Word of the day

July 30, 2017

Phosphene –  a ring or spot of light produced by pressure on the eyeball or direct stimulation of the visual system other than by light; a sensation of light caused by excitation of the retina by mechanical or electrical means rather than by light; an impression of light that occurs without light entering the eye.


National Party list released

July 30, 2017

The National Party has released its 2017 party list:

National’s 2017 Party List is a strong mix of experienced talent and fresh faces, Party President Peter Goodfellow says.

“National is incredibly lucky to have so many capable people we can draw on, from our Leader and Prime Minister Bill English right through to our newest candidates.

“Putting together a list is never easy, but this strikes the right balance between recognising experience, diversity, and pursuing ongoing renewal.”

The current Cabinet and Speaker David Carter make up spots one through 21, with existing MPs and new candidates following that. If National matched its result from 2014, 13 new MPs would enter Parliament alongside 47 returning MPs.

“Rejuvenation is important for any political party, and National is going into this election with some fantastic new candidates. We are also farewelling some very dedicated MPs who have served their constituents, our party and the country with distinction,” Mr Goodfellow says.

“This is National’s most diverse list ever. We’re incredibly proud to represent New Zealanders from all walks of life, with a range of ethnicities and backgrounds. We’ve got businesspeople, teachers, farmers, community advocates, scientists, and a pilot – just to name a few.

“National is working hard to build a strong economy so we can afford to invest in the things that matter to New Zealanders, like training more teachers, investing in health services, building more schools and roads, and boosting family incomes.

“Every MMP election is very close. All of our candidates will be campaigning hard to ensure National gets a strong Party Vote result so we can keep delivering for New Zealanders.

“The only way to secure another strong, National-led Government and avoid a chaotic Labour/Greens/New Zealand First coalition is by Party Voting National, and that’s what all of our candidates and volunteers will be focused on over the next eight weeks.”

National’s 2017 List:

1 Bill English List

2 Paula Bennett Upper Harbour

3 David Carter List

4  Steven Joyce List

5 Gerry Brownlee Ilam

6 Simon Bridges Tauranga

7 Amy Adams Selwyn

8 Jonathan Coleman Northcote

9 Chris Finlayson Rongotai

10 Michael Woodhouse Dunedin North

11 Anne Tolley East Coast

12 Nathan Guy Otaki

13 Nikki Kaye Auckland Central

14 Todd McClay Rotorua

15 Nick Smith Nelson

16 Judith Collins Papakura

17 Maggie Barry North Shore

18 Paul Goldsmith Epsom

19 Louise Upston Taupo

20 Alfred Ngaro Te Atatu

21 Mark Mitchell Rodney

22 Nicky Wagner Christchurch Central

23 Jacqui Dean Waitaki

24 David Bennett Hamilton East

25 Tim Macindoe Hamilton West

26 Scott Simpson Coromandel

27 Jami-Lee Ross Botany

28 Barbara Kuriger Taranaki-King Country

29 Matt Doocey Waimakariri

30 Brett Hudson Ohariu

31 Melissa Lee Mt Albert

32 Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi Manukau East

33 Jian Yang List

34 Parmjeet Parmar Mt Roskill

35 Jonathan Young New Plymouth

36 Joanne Hayes Christchurch East

37 Ian McKelvie Rangitikei

38 Simon O’Connor Tamaki

39 Andrew Bayly Hunua

40 Chris Bishop Hutt South

41 Sarah Dowie Invercargill

42 Nuk  Korako Port Hills

43 Todd Muller Bay of Plenty

44 Maureen Pugh West Coast Tasman

45 Shane Reti Whangarei

46 Alastair Scott Wairarapa

47 Stuart Smith Kaikoura

48 Nicola Willis Wellington Central

49 Agnes Loheni Mangere

50 Paulo Garcia New Lynn

51 Matt King Northland

52 David Hiatt Wigram

53 Matthew Gregory Dunedin South

54 Adrienne Pierce Palmerston North

55 David Elliott Napier

56 Katrina Bungard Manurewa

57 Bala Beeram Kelston

58 Carolyn O’Fallon Rimutaka

59 Euon Murrell Mana

60 Simeon Brown Pakuranga

61 Andrew Falloon Rangitata

62 Harete Hipango Whanganui

63 Denise Lee Maungakiekie

64 Chris Penk Helensville

65 Erica Stanford East Coast Bays

66 Tim Van de Molen Waikato

67 Lawrence Yule Tukituki

68 TO BE CONFIRMED Clutha-Southland

69 Sarah Jo Barley List

70 Lisa Whyte List

71 Linda Cooper List

72 Dan Bidois List

73 Rahul Sirigiri List

74 Hadleigh Reid List

75 Graham Collins List

A party in its third term wouldn’t usually be given much chance at all of being able to form a fourth government but National’s support has held up.

This is party due to the inability of the opposition to look like a government in waiting.

