September 2017

The Weekender 29/09/2017

Welcome along, we are a day early because I'll be away tomorrow for a wedding.


Sport

The All Blacks play Argentina away later this weekend and although they have made a number of changes they should still have a strong team.
Jamie Joseph was named as the new head coach of the Japanese Super rugby team, the Sunwolves, taking over from fellow kiwi Filo Tiatia. And Brad Thorn has been named as the coach for the Queensland Reds after Nick Stiles was sacked with just four wins for the season.
In the NPC Northland beat Otago 32-30 in a close game. Last weekend Taranaki jumped to second with a 48-17 thrashing of Hawke's Bay.

Joseph Parker won his title fight last weekend against Hughie Fury on a points decision, where one judge ruled it even and the other two very much in Parker's favour. Parker knew he had done well but wasn't sure since the ref and contender were all at home.

Shane Bond has been asked to join England's Ashes coaching team as the bowling coach - he says it is pretty humbling.

The NZ Breakers have continued an impressive pre-season with an 83-67 win over the Brisbane Bullets.

Another NZer has come second in a major motor racing championship with Marcus Armstrong finished second in the German Formula 4 Championship, but Mad Mike Whiddett has won the latest round of the Formula Drift Japan.

Team New Zealand announced the rules for the next America's Cup today - with breathtaking speed compared to the last event which almost bankrupt TNZ before they could mount a challenge (by design?). It will be 75-foot monohulls and there are nationality rules with 20% from one country and strict criteria for others.


NZ News

Lorde has won the 2017 ARPA Silver Scroll Award for her song Green Light.

So the election was last weekend, and if you were interested you've probably already checked the results but we still don't know who will lead the next government yet and probably won't for a few weeks. The election night results had National at 46%, Labour 35.8%, New Zealand First 7.5%, Greens 5.9% and ACT at 0.5% (in because they won a seat in Epsom). This is the smallest number of parties in government since MMP began, with TOP reach 2.2% and the Maori Party 1.1% but not winning any Maori seats.
There have been suggestions that the Greens should support National to take New Zealand First (and Winston Peters) out of the equation, but assuming the Greens aren't interested in actually doing anything (even if they get in they'll be hamstrung by NZF), that leaves Winston Peters as the kingmaker and he is waiting until the special votes are counted by October 7th. Then he'll decide whether to talk to National or Labour + Greens.

There were tears as the Maori Party MPs left parliament with co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell stepping down as a leader and leaving politics. Sir John Key said the result was an emphatic one and a victory for Bill English, while Labour leader Jacinda Ardern was confident of a Labour, Greens, NZ First government.
While National is considered to be supported by farmers, one of the strongest showings for the party was in Auckland where support averaged 48.7%.

So we don't really know what will happen. It would seem grossly unfair for Labour to lead the next government when they got 10% less support than National, but that would be MMP. I can't see a Labour + Greens + NZ First government being stable.


Finance NZ Dollar

(Six days)
GBP 0.5376 (-0.0021)
EUR 0.6127 (0.0013)
USD 0.7210 (-0.0103)
AUD 0.9202 (0.0007)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Te Rangi Hiroa / Peter Buck
Aotearoa Anthropologist
Te Rangi Hiroa/Sir Peter Buck’s achievements are astonishing for their diversity, reading more like a list of possible careers than a biography – a pioneering and internationally renowned anthropologist, the first Maori medical doctor, a politician, administrator, soldier, sportsperson and leader of the Maori people. Through exploring the Maori/Pakeha cross-cultural advantages of his birth, and exercising a scientific rigour that was largely self-taught, Peter Buck extended the edges of knowledge.His honorary doctorate from the University of Hawaii recognised his “Contribution to the knowledge of mankind” and likewise his honorary doctorate from Yale University lauded him as:
“First among those who know the peoples and cultures of the Polynesian world, medical doctor, warrior, ethnologist, author and poet, you have brought many races of people to greater understanding and peace.”
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/peter-buck-post/


Joke of the Weekender

I told my girlfriend she drew her eyebrows too high. She seemed surprised.


 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 23/09/2017

Election night!


