Word of the day

April 12, 2019

Fluence – mysterious, magical, or hypnotic power; the number of particles (such as photons or neutrons) incident on a sphere divided by the cross-sectional area of the sphere; the total number of particles per unit area with which a material is irradiated.


Maya muses

April 12, 2019


Rural round-up

April 12, 2019

Job offers roll in for Trainee of the Year – Yvonne O’Hara:

When Caycee Cormack left school she had intended to study physical education at Otago University, as she played a lot of sport.

At that stage she had not even considered working in the dairy industry as a career option.

Now she is the Southland/Otago Dairy Trainee of the Year and has a dozen job offers to consider.

This was the second time Ms Cormack had entered the competition – she placed third last year.

The win was even more remarkable because when she went through the final judging, she had only been out of hospital for two days after having her appendix removed.

Ms Cormack said she enjoyed the challenge of the competition. . . 

Landcorp will stick to its guns – Neal Wallace:

There are few roles in agriculture that have eluded Warren Parker’s career – except full-time farming, though he does live on a lifestyle block near Rotorua. Neal Wallace spoke to the new Landcorp chairman.

Now, more than ever, New Zealand agriculture needs a trailblazer, an entity with size and scope to test new systems and ventures,  new Landcorp chairman Warren Parker says.

He is happy for the state-owned enterprise, also known as Pamu, to be that entity given the breadth of challenges, from integrated farming systems to water and nutrient management and reducing its environmental footprint, farming faces. . . 

On a mission to lasso youth – Yvonne O’Hara:

Brooke Flett is keen to encourage young people to get involved in the agriculture sector.

After all, her passion for stock and for dairying led her to her career and to winning the 2018 Southern District Harcourts Royal Agricultural Society (RAS) Rural Ambassador Award.

She also won last year’s Young Farmers national stock-judging competition and the 2017 RAS Young Judge of the Year – Dairy.

Ms Flett attended the Royal Agricultural Society’s 2019 junior judging competition at Waikaka two weeks ago, which fitted in with her desire to encourage more young people to learn about stock management, enter shows and view agriculture as a career. . . 

Chipping in on the West Coast:

Our Emergency Response Team is lending a hand to get farms back up and running in the aftermath of recent storm.

You’ll find them following floods, in the sweep of storms and helping after hurricanes.

When natural disaster strikes members of Fonterra’s Emergency Response Team (ERT) can be quick to the scene to help farmers and New Zealand communties deal with often overwhelming recovery situations, such as the 2017 Edgecumbe flood

Right now a group of our ERT is working on the West Coast to help other kiwi farmers fix the storm damage and get farms functioning following the recent bout of bad weather.

National ERT Response Director Kevin Lockley says their current focus is fixing ruined fences and the crew of five working at Hokitika were selected because they have the best skills for the job. . . 

WHO pulls support from initiative promoting global move to plant based foods:

The World Health Organization pulled out of sponsoring a global initiative promoting healthier and sustainable diets across the world after pressure from an Italian official who raised concerns about the impact of the diet on people’s health and livelihoods.

The event—the launch of the EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, Health in Geneva, Switzerland on 28 March—still went ahead, sponsored by the government of Norway.

WHO dropped its planned sponsorship after Gian Lorenzo Cornado, Italy’s ambassador and permanent representative of Italy to the international organizations in Geneva, questioned the scientific basis for the diet which is focused on promoting predominantly plant based foods, and excluding foods deemed unhealthy, including meat and other animal based foods. . . 

Welfare the nub of mobile processing – Alastair Dowie:

Animal welfare and reduced stress is the core belief behind the development of a new mobile livestock processing system by Victorian-based company Provenir.

Provenir chief executive and co-founder Chris Balazs said the system introduced a unique, on-farm processing solution that provided the highest animal welfare by eliminating the need for live animal transport prior to processing.

Mr Balazs, a farmer, said the mobile processing unit (MPU) system was created to improve animal welfare and advance sustainable farming practices. . . 

 


Prudence or panic?

April 12, 2019

Anzac Day services have been cancelled in Auckland and the Queenstown parade has been cancelled though other events in the south will go ahead.

The RSA in Christchurch is determined that services will continue as normal.

The cancellations have come on police advice although there don’t appear to be any specific threats.

The attack on the Christchurch mosques showed us that New Zealand is no more safe from terror attacks than anywhere else, but are the decisions to cancel some Anzac Day services and a parade prudence or panic?

I was in London in 1982 when IRA bombs in Hyde and Regents Park  killed eight people and injured many more.

Life went on as normal afterwards just as it had after all the other IRA bombing campaigns.

If there are known threats in the wake of the March 15 atrocities we should be told, if there are not we ought to carry on as we would normally do.

. . . If the only reason the police are still carrying highly visible firearms at public events, and curtailing Anzac Day observances, is to provide “reassurance” for the community, it might be time for them to think again. Terrorism succeeds when a community is afraid to go about its normal life. There is no sign of that sort of fear among the general public and no reason there would be. One man stands accused of the murders in Christchurch and police are confident he acted alone. . . .

Life will never be the same for those directly affected by the mosque attacks.

It will never be quite the same for the rest of us either but if there are no known threats, the terrorist wins if we live in fear.


Quote of the day

April 12, 2019

What I find interesting is how close you can run the laughter along the seam of seriousness, and occasionally cross it, so that half the house genuinely doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Custard pie humour is fairly universal, but at the other end, which I’m more interested in, there’s the humour that hovers on the darkness, that walks in the shadow of something else, not always that obvious. – Alan Ayckbourn who celebrates his 80th birthday today.