But National can’t afford to let the opposition lose, it needs to earn the right to lead the next government by its own merits, not by the opposition’s failures.

David Farrar has a demographic breakdown of the likely caucus.


A river of sound

July 30, 2017

When you are fluent in a language you know when one word stops and the next one starts.

When you’re learning a new language you don’t. It’s more like a river of sound flowing past your brain with occasional islands of words which you understand.

It’s difficult for people who speak only one language to understand what this is like, and why it’s so difficult for foreigners to comprehend what they’re hearing, but this might help.

It’s Prisencolinensinainciusol a song  by Adriano Celentano, an Italian, who’s singing what English sounds like to him – but it’s not really English, it’s gibberish.

Just between you and me, English is my first language and I find a lot of what passes for songs in a lot of modern music, just as incomprehensible as this one.

The song starts at about 1:40.

 


Stress Management

July 30, 2017

stress management StoryPeople print by Brian Andreas

I can imagine it working out perfectly, I said. I can’t, she said & I said no wonder you’re so stressed. Stress Management © 2014 Brian Andreas – posted with permission.

You can buy books, posters, cards, ornaments and more and sign up for a daily dose of whimsy like this by email at Story People.


Rural round-up

July 30, 2017

Restrictions on group’s farms – Sally Rae:

Sixteen properties belonging to the Van Leeuwen Dairy Group in South Canterbury have had Restricted Place Notices imposed on them by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) after the outbreak of the bacterial cattle disease mycoplasma bovis.

The effect of the notices is to control the movement of stock.

Two dozen cows on one of the group’s farms have tested positive for the disease and are the first in New Zealand to have the disease. A further 150 cows on the property have signs of infection.

MPI veterinarians are working with local vets to assess stock on the affected farm, which has a milking herd of about 1000 cows.

MPI regional controller Dr Chris Rodwell said the situation was well under control, praising Glenavy farmer Aad van Leeuwen for the way he had handled the outbreak. . .

Immigration announcement: Disappointing but there’s hope, says DairyNZ:

DairyNZ is disappointed that today’s announcement by Government has not addressed the concerns raised about migrant staff.

However, DairyNZ chief executive Dr Tim Mackle says there is hope for farmers who need to employ people from overseas.

“Government has committed to tackling the issues as a priority to help provide certainty for farmers who need to employ migrant staff, and those staff members themselves, as well as their families.” . . .

Opening the farm gates  – Sonita Chandra:

Metaphorically speaking, dairy farmers have closed their farm gates in recent times for fear of criticism, but this now needs to change, says Federated Farmers dairy vice-chairman Wayne Langford.

“The farm gates need to be opened again so that we can show what we are doing, but also see what our communities want us to be doing.

“As dairy farmers, we have to be proud of the industry and proud of what we are doing. If we are not proud of it, then we need to make changes.” . .

Top performing farm quick to adopt tech :

Take a scenic drive ten minutes west of Masterton in the Wairarapa and you’ll be greeted with a rustic sign announcing your arrival at “Spring Valley farms”. Nestled deep in the Kaituna valley, it’s the home of Matt and Lynley Wyeth and their two sons.

Spring Valley Enterprises farms roughly ten thousand sheep and another four thousand stock units made up of three hundred Angus breeding cows. It sits on 16 hundred hectares of hard hill country with some decent quality flat lands. It consistently rates in the top 5 per cent of performers in the red meat industry, in part this is due to their early adoption of agri-tech.

The Wyeth’s employ a range of technology each with a specific, measurable outcome that allows them to make small tweaks, accumulatively, saving them money. . .

Plan for calving – include talking to staff about risks:

Farmers preparing for calving should also be thinking about effective ways to keep workers safe and well, said WorkSafes Agriculture Sector Lead Al McCone.28 July 2017

Plan for calving – include talking to workers about risks

Farmers preparing for calving should also be thinking about effective ways to keep workers safe and well, said WorkSafe’s Agriculture Sector Lead Al McCone. . .

Zespri opens new pan-American office in California, growing sales:

It was an all-New Zealand affair in Orange County, California today as Zespri officially opened its regional office to manage growing sales across Northern, Central and Southern America.

Zespri Chief Executive Lain Jager says Zespri is growing strongly across North America with most of this growth coming from the new gold variety Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit, which is proving hugely popular.

“The New Zealand kiwifruit industry is on track to more than double sales to $4.5 billion by 2025 and an important part of this growth will come from developing markets like North America, as well growing sales in our more established markets. Zespri is relaunching the kiwifruit category in the United States and the wider Americas region to attract new consumers and grow sales,” says Mr Jager. . .


Sunday soapbox

July 30, 2017

Sunday’s  soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, amuse, bemuse or simply muse, but not abuse.

