Word of the day

September 10, 2014

Glaikit – stupid, foolish, giddy; flighty; not very bright; thoughtless; vacant.


Farm facts

September 10, 2014


Feds wary of Greens

September 10, 2014

I’d add Finance to that:


National working for and in the south #12

September 10, 2014

Fantastic Fact # 12:


Rural round-up

September 10, 2014

Freshwater Fund for Wetlands?

Federated Farmers have been working with DairyNZ to analyse the $100m freshwater fund policy, recently announced by the National Party. The outcome was very positive with both parties agreeing the fund could deliver improved water quality around New Zealand.

Federated Farmers believe NZ Landcare Trust and Queen Elizabeth II National Trust could both play a key role in delivering the new fund.

“The Fund to retire farmland would be perhaps better interpreted as a policy to create on-farm wetlands. Instead of looking at this as a linear purchase of land, or trying to recreate MAF’s old farm advisory division, think more along the lines of NIWA’s guidelines for constructed wetlands,” says Ian Mackenzie, Federated Farmers Environment spokesperson and Member of NZ Landcare Trust Board of Trustees.

It is estimated a fund of $10 million a year could purchase at least 286 hectares. Using NIWA guidelines and if turned into strategically located wetlands, DairyNZ and Federated Farmers believe it could remove 60-70 percent of Nitrogen from around 9,500 hectares of farmland. . .

Thorny question of wool levy benefits – Allan Barber:

Sheep farmers have the chance to vote for or against a compulsory levy under the Commodity Levies Act (CLA) in October. The Wool Levy Group’s proposal indicates a levy of 3 cents a kilo which would raise $4.7 million to be spent on a combination of education, communication, advocacy, R&D and administration. This is either too much, far too little or a worthwhile beginning which depends on your point of view.

 In this week’s Farmers Weekly Ruth Richardson argues very strongly against wasting any more farmer money on a compulsory levy, citing quite justifiably the enormous waste of funds both by the Wool Board and on its subsequent disestablishment. On the opposite side of the fence sit the Wool Levy Group and its supporters. . .

Referendum on wool levy seen as hope for industry –

A referendum seeking to reintroduce a wool levy gives some hope for a remedy in a stagnant, dysfunctional industry, Lindis Pass farmer Russell Emmerson believes.

A referendum is being held in October, when farmers will be asked to approve a levy of between 2c and 5c for each kilogram of greasy or slipe wool at the first point of sale.

That equated to $4.6 million at 3c a kg for 154,000 tonnes of wool annually, if the 17,000 farmers eligible to vote agreed. . . .

Record avocado crop a challenge:

The new avocado export season is underway and the industry is bracing itself for the challenges of selling a record crop.

The harvest this season is forecast to top seven million trays, of which almost five million are expected to be exported.

New Zealand’s previous biggest avocado crop was 6.2 million trays in 2011-12. Last season, about three million trays were exported from a medium sized harvest.

The country’s largest grower group, AVOCO, is responsible for 65 percent of production and said a record crop would test the industry and its ability to manage the fruit. . .

Nominations for Hayward Medal:

NOMINATIONS ARE open for the kiwifruit industry’s Fresh Carriers Hayward Medal.

The award last year went to ex-chair of the New Zealand Kiwifruit Marketing Board, John Palmer, for his efforts to bring the kiwifruit industry through the fiscal crisis in the early 1990s.

The judging panel awarded Plant & Food Research plant breeder, Russell Lowe the inaugural award in 2012 for developing and helping commercialise the Gold kiwifruit variety Hort16A, adding over $3 billion to the industry and New Zealand. . . .

Barker’s Success Spreads with Four More Award Nominations:

Barker’s of Geraldine has been chosen as a finalist for four of its products across three categories in the 2014 New Zealand Food Awards.

