Word of the day

November 9, 2015

Pismire – an ant.


Rural round-up

November 9, 2015

Alliance in good shape, Donald says – Sally Rae:

He’s been sitting around the board table at Alliance Group for 24 years but Murray Donald has finally called time.

Come December 17 and the Southland farmer will be gone, as he is standing down as a supplier representative at the company’s annual meeting in Oamaru.

Mr Donald (54), who farms near Winton, and fellow long serving director Doug Brown, of Maheno, who was elected in 2001, have decided not to seek re election. . . 

Exit from EU could cripple UK agriculture – Allan Barber:

A new report by agricultural consultancy Agra Europe entitled Preparing for Brexit suggests leaving the EU, to be determined by a referendum in 2017, could destroy the British farming sector. The authors have based their forecast on the Coalition government’s 2013 Fresh Start Policy document which theorised that British agriculture could imitate New Zealand and Australia’s success in surviving, even flourishing, in a post-subsidy world.

Not surprisingly there is plenty of scepticism about the realistic prospect of either of these scenarios eventuating. If British voters chose the Brexit option, it is most unlikely any government would eliminate all subsidies, while a cursory glance at the proportion of farm income from EU Common Agricultural Policy payments shows how laughable it would be to expect them to become suddenly profitable. . . 

Contest continues to hold appeal – Sally Rae:

Chris Pemberton was just a lad when he competed in the Young Farmers Contest.

It was 2005 and, at 17, Mr Pemberton was one of the youngest regional finalists in the contest’s then 36-year history.

He was still at boarding school at St Kevin’s College when he competed in the Aorangi regional final.

While unplaced, he performed creditably and was a favourite with the crowd. . . 

Spaans new DairyNZ head – Stephen Bell:

Waikato dairy farmer Michael Spaans has been elected the new chairman of DairyNZ.

The industry-good body held a special meeting of the board this weekend.

Spaans will serve an annual term as chairman, leading an eight-member board made up of five farmer-elected and three independent directors.
He replaced long-serving chairman and former Cabinet minister John Luxton who retired from the DairyNZ board last month after 12 years of service on dairy industry bodies. . . 

Yashili New Zealand’s Pokeno factory opens – Gerald Piddock:

Yashili New Zealand Dairy Co has opened its new state-of-the-art infant formula manufacturing plant in Pokeno, south of Auckland.

The 30,000m2 plant will employ 85 staff and have an annual production capacity of about 52,000 tonnes of formula product. It will produce formula under the brand ‘Super Alpha-Golden Stage Infant Formula’ with shipments to China expected to begin in early 2016.

Yashili New Zealand is a leading producer of infant milk formula for the domestic market in China. It was founded in July 2012 and is a subsidiary of Yashili International Holdings and Mengniu Dairy Co.  The new factory took three years to build and cost $220 million. The company’s goals were to produce the highest quality infant formula and raise the healthiest babies in China. . . 

Yashili, Arla and Danone sign agreement – Gerald Piddock:

Yashili International along with European dairy producers Arla and Danone have entered into global strategic cooperation agreement.

Signed at the opening of Yashili’s new infant formula plant at Pokeno on November 6, the agreement will see the three companies work closer together in supplying products into Arla and Danone’s markets.

“It is a significant agreement between these two great dairy producers who are each committed to the highest standard of food quality and safety,” Yashili International Holdings president Lu Mingfang said. . . 

 


All jobs not equal

November 9, 2015

Labour’s proposal to use the government’s $40 billion in buying power to create jobs and back local businesses by requiring suppliers to make job creation in New Zealand a determining factor for contracts might be good politics but it’s bad policy.

The government, like any other entity, should be guided by price and quality when buying goods and services.

Unless businesses can adding job creation while competing on both of those factors, the requirement is a subsidy by another name.

If a future Labour-led government pays more, or accepts lower quality, to purchase from a business which creates more jobs it will not be not using public money wisely.

