February 2018

The Weekender 17/02/2018

Welcome along. I am going to skip next week due to a massive (surprise) party. Well, some sort of surprise party anyway.


Sport

In the Brisbane Global Tens, the Blues beat the Hurricanes for the title. The Chiefs would have felt rightly aggrieved after they had two very dodgy calls against them resulting in tries in their knockout game against the Reds.

The Black Caps have been in action as the Twenty20 tri-series continued. Firstly against England where Kane Williamson hit 72 to lead NZ to a 12 run win. In the second game this week the Black Caps played Australia in Auckland and chose to bat first, hitting an amazing 243-6 with a ton from Martin Guptill, but Australia took apart rookie bowler Ben Wheeler and put together a record run chase to win by five wickets.

There is another kiwi doing well in the UFC with Israel Adesanya in the middleweight, knocking out Australian Rob Wilkinson with a TKO in the second round.

Lydia Ko started well briefly leading the LPGA in Australia before slipped back to third. She has recently replaced her coach and caddy.

Haydon Paddon has done well in the WRC Rally of Sweden winning a couple of stages and finishing third in a 1-2-3 for Hyundai.


NZ News

Kiwi technology pops up in all sorts of places and this time it's a new technique for detecting DNA when there are multiple contributors in one sample. The system called STRmix was used in America for a breakthrough in a brutal triple murder investigation in Florida last year.

In Auckland, they were mopping up after 55mm in 14 hours hit town, but for most of this week its been all about the humidity with 99% joining the 28 degree days. After only 13 days of February, northern parts of Auckland had already registered their wettest February on record.

The government has released a report claiming a "sobering" stocktake on housing found homelessness was worse than thought, but a property expert has claimed it is simply a political argument and they are just diverting the focus in a way that is unreasonable and amplifies the homeless figures.

The defence minister Ron Mark has switched his views and expressed support for the NZ deployment to Iraq where he previously called them cowards.
The Green Party won't be happy after it's likely they will have to support the so-called "Waka Jumping" bill because they didn't raise it during coalition negotiations. They have been very opposed to it in the past, but the government simply doesn't have the numbers without the Greens.

The devastating news of the week was that Bill English has stood down as leader of the National Party. He obviously had the financial credentials to lead the country and I think he had the ability for huge long-term improvements for those worse off socially - without destroying our financial stability. He decided over the summer holidays that his 27 years in politics were enough. Many many politicians from New Zealand and across the world had positive things to say about English - except most gallingly the one person who stopping him winning the last election - Winston Peters, who said some horrid and incoherent stuff. Amy Adams, Judith Collins, and Simon Bridges have lined up as potential replacements.


The Numbers Game

6: people died on the roads in a horror 24 hours last weekend
15: years after Sir Peter Black was murdered, one of the fugitive pirates involved has been captured
50: people had died on our roads by 13th Feb, ten above last year
556: days spent fighting suspicious fires over the last eight years
50,000: $ for one lucky fan who took a stunning one-handed catch off a six at the Black Caps game
1.2m: $ of cocaine resulted in eight years jail for a Portuguese national.


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5259 (0.0049)
EUR 0.5932 (0.0031)
USD 0.7403 (0.0173)
AUD 0.9322 (0.0045)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Ernest Godward
Inventive Entrepreneur
An innovator of many talents. During the 1930s he was a leading world expert on the internal combustion engine. He built power tools, eggbeaters, burglar-proof windows and hairpins. He was a champion sportsman, a fine musician and a talented painter – Ernest Godward was a brilliant over-achiever.http://www.nzedge.com/legends/ernest-godward/


Joke of the Weekender

I've found a job helping a one-armed typist do capital letters.
It's shift work.

 

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 10/02/2018

Welcome along. I think after the hot weather we are starting to do what the Aussies do. On Friday I switched from summer clothing (t-shirt & shorts) to winter clothing (+jersey & slippers) just because the temperature was low 20's with rain. Well at least for half an hour.


Sport

The Hamilton Sevens went well last weekend with a good crowd dressed up and behaving themselves. As the newspaper article said, "the inaugural Hamilton Sevens sold out yet again" (do newspapers not have editors anymore?). NZ topped their pool but got knocked out in the semis and Fiji went on to win the tournament, beating South Africa 24-17 in the final.
It looks like Queensland's Global Tens rugby tournament isn't being supported very well in Queensland, and there is more talk of it moving to New Zealand. I'm not sure why they say global though, it's mostly NZ & Australian teams, but like last year NZ teams are the ones to beat. The Blues are unbeaten in Pool A, the Chiefs are unbeaten in Pool B and the Crusaders are unbeaten in Pool C.

The Black Caps lost to Australia in their opening Twenty20 match at Melbourne after some rain and Duckworth Lewis calculations.

The NZ Breakers booked their semi-final spot in the ANBL, with a hard-fought 88-84 win over the Illawarra Hawks.
Stephen Adams and the Oklahoma City Thunder broke their run of losses with a good 125-105 win over the defending champions the Golden State Warriors.
Perhaps unrelated (?) but Basketball has overtaken Football as measured by Secondary School Participants.

Team New Zealand won the top award at the Halberg Awards this year. Lisa Carrington won the Sportswoman of the year, with Tom Walsh picking up Sportsman of the year. Team New Zealand won the team of the year and Rob Waddell was inducted into the Hall of Fame.


NZ News

The weather changed from dry to wet this week and it doesn't happen very often but the rain caused two deaths after three young people were swept down a river in Auckland's Waitakere Ranges. On Waitangi Day, Gisborne reached 28C, but after the Southern Alps had a dusting of snow, Gore had a high of 12C. Northland had their hottest January since records began in 1909.

