Pusillanimous – lacking courage, determination and resolution; marked by contemptible timidity; showing ignoble cowardice; faint-hearted; timid.
Hat tip: Not PC
Pusillanimous – lacking courage, determination and resolution; marked by contemptible timidity; showing ignoble cowardice; faint-hearted; timid.
Hat tip: Not PC
Saatchi and Saatchi chair, Kevin Roberts, has been put on leave after saying in an interview that gender bias in advertising business doesn’t exist.
The interview was in Business Review:
Roberts said: “Edward de Bono [the physician, psychologist, and author] once told me there is no point in being brilliant at the wrong thing — the fucking debate is all over. This is a diverse world, we are in a world where we need, like we’ve never needed before, integration, collaboration, connectivity, and creativity … this will be reflected in the way the Groupe is.”
Publicis Groupe has around a 50/50 gender split amongst all its staff, while around 65% of Saatchi’s staff are female as the agency wants to reflect the buyers of the types of products it is advertising, Roberts added. . .
Roberts said he doesn’t spend “any time” on supposed gender issues at his agencies at all — saying the issue is “way worse” in sectors like financial services, where there are “problems left, right, and center.”
Where this is a gender-related challenge at Saatchi, he said, is elevating female creatives into top roles.
“We have a bunch of talented, creative females, but they reach a certain point in their careers … 10 years of experience, when we are ready to make them a creative director of a big piece of business, and I think we fail in two out of three of those choices because the executive involved said: ‘I don’t want to manage a piece of business and people, I want to keep doing the work’,” Roberts said.
Historically, advertising companies have looked at this kind of scenario as a failure — but Roberts, who earlier in our conversation suggests it’s an area that his company “can’t figure out,” later suggests that perhaps agencies would do well to look at the issue through a different lens.
“If you think about those Darwinian urges of wealth, power, and fame — they are not terribly effective in today’s world for a millennial because they want connectivity and collaboration. They feel like they can get that without managing and leading, so maybe we have got the definition wrong,” Roberts said.
Rather than holding ambitions to progress into the higher echelons of the c-suite, many women — and men — simply want to be happy and do great work, which management can often overlook, Roberts said.
He added: “So we are trying to impose our antiquated shit on them, and they are going: ‘Actually guys, you’re missing the point, you don’t understand: I’m way happier than you.’ Their ambition is not a vertical ambition, it’s this intrinsic, circular ambition to be happy. So they say: ‘We are not judging ourselves by those standards that you idiotic dinosaur-like men judge yourself by’. I don’t think [the lack of women in leadership roles] is a problem. I’m just not worried about it because they are very happy, they’re very successful, and doing great work. I can’t talk about sexual discrimination because we’ve never had that problem, thank goodness.” . . .
Below the interview is the statement from Publicis saying Roberts has been placed on leave immediately:
Following the comments made by Saatchi & Saatchi Executive Chairman and Publicis Groupe Head Coach, Kevin Roberts, in a recent interview with Business Insider, Publicis Groupe Chairman & CEO, Maurice Lévy addressed a statement internally to all Publicis Groupe employees to reiterate the Groupe’s no-tolerance policy towards behaviour or commentary counter to the spirit of Publicis Groupe and its celebration of difference as captured in the motto Viva la Difference!
It is for the gravity of these statements that Kevin Roberts has been asked to take a leave of absence from Publicis Groupe effective immediately. As a member of The Directoire, it will ultimately be the Publicis Groupe Supervisory Board’s duty to further evaluate his standing.
Diversity & inclusion are business imperatives on which Publicis Groupe will not negotiate. While fostering a work environment that is inclusive of all talent is a collective responsibility, it is leadership’s job to nurture the career aspirations and goals of all our talent.
Promoting gender equality starts at the top and the Groupe will not tolerate anyone speaking for our organisation who does not value the importance of inclusion. Publicis Groupe works very hard to champion diversity and will continue to insist that each agency’s leadership be champions of both diversity and inclusion.
