Word of the day


Circumlocutionist – one who consistently speaks in a roundabout way in order to avoid addressing a question directly; a roundabout, indirect, or evasive talker; one who uses circumlocution.

Sowell says


Rural round-up


Voluntary sequestration schemes create opportunities as well as confusion – Keith Woodford:

Native forests that began regenerating prior to 1990 are excluded from the ETS. This opens opportunities for voluntary schemes independent of Government.

In a recent article, I wrote how carbon credits are not created equal. This inequality is now leading to game-playing and confusion across society. Terms like ‘greenwash’ as the carbon equivalent of a ‘whitewash’ are increasingly heard and there is increasing talk of ‘hot air’ carbon claims.

Since writing that article, I have been wrestling with the challenge of further deepening my own understanding of how the carbon game is being played. It is a game where different players are playing by different sets of rules, as are the certifying referees.  Many of the certifying rules are far from transparent.

Here in this article my focus is specifically on the rules surrounding sequestration that removes carbon from the atmosphere. That leaves other aspects of the carbon rules for another time. . .

Better free trade outcomes an illusion – EU politician – Sam Sachdeva:

EU trade committee chair Bernd Lange argues the grouping’s trade deal with New Zealand is a “gold standard” agreement – even if Kiwi farmers disagree. Lange spoke to Sam Sachdeva about China’s coercive trade practices, cracking down on forced labour, and how the Ukraine invasion has changed attitudes on trade

Even a typically miserable Wellington spring day can’t shake the good mood of European parliamentarian Bernd Lange.

Speaking to Newsroom at the end of a week-long visit to New Zealand, Lange says the grey skies and rain remind him of his roots in northern Germany – although his cheer may be more down to the free trade agreement between the European Union and New Zealand he is here to discuss.

Lange visited New Zealand in late 2017 for a “fact-finding mission” with other members of the European Parliament’s international trade committee which he chairs. . . 

Synlait posts $38.5m annual profit

The South Island dairy company Synlait Milk is back in the black as its ingredients division saw higher than normal sales, while its major customer rebalanced inventory levels.

Key numbers for the 12 months ended July compared to a year ago:

  • Net profit $38.5m vs $28.5m loss
  • Revenue $1.66b vs $1.37b
  • Total average payment $9.59 vs $7.82
  • Forecast 2023 payout $9.50 per kilo of milk solids

Synlait chair John Penno said the past year was “an important period of refocusing”. . . 

Fonterra trials world first in sustainable electricity storage :

A new organic, low-cost, safe, sustainable and long-life battery being trialled by Fonterra, could support greater energy security and distributed electricity generation for New Zealand.

PolyJoule, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) spin-off, is partnering with Fonterra on the application of the battery made from electrically conductive polymers, an organic based compound with the ability to act like metal.

Late last year the world’s first industrial scale organic battery was installed on a Fonterra farm at Te Rapa. The battery was cycled daily, supporting dairy shed operations for 10 months. The Co-op is now moving this battery to its Waitoa UHT site, which can be impacted by power disturbances leading to downtime and waste.

Fonterra Chief Operating Officer Fraser Whineray says as a significant electricity user at about 2.5% of the national grid, a sustainable and secure electricity supply is vital to the Co-operative’s local sales and exports. . .

Primary sector exporters buoyed by opportunities for a closer India-NZ relationship but different approach necessary :

Primary sector exporters recently returned from a visit to India are excited about the opportunities for a closer partnership between the two countries, however they are urging the New Zealand Government to adopt a more flexible and focused approach to trade.

New Zealand’s agriculture exporters and industry bodies, including representatives from the red meat, kiwifruit, apples & pears and dairy sectors, were part of an India New Zealand Business Council (INZBC) delegation which coincided with a visit from Trade Minister Damien O’Connor.

“India has come out of COVID-19 with growing confidence and strength, and its leaders have a clear focus on accelerating economic growth including through trade,” says INZBC chair Earl Rattray, who has dairy interests in India.

“India is on track to become the world’s third largest economy within the next decade. There is a modern economic miracle unfolding there, with an openness to explore mutually beneficial ways to strengthen trade relationships. This is a good time for New Zealand business to embrace India.” . . 

NZ Young Farmers and Ministry for Primary Industries partner to boost wellbeing :

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is supporting NZ Young Farmers (NZYF) to fund a series of events for NZYF members as part of an initiative to improve the wellbeing of young people in rural communities.