April 12 in history

April 12, 2019

467  Anthemius was elevated to Emperor of the Western Roman Empire.

1204 Constantinople fell to the Crusaders of the Fourth Crusade, temporarily ending the Byzantine Empire.

1432 – Anne of Austria, Landgravine of Thuringia was born, (d. 1462).

1557 Cuenca was founded in Ecuador.

1606  The Union Flag was adopted as the flag of Great Britain.

1633 The formal inquest of Galileo Galilei by the Inquisition began.

1776 American Revolution: With the Halifax Resolves, the North Carolina Provincial Congress authorised its Congressional delegation to vote for independence from Britain.

1799 – Henri Druey, Swiss lawyer and politician, 2nd President of the Swiss Confederation, was born (d. 1855).

1820 Alexander Ypsilantis was declared leader of Filiki Eteria, a secret organization to overthrow Ottoman rule over Greece.

1861 American Civil War The war began with Confederate forces firing on Fort Sumter, in the harbour of Charleston, South Carolina.

1864  American Civil War: The Fort Pillow massacre: Confederate forces killed most African American soldiers who surrendered at Fort Pillow, Tennessee.

1877  The United Kingdom annexed the Transvaal.

1883 – Imogen Cunningham, American photographer and educator, was born (d. 1976).

1902 – A train accident in South Africa killed 16 NZ soldiers.

1902 – Louis Beel, Dutch academic and politician, 36th Prime Minister of the Netherlands, was born (d. 1977).

1903 – Jan Tinbergen, Dutch economist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate, was born (d. 1994)

1908 – Ida Pollock, English author and painter, was born (d. 2013).

1913 HMS New Zealand began a tour of New Zealand.

HMS New Zealand begins tour of NZ

1916 – Russell Garcia, American-New Zealand composer and conductor, was born (d. 2011).

1917 World War I: Canadian forces successfully complete the taking of Vimy Ridge from the Germans.

1919 Billy Vaughn, American musician and bandleader, was born  (d. 1991).

1924 – Raymond Barre, French economist and politician, Prime Minister of France, was born (d. 2007).

1927 April 12 Incident: Chiang Kai-shek ordered the CPC members executed in Shanghai, ending the First United Front.

1929 – Elspet Gray, Scottish actress, was born (d. 2013).

1932  Tiny Tim, American musician, was born (d. 1996).

1934 The strongest surface wind gust in the world at 231 mph, was measured on the summit of Mount Washington, USA.

1934 The US Auto-Lite Strike began, culminating in a five-day melee between Ohio National Guard troops and 6,000 strikers and picketers.

1935 – Wendy Savage, English gynaecologist and activist, was born.

1935  First flight of the Bristol Blenheim.

1937 Sir Frank Whittle ground-tested the first jet engine designed to power an aircraft at Rugby, England.

1939 Alan Ayckbourn, English writer, was born.

1942 Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa, was born.

1945 US President Franklin D. Roosevelt died while in office; vice-president Harry Truman was sworn in as the 33rd President.

1946 – George Robertson, Baron Robertson of Port Ellen, Scottish politician and diplomat, 10th Secretary General of NATO, was born.

1947 Tom Clancy, American author, was born (d. 2013).

1947 David Letterman, American talk show host, was born.

1949 Scott Turow, American writer, was born.

1950 David Cassidy, American singer and actor, was born.

1952 – Leicester Rutledge, New Zealand rugby player, All Black, was born.

1955 The polio vaccine, developed by Dr Jonas Salk, was declared safe and effective.

1961 Yuri Gagarin became the first human to travel into outer space inVostok 3KA-2 (Vostok 1).

1963 The Soviet nuclear powered submarine K-33 collided with the Finnish merchant vessel M/S Finnclipper in the Danish straits.

1978 Guy Berryman, British musician (Coldplay), was born.

1980 Brian McFadden, Irish Singer (Westlife) was born.

1980  Samuel Doe took control of Liberia in a coup d’état, ending over 130 years of national democratic presidential succession.

1980 – Terry Fox began his “Marathon of Hope” at St. John’s, Newfoundland.

1981 The first launch of a Space Shuttle: Columbia launched on the STS-1 mission.

1990 Jim Gary’s Twentieth Century Dinosaurs exhibition opened at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.

1992 The Euro Disney Resort officially opened with its theme park Euro Disneyland.

1994 Canter & Siegel posted the first commercial mass Usenet spam.

1998 An earthquake in Slovenia, measuring 5.6 on the Richter scale occurred near the town of Bovec.

1999 US President Bill Clinton was cited for contempt of court for giving “intentionally false statements” in a sexual harassment civil lawsuit.

2002 Pedro Carmona became interim President of Venezuela during the military coup against Hugo Chávez.

2002 – A female suicide bomber detonated at the entrance to Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda open-air market, killing 7 and wounding 104.

2007 A suicide bomber penetrated the Green Zone and detonated in a cafeteria within a parliament building, killing Iraqi MP Mohammed Awad and wounding more than twenty other people.

2010 – A train derailed near Merano, Italy, after running into a landslide, causing nine deaths and injuring 28 people.

2014 – A wildfire ravaged the Chilean city of Valparaíso, killing 16, displacing nearly 10,000, and destroying over 2,000 homes.

2017 – Zuma Must Fall protests resumed in South Africa, with Julius Malema addressing large crowds in Pretoria.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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