Word of the day

June 2, 2020

Emacity – the desire or fondness for buying things, or more generally for spending money.


Sowell says

June 2, 2020


Rural round-up

June 2, 2020

Growing new farmers – Gianina Schwanecke:

Four months into the Wairarapa pilot of the Growing Future Farmers programme, GIANINA SCHWANECKE speaks to those involved about how it has been going.

Interim GFF general manager Tamsin Jex-Blake said many students had expressed interest in the Wairarapa pilot late last year and six students were partnered with farmers.

The sheep and beef focused training programme officially kicked off in February this year, and she was happy with how it had progressed so far.

She said the programme helped provide students with opportunities to learn practical farming skills from those experienced in the industry and would go a long way to helping with the skills shortage. . . 

Food can fuel NZ recovery – Ross Verry:

Syndex CEO Ross Verry gives his view on how New Zealand can emerge from the Covid-19 crisis.

As the gates of lockdown open onto a changed landscape it’s time to take stock; to look at what we have, where our strengths lie and where the opportunities are.

There has to be a silver lining and, with the right innovation and systems in place, New Zealand could emerge shining brightly.

Having worked for both the industry and the financial systems that support it, in times of peaks and troughs, I can say that as we stand on the start line of the race ahead, we have to remember New Zealand is a world class producer of food – leaders in quality, productivity and efficiency.

We have a population of less than 5 million yet we produce enough to feed many more. Our supply is important to the world. Our kiwifruit, cherries and hops are revered and exported at premium prices and, although these items may fall into the luxury category, we excel in staple goods too. . . 

 

Urbanites upskill for career in dairy :

With large numbers of people losing their jobs because of Covid-19, Dairy NZ has launched a publicity campaign to encourage people to consider changing careers and getting into dairy farming.

On 8 June, it is running a “farm-ready” entry-level training course which is free for those serious about working on dairy farms.

Enquiries have already come in from people who have lost their jobs. They include a former fly-fishing guide, someone in film and television, another in banking and finance, a couple of commercial pilots, a biologist, a welder and people from construction and forestry. . . 

Awards co-ordinator bids adieu – Yvonne O’Hara:

Outgoing Southland Ballance Farm Environment Awards regional co-ordinator Tracie Donelley has always been impressed by how dedicated and passionate the entrants are about their farms.

‘‘I would like to invite urban people to come to the awards so they can see how much effort these farmers put into their land,’’ Ms Donelley, who has been in the position for nearly seven years, said.

‘‘I have been continually amazed by amount of time and money the farmers put in their farms with no immediate payback, and by how much they care for their land and their stock.’’ . . 

Heifer on the lam: Farmer seeks sightings of ‘mildly agitated’ cow :

The owner of a cow that pulled an audacious Houdini act to escape a trip to a Southland abbatoir is asking for the public’s help to get her back.

Stock agent Terry Cairns put an ad in the Southland Times seeking sightings of a “solid black Heifer” described as being “mildly agitated”.

“Her mates that I sold were $800 each, so while it’s not a fortune, it’s significant and it’s a hell lot of steak and hamburgers and stuff gone west if I can’t find her.” . . 

Root canals and GMOs – Uptown Girl:

Last week I went to the dentist and was surprised with an unexpected root canal. Nice, right?

The dentist explained the entire process and said that root canals have come along way with modern technology and were safe, and fairly pain free.

I shocked him and said, “Doc, I appreciate the offer but would you mind doing the procedure the same way it was done in the 50’s?”

😳

OK, I didn’t actually say that. (Everyone knows you can’t actually talk to the dentist because they only talk to you with their tools in your mouth.)

I just nodded and embraced the modern advancements that made the process nearly pain free.

As crazy as that request sounds- for a patient to request a dentist revert back to practices from decades ago – it’s the same request that is thrown at farm families all the time. . . 


And still we wait

June 2, 2020

The last case of Covid-19 which was thought to result from community transmission was on April 2. That’s more than eight weeks ago.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

There have been no new cases Covid-19 for 10 days.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

There is one active case of Covid-19 in New Zealand.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2 lockdown.

Many Covid-19 testing stations are closing down.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

People are losing 1000 jobs a day.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

New Zealand is facing the largest decline in GDP in 160 years.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

Thousands of people assembled to protest  the murder of Minneapolis man George Floyd. That murder was atrocious but no excuse for flouting the rules when still only 100 people can attend weddings and funerals and we’re all supposed to be social distancing, festivals and events from the National Fieldays to church fairs can’t be held and many businesses cannot operate at full capacity?

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

The Government needs to explain to New Zealanders why it won’t consider a move to Alert Level 1 for another week, Leader of the Opposition Todd Muller says.

“Kiwis have made enormous sacrifices to flatten the curve, but if their efforts still aren’t enough to move to Level 1 then the Government must explain why.

“It has been more than a week since the last confirmed case of Covid-19. There are fewer cases now than there was before any restrictions were put in place.

“The Government has a duty to speak with one voice on such a critical issue, but all Kiwis are hearing now is mixed messages from the Prime Minister and her deputy.

“Businesses on the brink of closure have been left in limbo too long. It’s time for the Government to be clear about what conditions need to be met for the move to Level 1.

“Level 1 should mean businesses can return to full capacity, transport networks can resume without constraints, marriages can be properly celebrated and loved ones can be appropriately mourned.

“The sooner small businesses know what Level 1 will look like, the easier it will be for the backbone of our economy to start repairing itself.”

Most of us co-operated with the Level 4 lockdown requirements.

Most of us co-operated with the Level 3 lockdown requirements.

Many of us are confused about exactly what we can and can’t do at Level 2 – protests are unlimited but work, church, funerals, weddings festivals and social gatherings are restricted?

And still we wait to drop down from Level 2.

But why?

The Ministry of Health’s criteria for  Alert Level 2 is:

The disease is contained, but the risk of community transmission remains.

Risk assessment

    • Household transmission could be occurring.
    • Single or isolated cluster outbreaks

The criteria for Alert Level 1 is:

The disease is contained in New Zealand.

Risk assessment

    • COVID-19 is uncontrolled overseas.
    • Isolated household transmission could be occurring in New Zealand.

By those measures it should be safe to go to Level 1.

And still we wait to drop from Level 2.

But we’re sick of waiting.

The social licence that is needed for us to keep the rules was torn up and stamped on yesterday.

If protesters don’t have to wait for a drop down from Level 2, why should the rest of us?


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