Sport

Last weekend the Super rugby continued with the All Blacks shaping up for their biggest game of the season against the fired-up Springboks. Well, it didn't quite turn out like that with the All Blacks kicking off to a 57-0 win - the biggest margin over South Africa. The Wallabies got their first Rugby Championship points with a come from behind 45-20 win over Argentina.
In NPC Canterbury headed to Wellington with a strong 5-0 win record, but Wellington ignored that and destroyed them 60-14. Otago had a win over Auckland, leaving Auckland with five losses from seven games and already facing possible relegation. This weekend Canterbury got back on track with a 41-28 win over North Harbour in a top of the table clash. Waikato lost to Wellington 10-34.

Lydia Ko had a bit of a slip up at the end but finished third at the Evian Championship.

The NZ Breakers have been doing well in the pre-season. In their latest game, they beat Melbourne 88-86 in Hawkes Bay.

Scott Dixon couldn't quite finish off his season with a bang, losing out to Josef Newgarden for the Indycar title.
Mitch Evans has been confirmed as a driver for the Jaguar Racing team for Formula E in the 2017-18 season.

Team New Zealand have started announcing details of the next America's Cup, starting by announcing a return to monohulls.


NZ News

A digger looking for Kauri logs damaged a critical fuel pipeline, which burst on Thursday causing fuel shortages at Auckland airport and some other places. Some flights were cancelled and others were redirected.

The final week of electioneering focused on Labour's urban-rural divide. National pointed out the divide, while farmers mounted a protest in Labour leader Jacinda Ardern's hometown of Morrinsville. Ardern played down the impact of the water tax, while PM Bill English indicated that National was committed to doing more for the environment - he quoted a farmer who said: "it's hard to be green when you're in the red". Just before the final leaders debate the latest polls came out with a big jump for National to 46% with Labour falling seven points to 37%, NZ First was on the edge of dropping out at 5%, Greens rising to 8%. In other bad news for Ardern, she had dropped in the preferred Prime Minister poll to 31%. The leader's debate wasn't a huge result for either leader, but generally, Bill English was deemed to win.
I won't be giving much in way of results tonight but with 22% of the vote counted, National is on 46.2% with Labour on 36.2%, NZ First 7.1%, Green Party 6.2%, TOP 2%, Maori 1.1%, ACT 0.5% with 1 seat.


The Numbers Game

5.8: Richter scale earthquake  near Invercargill followed by a 5.0 in Wellington one hour later
226: houses across Stratford without power after thunderstorms hammered the country last weekend, heavy rain and flooding at Mosgiel and Oamaru
1,271: mm of rain for Hamilton Airport - the highest Jan - Sept level since records began in 1935 - many locations have had more than their annual rainfall already
1.3m: $ clean up from vandalism on Auckland trains - not helped by a gang of professional Aussie taggers who came over specifically to damage the trains (so many questions... "professional"?)


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5397 (-0.0037)
EUR 0.6114 (0.0038)
USD 0.7313 (0.0086)
AUD 0.9195 (0.0154)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Colin McCahon
“McCahon was the artist who gave New Zealand a powerful visual identity and for that he is revered in his homeland. That he went further, to explore and communicate through the medium of painting the universal questions and concerns of humanity, is why we, in other parts of the world, must recognise him as a great modern Master.”
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/colin-mccahon/


Joke of the Weekender

A judge tells the defendant, “You’re charged with attacking your boss with a hammer.”
“You jerk!” yells a voice from the back of the courtroom.
“You’re also charged with attacking a bartender with a hammer,” says the judge.
“Jerrrrkkkk!” bellows the same man.
“Sir,” says the judge, “one more outburst, and I’ll charge you with contempt.”
“I’m sorry, Your Honor,” says the man. “But I’ve been this jerk’s neighbour for ten years, and every time I asked to borrow a hammer, he said he didn’t have one.”


Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos https://picasaweb.google.com/dunwich42

 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz

The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)

Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/

{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 16/09/2017

Hello, we are a bit earlier than normal this week. I'm popping down to Wellington this afternoon and back tomorrow morning.


Sport

Canterbury continues to set the standard in NPC rugby, so it will take something special to wrest the Ranfurly Shield from them. This weekend was Counties Manukau's turn but they didn't come close losing 78-5.
Last weekend in the Rugby Championship, South Africa bounced back from being 20-10 down against Australia to draw 23-23. It will be a good challenge for the All Blacks tonight against South Africa.

