Word of the day

April 17, 2019

Gabelle – an unpopular tax on salt in France that was established during the mid-14th century and lasted, with brief lapses and revisions, until 1946.


Sowell says

April 17, 2019


Rural round-up

April 17, 2019

Thriving in a demanding environment :

Andrew and Lynnore Templeton, who own and operate The Rocks Station, near Middlemarch, won the regional supreme title at the Otago Ballance Farm Environment Awards in Dunedin.

The awards are run by the New Zealand Farm Environment Trust and the supreme regional winners from each of the 11 districts will be profiled at the awards’ National Sustainability Showcase in Hamilton on June 6.

The Templetons also won the Massey University Innovation Award, which recognises the farmer or grower that demonstrated Kiwi ingenuity for solving a problem or pursuing a new opportunity. . . 

Mid-Canterbury dominates M. bovis cases – Heather Chalmers:

Mid-Canterbury has taken the biggest hit from cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis, with the district accounting for 41 per cent of all cases. 

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) figures show that 67 of 161 properties confirmed positive with the disease were in the region.

Of these, 23 properties remain contaminated and 44 have been cleared. 

The ministry’s M. bovis programme director Geoff Gwyn told farmers in Ashburton that the region was “carrying a disproportionate share of the burden” in its efforts to eradicate the disease.  . . 

 

Court orders Chinese owner of Wairarapa farm to settle access row before he sells – Andrea Vance:

The Chinese owner of a Wairarapa sheep station wants to sell it to a Kiwi buyer – but that won’t stop an extraordinary dispute over public access, which has now reached the courts.

For more than two years, officials and the Chinese owner of the sprawling $3.3 million Kawakawa Station, at Cape Palliser, have been deadlocked over access to a forest hut and tramping route.

Mediation to resolve the dispute failed late last year and triggered legal action.

Hong-Kong based Eric Chun Yu Wong has decided to sell the station back to an un-named Kiwi buyer. . . 

Kaumatua urges community restraint in Kawakawa dispute:

Ngati Kahungunu ki Wairarapa kaumatua, Sir Kim Workman, has asked the Wairarapa community to withhold its judgement around the Kawakawa Station dispute, following yesterday’s Stuff article by Andrea Vance, ‘Court orders Chinese owner of Wairarapa farm to settle access row before he sells

‘In June 2018, the Walkways Access Commission publicised this issue while the dispute negotiation was still in progress. The impact of WAC’s conduct on Mr Wong and his family was incendiary. Xenophobia emerged in full flight. Mr Wong became a foreign demon who was interfering with the rights of good old Kiwis. It adversely affected their walking tour business, and the then managers were openly referred to as ‘chink-lovers’. They resigned, and the backlash contributed to Mr Wong’s decision to sell the farm.’

This latest publicity has the potential to unleash yet another round of racism and hatred. When that happens, it disrupts the peace of our community, and sets neighbour against neighbour. We must avoid that at all costs. . . 

Demand for cage-free eggs contributes to national egg shortage – Karoline Tuckey:

While a national egg shortage could mean higher prices, it’s unlikely the hot breakfast staple will disappear from supermarket shelves.

Poultry Industry Association executive director Michael Brooks said supply problems were causing the shortages nationally.

The number of laying hens nationally has dropped from 4.2 million at the end of last year, to 3.6 million.

“We’re just going to see a lesser amount of eggs, and that will probably translate to some extent to price increases, just because of a shortage of supply,” said Michael Brooks. . . 

People’s role recognised in sustainable journeys:

The Ballance Farm Environment Awards have long been a respected, exciting highlight in the rural calendar, with each year’s award winners doing much to showcase the best this country has to offer in farming talent that recognises and respects the environment they depend upon.

This year the awards have a welcome addition with national realtor Bayleys sponsoring a “People in the Primary Sector” award.

Bayleys national country manager Duncan Ross said the company’s move to sponsor the people category in the awards is a timely one, given the focus within the agri-sector on recruiting, keeping and advancing young talent. . . 

Garlic production property for sale:

The land and buildings housing a trio of commercial businesses – including the processing and distribution plant of New Zealand’s largest garlic grower – have been placed on the market for sale.

The site at Grovetown near Blenheim in Marlborough consists of 1.4350 hectares of freehold triangular-shaped rural zoned land at 377 Vickerman Street.

The site is occupied by three tenancies – Marlborough Garlic Ltd, Kiwi Seed Co (Marlborough) Ltd and Ironside Engineering Ltd. Combined, the three businesses generate an annual rental return of $138,347 +GST. . . 


Auditor General keeping closer eye on PGF

April 17, 2019

The Auditor General is going to be keeping a closer eye on the Provincial Growth Fund:

Auditor-General John Ryan said Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) officials had been told to improve the management of the fund after an initial review found the risk of some payments going astray.

“We carried out some preliminary work to review how [MBIE] was administering the fund,” he said, adding that the review resulted in recommendations to improve the management of payments from the fund.

“The fund also requires appropriations to be managed by multiple government departments and organisations, which increases the risk of unappropriated expenditure.” . . 

