Word of the day

January 28, 2015

Rivo –  an expression used as an encouragement to drink and be merry.


A better way of doing things

January 28, 2015

Prime Minister John Key delivered a speech on social housing today.

Highlights include:

“The experience of countries like Australia and the United Kingdom is that having non-government organisations providing social housing, alongside the government, is a better way of doing things.”

“The experience of countries like Australia and the United Kingdom is that having non-government organisations providing social housing, alongside the government, is a better way of doing things.” www.national.org.nz/socialhousing

Around a third of Housing NZ properties are in the wrong place, or are the wrong type to meet existing and future demand.

Around a third of Housing NZ properties are in the wrong place, or are the wrong type to meet existing and future demand.<br /> www.national.org.nz/socialhousing

“It’s part of the Government’s wider approach to delivering better public services to New Zealanders who need them”

“It’s part of the Government’s wider approach to delivering better public services to New Zealanders who need them.” www.national.org.nz/socialhousing

Community housing providers can, and should, play a more significant role in owning and running social housing.

Community housing providers can, and should, play a more significant role in owning and running social housing.<br /> www.national.org.nz/socialhousing
We’ll help more vulnerable New Zealanders get into social housing when they need it.
We’ll help more vulnerable New Zealanders get into social housing when they need it. https://www.national.org.nz/policies/social-housing

“We’re taking a different approach to provide quality social housing for New Zealanders who need it.”

“We’re taking a different approach to provide quality social housing for New Zealanders who need it.”


Rural round-up

January 28, 2015

Repositioning NZ trade on the world stage:

Founder and Chairman of ANZCO Foods, Sir Graeme Harrison, is showing his unwavering commitment to New Zealand business by personally funding a Professorial Chair in Global Value Chains and Trade at Lincoln University.
The newly created position will contribute to the research and teaching at the specialist land-based university – but it will also come with a far wider reaching remit: to help lead change in the way New Zealand businesses engage globally throughout the value chain.   
 
Described by Lincoln University Vice-Chancellor Dr Andrew West as “an extraordinarily visionary and generous act”, the funded professorial chair will need a unique set of skills. “As well as carrying core academic responsibilities, we see the appointee becoming a leading spokesperson on global trade, particularly around the challenges facing New Zealand’s agricultural exports,” says Dr West. . .

Conviction for the illegal sale of home killed meat applauded:

Federated Farmers is applauding the Ministry for Primary Industries prosecuting a Northland man for selling meat which had not been processed in accordance with the Animal Products Act 1999.

The Chair of Federated Farmers Rural Butchers, Haydn Cleland says the successful prosecution shows the inspection regimes to protect the integrity of New Zealand’s food safety systems are working. . .

Caution not panic in kill plans – Alan Williams:

Farmers are taking a cautious line on stock for processing during an increasingly dry summer, booking them for two to three weeks ahead.

But they were ready to take them out if there was decent rain in the meantime, AFFCO Holdings interim general manager Rowan Ogg said.

In some cases farmers might have lambs booked in with more than one processor, he said. AFFCO had more stock than it could handle. . .

NZ lamb wool price rises to 3-year high on increased demand – Tina Morrison:

(BusinessDesk) – New Zealand lamb wool prices rose to a three-year high last week on increased demand for the fibre from clothing manufacturers in China.

The price for lamb wool jumped 10 cents to $6.10 per kilogram at last week’s North Island auction, matching a price last seen in January 2012, according to AgriHQ. The price for 35-micron clean wool, a benchmark for crossbred wool used for carpets and accounting for the majority of New Zealand’s production, was steady at $4.85/kg compared with the average price in auctions in both islands the previous week. Merino and mid-micron wool didn’t trade in the latest auction. . .

Sporting Stars Set to Choose Nation’s Top Lamb:

Iron Maidens Lisa Carrington, Sophie Pascoe and Sarah Walker are set to judge the ninth annual 2015 Beef + Lamb New Zealand Golden Lamb Awards, aka the Glammies.

The competition, supported by Zoetis, aims to find the most tender and tasty lamb in New Zealand, with categories for both farmers and retailers.

With the sporting superstars on the panel, alongside foodwriter, Lauraine Jacobs and head judge Graham Hawkes, entries will have to be of superior quality to impress this year.

