Bummock – a large quantity of drink, purposely prepared for a festival or special occasion; a Christmas party given by landlords to their tenants.
Westland Milk loan heightens PGF slush fund suspicions – Jenny Ruth:
(BusinessDesk) – Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones’s $3 billion Provincial Growth Fund has the laudable aim of enhancing development opportunities in the regions.
But National’s Paul Goldsmith’s dogged unanswered questioning inevitably raises the spectre that the fund may be little more than Jones’s slush fund.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, which administers the fund, describes the fund’s aims as “to lift productivity in the provinces. . .
South Canterbury farm extensively damaged by vandals – Mark Quinlivan:
A South Canterbury couple has been left devastated after vandals caused “extensive” damage at the dairy farm they sharemilk on at Glenavy.
Tracy Thompson and her partner, Brent McEwan, were shocked to find thousands of dollars worth of vandalism and graffiti in one the Pike Point Rd farm’s dairy sheds on Friday morning.
“It’s just devastating,” an emotional Thompson told Stuff on Friday. . .
Rural Health Alliance revitalised – Mike Houlahan:
Reports of the Rural Health Alliance Aotearoa New Zealand’s demise have proved premature and the advocacy organisation has restructured and refocused on its work to improve the wellbeing of people who live outside the major cities. RHAANZ put itself in self-described “hibernation” in mid-year after it failed to secure financial support from the government. A registered charity, RHAANZ had done considerable work on rural mental health and suicide prevention, as well as and supporting the recruitment and retention of rural health professionals.
Farmers and business owners in Otago are still picking up the pieces after November’s floods.
Widespread flooding in the region inundated farmland near the Taieri and Waipori Rivers, and caused issues for Middlemarch, Henley and communities in the Clutha district.
The downpours came during the one of the wettest Novembers on record.
The effects are still being felt particularly hard by the Tap and Dough Bistro in Middlemarch which had sewage knee deep flow through the restaurant during the deluge. . .
Bee farmer seeks compo over bees ‘cooked’ while being couriered – Jonathan Mitchell:
A bee farmer is demanding compensation from New Zealand Post after queen bees were “cooked” while being couriered.
Gary Milne runs Southern Sun Queen Bees in Horowhenua and has been breeding the bees for more than two decades.
He said a recent courier trip turned into a nightmare after 27 of the 100 queen bees were dead on arrival. . .
Since the industrial revolution, businesses have been built on a linear ‘take-make-waste’ model. But as pressure on resources grows, there is a need to shift to a more ‘circular’ economy.
The circular model seeks to maximise the lifecycle of materials, optimise usage, and re-use materials.
NZAgbiz is a Hamilton-based company whose business model has been circular since its inception in 2008. A Fonterra business unit, NZAgbiz manufactures livestock nutrition products using primarily Fonterra ingredients and has recently won a commendation at the prestigious 2018 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards for its work. . .
That’s creative thinking – if I had known that I probably would have joined them. – Inspector John Kelly on the New Year revellers who built a large sandcastle in the middle of the Tairua estuary in an attempt to avoid the liquor ban.
Among western leftists, morality had become culture-specific. If imperialism’s victims asked for support, then they would be given it, unquestioningly. If not, then they would tend to their own political gardens exclusively.
The problem for western feminists is that, in spite of these cultural and political self-denying ordinances, the only garden currently showing unequivocal signs of flourishing, is their own. Across vast regions of the planet, not only are women’s rights not flourishing, they are being diminished. – Chris Trotter
Any family, in any part of the country, dealing with any one of those challenges, would find it difficult. But when you have all of those at once, it is incredibly difficult to see how a family could navigate their way through all of that on their own.
