Word of the day

January 19, 2015

Aby – to pay or suffer the penalty for; redeem.


Rural round-up

January 19, 2015

Water not just a pipe dream – Tim Fulton:

The latest Canterbury drought is reinforcing a message in farming: irrigation is valuable, stored supply is better and an alpine water source is best of all. TIM FULTON reports.

When the norwesters keep blowing rain on the Southern Alps and drying out the plains, even irrigators with the most advanced water networks can feel anxious.

Farmer shareholders on the $115 million Rangitata South irrigation scheme are facing tight storage conditions, even though they have access to periodic floodwater.

The network has been “just squeaking along with a rain here, a little fresh there” since it started supplying last spring, chairman Ian Morten says.

More water cannot be delivered from the main pond to farms on the scheme until the Rangitata River flows at 110 cubic metres. . .

Drought fears grow as dry spell continues:

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy is expected to visit the parched South Canterbury area in the next few weeks as concern mounts that it and some other regions may be heading for a serious drought.

The Ministry for Primary Industries is monitoring the conditions in South Canterbury, as well as North Otago, Wairarapa and southern Hawke’s Bay.

MPI director of resource policy David Wansbrough said it had been talking with farmers and rural support trusts on a weekly basis.

However, he said farmers and communities appeared to be coping so far and the Government was not planning to step in with any support measures at this stage. . .

Drought!!!? – Gravedodger:

Drought is widely regarded in agricultural terms as a prolonged period of low rainfall when pastures and crops become seriously degraded by dehydration.

Yes last spring was one of low precipitation in many districts and having traveled the East coast from North Otago to The Bay of Plenty in the last 50 days there are now pockets with fodder insufficiency from “The Dry” but drought it aint.

Large Parts of Australia have been in that situation for several years and many rural properties are in a savage drought. With livestock having lost a serious degree of body weight, water supplies gone burger and absolutely zero opportunity to remove stock as buyers do not exist, increasing numbers of Aussie Farmers are taking their lives as despair overcomes their will to continue. . .

Big dry affects dairy production – Dene Mackenzie:

Dairy production is likely to slow below previous forecasts as parts of Canterbury and Otago dry off and water restrictions kick in, ASB rural economist Nathan Penny says.

”As we get further into the New Zealand summer, attention is turning to agricultural production. In the case of dairy, production has been good to date this season – albeit uneven across the regions.” . . .

Storage gives power to farmers – William C. Bailey:

United States corn and soybean farmers have a clear understanding that bad markets and low prices will reverse themselves to good times, just as good times will, eventually, fade into bad times.

The challenge, when these high or low points appear, is to prepare for the phase that will follow.

US corn and soybean farmers have enjoyed, over the past three to five seasons, really, really good prices. . .

 Sheep help drive tribe’s farm performance:

Ngati Porou has turned around its farming fortunes, reporting a surplus of $324,000 in its last financial year.

The figure compares to the previous period’s deficit of $1.46 million.

The Tairawhiti tribe said performance of its sheep division had improved, with sheep values and prices increasing.

Ngati Porou also said its lamb crop nearly doubled over two years, reaching 12,224 last year. . .

Rural gig good for peace-lovers – Steve Wyn-Harris:

Possibly every generation throughout history reckons things are getting worse and we are all going to hell in a hand basket.

That’s a little how I’m feeling at the moment.

However, there are great things happening here at the beginning of the 21st century which we should be grateful for.

For much of the world’s population improved healthcare and better food have led to the longest life expectancy humans have ever experienced. . .

 


Which career?

January 19, 2015

Which career are you meant for?

Writer:

You have a skill for language, your imagination is vast and you are artistic and creative. Your brain is just overflowing with ideas, and all you have to do is get a piece of paper and share it with the world. You were born to turn words into magical stories.

Less blogging more writing?

 


On moderation

January 19, 2015

Comments with four or more links automatically go into moderation because that’s a sign of spam.

Last year after continuous  comments which were off-topic and/or quoting others without links I began deleting comments from Robert Guyton then put anything he wrote into moderation. He complained about that and eventually I asked for his word he’d stop the spamming.

He gave it, I stopped moderating his comments but when he started spamming again I put him back into moderation.

He announced he wouldn’t comment at all and didn’t for some time. He returned a couple of weeks ago, got sick of moderation and said he was giving up again.

He returned again.

I’ve had emails from readers asking me to ban him but I’m not going to do as some blogs do and only accept comments with which I agree.

Robert – your comments about me being fearful of what you say are ridiculous.  I have no delusions that his blog is influential. It’s read by only a few hundred people a day and most I suspect already have firm views on most issues which are discussed. The tone of at least some of your comments is more likely to put the minority who are undecided off your views than persuade them to them.

I’ve stopped the moderation. If the spamming which prompted it in the first place is repeated I’ll reinstate it.

 


Declining benefit numbers best way to counter poverty

January 19, 2015

Benefit numbers continue to decline, about which Social Development Minister Anne Tolley says:

There were 309,145 people on benefit at the end of the December 2014 quarter.

“Compared with last year there are more than 12,700 fewer people on welfare. This is the lowest December quarter since 2008 and the third consecutive quarter (June, September, December) with such record lows.” Mrs Tolley says.

Numbers on the Jobseeker Support benefit have decreased by over 5,500 since last year and have been consistently declining since 2010, even as the overall working age population has increased.

Performance is strong around the country with only two regions, Wellington and Taranaki, registering a slight increase compared with the same period in 2013.

“Sole parents continue to move off the benefit and into work, confirming that welfare reforms have been successful.

“There are more than 5,300 fewer people on the Sole Parent Support benefit compared to last year, a drop of 6.8 per cent, and every region around the country recorded a reduction.