It will  be spending more than it needs to and to do that it has to take more tax, some of which will come from businesses with which those subsidised might be competing.

It could also lead the businesses which get the subsidies into difficulty when the government funding runs out and they find themselves with more staff than they can afford.

All jobs aren’t equal. Those created by government requirement are more expensive and less sustainable than ones created by businesses through their own efforts.

As Bill English said:

“We wouldn’t be chasing around the unemployment number [every] three months to three months – what we want to do is reinforce and encourage the industries that are doing well to invest, employ more people and grow.”

English said it was “not that easy” for the Government to create jobs, and any intervention would be unlikely to get value for money. . .”

The Wellington Chamber of Commerce is taking legal action against the City Council over its decision to require contractors to pay their staff the so-called living wage.

Labour’s policy is in the same feel-good- theory, bad-policy-in-practice territory.

The best thing a government can do for employment is keep a tight rein on its spending and enact policies which enable businesses to prosper which will give them the confidence to employ more people without a subsidy.


Quote of the day

November 9, 2015

I was raised to believe that everybody has a responsibility to their community and I use the word very loosely. It’s a big community. If I get recognized in the middle of the Sinai Desert I have a big community.Mary Travers who was born on this day in 1936.


November 9 in history

November 9, 2015

694 – Egica, a king of the Visigoths of Hispania, accused Jews of aiding Muslims, sentencing all Jews to slavery.

1282 – Pope Martin IV excommunicated King Peter III of Aragon.

1313 – Louis the Bavarian defeated his cousin Frederick I of Austria at the Battle of Gamelsdorf.

1330 – Battle of Posada, Wallachian Voievode Basarab I defeated the Hungarian army in an ambush.

1456 – Ulrich II of Celje last prince of Celje principality, was assassinated in Belgrade.

1492 – Peace of Etaples between Henry VII and Charles VIII.

1494 – The Family de’ Medici were expelled from Florence.

1620 – Pilgrims aboard the Mayflower sighted land at Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

1688 – The Glorious Revolution: William of Orange captured Exeter.

1720 – The synagogue of Yehudah he-Hasid was burned down by Arab creditors, leading to the expulsion of the Ashkenazim from Jerusalem.

1729 – Spain, France and Great Britain signed the Treaty of Seville.

1764 – Mary Campbell, a captive of the Lenape during the French and Indian War, was turned over to forces commanded by Colonel Henry Bouquet.

1769 – Captain Cook and astronomer Charles Green observed the transit of Mercury at Te Whanganui-a-hei (Mercury Bay) on the Coromandel Peninsula.

Captain Cook observes transit of Mercury

1791 – Foundation of the Dublin Society of United Irishmen.

1799 – Napoleon Bonaparte led the Coup d’état of 18 Brumaire ending the Directory government, and becoming one of its three Consuls (Consulate Government).

1841 King Edward VII was born (d. 1910).

1851 – Kentucky marshals abducted abolitionist minister Calvin Fairbankfrom Jeffersonville, Indiana, and took him to Kentucky to stand trial for helping a slave escape.

1857 – The Atlantic was founded in Boston.

1862 – American Civil War: Union General Ambrose Burnside assumed command of the Army of the Potomac, after George B. McClellan was removed.

1867 – Tokugawa Shogunate handed power back to the Emperor of Japan, starting the Meiji Restoration.

1868 Marie Dressler, Canadian actress, was born (d 1934) .

1872 – The Great Boston Fire of 1872.

1887 – The United States received rights to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

1888 – Jack the Ripper killed Mary Jane Kelly, his last known victim.

1902 Anthony Asquith, British film director, was born (d 1968).

1906 – Theodore Roosevelt was the first sitting USA president to make an official trip outside the country. He did so to inspect progress on the Panama Canal.

1907 – The Cullinan Diamond was presented to King Edward VII on his birthday.