And you sure as heck, can’t have an official sitting in Wellington waving a magic wand, and fixing it for them. – Louise Upston
If I look at my colleagues, they get up and go to work every day because they care so much. . .Why would we do that if we didn’t care? Why would we do that if we didn’t care about individuals and actually want something better for their lives? – Louise Upston
Men who have been inculcated into a culture of toxic masculinity need to regularly top up their King Dick Metre, which can only be fuelled by the disempowerment of someone else. And that someone else is very often a woman.
Their feelings of strength only come when someone else is in a position of weakness. They can only feel valid when they are able to invalidate someone else. They only feel like they have won when someone else has lost. – Kasey Edwards
Could you imagine a return to a world where the only people that gave dairy farmers grief were sheep farmers and bank managers?
Could you imagine the next time Fonterra was in the news, it was for a collaboration with Lynx in producing a deodorant that smelled of silage and cowshit, that dairy farmers could put on if they used too much soap in the shower?
Maybe we can hope that our on-farm processes continue to develop, along with scientific developments, adoption of best practices and consumer preferences, as opposed to at the whim of vote-hungry politicians, misinformed urban housewives and the combined armies of anaemic vegans, animal rights activists, goblins and orcs.
Maybe we could hope that we can reverse the trend that has seen rural folk and farmers become an ethnic minority in this country – a minority that is now seen by many New Zealanders as dirty, destructive and somehow freeloading on resources, with less credibility then prostitution. . . – Pete Fitzherbert
We welcome the government’s focus on tracking the number of children in persistent poverty and hardship. However, setting multiple arbitrary targets for reducing child hardship is easier than actually helping people extricate themselves from their predicaments. – Dr Oliver Hartwich
Good intentions are not enough. They’re not even a start, because there’s been a lot of money wasted and lives wrecked on the basis of good intentions expressed through public services. – Bill English
. . . the only reason we have a 37-year-old female Prime Minister is because a septuagenarian put her there. – Fran O’Sullivan
Peters’ inability to contain his bitterness suggests the coalition negotiations were a charade. His resentment towards National is deep-rooted, and since the election, the feeling is reciprocated. It is unlikely that National’s change of leader will diminish Peters’ toxicity. – The Listener
It strikes me as rather unfair that while we’ve been up in arms over where the country’s burgeoning cow population does its business, our burgeoning human population has been fouling up the waterways with what comes out of our own backsides. We can’t berate dairy farmers for dirtying the rivers if we’re content for our biggest city to keep using its waterways as one giant long drop. – Nadine Higgins
Over-reacting about everything someone says or does, creating controversy over silly innocuous things such as what I choose to wear or not wear, is not moving us forward. It’s creating silly distractions from real issues. – Jennifer Lawrence
The incident has also highlighted the danger of a government full of academics, health professionals, public servants, teachers and career politicians picking business winners.
The idea that councils around the country would rail or truck their rubbish to Westport for incineration is one of those ludicrous ideas that only regional development officials would think is a flyer. – Martin van Beynen
Getting policy right matters. In the end, lots of money and good intentions is never enough. You’ve got to get the policy right. – Nicola Willis
So consumed are they with the grassy vistas opening up in front of them that they are oblivious to their drawing ever closer to journey’s end, namely the holding yards of the local freezing works. – John Armstrong
Businesses, by and large, are better at coping with bad news than they are at coping with uncertainty. You cannot plan for it or adapt to it. Hamish Rutherford
Feminism is about choice, the right to have one, the right to be equal. It is not about trampling men to death in the process. It is not about spending so much time telling girls that “they can do anything” that they become curious and confused as to why you keep telling them something they already knew.