The maker of New Zealand’s favourite preserves has been nominated in the “beverage” category for its special edition Mountain Moonshine. It also has been named twice in the “dry” category for Anathoth Farm’s jams & curds (for its Lemon Curd and Quince Conserve) and Anathoth Farm’s chutneys & relishes (for its Sweet Chilli Relish and Garden Chow Chow). Anathoth Farm joined the Barker’s family in 2007.

It has also been nominated in the “novel ingredients” category for BreadshotsTM an innovative flavour mix for bread bakers. . .


Greens will continue to spam

September 10, 2014

The Green Party has been caught out spamming Environment Canterbury with submissions from people without their permission:

The Green Party has been accused of “subverting the democratic process” by lobbying Environment Canterbury (ECan) on behalf of individuals without their knowledge.

Four people were surprised to receive emails from ECan thanking them for their submission on the region’s proposed bus changes when they had not submitted.

A further 20 submissions, of the 165 submissions sent in by the Greens, were found to have incorrect email addresses.

ECan received 2357 submissions for its proposed bus changes.

All submissions from the Greens were a standard response asking for more investment in public transport and more services for elderly.

Emails given to The Press by ECan, with personal information removed, showed people were unimpressed.

“I nevet [sic] sent this email! How did this happen?” one said.

“I actually didn’t give permission for the Green Party to send that submission on my behalf,” another said.

Another questioned the ethics of the practice.

“It does not accurately represent my thoughts . . . I’m not sure I agree ethically with this practice.”

Green Party MP Eugenie Sage said it was an “attempt to engage the public that had gone wrong”.

According to the telephone script, those contacted were asked if their name could added to the Greens’ submission.

“Some people may not have been aware that there was a submission being sent in on their behalf after the phone conversation,” she said. . . .

Spamming submissions is bad enough, doing it without the permission of people purporting to be making them is even worse.

“We were using a new method of public engagement, having people call people on our database to alert them to the submission process,” she said.

It been abandoned in Christchurch because of the botch-up but would continue to be used elsewhere. . .

It isn’t clear whether they’ll seek people’s permission to use their names but it is clear they will continue to spam submissions.


National working for and in the south #13

September 10, 2014

Fantastic Fact # 13:

 


Who knows best?

September 10, 2014

 National’s proposed tax cuts are realistic:

ANZ’s chief economist says it’s right for National to be a bit vague about its tax cuts plan because of the uncertainty in the economy.

But Cameron Bagrie says despite still owing tens of billions in debt, the Government’s proposal is “realistic”. . .

“If you step back and look at the bigger picture, it’s a signal – and the signal there is if you get out the paid work, we’re going to increase that return to paid work by allowing you to keep more of your money, as opposed to taking it off you and spending it on your behalf,” Mr Bagrie said on Firstline this morning.

“We’ve got to look at the design package in regards to whether it does truly increase the returns to work and encourage people into the labour force, because that’s ultimately the benefit of tax cuts down the track.”

As for the lack of detail in the plan, Mr Bagrie says National doesn’t have much of a choice – but as one of the few countries that includes provisions for future initiatives within the Budget, New Zealand Finance Ministers have more flexibility to adjust to changes in the economy.

“Net debt is going to be on a declining trajectory, and in that situation it gives you options. It gives you flexibility on the fiscal front.

“If I look at the combination of the policies that the Government looks like they’re going to be pursuing by 2017, they’re going to be paying down a little bit of debt, there’s going to be some modest spending increases and they’re going to try and give tax cuts – so it looks like they’re trying to strike a very tough balancing act and trying to deliver on all three, as opposed to skewing off to one side.” . . .

Balanced and realistic – that’s good, as is the signal National is sending:  it trusts people to spend their own money better than any government can.

Labour and the rest of the left think government knows best.

 

We'll start paying off debt. Then we'll cut your taxes. #3moreyears


5 positive priorities vs 5 new taxes

September 10, 2014

National is offering the country five positive fiscal priorities if it’s re-elected:
Labour and the Green party are offering five new taxes.