Not PC says Roberts has been suspended for honesty:
NZer Kevin Roberts was “suspended” from his job as head of the Saatchi advertising empire for saying companies should be judged by how happy they make their female employees happy, not by how many with female parts occupy the boardroom. The feminazis rose up in droves. “People like Kevin Roberts no longer belong in ad agencies,” thundered the politest of the commentariat.We’re supposed to back his sacking say Twitterati, because this is apparently offensive to all right-thinking social-justice warriors. Get with their programme, Kev!
But what did he say that was so wrong, wonders Elena Shalneva? What’s wrong with being honest about “gender diversity”?
Not only is he well-informed on the subject, but he approaches the complex issue of gender diversity in a more intelligent and nuanced way than most…
From what I have read, there is absolutely nothing wrong with what Roberts said. On the contrary, he dared to approach an issue as sensitive as gender diversity in an honest and humane way, rather than resort to the one-sided ideological statements more customary to this subject.
Karl du Fresne echoes that:
. . . The irony is that Roberts may not have been downplaying women’s legitimate career ambitions at all, but instead was wondering aloud whether there were better options for women than relentlessly pursuing advancement as men do. That was the interpretation placed on his remarks in a discussion (between women, as it happened) that I heard on the BBC.
Not that it matters. Men are not permitted to discuss such things. . . .
Whether or not Roberts is right is a matter of opinion.
I didn’t read anything in his comments that showed any criticism of diversity and inclusion.
On the contrary, like Not PC and du Fresne I read a suggestion of another way of looking at work and success, that Roberts points out applies to some men too.
Whether or not he’s right, the reaction of the business is concerning. They put up no argument to refute Roberts, they simply stood him down.
That looks very like the linguistic fascism P.D. James criticises in today’s quote above.
Groser had been playing hard to get for the meeting, indicating a willingness to attend only if there was an improvement on the “wholly inadequate” offers of dairy market access from the heavily protected agricultural sectors in the US, Canada and Japan. . .
Groser said last week that New Zealand negotiators could “see a very good deal for New Zealand in everything except dairy and I don’t know to characterise the deal there because it’s not a deal we could accept.”
Since then, there’s been a flurry of reports in US and Canadian media suggesting that the US is pressuring Canada to accept more dairy products from the US as part of a deal that would begin to prise open the US dairy market for New Zealand and Australian dairy products. . .
Dairy market access is especially politically sensitive in Canada because the country faces a federal election on Oct. 19 and the country’s dairy sector is highly protected, using a system of supply management intended to match local dairy production volumes with domestic demand.
However, it appears the Harper government’s political calculus is that a dairy deal would hurt its electoral chances most in Quebec, where it is already comparatively unpopular, and that there would be political damage in being seen to walk away from a new Asia-Pacific deal and some kudos in being able to demonstrate trade opportunities for Canadian firms. . .
This means there is still hope for the TPPA in spite of strong opposition from protected industries and those whose politics blind them to the benefits of free trade and the costs of protection.
Dairy interests must be very powerful in Canada because everyone else pays dearly for its trade barriers which increase prices and reduce choice.
Eric Crampton has a suggestion to change that with this speech he’d like to have heard from a party leader:
“Right now, Canadian dairy prices are much higher than they need to be. Mothers pay too much for infant formula; families pay too much for cheese. And the system as a whole doesn’t even benefit dairy farmers any longer: getting into the industry is expensive because buying quota eats up whatever benefits the system provides to farmers. But there is a better way.”
“We are committed to protecting the quality of dairy products on store shelves – as we are with every food product sold in Canada. But we don’t protect food quality with 300% tariffs for vegetables, fruit, or thousands of other products that cross our borders each and every day. For that, we use food inspections. The dairy quota system isn’t necessary for protecting food quality.”