This weekend Scott Dixon has the chance to claim another Indycar series. He is sitting second by a few points but the final round is double points and he's on roll with a couple of second placings in a tight competition. As long as he beats the current series leader he should do it.
Joining him next year will be Brendon Hartley who was looking for a new drive after Porsche decided to withdraw their winning team from the World Endurance Championship.

Still with cars, last week Hayden Paddon was stood down from his Hyundai WRC rally team after they signed Andreas Mikkelsen. Paddon did well in his first season but hasn't done quite so well this year.

Earlier this week in netball the Silver Ferns again took on the English Roses and lost 49-46.

Kiwi golfer Ryan Fox has had a top 10 finish at the European Masters in Switzerland this week, ending up in a tie for ninth.
Last weekend Lydia Ko was looking for her first win of the season but slipped back to finish second.


NZ News

I bet you weren't expecting to start with a non-political story just a week out from the election, but here we go. Google Street View has now included a tour of White Island - although it is still recommended you do the real thing for the sights sounds and smells! www.whakatane.com/google-streetview

I've been through all the news except for politics and there is still a huge number of stories. Sigh. Only a week to go.

The talk this week has been all about Labour's Tax policies. National started a tongue in cheek campaign titled "Let's tax this". Winston Peters has attacked Labour telling them to front up on their tax plans. and there are questions about how Labour will pay $5b for Auckland's trams. The Green's James Shaw attacked Winston Peters over his attacks on Labour, and an interview with Winston Peters made it very clear he has absolutely no way to pay for what he has promised - perhaps it's a great day to be a minor party. Prime Minister Bill English laughed at Labour leader Jacinda Ardern after she said she would renegotiate the free trade deal with South Korea - when she voted for it at the time. The Federated Farmers protested Labour's promised new taxes in her hometown of Morrinsville. At the end of the week, Labour backed down on some taxes saying they would delay any implementation from the tax working group until after the 2020 election. So after nine years in opposition, they want to take the next three not even doing anything just to figure out what to do?
National said they would double their Home Start grant for first-time home buyers, and $13m for farmers to adopt more environmentally friendly methods. The Greens announced a Kiwi Climate Fund.

So on to the polls - which have been a bit topsy-turvy. Last week Labour was on a roll, passing National and heading up. At the start of this week, the "stardust" around Jacinda had settled and National bounced back to 47% in a Newshub Reid Research poll with Labour dropping to 37.8%. The 1New Colmar Brunton poll later in the week had both Labour and National up one to 44% and 40% respectively, New Zealand First down three to 6% and the Greens up two to 7%.

Kind of irrelevant but if Chinese voters had their way, National would have 71.1% of the vote!


The Numbers Game

10: places improvement for the All Whites in the latest FIFA rankings - but they are still outside the top 100
530,000: $ fraud against the Hastings District Council by 60-year-old woman Opal Taylor, who pled guilty this week in court
2.5m: $ meth bust by the Police in Hawke's Bay for the regions biggest


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5434 (-0.0096)
EUR 0.6076 (0.0030)
USD 0.7227 (-0.0056)
AUD 0.9041 (0.0026)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Arthur Lydiard
Arthur Lydiard invented jogging. 
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/endurance/arthur-lydiard/


Joke of the Weekender

• Couch = People Shelf
• Books = Manual Films
• Bracelets = Clockless Watches
• Air Horn = Spray Scream
• Bottled Water = Snowman Blood
• Feather = Bird Leaf


 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 09/09/2017

It's been a bit wet, but we are into spring and the weather is very random.


Sport

The Rugby Championship took a break last weekend, while the NPC rolled on. Last weekend Tasman held off Waikato 31-29, while Auckland's season sank further with a 57-10 thrashing by unbeaten North Harbour. This weekend the BOP Steamers beat the Manawatu 20-17 and Taranaki beat Auckland 49-38 meaning Auckland almost already can't make the semis as they sit second to last.
The All Blacks have just beaten Argentina 39-22 after Argentina put up a good fight until the All Blacks pulled away in the last 20 minutes.

Lydia Ko hasn't been doing too well over the last year or two but this weekend she is leading the latest LPGA Tour event in Indianapolis.