“Both Canterbury and Nelson’s Sole Parent Support numbers declined by more than 9 per cent, while Waikato and East Coast reduced by more than 7 per cent,” Mrs Tolley says.

“This Government’s welfare reforms are continuing to support New Zealanders into work. The reductions we’re now seeing will mean fewer people on benefit in the years to come which means we’re going to see healthier, more prosperous households.” Mrs Tolley says.

Benefit numbers are now back to levels recorded before the Global Financial Crisis.

That’s still too high but the downward trend is encouraging.

Moving people from benefits and work is one of the best ways to reduce poverty and the poor health, education, and other social and financial outcomes which go with it.


January 19 in history

January 19, 2015

1419 – Hundred Years’ War: Rouen surrendered to Henry V of England completing his reconquest of Normandy.

1511 – Mirandola surrendered to the French.

1520  – Sten Sture the Younger, the Regent of Sweden, was mortally wounded at the Battle of Bogesund.

1607 San Agustin Church in Manila, now the oldest church in the Philippines, was officially completed.

1736 James Watt, Scottish inventor, was born (d. 1819).

1764  John Wilkes was expelled from the British House of Commons for seditious libel.

1788  Second group of ships of the First Fleet arrived at Botany Bay.

1795  Batavian Republic was proclaimed in the Netherlands. End of the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands.

1806 – The United Kingdom occupied the Cape of Good Hope.

1807  Robert E. Lee, American Confederate general, was born  (d. 1870).

1809 Edgar Allan Poe, American writer and poet, was born (d. 1849).

1817 An army of 5,423 soldiers, led by General José de San Martín, crossed the Andes from Argentina to liberate Chile and then Peru.

1829 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe‘s Faust Part 1 premiered.

1839  Paul Cézanne, French painter, was born (d. 1906).

1839 The British East India Company captured Aden.

1840 Captain Charles Wilkes circumnavigated Antarctica, claiming what became known as Wilkes Land for the United States.

1845 Hone Heke cut down the British flag pole for the third time.

Hone Heke cuts down the British flagstaff -  again
1848 Matthew Webb, English swimmer/diver  first man to swim English Channel without artifical aids, was born (d. 1883).

1853 – Giuseppe Verdi‘s opera Il Trovatore premiered in Rome.

1883  The first electric lighting system employing overhead wires, built by Thomas Edison, began service at Roselle, New Jersey.

1893 Henrik Ibsen‘s play The Master Builder premiered in Berlin.

1899 – Anglo-Egyptian Sudan was formed.

1915  Georges Claude patented the neon discharge tube for use in advertising.

1915  German zeppelins bombed the cities of Great Yarmouth and King’s Lynn killing more than 20, in the first major aerial bombardment of a civilian target.

1917 German Foreign Secretary Arthur Zimmermann sent the Zimmermann Telegram to Mexico, proposing a German-Mexican alliance against the United States.

1917 – Silvertown explosion: 73 killed and 400 injured in an explosion in a munitions plant in London.

1918 Finnish Civil War: The first serious battles between the Red Guards and the White Guard.

1923 Jean Stapleton, American actress, was born.

1935 Coopers Inc.  sold the world’s first briefs.

1935  Johnny O’Keefe, Australian singer, was born (d. 1978).

1937 Howard Hughes set a new air record by flying from Los Angeles, California to New York City in 7 hours, 28 minutes, 25 seconds.

1939 Phil Everly, American musician, was born (d 2014).

1942  Michael Crawford, British singer and actor, was born.

1943 Janis Joplin, American singer, was born (d. 1970).

1943  Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, was born.

1945  Soviet forces liberated the Łódź ghetto. Out more than 200,000 inhabitants in 1940, less than 900 had survived the Nazi occupation.

1946  Dolly Parton, American singer and actress, was born.

1946 General Douglas MacArthur established the International Military Tribunal for the Far East in Tokyo to try Japanese war criminals.

1947 Rod Evans, British musician (Deep Purple), was born.

1951  Dewey Bunnell, American singer and songwriter (America), was born.

1953 – 68% of all television sets in the United States were tuned in to I Love Lucy to watch Lucy give birth to Desi Arnaz, Jr., American actor.

1966 Indira Gandhi was elected Prime Minister of India.

1967 – 19 men were killed in an explosion in the Strongman mine, at Rūnanga.

19 killed in Strongman mine explosion at Runanga

1972 – Princess Kalina of Bulgaria, was born.

1977 – Snow fell in Miami, Florida for the only time time in the history of the city.

1978  The last Volkswagen Beetle made in Germany left VW’s plant in Emden.

1981 United States and Iranian officials signed an agreement to release 52 American hostages after 14 months of captivity.

1983  Nazi war criminal Klaus Barbie was arrested in Bolivia.

1983 – The Apple Lisa, the first commercial personal computer from Apple Inc. to have a graphical user interface and a computer mouse, was announced.

1996  The barge North Cape oil spill occurred as an engine fire forced the tugboat Scandia ashore on Moonstone Beach in South Kingstown, Rhode Island.

1997 Yasser Arafat returned to Hebron after more than 30 years and joined celebrations over the handover of the last Israeli-controlled West Bank city.

2006 – The New Horizons probe was launched by NASA on the first mission to Pluto.

2007 – Armenian Journalist Hrant Dink was assassinated in front of his newspaper’s office by 17 year old Turkish ultranationalist Ogün Samast.

2012 – The Hong Kong-based file-sharing website Megaupload was shut down by the FBI.

2013 – A failed attempt to assassinate Ahmed Dogan, chairman of the Bulgarian political party Movement for Rights and Freedoms, on live television is foiled by security guards.

2014 –  – A bomb attack on an army convoy in the city of Bannu killed at least 26 soldiers and injured 38 others.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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