“Today, we are buying back all of the dairy quota and opening the borders. Farmers should not see their retirement savings wiped out by a policy decision from Ottawa. We are able to afford to do this because dairy prices, in a competitive world market, are low enough that we can fund the buyback with a levy on all dairy products sold in Canada while still keeping prices lower than they are now. And those levies will disappear when the bill is paid in full. Canadians will have better access to the world’s products, and Canadian agricultural producers will have better access to world markets.” . .
The economics are simple, the politics are not but Not PC shows how difficult life would be without trade in a post on the $1,500 sandwich.
. . . What would life be like without exchange or trade? Recently, a man decided to make a sandwich from scratch. He grew the vegetables, gathered salt from seawater, milked a cow, turned the milk into cheese, pickled a cucumber in a jar, ground his own flour from wheat to make the bread, collected his own honey, and personally killed a chicken for its meat. This month, he published the results of his endeavour in an enlightening video: making a sandwich entirely by himself cost him 6 months of his life and set him back $1,500. . .
Few but the strongest anti-trade people would suggest we go back to that sort of subsistence existence.
But here in one of the freest economies in the world some people still don’t understand how much we’ve gained from free trade. The transition from the highly protected economy we had wasn’t without casualties but the gains were worth the pain.
The TPPA will bring more gains and since our borders are already so open we have little to lose.
The great job-creating machine – Not PC:
. . . In 1980, almost a quarter of the world’s employment was still in agriculture. Now, only around 15% of the world’s workers are engaged in agricultural labour. Yet we are feeding more people, undernourishment is at an all-time low, and food is becoming less expensive.
Technological advances liberated humanity from toiling in fields by mechanizing many processes and boosting productivity, allowing more food to be produced per hectare of land, and freeing hundreds of millions of people to pursue less gruelling work.
The elimination of so many unsafe jobs in manufacturing and agriculture means fewer worker deaths. According to data from the International Labour Organization, from 2003 to 2013, the number of work fatalities in the world decreased by 61% (i.e., over 20,500 fewer deaths). This occurred even as the world population grew by over 700 million over the same time period. . .
Civil Defence Minister Nikki Kaye says recovery from the severe storm in June is going well, but latest estimates show its economic impact could be around $270 million. Areas hardest hit by the storm included parts of Taranaki, Whanganui and Manawatu. “Much of the cost of the storm will be met by private insurance, but the Government will also contribute significant support. “We do this in several ways. We make support available to individuals through things like contributions to local relief funds. . .
Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy and Civil Defence Minister Nikki Kaye have announced an extra $2.6 million of Government support for communities worst affected by the severe storm in June.
“Today’s announcement extends the support we can usually draw on to help communities recover from an emergency such as this,” says Ms Kaye.
“This was an unusual event because certain areas were hit a lot harder than others.
“The new support package includes one-off initiatives that take into account the severity of localised damage that occurred in parts of Taranaki, Whanganui and Manawatu.”
Today’s announcement adds to previous Government funding and welfare support, and includes: . . .
In recent weeks I have been traveling in Western China. It is just over a year since I was last there, and as with every visit the changes are visible: more fast railways, more four lane highways, and lots more apartment buildings.
This visual perspective contrasts with what we are reading in the media about China’s declining economic growth. Which is correct? Well, both perspectives are valid.
There are many ‘Chinas’ but for simplicity I will divide China into two. There is the eastern seaboard comprising Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Tianjin, Zhejiang, Shenzhen and other big seaboard cities. And there is another China west of the seaboard, including Chengdu, Chongqing, Xian, Wuhan, Kunming, and Xining. . .
Farming journalist Sandra Taylor has recently been appointed Judging Coordinator for the Canterbury Ballance Farm Environment Awards.
The award application period is open and Sandra is encouraging farmers to show how important environmental management and enhancement is to the industry.
“Farmers take great pride in their farm environments and the Ballance Farm Environment Awards provides a fantastic opportunity to both benchmark and showcase all the great work that is being done on farms throughout the Canterbury region.” . . .
