366 days of gratitude

November 1, 2016

A National Party Mainland conference a couple of years ago coincided with Mothers’ Day.

A member who grows tulips donated bulbs for all the mothers.

Mine are in full bloom at the moment, looking gorgeous and I’m grateful for them.


Word of the day

November 1, 2016

Hippophile – one who loves horses.


Rural round-up

November 1, 2016

Heartland: Grass is greenest for environment – Jacqueline Rowarth:

Streams of traffic at Labour weekend, with boats, jet skis and trail bikes loaded on or behind four-wheel drive vehicles, heralded the start of the summer outdoor life, part of the New Zealand heritage. 

The fact that fossil fuel consumption was involved, thereby increasing the contribution to global greenhouse gases (GHG), was probably not considered by most people as they took to the road. Nor was the decision to make 1.09 million overseas holiday trips in the September 2016 year. Statistics New Zealand data indicated residents took 71,200 more holiday trips than in the September 2015 year. 

But, overall, New Zealand produces less than 2% of the global GHG emissions, so people are getting out there and enjoying life. . . 

MP Chester Borrows says hidden camera footage threatens New Zealand’s economy – Sue O’Dowd:

Hidden-camera footage of on-farm practices not only breaches farmers’ security but also threatens New Zealand’s economy, says politician Chester Borrows. 

The Whanganui MP and one-time police officer turned lawyer is urging Taranaki farmers and rural residents to attend the rural crime prevention national roadshow – a joint police, FMG and Federated Farmers initiative – when it visits Stratford and Tikorangi on November 10. 

Figures presented at FMG’s annual meeting in Taranaki in September showed rural crime cost the company $21 million in claims in the last five years. . . 

From the Lip – bobby calves and Big Brother – Jamie Mackay:

The latest bobby calf cruelty video released by Farmwatch is yet again another salutary reminder of how careful farmers and farming have to be, in an age where social media rules and where the consumer is king.

I have to be bit careful when dishing out advice from behind the safety of a keyboard because I’ve never loaded bobby calves on to a truck, save for a few we bought and reared as kids on to the back of a car trailer.

But I have spent many years, in a past life, working with livestock and can understand the pressures and fatigue farmers and farm workers face in the course of a 14 hour working day at calving or lambing time. . . 

More tertiary graduates needed to grow a savvy agri-industry – Pat Deavoll:

The agricultural and horticultural industry will need more than 60,000 more workers by 2025 to be sustainable.

The Ministry for Primary Industries estimates horticulture will need an extra 7800 workers and meat and wool 16,500 fewer unqualified workers through the natural attrition of the industry but will need 11,400 with tertiary qualifications. The arable sector will need another 4700 workers and dairy 2300 more workers.

However, the biggest demand will come from the support area with as many as 30,000 more jobs required. . . 

Global Farmer Network ‘amazing’ – Sally Rae:

When Jane Smith headed to the Global Farmer Roundtable discussion in Iowa earlier this month, she was not sure what she should expect.

But it turned out to be an “amazing’ character-building trip for the North Otago farmer who was the sole representative from New Zealand.

The Global Farmer Network is a non-profit advocacy group led by farmers from around the world who support global expansion of trade and a farmer’s freedom to access the technology they need to be productive and sustainable. . . 

Farmers praised for ability to cut costs:

Not surprisingly, the 2015-16 dairy season has been officially declared the most challenging year yet for dairy farmers.

The $3.90 kg/ms milk price was the lowest in more than a decade and affected farmers who were, on average, operating at a break-even cost of $5.25 kg/ms, figures released at DairyNZ’s recent annual meeting in Ashburton showed.

Despite an obvious shortfall in farm income, farmers made positive steps in reducing their costs of production, chairman Michael Spaans said.

In August, DairyNZ revised the average farm’s break-even cost down to $5.05 kg/ms for 2016-17.‘‘This is a rare positive from a period of low milk prices and something farmers should be immensely proud of. . . 

Good points about US farming trumped by low profits – Pita Alexander:

In the middle of a fascinating election campaign any prayers you have would be reserved for the American people rather than their new president

Some years ago a reporter asked Pope XXIII about how many people worked at the Vatican.  His reply was: about half.  The sooner the United States election is over the sooner about half the population can get back to work.

Many years ago Mahatma Gandhi was asked what he thought of western civilisation.  His reply was: he thought it was a good idea.  Yet I counted 22 serious confrontations around the world on October 28 where lives were being lost every day.  Mr Gandhi would not be happy about this.  I did not include any of the internal US confrontations in my total.

