Word of the day


Cacoepy – bad or incorrect pronunciation of words or an instance of this; mispronunciation.

Sowell says


Rural round-up


Tears as convoy of trucks deliver donated bales to drought-stricken Hawke’s Bay farmers -Aroha Treacher:

More than 600 bales have been donated to drought-stricken farmers in the Hawke’s Bay as they struggle through one of the worst droughts the region has seen in decades. A convoy of trucks made the journey to Hawke’s Bay to drop off some much-needed relief.

“It’s so good to be here with this fantastic contribution of feed that’s come all the way to the Hawke’s Bay from farmers right throughout the Wairarapa,” says David Todd of the Rural Support Trust in Hawke’s Bay.

“There were tears we’ll say, and from big truckies. There was tears, so it’s quite a big deal,” says Poppy Renton of the Hawke’s Bay Drought Facebook page.

From here, the feed will be distributed out to needy farmers through the rural support trust. . . 

12 year-old photographer brings drought struggles home:

The Jowsey family are among many Hawke’s Bay farmers struggling with drought. The daily grind of feeding and watering stock on the parched paddocks is being documented on camera by the youngest in the family, 12-year-old Selby.

A rust-coloured paddock, a trail of sheep mid-trot, rolling grey hills and and a steely grey sky.

It catches your eye, this slightly tilted image of feeding out time on a drought-stricken farm in Hawke’s Bay.

Selby Jowsey, 12, says he’s tried to capture the moment. . .

Creativity in dealing with drought  –  Peter Burke:

Beef + Lamb New Zealand is taking some creative initiatives to help farmers deal with the drought gripping large parts of the country.

Promoting alternative stock feeds, staging webinars and arranging feed coordinators are just some of the initiatives.

BLNZ North Island regional manager Matt Ward told Rural News that farmers are not only concerned with the immediate problem of the drought, but how they will be in spring.

He says supplies of baleage are very limited and his team of extension officers have been working to get what feed is available to the farmers that need it most.

Budget misses the boat on water – Annette Scott:

The Budget is missed opportunity for water, Irrigation New Zealand chief executive Elizabeth Soal says.

While the covid-19 recovery fund has $3 billion set aside for infrastructure Soal is not confident water storage and reticulation will fit the Government’s bill.

“We were really excited about the opportunity unfolding for water as we face huge economic challenges.”

But the Budget failed to deliver.

“This is missed opportunity,” Soal said.  . . 

Benefit uncertain in tense times – Hugh Stringleman:

Kiwi beef producers might not benefit from a significantly reduced Australian cattle kill this year, AgriHQ analyst Mel Croad says.

“Too many other factors are working in world protein markets to be sure that Australia’s expected shortfall will flow on to greater demand for our beef exports,” she said.

A predicted 17% reduction in Australian beef exports in 2020 might help stabilise world prices rather than increase them for other supplying countries.

Australia is going to do what it would in a normal year, without covid-19, and that is rebuild its herd after widespread rain. . . 

ProductionWise® and OverseerFM can “talk”:

FAR’s ProductionWise® farm recording package is now able to interface directly with OverseerFM, a development which will make nutrient management reporting a lot faster and cheaper for most ProductionWise users.

FAR ProductionWise Manager, Melanie Bates, says that enabling the two systems to ‘talk to each other’ was always a goal, and although it’s taken a while, testing shows that the benefits will be huge.

“Formal discussions with Overseer about the project began in January 2019, and late last year, the ProductionWise technical team, headed by Chris Day from Flurosat, and the OverseerFM technical team started working together to plan out the integration process via computer ‘json’ files. Chris has developed a very simple and visual way to build up the json file from recorded data in PW into OverseerFM. In simple terms, you can extract your ProductionWise data to a file that can be imported into the OverseerFM platform, allowing you to create your year-end analysis easily.” . . 

Together we grow


“Together we Grow NZ” is a new initiative which aims to connect urban and rural communities.

“Together We Grow NZ” will showcase the importance of both communities working together by sharing stories, collaborating, and creating opportunities to highlight New Zealand’s farming background to the next generation.

The project was created by 15 women, who met while completing the Agri-Women’s Development Trust’s leadership and governance programme “Escalator”.