Ballance Agri-Nutrients has today announced it is holding nitrogen prices to help shelter customers from the significant drop in the dollar and support production on farm this spring.
“We know this is a crucial period for pastoral farmers, and with nitrogen a key feed source in farm budgets we are doing our best to help out where we can and support our customers to plan their feed requirements for spring,” said Ballance CEO Mark Wynne.
Ballance Science Manager Aaron Stafford advised farmers to focus on the nutrient inputs that drive production in the current season or year when planning budgets. . . .
Fonterra is pushing on with a business relationship with digital innovation start-up company Job Done after they won an idea pitch yesterday at GridAKL, in Auckland’s innovation precinct.
Seven teams representing Icehouse, Spark Ventures and BBDO spent a month developing prototypes at their own cost with a view to securing future services with the Co-operative to help farmers save time and money.
The seven ideas were pitched to a judging panel made up of Fonterra farmers and staff.
Pitch winner Job Done was mentored by Icehouse and founded by Manawatu farmer Nigel Taylor. . .
Simcro Limited, a leader in the global animal pharmaceutical delivery device industry, has acquired ISL Animal Health (Hamilton, NZ) and NJ Phillips PTY (Gosford, NSW, Australia) from Forlong & Maisey and the Maisey family of Hamilton, New Zealand.
The agreement is effective from 1 September 2015.
Simcro Executive Chairman, Will Rouse, said, “After the Riverside Company became our majority shareholder in 2013, we began looking for opportunities to exponentially grow Simcro’s international market strength. We’ve been in discussions with ISL Animal Health and NJ Phillips for quite some time.
“Internationally, animal health companies are amalgamating at a rapid pace. These industry changes are creating opportunities for companies like ours. These opportunities, however, create the requirement to meet ever-increasing quality and compliance thresholds for our global customers. . .
I have been increasingly conscious, for the last 10 years or so, of deaths among my contemporaries. My generation is on the way out, and each death I have felt as an abruption, a tearing away of part of myself. There will be no one like us when we are gone, but then there is no one like anyone else, ever. When people die, they cannot be replaced. They leave holes that cannot be filled, for it is the fate — the genetic and neural fate — of every human being to be a unique individual, to find his own path, to live his own life, to die his own death.
I cannot pretend I am without fear. But my predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved; I have been given much and I have given something in return; I have read and traveled and thought and written. I have had an intercourse with the world, the special intercourse of writers and readers.
Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and adventure. – Oliver Sacks
Hat tip: Not PC
There’s hope for the young – the left has lost Generation Y:
BBC Radio 4 recently broadcast a programme entitled Is this generation right?. It was based on a 2013 study by Ipsos Mori which examined the generational differences in attitudes towards the UK benefits system. According to the study, ‘Generation Y [18- to 30-year-olds] is more likely… to believe the role of the state should be more focused on providing opportunities and less on managing the risks individuals face. This suggests that Generation Y is a more individualist generation than the others, more concerned with personal independence and opportunity.’
Putting aside the rather trite conclusion that views on welfare alone mark the difference between left and right, the findings of this survey do raise an important issue: the inability of the modern left to engage with Generation Y. While, in times past, being left-wing was bound up with ideas of opportunity and social mobility, the left’s present incarnations have patronised and alienated ambitious young people. Policies implying that young people are incapable of self sufficiency, and are in need of constant guidance, vigilance and support have suffocated a generation. . .
The cotton-woolling and we-know-best might work when people don’t think for themselves.
But once they start thinking independently and working to achieve their ambitions they realise that isn’t helping them up but holding them back.
Young people who are doing it for themselves don’t want the government to get in their way as those on the left inevitably do.
Hat Tip: Not PC
A joint record of $55,000 in this season’s bull sales has been achieved by North Otago Angus breeders Neil and Rose Sanderson.
Fossil Creek Hero H006 was purchased by Tangihau Station, near Gisborne, at the Sandersons’ recent on-farm sale at Ngapara.