1913 – The Great Lakes Storm of 1913, the most destructive natural disaster ever to hit the lakes, destroyed 19 ships and killed more than 250 people.

1914 – SMS Emden was sunk by HMAS Sydney in the Battle of Cocos.

1917 – Joseph Stalin entered the provisional government of Bolshevik Russia.

1918 – Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany abdicated after the German Revolution, and Germany was proclaimed a Republic.

1918 Spiro Agnew, 39th Vice President of the United States, was born (d1996).

1920 The Immigration Restriction Amendment Act 1920 made it necessary for immigrants to apply for a permanent residence permit before they arrived in New Zealand, which in effect introduced a white New Zealand policy.

White New Zealand policy introduced

1921 – Albert Einstein was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his work with the photoelectric effect.

1923 – In Munich, Germany, police and government troops crushed theBeer Hall Putsch in Bavaria.

1932 – Riots between conservative and socialist supporters in Switzerland killed 12 and injured 60.

1936 Mary Travers,  singer, (Peter, Paul & Mary), was born (d 2009).

1937 Roger McGough, English poet, was born.

1937 – Japanese troops took control of Shanghai.

1938 – Nazi German diplomat Ernst vom Rath died from the fatal gunshot wounds of Jewish resistance fighter Herschel Grynszpan, an act which the Nazis used as an excuse to instigate the 1938 national pogrom, Kristallnacht.

1940 – Warsaw was awarded the Virtuti Militari.

1953 – Cambodia gained independence from France.

1955 – Karen Dotrice, British actress, was born.

1960 – Robert McNamara was named president of Ford Motor Co., the first non-Ford to serve in that post.

1963 – At Miike coal mine, Japan, an explosion killed 458, and hospitalised 839 with carbon monoxide poisoning.

1963 – A three-train disaster in Yokohama, killed more than 160 people.

1965 – Several U.S. states and parts of Canada were hit by a series of blackouts lasting up to 13 hours in the Northeast Blackout of 1965.

1965 – Catholic Worker member Roger Allen LaPorte, protesting against the Vietnam War, set himself on fire in front of the United Nations building.

1967 – Apollo program: NASA launches the unmanned Apollo 4 test spacecraft atop the first Saturn V rocket from Cape Kennedy, Florida.

1967 – First issue of Rolling Stone Magazine was published.

1970 – Vietnam War: The Supreme Court of the United States voted 6 to 3 against hearing a case to allow Massachusetts to enforce its law granting residents the right to refuse military service in an undeclared war.

1979 – Nuclear false alarm: the NORAD computers and the Alternate National Military Command Center in Fort Ritchie, Maryland detected purported massive Soviet nuclear strike. After reviewing the raw data from satellites and checking the early warning radars, the alert is cancelled.

1985 – Garry Kasparov 22, of the Soviet Union became the youngest World Chess Champion by beating Anatoly Karpov, also of the Soviet Union.

1989 – Fall of the Berlin Wall. Communist-controlled East Germany opened checkpoints in the Berlin Wall allowing its citizens to travel to West Germany.

1990 – New democratic constitution was issued in Nepal.

1993 – Stari most, the “old bridge” in Bosnian Mostar built in 1566, collapsed after several days of bombing.

1994 – The chemical element Darmstadtium was discovered.

1998 – Brokerage houses were ordered to pay $US1.03 billion to cheated NASDAQ investors to compensate for their price-fixing. This is the largest civil settlement in United States history.

1998 – Capital punishment in the United Kingdom, already abolished for murder, was completely abolished for all remaining capital offences.

2005 – The Venus Express mission of the European Space Agency was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

2005 – Suicide bombers attacked three hotels in Amman, Jordan, killing at least 60 people.

2007 – The German Bundestag passed the controversial data retention bill mandating storage of citizens’ telecommunications traffic data for six months without probable cause.

2012  – A train carrying liquid fuel crashed and burst into flames in northern Burma, killing 27 people and injuring 80 others.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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