EruditIon – the quality of having or showing great knowledge or learning; scholarship; profound, recondite, or bookish learning.
Rob Hosking, one of New Zealand’s top journalists has died.
I knew Rob through his work long before I met him. His columns at the NBR were always written with erudition and wit.
His posts at his blog, The Hinterland were eclectic showing among other things his love for, and knowledge of, books and the outdoors.
We met only a few times and corresponded by email a few more.
Early last year he emailed, worrying about me after something I’d blogged.
In his response to my reply he mentioned he had cancer. When I saw his by-line in the NBR late last year I hoped that meant he had recovered.
Sadly it didn’t.
If I who knew him mostly through his writing am crying as I type, how much harder his loss will be felt by his family and circle of friends.
In one email he wrote of the ambition he and a friend had to climb all the mountains with gloomy names in New Zealand. I replied telling him Mount Misery is on our property and inviting him to climb it.
He wasn’t able to but every time I’m there I will remember him.
Hat tip: Kiwi blog
Small actions add up in reducing emissions – Ken Muir:
Farmers can undertake immediate practical steps to begin reducing emissions from their farms, DairyNZ climate change ambassador Dean Alexander says.
”It’s important to realise that there’s no great silver bullet and there are some basic things farmers can do now,”
Mr Alexander, who farms a herd of 1100 cows near Winton, said. He said it was important for farmers to develop an understanding of their systems.
”Once you have some idea of your emission status, you can begin to evaluate your options.” . .
Benefactors’hopesaredashed – Neal Wallace:
For 99 years graduates of Taratahi Agricultural Training Centre and, for 54 years, from Telford in south Otago have worked on and progressed to owning farms. But all of that potentially came to an end before Christmas when a liquidator was appointed to resolve financial problems with the business. Neal Wallace profiles Taratahi.
The Taratahi and Telford farm training campuses have similar genesis. The formation of the not-for-profit private vocational farm training educators was made possible through generous bequests of land and industry and community support.
In 1918 Sir William Perry gave his Wairarapa farm to the Government to provide a training ground for servicemen returning from World War I. . .
It’s green but maybe not for long – Neal Wallace:
It might be the middle of summer but most of the country is still under an open fire season though Fire and Emergency is warning abundant vegetation growth could very quickly become potential fire fuel.
Usually, by mid-January dry conditions mean most of the country has fire controls, Fire and Emergency rural operations manager John Rasmussen said.
This year half the country can still light fires in the open without a permit because regular rain has kept vegetation green.
But Rasmussen said those conditions can change very quickly as summer gets drier.
Export lamb prices come off peak but Outlook strong despite Brexit – Heather Chalmers:
Export lamb prices remain at historically high levels, despite uncertainty over Brexit which coincides with the key Easter lamb trade.
Alliance Group livestock and shareholder services general manager Heather Stacy said Brexit could impact on the amount stock held in Britain and exchange rates, depending on what was agreed.
“It could be disruptive. It will affect customers in the UK, rather than New Zealand.” . .
Cleaning up with goat milk – Yvonne O’Hara:
Malcolm Gawn and wife Tracy Tooley decided they did not like Auckland traffic or the long commutes, so they moved to Balclutha and now they make soap from goat milk.
Mr Gawn said when they met about 10 years ago he was a corporate sales manager in Auckland and Ms Tooley was an anaesthetic technician there.
‘‘It got to the point we did not want to tolerate traffic, traffic lights and road works,” Mr Gawn said.
”We moved to an 8ha block near Balclutha with about 30 Saanen dairy goats and with no traffic lights, no roundabouts and no queues.”
Rural jobs fund runs out – Basant Kumar Mohanty:
The rural job guarantee scheme has run out of funds for this financial year, with activists fearing the implementing agencies will now hesitate to take up new projects, thereby denying paid work to the people.
According to the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act website, the net balance is now Rs 1,719 crore in deficit. This means the rural development ministry has exhausted the entire funds of Rs 59,567 crore released towards the programme for the 2018-19 financial year.
The scheme guarantees paid, unskilled work for up to 100 days a year to every rural household.
Social activist Nikhil Dey said the scheme would be crippled for the two-and-a-half months left in this financial year, adding to the rural distress, unless more funds are released. . .
Oxfam claims inequality is increasing in New Zealand but it’s wrong
While Oxfam claims inequality is increasing and uses its latest report to push a political campaign, the official data shows the complete opposite, says the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union.
Taxpayers‘ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says, “Oxfam bases their conclusions from the Credit Suisse Global Wealth Databook 2018. That report shows wealth inequality in New Zealand measured by the Gini coefficient falling from 72.3 to 70.8. Instead of using a comprehensive statistic like the Gini coefficient, Oxfam abandon any of their residual credibility and instead choose to cherry-pick two wealthy New Zealanders and highlight their improved financial position. It is a dishonest political manipulation of public debate.”