MPI is contributing funding for the events, which will offer a channel for young people across the country to connect and learn ways to manage mental health and build resilience.

NZ Young Farmers Chief Executive Lynda Coppersmith says mental health is a key concern in rural communities, where factors such as isolation and high workloads can impact overall wellbeing and mental health.

“The mental and physical wellbeing of young people is a big focus of our organisation and is essential for the ongoing viability of many rural communities,” says Lynda Coppersmith. . . 

Beautifying the blogosphere


Identity politics left not right


Kelvin Davis has shown he thinks Maori is based on politics not genes:

Minister Kelvin Davis is standing by his challenge to ACT’s Karen Chhour to “enter the Māori world” and stop looking at the world through a “vanilla lens”; she says he has taken away her mana, leaving her distressed.

The tense exchange in the debating chamber began with questions from Chhour over OT’s relationships – including whether Davis would reassess the relationship between the ministry and Te Whānau o Waipareira Trust. . . 

Chhour asked whether he agreed with Tamihere that the two were in a partnership, not a contract, and whether he would end this partnership if Te Whānau o Waipareira was struck off the charities register.

“What the member needs to do,” Davis responded, “is cross the bridge that is Te Tiriti o Waitangi from her Pākehā world into the Māori world and understand exactly how the Māori world operates. It’s no good looking at the world from a vanilla lens.”  . . 

Passing quickly over the issue of whether this means that Maori aren’t to be held to the same standards as others.

Speaking to reporters outside the debating chamber, Chhour said she was offended.

“When you have to resort to attacking someone on a race-based issue like that I find it quite offensive. I am a Māori woman and I’ve been through the care system and I can tell you Māori children aren’t that different to any other child, they just want to feel loved and feel safe,” she said.

“I’m here trying to make a difference for those children and I think looking at the world from just one point of view is actually quite destructive, and attacking me like that and basically taking away my mana – from a party that stands up and says they want to give Māori back their mana – is actually quite distressing for me.”

ACT’s leader David Seymour described the minister’s comments as “nasty” and “totally racist”.

Davis, however, stood by his comments.

“She whakapapas to Māori but she was raised in a Pākehā world, she needs to cross the bridge that is Te Tiriti o Waitangi so she gets to understand her Māori world better,” he told reporters.

“I’m saying their attitude towards anything that’s Māori is actually nasty,” he said. . . 

He’s ignoring the inconvenient fact that the woman he’s criticising is Maori and had personal experience of the care system as a child.

Davis has now apologised:

Deputy Labour leader Kelvin Davis has rung Māori ACT MP Karen Chhour to apologise for telling her to leave “her Pākehā world”.

Davis said he didn’t intend for it to be offensive but that he can see why she thought it was and he was sorry, Newshub has been told.

Chhour has accepted the apology.

“Kelvin called and offered an apology which I have accepted. No person should be judged by their identity but rather by their words and actions,” she said.

“I will continue to ask Kelvin questions about our most vulnerable children and I hope next time he comes prepared with information instead of personal attacks.” . . 

Coincidentally,  UK Labour Party MP said something similar this week:

Van Velden said Ardern should look at what British Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer did in response to comments one of his MPs made about UK Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng.

Labour MP Rupa Huq this week said of Kwarteng, “superficially he is a black man”. The MP was forced to apologise and suspended. . . 

Spot the difference: Davis got away with a vanilla apology, Huq was not only forced to apologise she was suspended from her caucus.

But both incidents show that identity politics is more about politics than identity.

Adherents to the gospel of identity who profess to be against discrimination continually discriminate against people whose politics differ from theirs.

That’s why so many feminists didn’t, and still don’t, celebrate Margaret Thatcher as the UK’s first female Prime Minister; Jenny Shipley as our first female Prime Minister and Ruth Richardson as our first – and so far only – female Finance Minister.

That’s why Simon Bridges got no recognition for being the first Maori to lead a major political party and there was no celebration that his deputy, Paula Bennett was also Maori.

To those who identity with identity politics, identity isn’t just about identity but politics, and politics of the left at that which isn’t right.

They lump everyone into a group, denying individuality and agency, using their own narrow definition constrained by their own narrow political views and criticising those who don’t fit in their political corner as not real members of the race, gender or whichever other identity box they want people to fit.

It catoragises people by their identity rather than their actions and character.

It’s a discriminatory and divisive philosophy that slices and dices populations on inherent differences but doesn’t recognise personal differences or our common humanity.

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