At the farming level, do not get the idea that the typical US family farm has a good net income.  The median figure for this year is estimated to be about $109,000 (US$76,282), but most of this  comes from off-farm income. . . 


Melbourne Cup picks

November 1, 2016

The appeal of horses’ names and jockeys’ colours is the usual basis for my picks in any race.

But today, patriotism is my guide and I’m opting for Pentathlon:

Pentathlon is the only Kiwi-trained, bred and owned starter in this year’s Cup. Pentathlon is being prepared by Kiwi training legend John Wheeler from New Plymouth. It’s been 20 years since Wheeler saddled up a runner in the great race. He will be ridden by New Zealand jockey Mark Du Plessis.

The Victorian Racing Club has the field and form here.

Sticking with patriotism, I’m picking Who Shot Thebarman for second and going for a jockey in blue, Beautiful Romance for third.

There’s a virtual gourmet picnic for anyone who picks the winner with a bonus virtual bottle of champagne for anyone who picks the first three.

 

UPDATE: I’m swapping my pick to Who Shot Thebarman for first and Pentathlon for second.

The horse is owned by Dan, Michael, Shaun and Humphrey O’Leary and is trained by expatriate New Zealander Chris Waller.

It was named after a favourite saying of the O’Leary’s aunt when her gin glass was empty and needed a refill.

TAB NZ has reported that up to 70 members of the O’Leary brothers family and friends will travel to Melbourne to support the horse.

I know some of the family and even if I didn’t that much support from family and friends, not to mention the aunt’s spirit, appeals.


Quote of the day

November 1, 2016

There is nothing in the world so easy to explain as failure – it is, after all, what everybody does all the time. – Susanna Clarke who celebrates her 57th birthday today.


November 1 in history

November 1, 2016

996  Emperor Otto III issued a deed to Gottschalk, Bishop of Freising, which is the oldest known document using the name Ostarrîchi (Austria in Old High German).

1179  Philip II was crowned King of France.

1348  The anti-royalist Union of Valencia attacked the Jews of Murviedro on the pretext that they were serfs of the King of Valencia and thus “royalists”.

1512 The ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, painted by Michelangelo, was exhibited to the public for the first time.

1520 The Strait of Magellan, was first navigated by Ferdinand Magellan during his global circumnavigation voyage.

1549 – Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain, was born (d. 1580).

1604 William Shakespeare‘s tragedy Othello was staged for the first time, at Whitehall Palace.

1611  William Shakespeare‘s romantic comedy The Tempest was staged for the first time, at Whitehall Palace.

1612 Time of Troubles in Russia: Moscow, Kitai-gorod, was captured by Russian troops under command of Dmitry Pozharsky.

1755 Lisbon earthquake:  Lisbon was destroyed by a massive earthquake and tsunami, killing between sixty thousand and ninety thousand people.

1762 – Spencer Perceval, English lawyer and politician, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, was born (d. 1812).

1765 The British Parliament enacted the Stamp Act on the 13 colonies in order to help pay for British military operations in North America.

1782 – F. J. Robinson, 1st Viscount Goderich, English politician, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, was born (d. 1859).

1790  Edmund Burke published Reflections on the Revolution in France.

1800  US President John Adams became the first President of the United States to live in the Executive Mansion (later renamed the White House).

1805 Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Austria during the War of the Third Coalition.

1814  Congress of Vienna opened to re-draw the European political map after the defeat of France, in the Napoleonic Wars.

1831 – Harry Atkinson, English-New Zealand politician, 13th Prime Minister of New Zealand, was born (d. 1892).

Sir Harry Albert Atkinson, ca 1885.jpg

1848 The first medical school for women, The Boston Female Medical School (which later merged with the Boston University School of Medicine), opened.

1859   Cape Lookout lighthouse was lit for the first time.

1861 American Civil War: US President Abraham Lincoln appointedGeorge B. McClellan as the commander of the Union Army, replacing the aged General Winfield Scott.

1870  The  U.S. Weather Bureau (later renamed the National Weather Service) mafr its first official meteorological forecast.

1876  New Zealand’s provincial government system was dissolved.

1884 The Gaelic Athletic Association was set up.

1886 Ananda College, a leading Buddhist school in Sri Lanka was established with 37 students.

1887 – L. S. Lowry, British painter of industrial scenes, was born  (d. 1976).

1894  Nicholas II became the new Tsar of Russia after his father, Alexander III, died.

1896 –  A picture showing the unclad breasts of a woman appeared inNational Geographic magazine for the first time.

1898 The New Zealand parliament passed the Old-Age Pensions Act.  A world first, the act gave a small means-tested pension to destitute older people ‘deemed to be of good character’; Chinese were specifically excluded. It is considered one of the major achievements of Richard Seddon’s Liberal government.