Guess what? The girls we’re raising haven’t had it occur to them they can’t do anything. – Kate Hawkesby
I’m not sure what affordable means but I am sure I’m not alone in that. It’s bound to be a complicated formula with one of the variables being the price of avocados. I just hope it doesn’t add up to borrowing from KiwiBank to buy from KiwiBuild during the KiwiBubble resulting in KiwiBust. – James Elliott
If we believe that correcting harmful inequities lies in asserting an inherent malice and/or obsolescence in all people with a specific combination of age, gender and ethnicity then we have already lost the fight. The real enemy is the unchecked and uncontested power exercised through institutions, social norms and structures which privilege one group over another. – Emma Espiner
A tagged tax has to be a tagged tax, otherwise it’s a rort. – Mike Hosking
While the Greens are dreaming of compost, wheelbarrows, chook poo and quinoa, the rest of us wouldn’t mind getting on with business. And that means we need water. – Mike Hosking
Certainly a rational person, and especially one convinced of the threat of global warming and the possibility of more droughts, would increase, not stop investment in irrigation?
That is not to argue that water quality and nitrate leaching are not problems – they are. But to stop irrigation as a solution is to throw the baby out with the bathwater. The rational approach is to find ways of reducing nitrate leaching even under high-producing irrigated pastures. This requires more science, more evidence, more rational thinking. – Dr Doug Edmeades
Businesses — it doesn’t matter what they are — require reliable steady staff; not rocket scientists but reliable steady staff. Unless we have those types of people available our whole economy has an issue. – Andre de Bruin
There’s power in love. There’s power in love to help and heal when nothing else can. There’s power in love to lift up and liberate when nothing else will. There’s power in love to show us the way to live. – Michael Bruce Curry
The well-being of all communities can be enhanced by enabling greater levels of social solidarity, empowering people in their personal and community lives, enhancing social infrastructure and establishing opportunities for dignified work and alternative livelihoods. – Tracey McIntosh
Tough on crime is popular with the insular and ignorant when it comes to justice policy, while restorative approaches with enduring outcomes that help people stay away from jail because they offend less are not popular, not sexy and seen as “soft on crime”. – Chester Borrows
Everyone can do something amazing once. You’ve got to back it up and do it again – Rowland Smith
The money spent on eliminating risk in one area means less available to fix problems in other areas. In other words, the consequence of lowering risk in one sphere can hinder minimising risk in another one. Chew carefully on that one. – Martin van Beynen
That’s what the call for diversity means. An endless slicing and dicing of society into every thinner minority groups with everyone scrambling for quotas and box ticking.
It’s a bureaucratic nightmare. It’s also a complete denial of individuality. You are not important. All that matters is what boxes you tick. It’s the boxes that define you, not what you do, what you think or what you produce. – Rodney Hide
We went to do a story about an American billionaire buying up wineries in Wairarapa. Local wine makers were going broke and in stepped the American billionaire. I went down with a TV crew expecting locals to be up in arms about the ‘foreigner’ buying up the land. But I couldn’t find one voice raised against him.
There is one thing worse than a foreign buyer, they told me, and that’s not having a buyer at all. – Guyon Espiner
It feels like a Dear Winston moment really – Mike Jaspers
We grow up thinking the world is fair, but it’s not, so you’re not always going to get the results you’re looking for. The challenge is to pick yourself up again when you have those days. – Joe Schmidt
I believe rugby is similar to society, where it is about interdependence and us trying to help each other. Imagine if everyone in life became the best version of themselves and made life easier for those either side of them. – Joe Schmidt
The very premise of our system is we learn from our mistakes and wrongs and are given freedom to make amends. – Mike Hosking
Grown-ups know that being short $60 a week is not what ails and troubles our most vulnerable children. Proper parenting can’t be bought for $60 a week. – Rodney Hide.