The spending of any and all public funds ought to be given very close scrutiny.

The size of the PGF – $3 billion – makes it even more important to ensure that money doesn’t go astray, especially when there are so many questions about the rigour, or lack of it, applied to the hand-outs.


Quote of the day

April 17, 2019

Who tells a finer tale than any of us. Silence does. Karen Blixen who was born on this day in 1885.


April 17 in history

April 17, 2019

1397  Geoffrey Chaucer told the Canterbury Tales for the first time at the court of Richard II.

1492 Spain and Christopher Columbus signed the Capitulations of Santa Fe for his voyage to Asia to acquire spices.

1521 Martin Luther spoke to the assembly at the Diet of Worms, refusing to recant his teachings.

1524 Giovanni da Verrazzano reached New York harbour.

1555 After 18 months of siege, Siena surrendered to the Florentine-Imperial army. The Republic of Siena was incorporated into the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

1620 Marguerite Bourgeoys, founder of the Congregation of Notre Dame, was born (d. 1700) .

1797  Sir Ralph Abercromby attacked San Juan, Puerto Rico in what became one of the largest invasions of the Spanish territories in America.

1820 – The American sealer General Gates was sent to Sydney under guard.

<em>General Gates</em> sent to Sydney under guard

1820 Alexander Joy Cartwright, Inventor of the Modern Game of Baseball, was born (d. 1892).

1837  J. P. Morgan, American financier, was born  (d. 1913) .

1861 American Civil War: Virginia seceded from the United States.

1864 American Civil War: The Battle of Plymouth began.

1865 – Ursula Ledóchowska, Polish-Austrian nun and saint, founded the Congregation of the Ursulines of the Agonizing Heart of Jesus was born (d. 1939).

1865 Mary Surratt was arrested as a conspirator in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.

1880 New Zealand’s first inter-city brass band contest was held.

First inter-city brass band contest

1885 Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen), Danish author, was born (d. 1962) .

1895 The Treaty of Shimonoseki between China and Japan was signed. This marked the end of the First Sino-Japanese War, the defeated Qing Empire was forced to renounce its claims on Korea and to concede the southern portion of the Fengtien province, Taiwan and the Pescadores Islands to Japan.

1905 The Supreme Court of the United States decided Lochner v. New York which held that the “right to free contract” was implicit in the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

1907 The Ellis Island immigration centre processed 11,747 people, more than on any other day.

1916 – Win Maung, 3rd President of Union of Myanmar, was born (d. 1989).

1918 William Holden, American actor, was born  (d. 1981).

1924 – Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios was formed by the merger of Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures, and the Louis B. Mayer Company.

1925  – René Moawad, Lebanese lawyer and politician, 13th President of Lebanon, was born (d. 1989).

1929 James Last, German band leader, was born.

1941 World War II: The Kingdom of Yugoslavia surrendered to Germany.

1942 French prisoner of war General Henri Giraud escaped from his castle prison in Festung Königstein.

1945 Brazilian forces liberated the town of Montese, Italy, from German forces.

1946 – Clare Francis, English sailor and author, was born.

1949 At midnight 26 Irish counties officially left the British Commonwealth. A 21-gun salute on O’Connell Bridge, Dublin, ushered in the Republic of Ireland.

1957  Nick Hornby, English author, was born.

1961 Bay of Pigs Invasion: A group of CIA financed and trained Cuban refugees landed at the Bay of Pigs in Cuba with the aim of ousting Fidel Castro.

1964 The Ford Motor Company unveiled the Ford Mustang at the New York World’s Fair.

1964  Jerrie Mock became the first woman to circumnavigate the world by air.

1969 Sirhan Sirhan was convicted of assassinating Robert F. Kennedy.

1969 Czechoslovakian Communist Party chairman Alexander Dubček was deposed.

1970 Apollo 13 returned to Earth safely.

1971 The People’s Republic of Bangladesh formed, under Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

1971  Sierra Leone became a republic.

1973 German counter-terrorist unit GSG 9 founded.

1974 Victoria Beckham, English singer (Spice Girls), was born.

1975  The Cambodian Civil War ended. The Khmer Rouge captured the capital Phnom Penh and Cambodian government forces surrendered.

1982 Patriation of the Canadian constitution in Ottawa.

1984  Police Constable Yvonne Fletcher was killed by gunfire from the Libyan People’s Bureau in London during a small demonstration outside the embassy. Ten others were wounded.

1986 The Three Hundred and Thirty Five Years’ War between the Netherlands and the Isles of Scilly ended.

2006 – Sami Hammad, a Palestinian suicide bomber, detonated an explosive device in Tel Aviv, killing 11 people and injuring 70.

2012 – Ilias Ali, organizing secretary of Bangladesh Nationalist Party and a former MP, disappeared from Dhaka with his chauffeur, allegedly abducted by government forces.

2013 – An explosion at a fertiliser plant in the city of West, Texas, kills 15 people and injures 160 others.

2014 – NASA’s Kepler confirmed the discovery of the first Earth-size planet in the habitable zone of another star.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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