Third time judge, Sarah Walker says she is thrilled to be involved in the competition once again. . .

NZ Forests Gain International Visibility:

With the acceptance of the NZ Forest Certification Association (NZFCA) as New Zealand’s PEFC Member, New Zealand forest growers gain visibility in the world’s leading forest certification system. “We are delighted to be accepted into membership of PEFC and to represent PEFC in New Zealand” says Dr Andrew McEwen, chair of NZFCA.

With more than 260 million hectares of certified forests, PEFC (Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification) is the world’s leading forest certification system, promoting Sustainable Forest Management through independent third party certification. PEFC works throughout the entire forest supply chain to promote good practice in the forest and to ensure that timber and non-timber forest products are produced with respect for the highest ecological, social and ethical standards. Thanks to its eco-label, customers and consumers are able to identify products from sustainably managed forests. . .

 

 


NZ 3rd for economic freedom

January 28, 2015

New Zealand has overtaken Australia to 3rd place in the  economic freedom index published by the Wall Street Journal and the Heritage Foundation.

The media release (the link to which is under press releases overview here) says:

The world economy is “moderately free,” with a slight rise in economic liberty leading to a third annual global increase, according to the editors of the 2015 Index of Economic Freedom, released today by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal.

The world average score of 60.4 is only one-tenth of a point above the 2014 average, but represents a 2.8-point overall improvement since the inception of the Index in 1995. Thirty-seven countries, including Taiwan, Israel, Poland and Colombia, achieved their highest-ever Index scores. Among the 178 countries ranked, scores improved for 101 countries and declined for 73. Ninety economies, or about half of all nations and territories graded in the Index, provide at least a moderate level of economic freedom for their citizens.

Yet the number of people living in economically “unfree” countries remains high: 4.5 billion, or about 65 percent of the world’s population. More than half live in just two countries: China and India. Twenty-six countries have “repressed” economies (scores below 50), while only five have earned the Index’s designation of “free” (scores above 80).

“The fundamental relationship between economic freedom and prosperity is readily apparent worldwide,” the editors write. “No matter the region, per capita income levels are consistently higher in countries that are economically freer.”

Despite being the only North American economy to improve in the 2015 Index, the United States remained stuck in the 12th spot globally and the second one regionally (behind Canada, which is once again No. 6 globally despite a 1.1-point drop in its score). The 2015 Index reports modest gains in six categories for the U.S., including control of government spending, which outweighed a small decline in business freedom.

Hong Kong and Singapore finished first and second in the rankings for the 21st consecutive year, although only two-tenths of a point separate their overall scores. New Zealand, which logged almost a full-point improvement last year, moved up two slots and reclaimed third place in the rankings, outperforming Australia (4th) and Switzerland (5th).

Chile’s score declined slightly, but it took seventh place. The score for Mauritius, the only Sub-Saharan country to rank among the top 10, declined one-tenth of a point, and it slid from eighth place globally to 10th. Estonia, meanwhile, rode an improved score into the world’s No. 8 slot, while Ireland again finished ninth.

The Most Free

  1. Hong Kong
  2. Singapore
  3. New Zealand
  4. Australia
  5. Switzerland
  6. Canada
  7. Chile
  8. Estonia
  9. Ireland
  10. Mauritius

The Least Free

  1. North Korea
  2. Cuba
  3. Venezuela
  4. Zimbabwe
  5. Eritrea
  6. Equatorial Guinea
  7. Turkmenistan
  8. Iran
  9. Rep. of Congo
  10. Argentina

Launched in 1995, the Index evaluates countries in four broad policy areas that affect economic freedom: rule of law; limited government; regulatory efficiency; and open markets. There are 10 specific categories: property rights, freedom from corruption, fiscal freedom, government spending, business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom, trade freedom, investment freedom, and financial freedom. Scores in these categories are averaged to create an overall score. . .

Countries which have more economic freedom are also more prosperous with the social benefits which flow from that.


Right words no use with wrong policy

January 28, 2015

Labour leader Andrew Little’s state of the nation speech is full of lots of right words – lowest unemployment, dignity, self-respect, families, engine room will be small business, quality of life needs strong economic performance . . .

But all that is empty rhetoric if it’s not matched by the right policies.