So stop beating yourself up for buying too many books or for having a to-read list that you could never get through in three lifetimes. All those books you haven’t read are indeed a sign of your ignorance. But if you know how ignorant you are, you’re way ahead of the vast majority of other people. – Jessica Stillman
Feminism has descended into a cauldron of cattiness; of nasty factionalism. It doesn’t empower. It scrutinises and judges groups within groups. Like extreme left or right politics, the creed is hardest on those most like it – those who should know better but fail. – Lindsay Mitchell
Regional development is about more than funding a few projects; it’s about allowing people to make a living. – Paul Goldsmith
This image of Anglo-Saxon culture isn’t grounded in the up-to-date distinct cultural traditions or practices of the United Kingdom. It is a cover of a misremembered song, played by a drunk who forgot the words mid-song and so started humming. – Haimona Gray
Imagine the world today if William Wilberforce and Kate Sheppard had refused to engage with people whose views they found repugnant. If Martin Luther and Martin Luther King Jr had decided not to argue back. If Desmond Tutu and Te Whiti had seen no point in suffering the slings and arrows of their opponents because, hey, nothing’s gonna change.
The twist in this debate is that the Molyneuxs, Southerns and other so-called champions of free speech only win when their shouting drowns out other voices. Voices of conciliation and peace. Because regardless of the polarisation we see today, people can change. We can learn. And, even if we still disagree on some profound issues, we can find other things to agree on and other things to respect in each other. Tim Watkin
The day that this country’s dictated to by the social media trolls is the day that democracy dies. If we are to be spooked into compliance by what an anonymous moron threatens by the swipe of a cellphone screen then we’re little better than they are. – Barry Soper
It is unfortunate, but the world seems to have lost the ability to disagree well. Civility in our discussions and debates over contentious issues seems to have been lost. We are increasingly polarised in our views with recourse to extreme positions in order to ‘prove’ or force our point. However, the answer is not to avoid difficult and, at times, confronting conversations. Rather, community leaders, and universities in particular, play a vital role in leading our communities in those discussions, as difficult as they may be, applying the principles of informed discussion, compromise, enlightenment of the points of view of others, and if all else fails, respectful disagreement. – Chris Gallavin
But where is that line that we need to find as a Parliament between being culturally sensitive to people that may not see things in the way in which New Zealand’s own cultures have developed, and, on the other hand, being firm enough that, actually, no, these things, regardless of culture, are not right. Nick Smith
We have an education system that does not reward excellence and does not punish failure. Decades of bureaucratic hand-wringing has delivered a broken system that relies on the personal integrity and good intentions of those who choose teaching as a profession. – Damien Grant
After all, as long as we can discern the truth clearly, love it passionately, and defend it vigorously, we have nothing to fear from open debate; and if we can’t do those things, then why are we claiming to be a university at all? – Dr Jonathan Tracy
The answer to suffering, physical or mental, is affection and good care. This should come first and as far as possible from family and community, supported by institutions.
“Finishing people off” may suit our current individualistic, utilitarian, impatient culture, but it will degrade us all in the end. – Carolyn Moynihan
In a liberal, democratic society, there will always be speech in the public domain that some people find offensive, distasteful or unsavoury. Unless that speech is manifestly doing harm to others, there is no case to ban it, only a case for arguing strongly against it or ridiculing it. Recourse to suppression is redolent of authoritarianism, not democracy. – Chris Bishop
The irony is that although the elimination of subsidies started out as a kind of political punishment, it wound up becoming a long-term blessing for farmers. We went through a difficult period of adjustment but emerged from it stronger than ever. . .
We became ruthlessly efficient, which is another way of saying that we became really good at what we do.
We also improved our ability to resist regulations that hurt agriculture. Subsidies empower politicians, who can threaten to cut off aid if farmers refuse to accept new forms of control. Without subsidies, we have more freedom to solve problems through creativity and innovation rather than the command-and-control impulses of government. – Craige Mackenzie
But as someone who’s spent a bit of time writing and talking about the important, and not so important, issues in life, there is one thing I know which will never change.