The group continued working together during the Covid-19 lockdown and saw an opportunity to bring to light some of the stories of Kiwi food producers.

CEO of NZ Avocado Jen Scoular said isolation had given the group time to “look at where our food comes from” and to celebrate it.

“We’ve realised we love local produce and we’ve had the time to browse through recipe books and create new dishes to star on the family dinner table. Let’s keep doing that, let’s celebrate food provenance, the passion demonstrated by New Zealand food producers and our collective love of food”. . . 

Inconsistencies and control freakery


From the start of lockdown we’ve been plagued with inconsistencies in which businesses can or cannot operate and what we can or cannot do.

Using essential rather than safe as the rule for whether or not businesses could open was the cause of most of the inconsistency under Level 4.

Control freakery seems to be the reason for some of the inconsistencies under Level 2.

We can go to brothels and strip clubs now and will be able to go to bars later this week but still won’t be able to go to church.

This has prompted Simon Bridges to write an open letter to the Prime Minister:

I write to you on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders who practice many different faiths and religions, who continue to be unable to gather in any meaningful way for worship this weekend because the Covid-19 restrictions your Government has chosen to keep in place limit the number of people who can attend religious services to 10.

New Zealanders of faith have understood the need to sacrifice their freedom of religion to gather for worship to support our fight against Covid-19.

People of all faiths have done their part, however they are now being told that despite our alert level being reduced they are still no longer able to meet for worship.

New Zealanders find it inconsistent that you allow large numbers of people at bars, restaurants or sporting events but continue to deny more than 10 people gathering for religious services.

It was right to increase the number of people who can attend funerals and tangi – it is right to do the same for our faith communities.

Religious institutions are in a better place than almost any other organisation that is allowed to host larger crowds, and are therefore able to ensure appropriate physical distancing and health precautions are taking place.

I strongly urge you to reconsider this limit so New Zealanders of faith can gather and worship this weekend and participate in what is one of the most defining aspects of their lives: expressing their faith through worship. 

Yours sincerely

SImon Bridges

The answer Health Minister David Clark gave to Simon O’Connor’s question on this shows the control freakery:

O’Connor put the question to Dr David Clark in Parliament on Wednesday, claiming the Government failed to consider New Zealanders’ rights to freedom of religion when it drafted the COVID-19 Public Health Response Bill.

“Is the Minister aware that strip clubs are allowed to open during alert level 2 but churches are not, and if so, why is one deemed so much safer than the other?” he asked.

“Speaker, I think the Member will understand – both he and I are people that have interacted with churches, that I know – that people often attend services of worship for fellowship reasons,” Dr Clark responded.

“They are there to worship, but they are also there to mix and mingle with others. The purpose of having rules around gatherings – places people gather to intermingle – is precisely to ensure we are keeping the space for people, the appropriate social distance, and keeping the virus out.”

Dr Clark went on to explain that commercial premises such as strip clubs had their own requirements to ensure people did not intermingle. . .

Fellowship is part of church attendance but if bars and strip clubs can be trusted to ensure their patrons don’t intermingle, why can’t churches be trusted to ensure their congregations do the same?

An appeal from more than 75 church leaders asks government to have faith in them:

Whilst we understand the reasoning of having public groups of no more than 10 (50 now at funerals) we believe and would argue that our church people are generally highly responsible and hopefully better behaved on the whole compared to some behaviour at late night bars etc. It is far easier for us to track and trace, because we already know our church families.

We are not asking to be open seven days a week until all hours. Church gatherings mainly take place on one day of the week.

We would like you to consider that churches be able to resume services with the same restrictions and safety measures in place that other sectors of society are operating under. As bars are allowed to reopen, surely the church, as a place of nurturing, stability and support in the community should be able to open as well.

If you have faith in business owners, we request you also have faith in us. . . 

The nearest church to us seats about 120 people but it’s unusual to have more than about 20 people at a service.

It would be possible to require people to register their intention to attend, limit numbers to ensure social distance could be maintained, have no singing, and control entry and exit to ensure no-one breached the distancing.

It’s a Presbyterian Church, the parishioners will be sober which is more than can be said for at least some of the patrons at bars and strip clubs and they can definitely be trusted to keep far further away from each other than prostitutes will be to their customers.

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