A re-elected National Government will return to surplus this financial year and stay there so we can reduce debt, lower ACC levies, and start modestly reducing income taxes. #Working4NZ ntnl.org.nz/1lQaKiR

National is offering sustainable growth to provide a foundation for the services which depend on it.

Labour, the Green and which ever other parties they will need to govern, are threatening us with more of the high taxing, high spending policies like those of the last Labour-led government which put New Zealand into recession before the global financial crisis.

This election, the choice is simple.</p><br /> <p>Keep the team that's #Working4NZ. Party vote National.


Labour’s CGT no good – NZIER

September 10, 2014

A report by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research (NZIER) reinforces Federated Farmers concerns over Labour’s proposed capital gains tax:

“The NZIER say the Labour Party’s proposed Capital Gains Tax would not be a good addition to New Zealand’s tax mix as it is proposed, we agree,” says Dr William Rolleston, Federated Farmers President.

“The nature of politics will see the Labour Party try to dismiss the NZIER report.  Yet they must listen to the message because the messenger is credible.

“We commissioned the NZIER to examine Labour’s CGT proposal since it represents a major change to New Zealand’s tax system and has been devoid of critical analysis. 

“Perhaps the most concerning aspect of the report comes down to the Labour Party’s revenue assumptions.  In 2011, the Labour Party estimated a 15 percent capital gains tax would raise $17.5 million in its first year, rising to $3.7 billion by 2026.

“The NZIER tell us these estimates are high, since the revenue potential of its proposed CGT is more likely to be half that sum.  In fact it may be smaller.  If this key policy is out by such a margin it asks fundamental questions about the Party’s shadow budget. 

“What’s more, the Labour Party’s estimates of CGT revenue were revised up this year.  The NZIER noting Labour’s “…2014 estimates are less believable than the 2011 estimates.”

“Labour also expects to raise at least $1.3 billion from the farming sector but a more realistic estimate is half that sum in 15 years’ time.  NZIER further estimates that the loss in current farm values will be between $2.4 billion and $7.6 billion.  But this will be a one off hit for farmers.

“Lower land values mean lower tax revenue too.

“Aside from simply delaying sale, the NZIER notes there would be significant opportunities to avoid taxable ‘realisation’ events by keeping assets in the family. The CGT tax proposed would not treat transfers to family members as events where capital gains are assessed.

“A CGT genuinely risks capital lock-in with the housing market.  To avoid taxable gains people will choose not to sell achieving the opposite of what is desired for productive investment.

“Since the housing market has been part of a CGT’s rationale, the NZIER found Labour’s CGT will not aid affordability and is not as progressive as many would like to think.  Indeed, a CGT may lead to higher rents. 

“What is more, speculative property investment is already subject to income tax on capital gains.

“The lesson we can draw from countries with a CGT is that they are not immune from rising house prices, indeed, two weeks ago, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that Sydney and Melbourne had their strongest winter price surge since 2007.

“Federated Farmers, NZIER and others like Victoria University’s Tax Working Group agree that a CGT, of the kind proposed by the Labour Party, would not be an efficient and effective option,” Dr Rolleston concluded.

The party has criticised the criticism to which  Feds replied:

The New Zealand Labour Party has issued a media release calling into question the efficacy of the report authored by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research (NZIER).

Federated Farmers notes the NZIER details Victoria University’s Tax Working Group consideration that a CGT, of the kind proposed by the Labour Party, would not be an efficient and effective option going forward.

This media statement confirms that the NZIER stands by its report and Federated Farmers deliberately selected an independent organisation to prepare the CGT report.

The NZIER report was issued to generate discussion on what could become a major change to New Zealand’s taxation base. In doing so, it casts doubt about Labour’s revenue projections and assumptions about the capital gains tax.

The Federation believes it is incumbent on the Labour Party to release detailed calculations supporting the basis for its policy allowing independent scrutiny ahead of the General Election.