This week has seen two streams of political news. The first around the Government's attendance at the Waitangi Day celebrations. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern somehow managed to be there for five days and got lots of good press, but there are lots of unanswered questions. It seems the government isn't really focused on settling Waitangi claims - in fact, 9 years of the previous Labour government settled hardly any claims compared to 9 years of National government. And now Ardern is saying she is focusing on jobs, housing and infrastructure - which isn't related to Waitangi commitments.

The other stream of political news was a constant barrage of presumably left-leaning reporting that Bill English was about to be rolled as leader of the National Party. Everyone tagged as a replacement has come out in support of English staying long term. And toward the end of the week, Bill came out swinging on a couple of issues. Firstly about charter schools which the Education Minister Chris Hipkins has said all need to be closed down. The issue here (other than the 1300 students they serve) is that Labour's deputy leader Kelvin Davis said he would resign if two of the Maori chart schools in Northland closed down, and other Labour MPs have supported the schools in the past as well. English said closing the doors was "nasty and vindictive, and the victims will be the kids".

Bill English has also said that National will reach out to New Zealand First and the Green Party to advance areas of common interest.


The Numbers Game

0: days off school in five years of secondary school for Fairfield College student Jarrod Neill-Woodd
10,000: $ for each Black Ferns player as back pay for their successful 2017 season


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5210 (0.0040)
EUR 0.5901 (0.0019)
USD 0.7230 (-0.0110)
AUD 0.9277 (0.0071)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Peter Jackson
Once upon a time – in fact only a generation ago – the likelihood of anyone even making a feature film here in New Zealand was laughably remote. The prospect of a Kiwi film director creating a huge worldwide smash hit seemed utterly impossible.
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/peter-jackson/


Joke of the Weekender

My friend asked me to help him round up his 37 sheep.
I said "40."

 

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 03/02/2018

Hello to a lovely kind of long weekend here, with Waitangi Day on Tuesday.


Sport

The Rugby Seven's has hit Hamilton, but last weekend both the men's & women's team lost out to Australia in Sydney. The All Blacks Sevens started well with a 52-7 win over France in their first match, and they continued with a 24-5 win over Scotland.
The Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd has signed a deal with Northampton Saints - He claimed he hasn't spoken to Steve Hansen in three years. Chiefs and Taranaki centre Charlie Ngatai has confirmed he is heading to France and All Blacks and Crusaders winger Seta Tamanivalu is heading to France as well.
South African coach Allister Coetzee has left his role as coach of the Springboks.

The Silver Ferns continued their run of losses to Australia, losing 67-48 meaning they are unlikely to defend their Quad Series title.

In the final Twenty20 against Pakistan, Pakistan won by 18 runs to win the series 2-1.
On the second day of the IPL auction, Trent Boult picked up a contract for $470,000 and Mitchell Santner was picked up for $107,000, while Tim Southee went for $214,000.

The NZ Breakers remained on track for the ANBL playoffs after beating the Hawks 77-73.


NZ News

We started the week with threats of record temperatures. Countdown sold 18% more water than usual, sold lots of ice and sales of fans were more than 10% higher than last year and Ice cream sales were up 20%. But the week ended with massive storms heading up the country, although while coastal towns were getting hammered, parts of Canterbury were burning in dry conditions. There were plenty of photos and videos from Dunedin, Wellington, Auckland and West Coast of waves from the king tide breaking over roads (and any cars that happened to be going past). The final figures were that January was the hottest NZ month in 150 years. Around 115 people were trapped in their cars overnight near Fox Glacier, and 700 people in Haast were trapped with closed roads.

The Greens have promised to behave having been given a seat on the Intelligence and Security committee - an unbelievable thing to happen just a week after one of their MPs was protesting at the Waihopai spy base.
The Green Party bill for medicinal cannabis went down in its first reading 73-47 in a conscience vote. The vote came a day after the Labour party's own medicinal cannabis bill went through the first reading. The difference was Labour's bill was for the terminally ill, and the Green's bill was for the chronically ill.

A report that was commissioned by National has found only weak evidence that a sugar tax would improve health.

While right-leaning Mike Hosking has given Jacinda Ardern's government a high mark for her first 100 days, Bill English pointed out that the first 100 days have been marked by policy backflips and the creation of 10 inquiries and working groups, which is the hallmark of a weak and confused government.
"He said the Government had overseen a large fall in business confidence, failed to set meaningful targets for action on child poverty and done away with the social investment approach that would have delivered real improvements in the lives of New Zealanders.
The child poverty reduction targets of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern included a goal to reduce poverty by 100,000 on one measure (before housing costs) within 10 years – whereas National during the election campaign had promised the same level of reduction in one term of Government."


The Numbers Game

11: kg snapper for a surfer who just grabbed it with his hands
44.5: % support for National - the same as election night, Labour has increased to 42.3%, NZ First has dropped to 3.8%, Greens steady on 6%
150: fines for people breaching freedom camping rules in Tauranga and the Western Bay of Plenty
21.8m: $ deficit for Waikato DHB


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5170 (-0.0005)
EUR 0.5882 (-0.0026)
USD 0.7340 (-0.0007)
AUD 0.9206 (0.0117)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Tex Morton
New Zealander Tex Morton lived a life of breath-taking achievement. He attained fortune and huge international fame in several careers: a recording star (300 songs), singer-songwriter, stage artist (touring sensation in North America, Europe, Australasia), circus entrepreneur, best-selling comic writer, Hollywood screen actor, and with a Doctorate from McGill University, a world authority and renowned performer of hypnotherapy.
http://www.nzedge.com/legends/tex-morton/


Joke of the Weekender

I bought the world's worst thesaurus yesterday. Not only is it terrible, it's terrible.

 

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}