Truth always wins. If you report the facts you can never go wrong. – Peter Williams
We can’t prosper by taking in our own washing so, strutting it on the global stage has to be our modus operandi.And I mean strutting, not just selling low value stuff that rises or falls on the rise or fall of the NZ dollar. Strutting starts with the daring of the ambition and is sustained by the ability to execute. Ruth Richardson
The frightening retreat from sane economics. Free trade is the path to growth, protectionism is the path to decline. Ruth Richardson
This is an accidental government formed on the fly and governing on the fly.– Ruth Richardson
Death of great science on the alter of doctrinal and PC positions doesn’t strike me as the smartest choice. – Ruth Richardson
I’m satisfied within myself. I’ve got more to do with my life than look at that. Barbara Brinsley
Each of us has made different life choices and, actually, that gives women everywhere role models.
It’s legitimate to choose. We don’t have to be the same, we don’t have to judge each other, we make our own choices. – Dame Jenny Shipley
Every student who walks out of the gate to truant is already a statistic of the worst kind, highly likely to go to prison, highly likely to commit domestic violence or be a victim of domestic violence, be illiterate, be a rape victim, be a suicide victim, be unemployed for the majority of their life, have a major health problem or problems, die at an early age, have an addiction – drugs, gambling, alcohol or smoking. – Virginia Crawford
I am Māori. Tuhinga o mua Ngāti Hāmua a Te Hika a Pāpāuma. Ko taku iwi Ngāti Kahungunua a Rangitāne. I am Scottish, I am English, I am a New Zealander. I am not defined by the colour of my skin. I am a victim. I did not choose to be a victim. – Maanki
If we want to see fewer Māori in prison, our whānau broken apart because dad is in prison and mum is now in rangi (heaven), we must free ourselves and our whānau from the increasing level of domestic violence and abuse in our homes. The drugs must stop, the high level of drinking and violence among our own must be gone.
How many of our fathers are incarcerated, because their fathers taught them the only way to deal with anger was violence, to punch their way through a situation. How many of our whānau have lost a mother, a child, a brother from our people’s own hand. – Maanki
The blame needs to stop. It is not the police, the system, the state, the Government, the justice system or even the Pākehā who made a man beat his wife to death, to rape an innocent stranger, to murder their own child or to sexually abuse a daughter or son.
No, it was a choice, a choice made by a perpetrator. – Maanki
The Senate, collectively, could not find their own arses with a sextant and a well-thumbed copy of Gray’s Anatomy – Jack the Insider
Over the years I have come to the conclusion that God’s table is a smorgasbord of theological truths with some in conflict with others and some more important that others. People are free to pick and choose from that smorgasbord and do so based on what is important to them. – The Veteran
But I can’t remember not having books. I’d go to the library every week, search every shelf with children’s books, then go home with a stack. . . Every choice was my choice. Then I could control what went into my head by plugging into new worlds, learning new things and just imagining a different life. . .
When we only look to reinforce our taste and beliefs we lose the opportunity to browse and the opportunity for serendipity, and that’s unfortunate. – Maud Cahill
It was sort of total irritability associated with feeling hungry that would manifest as grumpiness. This void in my stomach would create a void in my sense of humour and my ability to tolerate things. – Simon Morton
This is a partnership designed by a drover’s dog and a clinical psychologist who have absolutely nothing in common except they both have experience dealing with rogue steers who don’t believe in being team players. – Clive Bibby
I live down in the South Island, and there’s been a lot of farmers trying to curtsey. Most of the time they’re in gumboots. – Dame Lynda Topp
In the west food is produced by a few to feed the many and when people are relieved of the duties of working on farms and subsistence farming the job is handed to a few and people move to the cities and that is when they become disconnected. – Anna Jones
Class is a commodity that doesn’t seem to be in conspicuous supply in politics at the moment. – Chris Finlayson
New Zealand’s real problems are not identity politics, no matter what the left may think. They are that the welfare state has failed. Too many kids don’t get educated. Too many working aged adults are on welfare. Too many are in jail because there is too much crime and they’re never rehabilitated. Housing has gone from a commodity to a ponzi scheme. Our productivity growth is anaemic. With government’s and councils’ approach to regulation, it’s amazing anyone still does anything. – Andrew Ketels
I certainly don’t celebrate diversity for its own sake. You have to distinguish pluralism from relativism. Relativism tends towards ‘anything goes’ and that can’t be right
Pluralism is the view that although some ways of living really are wrong, the list of possible good ways to live a flourishing human life and have a good society contains more than one item. – Julian Baggini
