Zealanders when it comes to their number one asset, their family home, how it will be treated.”

Will Labour's Capital Gains Tax (one of five new taxes) punish Kiwi families when their parents pass away? Let's ask them.


September 5 in history

September 5, 2014

1661  Fall of Nicolas Fouquet:  Louis XIV’s Superintendent of Finances was arrested in Nantes by D’Artagnan, captain of the king’s musketeers.

1666  Great Fire of London ended: 10,000 buildings including St. Paul’s Cathedral were destroyed, but only 16 people were known to have died.

1698  In an effort to Westernize his nobility, Tsar Peter I of Russia imposed a tax on beards for all men except the clergy and peasantry.

1725 Wedding of Louis XV and Maria Leszczyńska.

1774  First Continental Congress assembled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

1781  Battle of the Chesapeake.

1793 French Revolution the French National Convention initiated the Reign of Terror.

1798  Conscription was made mandatory in France by the Jourdan law.

1800 Napoleon surrendered Malta to Great Britain.

1812 War of 1812:  The Siege of Fort Wayne began when Chief Winamac’s forces attacked two soldiers returning from the fort’s outhouses.

1816  Louis XVIII had to dissolve the Chambre introuvable (“Unobtainable Chamber”).

1836 Sam Houston was elected as the first president of the Republic of Texas.

1839  The First Opium War began in China.

1840  Premiere of Giuseppe Verdi’s Un giorno di regno at La Scala, Milan.

1847  Jesse James, American outlaw, was born (d. 1882).

1850 Jack Daniel, Creator of Jack Daniel’s, was born (d. 1911).

1862  James Glaisher, pioneering meteorologist and Henry Tracey Coxwell broke world record for altitude whilst collecting data in their balloon.

1877  Indian Wars: Oglala Sioux chief Crazy Horse was bayoneted by a United States soldier after resisting confinement in a guardhouse.

1882  The first United States Labor Day parade was held in New York City.

1887  Fire at Theatre Royal in Exeter killed 186

1905  The Treaty of Portsmouth, mediated by US President Theodore Roosevelt, ended the Russo-Japanese war.

1914 World War I: First Battle of the Marne begins. Northeast of Paris, the French attack and defeat German forces who are advancing on the capital.

1915 The pacifist Zimmerwald Conference began.

1918 Decree “On Red Terror” was published in Russia.

1927  The first Oswald the Lucky Rabbit cartoon, Trolley Troubles, produced by Walt Disney, was released by Universal Pictures.

1929 Bob Newhart, American actor and comedian, was born.

1932  The French Upper Volta was broken apart between Ivory Coast, French Sudan, and Niger.

1938  A group of youths affiliated with the fascist National Socialist Movement of Chile were assassinated in the Seguro Obrero massacre.

1939 Prime Minister, Michael Joseph Savage, declared New Zealand’s support for Britain and attacked Nazism.

PM declares NZ's support for Britain

1939 John Stewart, American musician (The Kingston Trio), was born (d. 2008).

1939 George Lazenby, Australian actor, was born.

1940 Raquel Welch, American actress, was born.

1942  World War II: Japanese high command ordered withdrawal at Milne Bay, first Japanese defeat in the Pacific War.

1944 Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg constituted Benelux.

1945 Al Stewart, Scottish singer and songwriter, was born.

1945  Cold War: Igor Gouzenko, a Soviet Union embassy clerk, defected to Canada, exposing Soviet espionage in North America, signalling the beginning of the Cold War.

1945 – Iva Toguri D’Aquino, a Japanese-American suspected of being wartime radio propagandist Tokyo Rose, was arrested in Yokohama.

1946  Freddie Mercury, Zanzibar-born English singer and songwriter (Queen), was born (d. 1991).

1951 Michael Keaton, American actor, was born.

1960 Poet Léopold Sédar Senghor was elected as the first President of Senegal.

1969  My Lai Massacre: U.S. Army Lt. William Calley was charged with six specifications of premeditated murder for the death of 109 Vietnamese civilians.

1972 Munich Massacre: “Black September” attacked and took hostage 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympic Games. 2 died in the attack and 9 die the following day.

1977  Voyager 1 was launched.

1978 Chris Jack, New Zealand All Black, was born.

1978 Camp David Accords: Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat began peace process at Camp David, Maryland.

1980 The St. Gotthard Tunnel opened in Switzerland as the world’s longest highway tunnel at 10.14 miles (16.224 km) stretching from Goschenen to Airolo.

1984  The Space Shuttle Discovery landed after its maiden voyage.

1984  Western Australia became the last Australian state to abolish capital punishment.

1986  Pan Am Flight 73 with 358 people on board was hijacked at Karachi International Airport.

1990 Eastern University massacre, massacre of 158 Tamil civilians by Sri Lankan army.

1991 The  Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention, 1989, came into force.

1996 – Hurricane Fran made landfall near Cape Fear, North Carolina as a Category 3 storm with 115 mph sustained winds

2000 The Haverstraw–Ossining Ferry made its maiden voyage.

2005 Mandala Airlines Flight 091 crashed into a heavily-populated residential of Sumatra, killing 104 people on board and at least 39 on the ground.

2007 – Three terrorists suspected to be a part of Al-Qaeda were arrested in Germany after allegedly planning attacks on both the Frankfurt International airport and US military installations.

2012  – A firecracker factory exploded nearSivakasi,TamilNadu, killing 40 and injuring 50 others.

2012 – An accidental explosion at a Turkish Army ammunition store inAfyon, western Turkey killed 25 soldiers and wounded 4 others.

 

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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