December 2019

The Weekender 14/12/2019

Hello, I will be taking a break from the Weekender over Christmas and New Year, and I've got a holiday in January as well, so the Weekender may be a bit intermittent, but I'll do catch-ups when I can.


Sport

The Black Caps are now in Australia and in the middle of a day/night test match but aren't finding things as easy as they did against England.

At the annual NZ Rugby awards, Ardie Savea has been named the New Zealand rugby player of the year.
Ian Foster has been named as the new All Blacks coach. The former AB's assistant coach had been shoulder tapped by the previous coach, but there was strong competition from Crusaders coach Scott Robertson.

New Zealand basketball has named Tall Blacks legend Pero Cameron as the head coach.
The NZ Breakers on again-off again with Glen Rice Junior seems to be finished with the Breakers terminating his contract with immediate effect after he breached his bail conditions.

The recent track cycling world cup meet at the Cambridge velodrome saw NZ win five gold medals and eight total.


NZ News

The biggest news of the week was undoubtedly the eruption of White Island, with around 50 sightseers there. The boat left with nine people unaccounted for and presumed dead, and five of those who were evacuated were too injured to survive. Experts have said that the gas from an eruption could kill just by taking a single breath. Yesterday an elite army group launched a body recovery mission and retrieved the seven bodies they knew about, but there is one more on land and one in the water. The death toll from those who were immediately evacuated had also risen to eight.

The government was callous enough soon after the eruption, to try and slip a few big announcements through. They've decided that the Port of Auckland should move north. Also, the Health minister defended his 76 appointments to District Health Boards - including a chairman from Palmerston North (?) for West Coast who expects only to be needed for monthly or six-weekly meetings - clearly no idea. Labour had seemed like they wanted to revamp the idea of District Health Boards but presumably, now they are going to keep them around - stacked with their own people. National is vowing to bring back health targets and is contemplating the future of DHB's. 
The government talked more about their plan to bribe people to vote - I mean borrow to increase infrastructure spending, and they plan to borrow $19b over the next five years and spend $12b on infrastructure split across roading (ha!), rail, schools and healthcare. They expect the spending to increase the size of the economy by $10b over the next five years. See what they did there? That extra $2b must be to bribe NZ First into another government - either that or Labour can't count.
National leader Simon Bridges has accused the government of screwing up the economy after Treasury revealed that the economy would be going into a deficit next year. They are forecasting a $900m deficit - down from a $1.3b surplus. Treasury also expects $12b worth of surpluses over the next four years, but Labour is wasting that and borrowing more than twice as much!

A man was taken to Hastings hospital with critical injuries after he saved the life of a toddler when a car crossed onto the wrong side of a road in a hit & run. He pushed the pram to safety before being hit by the car.


The Numbers Game

5.3: magnitude earthquake struck 25 km south of Gisbourne
13: people died on the roads over last weekend (including Monday), a shocking weekend
1,000: people were stranded in Franz Josef after the wild weather resulted in roads north and south of the township being closed for up to a week


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.4953 (-0.0047)
EUR 0.5935 (-0.0002)
USD 0.6600 (0.0033)
AUD 0.9597 (-0.0002)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Sir Peter Snell
Famed New Zealand Olympic middle-distance runner Sir Peter Snell has died, age 80.
Sir Peter George Snell KNZM OBE (17 December 1938 – 12 December 2019) was a New Zealand middle-distance runner. He won three Olympic gold medals and is the only male since 1920 to have won the 800 and 1500 metres at the same Olympics, in 1964.

Snell had a relatively short career as a world-famous international sportsman, 1960-1965, yet achieved so much that he was voted New Zealand's "Sports Champion of the (20th) Century" and was one of 24 inaugural members of the International Association of Athletics Federations Hall Of Fame named in 2012. A protégé of the New Zealand athletics coach Arthur Lydiard, Snell is known for the three Olympic and two Commonwealth Games gold medals he won, and the several world records he set.
https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/sport/405484/olympic-middle-distance-runner-s...


Joke of the Weekender

Bob: "Holy schmoozes, I just fell off a 30 ft ladder."
Jim: "No way man, are you okay?"
Bob: "Yeah, luckily I was just on the first step."

 

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 07/12/2019

Welcome along, we are getting closer to the end of the year!


Sport

The Black Caps drew the second test and thus won the test match series against England. Australia is next.

The Wellington Phoenix won their second game in a row with a 1-2 win over Adelaide United.

The Silver Ferns have been awarded the Londsdale Cup from the New Zealand Olympic Committee in recognition of their World Cup success.

The NZ Breakers have un-indefinitely suspended American import, Glen Rice Jnr, putting him in the lineup against Cairns. Perhaps they found out some more details about the alleged assault. It didn't help them though losing 108-90.


NZ News

As we get closer to a year before the elections, it seems that PM Jacinda Ardern has learnt some lessons from former-PM Helen Clark with her last winning election - you can easily use other people's money to buy an election.
The party have abandoned the pre-election "Budget Responsibility Rules", and they are planning on borrowing billions for infrastructure projects - but didn't National do the same when they were in power? Yes, they did, but times were completely different. National did it during a global financial crisis and kept NZ's economy strong. Labour has blown a strong economy during a time of 'plenty' and is talking about borrowing near the end of an election term, and the way they've been spending (or perhaps the way NZ First has been spending) seems random and unnecessary.
Take for example this week's announcement and perhaps the first election bribe of $396 million for almost every school in the country for infrastructure. Firstly, I say almost, because the newly integrated Hamilton Christian School isn't on the list, and the Destiny Church school isn't there either, and the fully integrated Waipa Christian School doesn't get anything - they seem like targetted exceptions rather than random. Secondly, this is an example of random spending. The reason it is a bribe rather than useful spending is that the amount the schools get seems related to school size rather than need. Rich schools in Auckland are getting more than poor schools that could do with infrastructure spending. It gets worse. It is a "use it or lose it" deal. So that means the money will be wasted on stuff that isn't actually needed just to use it up.

The Police announced a data breach this week when legitimate access to the online platform allowed someone to see all gun owner details.

This week the government said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates over $50 to try and "protect New Zealand from foreign interference".

The Australian fires have been terrible, and aside from a faint orange haze over here, it has also been noticed that our glaciers are turning pink.

Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi has been accused of favouritism after he promised a long-time friend to help with an immigration case.


The Numbers Game

15: % increase on overseas prices with new rules where companies doing more than $60,000 worth of business in NZ must now charge GST
46: % for National in the latest One News poll meaning they could (with help from ACT) govern, Labour 39%, Green 7%, NZ First 4%, ACT 2%
9.6m: $ from the Government's Provincial slush fund to fully tarseal the Forgotten World Highway - such a shame


Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5000 (0.0035)
EUR 0.5937 (0.0112)
USD 0.6567 (0.0149)
AUD 0.9600 (0.0110)


The Weekender NZer of the week

Godfrey Bowen
With a history steeped in agriculture, it is natural that New Zealand’s farmers, shepherds and shearers have become known throughout the world for their skill and toughness. Many have travelled, to teach and work in foreign countries, but few have been invited to Buckingham Palace, appeared on late-night American television or been honoured by the leader of the Soviet Union. Only one: Godfrey Bowen.
https://www.nzedge.com/legends/endurance/godfrey-bowen/


Joke of the Weekender

Everybody knows 40 is the new 30, right? But the police officer giving me a speeding ticket couldn’t be persuaded.

 

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}