The Silver Ferns had an awesome game last weekend when they beat Australia 57-47, and then later in the week, they pulled away to beat England 62-55.

The Warriors fans are worried. They've had to put up with a dreadful season but never before has the Warriors support slipped so badly. Even the new Warrior signings of Adam Blair and Gerard Beale haven't helped. Some have called this season the Warriors worst ever as they finished with a 28-16 loss to the Wests Tigers for their ninth in a row. They finished up 13th on the table.

Scott Dixon made championship ground when he finished second at Watkins Glen last weekend.


NZ News

Labour announced some new tenancy rights this week - rights that would make things a lot more difficult for tenants. National announced a crackdown on gangs, drugs and giving police new search powers. National's Steven Joyce claimed that Labour's spending plans left a $11.7b hole in the budget. National mostly got slammed with claims that it was accounted for - but the reason for the claim was because for some weird reason Labour accounted for certain ongoing costs, completely different to everyone else in the world. National announced a $72m plan to get young beneficiaries into work. Labour leader Jacinda Ardern had to fend off an article from The Wall Street Journal which compared her to Donald Trump. Winston Peters was attacked by some funny vandals who very tidily changed his sign saying "Had Enough", adding "I've" in front and "Whiskey" after. Peters twice this week reverted to things he's tried before. Firstly attacking Labour for stealing his policy to re-establish the NZ Forestry Service, and also coming up with the Gold Card part 2.
There was an interesting article comparing National and Labour's education policy and they gave a nice summary. National's main goal is lifting student achievement, particularly in reading, writing and maths. Labour is focused at the other end of education proposing three years of free tertiary education.
BusinessNZ has attacked Labour's climate plan pointing out that (like a number of Labour's policies) it is light on detail, with National saying it will hit the regions hard.

There have been various polls this week National 43.3, Labour 39.4. Another had National at 39 with Labour up to 43, and a final one had National at 34 with Labour at 37.

Ten months after the mammoth earthquake on the Kaikoura Coast, the first rail services will begin next Friday.


The Numbers Game

1,000: slips in Wellington over a wet winter
1,794: lightning strikes in NZ over 24 hours
300,000: $ worth of bee hives stolen in Western Bay recently.


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5530 (-0.0004)
EUR 0.6046 (0.0020)
USD 0.7283 (0.0119)
AUD 0.9015 (0.0008)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Harold Williams
New Zealander Harold Williams was listed by the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s greatest linguist. He is said to have spoken over 58 languages fluently, as well as some of their dialects. Among these were Swahili, Hausa and Zulu. This amazing polyglot was said to “read grammars as others read detective stories”. He was the foreign editor of The Times; described as the “the most brilliant foreign correspondent” his generation had known, he “knew everyone and everything … and was always at the point of greatest interest and risk.” Williams’ editorials on foreign affairs were regarded as the authoritative version. His personal qualities and his expansive knowledge, particularly of Russian affairs, led to associations with some of the most influential people of the time, from statesman to writers such as H.G. Wells and Hugh Walpole (also born in New Zealand).
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/harold-williams/


Joke of the Weekender

A scientist tells a pharmacist, “Give me some prepared tablets of acetylsalicylic acid.”
“Do you mean aspirin?” asks the pharmacist.
The scientist slaps his forehead. “That’s it!” he says. “I can never remember the name.”


Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos https://picasaweb.google.com/dunwich42

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}

The Weekender 02/09/2017

Hey, everyone, we've had some nice days and some wet days and I started a new job on Friday (well same work for the same company but full-time, not contracting).


Sport

Last weekend saw the second Bledisloe Cup match, and if you just watched the last 30 minutes of the first game and the first part of the second game, you might well be under the impression that Australian rugby was a long long way ahead of the All Blacks, but the All Blacks came back from 0-17 down in the first 15 minutes, and Beauden Barrett scored in the last two minutes for an All Blacks win 35-29. That is the Bledisloe safe for another year - and a good start to the Rugby Championship. The most interesting thing I find is the difference in the coaching boxes. Typical Steve Hansen is pretty even, maybe a little excited with a try. But Wallabies coach Michael Chieka is a different story, the anger he shows when the slightest thing goes wrong is amazing - even if the ref has already awarded a penalty. There just isn't a need to get angry when you get a penalty.
In other games, South Africa beat Argentina 41-23.
The Black Ferns have won the Women's Rugby World Cup, beating England 41-32 in the final last weekend. It was a great game and in many ways better than the All Blacks vs Australia game.