Earlier this month, a Hereford bull from David and Rosemary Morrow’s Okawa stud, near Mt Somers, also sold for $55,000 to the Kokonga stud at Tuakau. . .
You know, years ago when this blog first started, we had a discussion about property rights in fish, large and small, and talked about property rights as a way both to save the oceans, and to de-politicise them.
The solution to the imminent and watery Tragedy of the Commons represented by whale-harvesting and out of control fishing is similar to the problem solved by nineteenth century cattlemen by the imperfect means of branding, and eventually by the invention of barbed wire. It is one of recognising and legally protecting the property right in these animals.
And no, it’s not easy to protect property rights in big fish, but then there was a time when it wasn’t easy to protect property rights in cattle either, particularly on America’s great plains. But that was before barbed wire.
Branding and barbed wire were inventions that allowed the cattlemen to identify “their cattle” and to ask the law for its protection for them. The solution for those who wish to protect “their whales” is essentially the same — a technological advance that allows them to identify to themselves and others which whales are theirs, and which therefore have the full protection of law. . .
Taranaki sheep and beef farmers Robin and Jacqueline Blackwell have always taken pride in their property. That pride was publically recognised at this year’s Ballance Farm Environment Awards.
The couple took home four awards: the Beef + Lamb New Zealand livestock award, Hill Laboratories harvest award, Donaghys stewardship award and the Taranaki Regional Council sustainability award.
Blackwells farm Mangaotea, a 658ha mainly flat to rolling sheep and beef property at Tariki, north east of Stratford. It sits at 200-300m above sea level and averages 1800mm of rain annually. Mangaotea is about 20 minutes drive from the base of Mt Taranaki and includes some steeper ridges. It winters 11,300 stock units, with a cattle to sheep ratio of 90:10. The main focus is producing bulls for an annual September sale on the property and grazing young dairy stock for long-term clients. . .
Plant & Food Research’s Alistair Jerrett and the team involved in the Precision Seafood Harvesting (PSH) programme had several reasons to celebrate at last night’s second annual KiwiNet Research Commercialisation Awards. Mr Jerrett’s 30-year career as an innovator and entrepreneur within the New Zealand seafood industry saw him collect the coveted Researcher Entrepreneur Award, before he and his team also collected the People’s Choice Award and runner up in the BNZ Supreme Award category.
The awards, held at Auckland’s Viaduct Event Centre last night was attended by around 250 people from throughout the research, business and investment sectors, including politicians Hon. Steven Joyce, Nikki Kaye and Grant Robertson, and New Zealander of the year Sir Ray Avery. The annual awards aim to bring together the people and technologies changing the research commercialisation landscape in New Zealand. . .
Crown Research Institute, Plant and Food Research has bred a new variety of pear which will be grown in Australia.
The fruit has been released by Prevar, a joint venture between Pipfruit New Zealand, Apple and Pear Australia and Plant and Food.
A Prevar spokesperson said the new cultivar combined characteristics from European, Japanese and Chinese pears, which gave it a crisp, juicy texture. . . .
Beef + Lamb New Zealand CEO, Dr Scott Champion pressed home the need for comprehensive tariff elimination in the Trans Pacific partnership during a visit to the United States last week.
Dr Champion met with the leadership of several major US trade and farming associations, including Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s US counterparts, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the American Sheep Industry Association, as well as state and federal government agencies, members of the US Congress, and US and New Zealand businesses. . .
(BusinessDesk) – Comvita, which makes health-care products and supplements based on honey, has lifted the cash component of its takeover offer for New Zealand Honey, the Timaru-based honey produce owned by the New Zealand Honey Producers Cooperative that operates the Hollands Honey, 3 Bees and Sweet Meadow brands.
The purchase price will now comprise $10.3 million in cash and $2 million Comvita shares issued at $3.50 apiece, Comvita said in a statement. The deal had originally been for $7.3 million of cash and $5 million of shares. The NZX-listed company last traded at $3.80. . . .