“As is clear from this campaign, Oxfam is little more than a left-wing political campaign group. In the same way that Family First and the Sensible Sentencing Trust are not allowed charitable status, it is time the same rules were applied to Oxfam and it was deregistered as a charity.”
Charities which get political risk losing donors.
A few years ago my daughter gave me a midwife for Christmas. It was an Oxfam programme that paid for midwives in a developing country.
The charity got my email and began asking for funds. I liked the idea of practical help and donated.
Then I saw a media release similar to this one that I knew was based on misinformation and stopped my donations.
Political advocacy plays an important role but charities which get into it risk confusing people about their priorities and losing support for their charitable work.
There is only one true thing: instantly paint what you see. When you’ve got it, you’ve got it. When you haven’t, you begin again. All the rest is humbug. – Edouard Manet who was born on this day in 1832.
971 – In China, the war elephant corps of the Southern Han were soundly defeated at Shao by crossbow fire from Song Dynasty troops. The Southern Han state was forced to submit to the Song Dynasty, ending not only Southern Han rule, but also the first regular war elephant corps employed in a Chinese army that had gained the Southern Han victories throughout the 10th century.
1556 The deadliest earthquake in history, the Shaanxi earthquake, hit Shaanxi province, China. The death toll may have been as high as 830,000.
1570 The assassination of regent James Stewart, 1st Earl of Moraythrew Scotland into civil war.
1571 The Royal Exchange opened in London.
1579 The Union of Utrecht formed a Protestant republic in the Netherlands.
1719 The Principality of Liechtenstein was created within the Holy Roman Empire.
1789 Georgetown College, the first Roman Catholic college in the United States, was founded.
1793 Second Partition of Poland: Russia and Prussia partitioned Poland for the second time.
1813 Camilla Collett, Norwegian writer and feminist, was born (d. 1895).
1832 Edouard Manet, French artist, was born (d. 1883).
1849 Elizabeth Blackwell the USA’s first female doctor, was awarded her M.D. by the Medical Institute of Geneva, New York.
1855 John Moses Browning, American inventor, was born (d. 1926).
1855 A magnitude 8.2 earthquake hit the Wellington region.
1855 The first bridge over the Mississippi River opened.
1870 U.S. cavalrymen killed 173 Native Americans, mostly women and children, in the Marias Massacre.
1897 Sir William Samuel Stephenson, Canadian soldier, W.W.II codename, Intrepid. Inspiration for James Bond., was born (d. 1989).
1897 Elva Zona Heaster was found dead.The resulting murder trial of her husband is perhaps the only case in United States history where the alleged testimony of a ghost helped secure a conviction.
1899 Emilio Aguinaldo was sworn in as President of the First Philippine Republic.
1904 Ålesund Fire: the Norwegian coastal town Ålesund was devastated by fire, leaving 10,000 people homeless and one person dead.
1907 Charles Curtis of Kansas became the first Native American U.S. Senator.
1912 The International Opium Convention was signed at The Hague.
1920 The Netherlands refused to surrender ex-Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany to the Allies.
1948 Anita Pointer, American singer (Pointer Sisters), was born.
1951 Yachts left Wellington bound for Lyttelton in an ocean yacht race to celebrate Canterbury’s centenary. Only one, Tawhiri, officially finished the race. Two other yachts, Husky and Argo, were lost along with their 10 crew members.
1951 – Chesley Sullenberger, Captain of US Airways Flight 1549, a flight that successfully ditched into the Hudson River, was born.
1957 Princess Caroline of Monaco, was born.
1958 Overthrow in Venezuela of Marcos Pérez Jiménez
1960 The bathyscaphe USS Trieste broke a depth record by descending to 10,911 m (35,798 feet) in the Pacific Ocean.
1973 A volcanic eruption devastated Heimaey in the Vestmannaeyjar chain of islands off the south coast of Iceland.
1997 Madeleine Albright became the first woman to serve as United States Secretary of State.
2001 – Five people attempted to set themselves on fire in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.
2002 – U.S. journalist Daniel Pearl was kidnapped in Karachi, Pakistan and subsequently murdered.
2003 Final communication between Earth and Pioneer 10
2010 – Protests took place in 60 Canadian cities against the prorogation of the 40th Canadian Parliament.
2012 – A group of Gaddafi loyalists took control of part of the town of Bani Walid and flew the green flag after a battle with NTC forces left 5 dead and 20 injured.
2014 – A fire broke out in a L’Isle Verte, Quebec elderly home, killing 28 people.
2018 – A double car bombing in Benghazi, Libya, killed at least 33 people and wounds “dozens” of others.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.