The Weekender 19/08/2017

Welcome to another week, a storm earlier in the week, lovely blue sky winters day on Wednesday & Friday, and another storm down south.


The All Blacks and the Wallabies open the Rugby Championship/Bledisloe Cup tonight in Sydney.
Provincial rugby has started with Taranaki holding off Waikato 34-29, after being well ahead with 15 minutes to go.

In other rugby, the Black Ferns beat Hong Kong 121-0 in their World Cup match in Dublin.

So New Zealand is still all about rugby in general, but the amount the players get is still tiny compared to football. All White Captain Chris Wood may stay at Leeds after getting a $21m offer, or someone might offer more. In contrast, Charles Piutau is set to become the highest-paid player with a 1m GPB offer from Bristol. Dan Carter is currently paid more, but his contract expires at the end of the new season.

Last weekend the Warriors hit their sixth defeat in a row, losing to the Raiders 36-16, and this weekend their seventh 36-18 to the Rabbitohs.

Greg Henderson has announced his retirement from competitive cycling. He has competed in five Tours de France and represented New Zealand at five Olympics and four Commonwealth Games.

The Tall Blacks beat Jordan 98-70 to set up a semi-final clash with Australia in the Asia Cup.

In the Aussie V8s Fabian Coulthard won a dramatic race in Sydney with Scott McLaughlin spinning out Shane van Gisbergen as they were duelling. McLaughlin has won the season's pole award, when he won his 12th pole, even though there are nine races remaining.

NZ News

The politics continued this week with a bit of back lash for Labour over one of their policies. Many people are worried about a lack of detail and Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson was warning that Labour's policy could cause Treaty renegotiations.

But the biggest political ruckus came from Australia. In Australia, you aren't allowed to be an MP if you have dual citizenship. And without knowing, the Australian deputy Prime Minister had dual Australian-New Zealand citizenship (he got it through his father). Anyway, the difficulty was that it was found out because an NZ Labour MP requested the information, causing the Australians to claim they will find it hard to build trust with Labour, should they get in. Labour leader Jacinda Ardern both denied it and confirmed it (like a true politician) when she said MP Chris Hipkin wasn't on a dirt-digging exercise, but she had reprimanded him. 

The latest poll has more of the same, the Green Party has plummeted to below the five per cent threshold, while Labour has jumped from 24% to 37%, with National dropping a few points. New Zealand First was down one to 10, Maori Party up to 2%, and Gareth Morgan's TOP on 2%. And on the basis of all that the Greens are promising an Auckland-Hamilton-Tauranga passenger rail running five times a day.

The Numbers Game

300: Kiwis killed in the last five years because they weren't wearing a seatbelt
9,500: lightning strikes across the country early this week
77.8m: $ for the new Grey Base Hospital on the West Coast
1b: $ redevelopment programme for Canterbury health
1.2b: $ to rebuild Dunedin hospital

Finance NZ Dollar

GBP 0.5676 (0.0063)
EUR 0.6224 (0.0039)
USD 0.7311 (0.0019)
AUD 0.9233 (-0.0029)

The Weekender NZer of the week

Richard Pearse
Richard Pearse: “Mad Pearse”, “Bamboo Dick”, self-taught inventor, prophetic designer, trail blazing aviator and eccentric visionary. On or about 31st March 1903 a reclusive New Zealand farmer Richard Pearse climbed into a self-built monoplane and flew for about 140 metres before crashing into a gorse hedge on his Waitohi property. Even at half the distance, Pearse must have felt the liberating but anxious exhilaration of flying. There is uncertainty about whether it met the definitions of sustained flight, but it came eight months before the Wright Brothers entered the record books at Kitty Hawk North Carcancelled 17th December 1903.

Joke of the Weekender

Jimmy Fallon asked his viewers to tweet #IGotBusted and share the most embarrassing times they got caught.
“I was on Facebook at work, and my boss walked up. I slammed down what I thought was my laptop screen, but it was actually my desktop monitor.”
“I lied and told my dad school was cancelled. He said, ‘Let’s go see a movie.’ We got in the car, and he dropped me off at school.”
“I was Facebooking in church, and the usher passed by and whispered, ‘You better be texting Jesus.’”

Weekender Photos

Have a look at photos


Darren Harrison:
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