We didn’t need a tax on stones, there wasn’t a concern about ‘peak stone’ and we didn’t need to stage protests in front of the chieftains’ caves to argue for the use of bronze. It came down to developing the new technology, which had benefits over the old technology, and disseminating the knowledge. – Andrew Hoggard
I am the culmination of generous moment after generous moment, kind moment after kind moment and that is the glue that holds this country together. – Kurt Fearnley
It is a privilege for any mother to be able to propose a toast to her son on his 70th birthday. It means that you have lived long enough to see your child grow up. It is rather like – to use an analogy I am certain will find favour – planting a tree and being able to watch it grow. – Queen Elizabeth II
When I noticed that I was spending far more time scrolling through my email and Twitter than I was playing on the floor with my son, I realized that the problem wasn’t with screens warping his fragile mind. It was that I’d already allowed my phone to warp mine. So these days, my husband and I try not to use our phones at all in front of our son. Not because I think the devil lives in my iPhone, but because I think, to some extent, a small part of the devil lives in me. – EJ Dickson
The proper purpose of journalism remains as Kovach and Rosenstiel defined it – not to lead society toward the outcome that journalists think is correct, but to give ordinary people the means to make their own decisions about what’s in their best interests. – Karl du Fresne
I’m bloody angry at New Zealand for fighting over Santa and I want us to stop. This is not what Santa’s about. Santa is not about angst and Santa is not about Santa hate.
Santa is about hope, Santa is about dreams. Santa can come down the chimney even when you don’t have a chimney. Santa can come in the ranch slider, Santa can drink craft beer. Santa can drink strawberry-flavoured Lindauer for all I care. – Patrick Gower
The expectation that we rustics just need to lean on the gate chewing a straw and making obscure pronouncements about the weather in impenetrable accents for picturesque effect is entertaining until it dawns on you that your role apparently really is just to provide background local colour and not disturb the peace too much. Rural places are workplaces — stuff happens down on the farm and that stuff can be noisy. And not just on the farm — gravel quarries, jet-boat companies and the construction sites of all those new houses that didn’t used to be there. – Kate Scott
Rose-tinted nostalgia strikes us all from time to time, but when it comes with a side of imported urban world view where non-working weekends and the notion of property values is accorded more worth than building community resilience, I begin to feel resentful of the twittering worries of suburbia intruding on my bucolic peace with its soothing soundtrack of barking huntaways, topdressing planes and chainsaws –Kate Scott
I had a gentleman come to my office three years ago. He was a Labour candidate. He ran for the Labour Party. He was coming to see me because he’d been to see his own team—they wouldn’t help him with an issue, so he came to me. Did I say, “Oh, sorry, you’ve been a Labour candidate. I’m not going to assist you. I’m not going to help you.”? No, I didn’t. I actually helped him with his issue, because that’s my job as a member of Parliament. I don’t care whether you support New Zealand First, I don’t care whether you’re a supporter or member of the Labour Party, the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand, or the National Party—if you come and ask for help and support, you will get it. That’s my job.- Mark Mitchell
The only positive outcome from the UN’s 2009 Copenhagen fiasco was the launch of New Zealand’s Global Research Alliance (GRA) to reduce methane and nitrous-oxide emissions, which account for 22 per cent of the world’s GHG total. More than 50 countries are now involved. If the GRA develops science to cut agricultural emissions by two-thirds it would be the equivalent of the US becoming a zero emitter. If it eliminated them, it would be like China going carbon zero. This would benefit the world at least 100 times more than New Zealand becoming net-zero domestically. – Matthew Hooton
No one bets on a horse with a dud jockey. – Simon Bridges
Ms Ardern promised to lead the most open and transparent Government New Zealand has seen. That doesn’t mean picking and choosing to be open and transparent when it benefits her. – Tova O’Brien
Shaw and his comrades have a vision of a different economic model, one that sane people have tunnelled under barbed wire fences to escape. Alas, the sacrifice required to achieve this gender-fluid post-colonial paradise requires a reversal of most of the economic gains of the last 50 years. – Damien Grant
The less you trust people, the more distrustful they become and so the more law you need in order to trust them. A good society would not have too much law, because people would do the right thing he says. But in New Zealand we have a lot of law. – Professor Mark Henaghan
I don’t believe in magic. I believe in hard work. – Richie McCaw who celebrates his 38th birthday today.