Old-Age Pensions Act passes into law

1911  The first dropping of a bomb from an airplane in combat, during the Italo-Turkish War.

1914 World War I: the first British Royal Navy defeat of the war with Germany, the Battle of Coronel, was fought off of the western coast of Chile, with the loss of HMS Good Hope and HMS Monmouth.

1916  Paul Miliukov delivered in the State Duma the famous “stupidity or treason” speech, precipitating the downfall of the Boris Stürmer government.

1918  Malbone Street Wreck: the worst rapid transit accident in US history with at least 93 deaths.

1918  Western Ukraine gained its independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

1920  American Fishing Schooner Esperanto defeated the Canadian Fishing Schooner Delawana in the First International Fishing Schooner Championship Races in Halifax.

1922  The last sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Mehmed VI, abdicated.

1924 – Süleyman Demirel, Turkish engineer and politician, 9th President of Turkey,  was born (d. 2015).

1928 The Law on the Adoption and Implementation of the Turkish Alphabet, replacing the version of the Arabic alphabet previously used, came into force in Turkey.

1935  – Gary Player, South African golfer, was born.

1937  Stalinists executed Pastor Paul Hamberg and seven members ofAzerbaijan‘s Lutheran community.

1938  Seabiscuit defeated War Admiral in an upset victory during a match race deemed “the match of the century” in horse racing.

1939  The first rabbit born after artificial insemination was exhibited to the world.

1941 American photographer Ansel Adams took a picture of a moonrise over the town of Hernandez, New Mexico that became one of the most famous images in the history of photography.

1942  Matanikau Offensive began during the Guadalcanal Campaign.

1943  Battle of Empress Augusta Bay, United States Marines, the 3rd Marine Division, landed on Bougainville in the Solomon Islands.

1944 –   More than 800 Polish refugees from war-torn Europe landed in Wellington from the troopship USS General George M. Randall.
Polish refugees land in New Zealand

1944 – Oscar Temaru, President of French Polynesia, was born.

1944 World War II: Units of the British Army landed at Walcheren in the Netherlands.

1945 The official North Korean newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, was first published under the name Chongro.

1946  – Yuko Shimizu, Japanese graphic designer, created Hello Kitty was born.

1948   6,000 people were killed as a Chinese merchant ship exploded and sank.

1948 – Amani Abeid Karume, Zanzibar accountant and politician, 6th President of Zanzibar was born.

1950 – Pope Pius XII claimed Papal Infallibility when he formally defined the dogma of the Assumption of Mary.

1951  Operation Buster-Jangle: 6,500 American soldiers were exposed to ‘Desert Rock’ atomic explosions for training purposes in Nevada.

1952  Operation Ivy – The United States successfully detonated the first large hydrogen bomb, codenamed “Mike” [“M” for megaton], in the Eniwetok atoll, in the Marshall Islands.

1954 The Front de Libération Nationale fired the first shots of theAlgerian War of Independence.

1955 The bombing of United Airlines Flight 629 killed all 39 passengers and five crew members aboard the Douglas DC-6B airliner.

1957  The Mackinac Bridge, the world’s longest suspension bridge between anchorages at the time, opened to traffic connecting Michigan’s upper and lower peninsulas.

1959 – In Rwanda, Hutu politician Dominique Mbonyumutwa was beaten up by Tutsi forces, leading to a period of violence known as the wind of destruction.

1959 – Susanna Clarke, English author and educator, was born.

1960 – Tim Cook, American businessman and engineer, CEO of Apple Inc. was born

1961  50,000 women in 60 cities participated in the inaugural Women Strike for Peace (WSP) against nuclear proliferation.

1963 The Arecibo Observatory in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, with the largest radio telescope ever constructed, officially opened.

1970  Club Cinq-Sept fire in Saint-Laurent-du-Pont, France killed 146 young people.

1981  Antigua and Barbuda gained independence from the United Kingdom.

1982  Honda becomes the first Asian automobile company to produce cars in the United States with the opening of their factory in Marysville, Ohio.

1993 The Maastricht Treaty took effect, formally establishing the European Union.

2000 – Serbia joined the United Nations.

2005 First part of the Gomery Report, which discussed allegations of political money manipulation by members of the Liberal Party of Canada, was released in Canada.

2009  The inaugural Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was held at the Yas Marina Circuit.

2012 – A fuel tank truck crashed and exploded in the Saudi Arabian capital Riyadh killing 26 people and injuring 135.

2013 – A gunman opened fire at Los Angeles International Airport, killing a US Transportation Security Administration employee, and wounding seven other people.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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