Particularly, the analytical basis underpinning the Labour Party’s estimates of CGT revenue, which were revised upwards earlier this year.

The comments we have read do not represent the report NZIER wrote . . . 

Other objections raised by the Labour Party are reflective of debates around the world, in which the Labour Party holds a different philosophical view.

The NZIER fully stands behind its key findings and messages.

 

A simple and comprehensive CGT which was combined with lower personal and company taxes might work.

Labour’s is complicated, has several exclusions and is in addition to existing taxes.

It won’t do anything to cool the housing market, will distort investment and reduce the reward from risk taking and hard work.


September 10 in history

September 10, 2014

506  The bishops of Visigothic Gaul met in the Council of Agde.

1385 Le Loi, national hero of Viet Nam, founder of the Later Lê Dynasty, was born (d. 1433).

1419  John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy was assassinated by adherents of the Dauphin, the future Charles VII of France.

1509 An earthquake known as “The Lesser Judgment Day” hit Istanbul.

1547 The Battle of Pinkie Cleugh, the last full scale military confrontation between England and Scotland, resulting in a decisive victory for the forces of Edward VI.

1659 Henry Purcell, English composer, was born (d. 1695).

1798 At the Battle of St. George’s Caye, British Honduras defeated Spain.

1813  The United States defeated the British Fleet at the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812.

1823  Simón Bolívar was named President of Peru.

1844 Abel Hoadley, Australian confectioner, was born (d. 1918).

1846 Elias Howe was granted a patent for the sewing machine.

1858 George Mary Searle discovered the asteroid 55 Pandora.

1897  Lattimer massacre: A sheriff’s posse killed 20 unarmed immigrant miners in Pennsylvania.

1898  Empress Elizabeth of Austria was assassinated by Luigi Lucheni.

1898  Waldo Semon, American inventor (vinyl), was born (d. 1999).

1914 – An eruption on White Island killed 10 people.

1914 Robert Wise, American film director, was born (d. 2005).

1918 Rin Tin Tin, German shepherd dog, was born (d. 1932).

1919 Austria and the Allies signed the Treaty of Saint-Germain recognising the independence of Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia.

1932  The New York City Subway’s third competing subway system, the municipally-owned IND, was opened.

1933 Karl Lagerfeld, German fashion designer, was born.

1939  The submarine HMS Oxley was mistakenly sunk by the submarine HMS Triton near Norway becoming the Royal Navy’s first losss.

1942 World War II: The British Army carries out an amphibious landing on Madagascar to re-launch Allied offensive operations in the Madagascar Campaign.

1951 The United Kingdom began an economic boycott of Iran.

1956 Johnny Fingers, Irish musician The Boomtown Rats, was born.

1960 Colin Firth, English actor, was born.

1961 Italian Grand Prix, a crash caused the death of German Formula One driver Wolfgang von Trips and 13 spectators who were hit by his Ferrari.

1967  The people of Gibraltar voted to remain a British dependency rather than becoming part of Spain.

1974 Guinea-Bissau gained independence from Portugal.

1976 A British Airways Hawker Siddeley Trident and an Inex-Adria DC-9 collided near Zagreb, killing 176.

1977  Hamida Djandoubi, convicted of torture and murder, was the last person to be executed by guillotine in France.

1984 The Te Maori exhibition opened in New York.

Te Maori exhibition opens in New York

1990 The Basilica of Our Lady of Peace in Yamoussoukro, Côte d’Ivoire – the largest church in Africa was consecrated by Pope John Paul II.

2001 Charles Ingram cheated his way into winning one million pounds on a British version of Who Wants to be a Millionaire.

2003 Anna Lindh, the foreign minister of Sweden, was fatally stabbed while shopping.

2007  Former Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif returned to Pakistan after seven years in exile, following a military coup in October 1999.

2008 The Large Hadron Collider at CERN, described as the biggest scientific experiment in history was powered up in Geneva.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.


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