1229 James I of Aragon the Conqueror entered Medina Mayurqa (now known as Palma) consummating the Christian conquest of the island of Majorca.
1491 – Jacques Cartier, French explorer, was born (d. 1557)
1599 The British East India Company was chartered.
1687– The first Huguenots set sail from France to the Cape of Good Hope.
1695 A window tax was imposed in England, causing many shopkeepers to brick up their windows to avoid the tax.
1720 Charles Edward Stuart, pretender to the British throne, was born (d. 1788).
1759 Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease at £45 per annum and started brewing Guinness.
1853 Sir George Grey left New Zealand after finishing his first term as Governor.
1857 Queen Victoria chose Ottawa, as the capital of Canada.
1869 Henri Matisse, French painter, was born (d. 1954).
1878 Elizabeth Arden, Canadian businesswoman, was born (d. 1966).
1879 Thomas Edison demonstrated incandescent lighting to the public for the first time.
1904 The first New Year’s Eve celebration was held in Times Square(then known as Longacre Square) in New York.
1908 Simon Wiesenthal, Austrian Holocaust survivor, was born (d. 2005).
1909 Manhattan Bridge opened.
1937 Sir Anthony Hopkins, Welsh actor, was born.
1941 – Sir Alex Ferguson, Scottish football manager, was born.
1943 John Denver, American singer and songwriter, was born (d. 1997).
1943 Sir Ben Kingsley, English actor was born.
1946 President Harry Truman officially proclaimed the end of hostilities in World War II.
1951 The Marshall Plan expired after distributing more than $13.3 billion USD in foreign aid to rebuild Europe.
1955 The General Motors Corporation became the first U.S. corporation to make over $1 billion USD in a year.
1960 The farthing coin ceased to be legal tender in the United Kingdom.
1965 Nicholas Sparks, American author, was born.
1980 – Richie McCaw, All Black captain, was born.
1991 All official Soviet Union institutions ceased operations by this date and the Soviet Union was officially dissolved.
1996 – On New Year’s Eve around 4000 people made their way to the remote location of Canaan Downs, Tākaka, to take part in the first Gathering, a two-day festival for electronic dance music fans.
1999 – The United States Government handed control of the Panama Canal (as well all the adjacent land to the canal known as the Panama Canal Zone) to Panama. This act complied with the signing of the 1977 Torrijos-Carter Treaties.
2004 The official opening of Taipei 101, the tallest skyscraper at that time in the world, standing at a height of 509 metres (1,670 ft).
2007 – Bocaue Fire: Seven people were injured when a fire resulted in the explosion of several fireworks stores in Bocaue, Bulacan, Philippines.
2011 – NASA succeeded in putting the first of two Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory satellites in orbit around the moon.
2014 – A New Year’s Eve celebration stampede in Shanghai killed at least 36 people and injures 49 others.
2015 – A fire broke out at the Downtown Address Hotel in Downtown Dubai, United Arab Emirates located near the Burj Khalifa 2 hours before the fireworks display was due to commence. 16 injuries were reported.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.