The Silver Ferns have been in action in the Quad series and needed a strong second half to beat South Africa 63-56. However, they failed against England, losing 49-45.

Lisa Carrington continued her dominance in the K1 200 winning by over half a second and finishing with a five-medal haul at the canoe sprint world champs in the Czech Republic. Actually, I think the news headline about the five-medal haul is wrong. She has won the title five times, but NZ finished with two golds, a silver and a bronze.

The Warriors have equalled their worst ever losing streak with a golden point loss to the Sea Eagles 22-21.

Chris Wood made an impact at his new club Burnley when he scored a stoppage time equaliser. Then with no time to celebrate, he jumped on a plane for international duties, where he starred for the All Whites, scoring the first two of six goals against the Solomon Islands in a World Cup qualifier. The All Whites won 6-1.

Scott Dixon has come second at Gateway Motorsports Park, but the winner has extended his series lead over Dixon.


NZ News

Sorry but as the election looms there is lots of political news! Rodney Hide wrote an interesting article about how not even Labour knows what it's tax policies are - we just know there will be lots of new taxes. National announced a $379m education policy which would allow every child the chance of speaking a second language. Winston Peters had some trouble this week when it came to light that he had been overpaid for his superannuation. As soon as he was told, he immediately paid it back so there isn't any suggestion of wrong-doing - well, other than him claiming superannuation while being paid an MP's wage. But he was certainly up in arms accusing mostly National of leaking the information - without a shred of evidence as is typical for him. Bill English made the claim that NZers aren't an ATM for the Labour Party - but we might well end up being just that. National has promised to extend paid parental leave from 18 to 22 weeks. Labour leader Jacinda Ardern may have learnt from Helen Clark by buying student votes with a $2b tertiary plan including a $50 boost to student allowances and phasing in free education. An interesting article this week talked about what Helen Clark did to buy her third term, stating that the student vote buying, cost a huge amount and did nothing positive - and this "plan" is probably very similar. Bill English announced the rollout of ultrafast broadband to another 190 towns and rural areas at a cost of $270m - completing the UFB network two years ahead of schedule in 2022. I'm not sure if he was trying to be ironic, but Labour MP Grant Robertson came out swinging, blasting National for making big money policy announcements - has he not been reading the Labour news feed? National announced another $70m for pest eradication and the Green Party announced their plan for healthy rivers, learning from Labour and putting a nitrate pollution "levy" on dairy farmers to pay for river a clean-up. Apparently, market gardens are far worse at leaching nitrates but there is no word whether the Greens would tax - ahem "levy" others or just the typical National fan base.
Potentially the biggest news of the week was that just before the first TVNZ leaders debate a poll was released that put Labour ahead of National - however, those results were different to internal polling for both the National and Labour parties.


The Numbers Game

51: % of kiwis polled didn't want Winston Peters in a high-ranking government roll
79.4: mm of rain in for Tauranga over Monday night - stunning weather experts
534: candidates are up for election, from 16 political parties.


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5534 (-0.0090)
EUR 0.6026 (-0.0074)
USD 0.7164 (-0.0059)
AUD 0.9007 (-0.0115)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Joseph Nathan
Glaxo Founder 
Glaxo SmithKline, the largest pharmaceutical group in the world, had its origins in a place far removed from the centres of world commerce: a dairy creamery in Bunnythorpe, near Palmerston North, and a general trading company started in Wellington, New Zealand in 1873.
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/joseph-nathan/


Joke of the Weekender

My friend called me in hysterics. “I just saw a mouse in my kitchen!” she yelled. “I’m so grossed out! It’s so disgusting!”
“What are you going to do?” I asked.
“I’m not sure. But you can bet I’ll never eat the stuff I drop on the floor anymore.”


Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos https://picasaweb.google.com/dunwich42

 

Darren Harrison: darren@harrison.gen.nz
The Weekender: mailed weekly (Sunday nightish)
Website: www.dunwich.co.nz/weekender/
{If these just fill up your junk mail, then send me an email & I'll take you off the list | The Weekender is not a verified news source, sometimes it's even just an opinion}