That would include at the very least keeping, and better still extending, the 90-day trail period for new employees.

But Radio New Zealand’s 10am news report (which I can’t find on-line) said Labour would be ditching the 90-day trial period.

One of the greatest risks to a small business is the wrong employee – someone who doesn’t have the ability to do what’s required how and when it’s required and who puts more pressure on or  otherwise negatively impacts other employees.

No matter how well someone presents in interviews and how rigorous the reference checks, it’s impossible to tell how someone will fit in the workplace until s/he’s actually in it and working.

Recruiting, inducting and training new staff is a hassle which no business wants to keep doing every three-months. that would waste time, money and physical and mental energy and reduce productivity.

There hasn’t been a lot of employers abusing the process. There have been more employers taking on the risk of taking on new employees because they know they can let them go within 90 days if they aren’t right for the job.

Getting rid of the 90-day trial period would be the triumph of politics over policy that has been proven to work.

Little can carry on saying the right words but they will be meaningless if they’re followed with the wrong policy.
Andrew Little says Labour will stand up for small business. Here’s a quick pop quiz for Mr Little about where he really stands.


Human-shaped anthropocene epoch vs overhang idealised historical period

January 28, 2015

Quote of the day from Colin James:

. . . human-made law is for humans’ wellbeing and future, not the preservation of some frozen-in-time environmental mix. We live in the human-shaped anthropocene epoch, not in an overhang of some idealised historical period. We started the shaping millennia ago with shovels and fire. . .

He was discussing the dilemma facing the Green Party and their tendency to see economic development and environmental protection and enhancement as mutually exclusive.

Environmental awareness is growing and in spite of what they would like to believe, green issues and initiatives are not the preserve of the left of the political spectrum where the Greens are mired.

Both the will and means to have green growth are increasing with the economic, environmental and social benefits it brings.

The Greens no doubt feel threatened by that because the country grows greener their radical left agenda becomes even less relevant.

 

 


January 28 in history

January 28, 2015

1225 Saint Thomas Aquinas, was born (d. 1274).

1457  King Henry VII, was born (d. 1509).

1521 The Diet of Worms began.

1547 Henry VIII died. His nine year old son, Edward VI became King, and the first Protestant ruler of England.

1573 – Articles of the Warsaw Confederation were signed, sanctioning freedom of religion in Poland.

1582  John Barclay, Scottish writer, was born (d. 1621).

1624 Sir Thomas Warner,  founded the first British colony in the Caribbean, on the island of Saint Kitts.

1706 John Baskerville, English printer, was born  (d. 1775).

1724 The Russian Academy of Sciences was founded in St. Petersburg by Peter the Great, and implemented in the Senate decree.

1754 Horace Walpole, in a letter to Horace Mann, coined the word serendipity.

1813 Pride and Prejudice was first published in the United Kingdom.

1820 – Russian expedition led by Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Petrovich discovered the Antarctic continent approaching the Antarctic coast.

1827  French explorer Jules Sébastien César Dumont d’Urville sailed the Astrolabe through French Pass and into Admiralty Bay in the Marlborough Sounds.

D'Urville sails through French Pass

1833 Charles George ‘Chinese’ Gordon, British soldier and administrator (d. 1885).

1841 Henry Morton Stanley, Welsh-born explorer and journalist, was born (d. 1904).

1855 The first locomotive ran from the Atlantic to the Pacific on the Panama Railway.

1857 William Seward Burroughs I, American inventor, was born (d. 1898).

1863 Ernst William Christmas, Australian painter, was born (d. 1918).

1864 Charles W. Nash, American automobile entrepreneur, co-founder Buick Company,  was born  (d. 1948).

1864 – Herbert Akroyd Stuart, English inventor of the hot bulb heavy oil engine, was born (d. 1927).

1871 Franco-Prussian War: the Siege of Paris ended in French defeat and an armistice.

1873 Colette, French writer, was born (d. 1954).

1878 Yale Daily News became the first daily college newspaper in the United States.

1887  Arthur Rubinstein, Polish pianist and conductor, was born (d. 1982).

1887  In a snowstorm at Fort Keogh, Montana, the world’s largest snowflakes were reported, being 15 inches (38 cm) wide and 8 inches (20 cm) thick.