Image result for quotes laughter

If love is the treasure, laughter is the key – Yakov Smirnoff


July 30 in history

July 30, 2017

762  Baghdad was founded.

1419  First Defenestration of Prague.

1502 Christopher Columbus landed at Guanaja in the Bay Islands off the coast of Honduras during his fourth voyage.

1549 Ferdinando I de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, was born (d. 1609).

1608  Samuel de Champlain shot and killed two Iroquois chiefs which set the tone for FrenchIroquois relations for the next 100 years.

1619  The first representative assembly in the Americas, the House of Burgesses, convened for the first time.

1629  An earthquake in Naples killed 10,000 people.

1733  The first Masonic Grand Lodge in what became the United States was constituted in Massachusetts.

1756 Bartolomeo Rastrelli presented the newly-built Catherine Palace to Empress Elizabeth and her courtiers.

1811  Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, leader of the Mexican insurgency, was executed by the Spanish.

1818 Emily Brontë, English novelist, was born (d. 1848).

1825 Malden Island was discovered.

1859 First ascent of Grand Combin.

1863 Henry Ford, American industrialist, was born (d. 1947).

1863 Indian Wars: Chief Pocatello of the Shoshone tribe signed the Treaty of Box Elder, agreeing to stop the harassment of emigrant trails in southern Idaho and northern Utah.

1864 American Civil War: Battle of the Crater – Union forces attempt edto break Confederate lines at Petersburg, Virginia by exploding a large bomb under their trenches.

1866 New Orleans’s Democratic government ordered police to raid an integrated Republican Party meeting, killing 40 people and injuring 150.

1871  The Staten Island Ferry Westfield’s boiler exploded, killing over 85 people.

1893 Fatima Jinnah, Pakistani Mother of the Nation, was born (d. 1967).

1898 Henry Moore, English sculptor, was born (d. 1986).

1916  Black Tom Island explosion in Jersey City.

1925 Alexander Trocchi, Scottish writer, was born (d. 1984).

1926 Christine McGuire, American singer (The McGuire Sisters), was born.

1930  Uruguay won the first Football World Cup.

1932  Premiere of Walt Disney’s Flowers and Trees, the first cartoon short to use Technicolor and the first Academy Award winning cartoon short.

1935 Ted Rogers, English comedian and game show host, was born (d. 2001).

1940 Sir Clive Sinclair, English entrepreneur and inventor (pocket calculator, home computer), was born.

1941 Paul Anka, Canadian singer and composer, was born.

1945   Japanese submarine I-58 sank the USS Indianapolis, killing 883 seamen.

1947 Arnold Schwarzenegger, Austrian-born American actor and 38th Governor of California, was born.

1950 Frank Stallone, American singer and actor, was born.

1953  Rikidōzan held a ceremony announcing the establishment of theJapan Pro Wrestling Alliance.

1956  A joint resolution of the U.S. Congress was signed by PresidentDwight D. Eisenhower, authorizing In God We Trust as the U.S. national motto.

1958 Kate Bush, English singer/songwriter, was born.

1958 Daley Thompson, English decathlete, was born.

1965  US President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Social Security Act of 1965 into law, establishing Medicare and Medicaid.

1969 Vietnam War: US President Richard M. Nixon made an unscheduled visit to South Vietnam and met  President Nguyen Van Thieu and U.S. military commanders.

1971  Apollo 15 Mission – David Scott and James Irwin on Apollo Lunar Module module, Falcon, landed with first Lunar Rover on the moon.

1971  An All Nippon Airways Boeing 727 and a Japanese Air Force F-86collided over Morioka killing 162.

1974  Watergate Scandal: US President Richard M. Nixon released subpoenaed White House recordings after being ordered to do so by the United States Supreme Court.

1974  Six Royal Canadian Army Cadetswere  killed and fifty-four injured in an accidental grenade blast at CFB Valcartier Cadet Camp.

1975  Three members of the Miami Showband and two gunmen were killed during a botched paramilitary attack in Northern Ireland.

1978  The 730 (transport), Okinawa changed its traffic on the right-hand side of the road to the left-hand side.

1979 Carless days were introduced in New Zealand to combat the second oil shock.

Carless days introduced

1980 Vanuatu gained independence.

1980  Israel’s Knesset passed the Jerusalem Law

1997  Eighteen lives were lost in the Thredbo Landslide.

2003  In Mexico, the last ‘old style’ Volkswagen Beetle rolled off the assembly line.

2006 World’s longest running music show Top of the Pops was broadcast for the last time on BBC Two after 42 years.

2006 Lebanon War: At least 28 civilians, including 16 children were killed by the Israeli Air Force in what Lebanese call the Second Qana massacre.

2009 A bomb exploded in Palma Nova, Mallorca, killing 2 police officers. Basque separatist group ETA was believed to be responsible.

2012 – A power grid failure left seven states in northern India without power, affecting 360 million people.

2014 – One hundred and fifty people were trapped after a landslide in the village of Ambe in the Pune district in India’s Maharashtra state with 20 killed.

Sourced from Wikipedia and NZ History Online.


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