1890 Robert Stroud,  American convict, the Birdman of Alcatraz, was born (d. 1963).

1896  Walter Arnold of East Peckham, Kent became the first person to be convicted of speeding. He was fined 1 shilling plus costs for speeding at 8 mph (13 km/h), thus exceeding the contemporary speed limit of 2 mph (3.2 km/h).

1901 Wellington blacksmith, William Hardham, won the Victoria Cross – the only New Zealander to do so in the South African War.

Hardham wins VC in South Africa

1902The Carnegie Institution was founded in Washington, D.C. with a $10 million gift from Andrew Carnegie.

1909 United States troops left Cuba with the exception of Guantanamo Bay Naval Base after being there since the Spanish-American War.

1912  Jackson Pollock, American painter, was born (d. 1956).

1915 An act of the U.S. Congress created the United States Coast Guard.

1916 Louis D. Brandeis became the first Jew appointed to the United States Supreme Court.

1917 Municipally owned streetcars began operating in the streets of San Francisco, California.

1918  Harry Corbett, English puppeteer (Sooty), was born(d. 1989).

1921 A symbolic Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was installed beneath the Arc de Triomphe to honor the unknown dead of World War I.

1922 Knickerbocker Storm, Washington D.C.’s biggest snowfall, causes the city’s greatest loss of life when the roof of the Knickerbocker Theater collapses.

1929 Acker Bilk, English jazz clarinetist, was born  (d. 2014).

1933 – The name Pakistan was coined by Choudhary Rehmat Ali Khan and is accepted by the Indian Muslims who then thereby adopted it further for the Pakistan Movement seeking independence.1934 The first ski tow in the United States begins operation in Vermont.

1935 David Lodge, English author, was born.

1935 Iceland became the first Western country to legalize therapeutic abortion.

1936 Alan Alda, American actor, writer, and director, was born.

1938 The World Land Speed Record on a public road was broken by driver Rudolf Caracciola in the Mercedes-Benz W195 at a speed of 432.7 kilometres per hour (268.9 mph).

1943 Dick Taylor, English musician (The Rolling Stones and The Pretty Things), was born.

1944 Susan Howard, American actress, was born.

1955 Nicolas Sarkozy, President of France, was born.

1958 – The Lego company patented their design of Lego bricks.

1964 A U.S. Air Force jet training plane that strayed into East Germany  was shot down by Soviet fighters near Erfurt ; all 3 crew men are killed.

1965  The current design of the Flag of Canada was chosen by an act of Parliament.

1977 The first day of the Great Lakes Blizzard of 1977, which severely affected and crippled much of Upstate New York, but Buffalo, NY, Syracuse, NY, Watertown, NY, and surrounding areas were most affected, each area accumulating close to 10 feet of snow on this one day.

1980 USCGC Blackthorn (WLB-391) collided with the tanker Capricorn while leaving Tampa Florida and capsizes killing 23 Coast Guard crewmembers.

1980  – Nick Carter, American singer (Backstreet Boys), was born.

1981 Ronald Reagan lifted remaining domestic petroleum price and allocation controls in the United States helping to end the 1979 energy crisis and begin the 1980s oil glut.

1981 Elijah Wood, American actor, was born.

1982 US Army general James L. Dozier was rescued by Italian anti-terrorism forces from captivity by the Red Brigades.

1985 Supergroup USA for Africa (United Support of Artists for Africa) records the hit single We Are the World, to help raise funds for Ethiopian famine relief.

1986 Space Shuttle Challenger broke apart after lift-off killing all seven astronauts on board.

2002 TAME Flight 120, a Boeing 727-100 crashed in the Andes mountains in southern Colombia killing 92.

2006 – The roof of one of the buildings at the Katowice International Fair in Chorzów / Katowice, Poland, collapsed due to the weight of snow, killing 65 and injuring more than 170 others.

2010 – Five murderers of President Sheikh Mujibur Rahman of Bangladesh: Lieutenant Colonel Syed Faruq Rahman, Lieutenant Colonel Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Major AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed, Major Bazlul Huda and Lieutenant Colonel Mohiuddin Ahmed were hanged.

2011 – Hundreds of thousands of protesters thronged Egyptian streets in demonstrations  against the Mubarak regime, referred to as “Friday of Anger” .

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


%d bloggers like this: