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Top Scoop Stories December 23rd 2009 News Summary

Top Scoop Stories December 23rd 2009 News Summary


LEAD STORY

Confident but Cautious, says English: NZ Economy Grows 0.2% in September Quarter

NZ POLITICS

Arms Control: NZ Ratifies Ban On Cluster Munitions

Justice System: Nationwide Inquiry Into Police Handling Of Child Abuse Cases

Flip Floppery: Waterview Tunnel Option Back On

Funding, harmonised with performance: The new Tertiary Education Strategy

Climate Change: Activists Blockade NZ Stock Exchange

Mining: Coromandel Assessed As Unsuitable For Mining

BUSINESS SCIENCE & TECH

1/4 vs 7/50: NIWA Stands By Its Statement On Methane Rise

3.1% of GDP: NZ Posts Smallest Current Account Gap In 6 Years

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Fair Trading: Flight Centre warned over advertising and promotion

What Goes Up: NZ Dollar Extends Decline To Three-Month Low

Smellie Sniffs The Breeze: Taking Our Lumps At Copenhagen

COMMENT

Catherine Austin Fitts: NZ Banking System Overview

Dave Wolland: Getting The Pip

Death Of A Dissident: Hosein-Ali Montazeri

Connie Lawn’s Column: Snowed In

Martin LeFevre: Global Warming As Metaphor

Torture In Afghanistan: New UK Court Orders

Allen Roland: Are You Really Unemployed And Does Anyone Care?

Gordon Campbell: Peter Jackson, And Catching The Aussies

Ramzy Baroud: The Lobby Within

LIFESTYLE

Scoop Survey: Choose Your Favourite Wellington Christmas Tree

C K Stead: Abroad 2009

Scoop Review Of Books: Best of the Best of Lists for 2009

10 Reasons: Why Christmas Is Not The Season To Be Sexy

Odd Combinations: Smashproof And Susan Boyle Top 2009 RIANZ Charts

Like Rugby Superphospate: Grassroots Rugby The Winner In RWC

Scoop Review Of Books: The Birth Of Suburbia

WORLD

United Nations Report: Poor Weather Drives Tea Prices To Record High

Organ Theft: What If Everyone Just Kept Their Mouth's Shut?

Akanimo Sampson: Shell Accused Of Media Whitewash

Whale Protection: Sea Shepherd Ship Attacked With Water Cannons

DR Congo:Rebels Murder, Rape, Mutilate & Displace Thousands

India: Pro-Mining ‘Goons’ Harass And Intimidate

Philippines: Eruption Of Volcano Is Imminent

Organ Theft: Israel Harvested Palestinian Organs Without Permission

Copenhagen: Historic Moment, Historic Gathering And Historical Cop Out

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LEAD STORY

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Confident but Cautious, says English: NZ Economy Grows 0.2% in September Quarter
New Zealanders can go into the Christmas break feeling more positive after two quarters of economic growth, but more work is needed to ensure a strong sustainable recovery, Finance Minister Bill English says.GDP data shows the economy grew 0.2 per cent in the September quarter and June quarter growth was revised upwards from 0.1 to 0.2 per cent. In the September quarter household consumption and mining were stronger than expected and manufacturing and construction down. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0912/S00366.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00582.htm [2]

[3] - http://business.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/23/nz-economy-expands-0-2-in-3rd-qtr-kiwi-drops/ [3]

[4] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00580.htm [4]

[5] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00576.htm [5]

[6] - http://img.scoop.co.nz/media/pdfs/0912/gdpSep2009alltables.xls [6]

[7] - http://img.scoop.co.nz/media/pdfs/0912/GrossDomesticProductSep09qtrHOTP.pdf [7]

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NZ POLITICS

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Arms Control: NZ Ratifies Ban On Cluster Munitions
New Zealand has ratified the Cluster Munitions Disarmament Convention which bans the use, development, production and stockpiling of cluster munitions, Disarmament and Arms Control Minister Georgina te Heuheu announced today. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0912/S00365.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00282.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00151.htm [3]

[4] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0908/S00069.htm [4]

[5] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0912/S00183.htm [5]

[6] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0905/S00410.htm [6]

[7] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0911/S00430.htm [7]

Justice System: Nationwide Inquiry Into Police Handling Of Child Abuse Cases
The Independent Police Conduct Authority’s inquiry into Police handling of child abuse cases will cover all of New Zealand, the Authority said today. The Authority was notified in June of delays in the Police response to child abuse cases in the Wellington District, in particular the Wairarapa. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK0912/S00376.htm

Flip Floppery: Waterview Tunnel Option Back On
Transport Minister Steven Joyce’s decision to back down from his preferred route for the new Waterview road connection in Auckland was welcomed today by Mt Albert Labour MP David Shearer. “National’s announcement – dropped late yesterday in the dead news period before Christmas – that it would now build a 2.4km tunnel east of its preferred route takes us back near to what Labour had originally proposed for the route,” David Shearer said. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0912/S00354.htm

Funding, harmonised with performance: The new Tertiary Education Strategy
The Tertiary Education Strategy 2010-2015 released today will ensure the sector is more responsive to the needs of students and employers, says Tertiary Education Minister Anne Tolley. “The new strategy outlines the Government’s priorities for the next... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0912/S00355.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00276.htm [2]

Climate Change: Activists Blockade NZ Stock Exchange
Protesters blockaded the New Zealand Stock Exchange on Monday frustrated with global inaction on climate change and critical of market-based systems being proposed to tackle the problem. Activists occupied an office on the second floor of the exchange and nine people were arrested blockading the south entrance to the building. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00188.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00268.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00269.htm [3]

[4] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00262.htm [4]

[5] - http://pacific.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/copenhagen-looking-back-looking-forward/ [5]

[6] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00263.htm [6]

[7] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00265.htm [7]

[8] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00155.htm [8]

[9] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/multimedia/tv/world/30864.html [9]

Mining: Coromandel Assessed As Unsuitable For Mining
A peer-reviewed Landscape Assessment of the Coromandel Peninsula completely contradicts statements by Energy and Resources Minister Gerry Brownlee, that some Coromandel conservation land presently close to mining has low conservation values and could be mined for gold. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00271.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00274.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00273.htm [3]

[4] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00505.htm [4]

[5] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00504.htm [5]

[6] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00527.htm [6]

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BUSINESS SCIENCE & TECH

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1/4 vs 7/50: NIWA Stands By Its Statement On Methane Rise
The statement made by NIWA Principal Scientist, Dr Keith Lassey in a TV3 news story last night (22 Dec 2009) about methane is correct. Dr Lassey said “Livestock globally account for about one-quarter of human-caused emissions. The rest of it’s shared... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00287.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00280.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/multimedia/tv/world/30897.html [3]

3.1% of GDP: NZ Posts Smallest Current Account Gap In 6 Years
New Zealand posted the smallest annual current account deficit in six years as the weak domestic economy trimmed profits at foreign-owned companies and sapped demand for imports. The deficit shrank to $5.72... More »[1]

[1] - http://business.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/22/nz-posts-smallest-current-account-gap-in-6-years/

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00543.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00545.htm [3]

[4] - http://business.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/22/economists-in-line-with-bollard-on-q3-gdp-growth/ [4]

Fair Trading: Flight Centre warned over advertising and promotion
The Commerce Commission has warned a travel agency that some of its advertising and promotions of travel deals risk breaching the Fair Trading Act. The Commission has issued warnings in relation to Flight Centre New Zealand’s advertising between ... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU0912/S00546.htm

What Goes Up: NZ Dollar Extends Decline To Three-Month Low
The New Zealand dollar extended its decline for a seventh straight day amid continued unwinding of short positions in the U.S. dollar and as investors await data that’s expected to show the nation’s current account deficit... More »[1]

[1] - http://business.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/22/nz-dollar-extends-decline-to-three-month-low/

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0912/S00275.htm [2]

Smellie Sniffs The Breeze: Taking Our Lumps At Copenhagen
Watching the Copenhagen climate change summit from Wellington today brings to mind the Pineapple Lumps ad where the Kiwi turns up late, hits the button, and is delighted to receive a toothsome booby prize while other countries make off with the riches. More »[1]

[1] - http://business.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/18/smellie-sniffs-the-breeze-taking-our-lumps/

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COMMENT

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Catherine Austin Fitts: NZ Banking System Overview
New Zealand banks and non-bank deposit-taking institutions are registered, supervised and monitored for compliance with New Zealand banking supervision policies by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (“Reserve Bank”). More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00207.htm

Dave Wolland: Getting The Pip
In winter and spring fruit prices usually rise along with tomatoes, but over the last few years I have been pleased to see apples and pears remain at affordable prices. Sadly, I heard in the news that apple and pear orchardists have been suffering to... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00200.htm

Death Of A Dissident: Hosein-Ali Montazeri
Grand Ayatollah Hosein-Ali Montazeri has passed into the history of the Iranian Revolution as he was, potentially at least, about to create another. Thirty years ago, he was a vital figure in unseating the Shah, and well placed within the circle of the Ayatollah ... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00197.htm

Connie Lawn’s Column: Snowed In
A Russian leader once said, the best way to conquer America is to dump a few inches of snow on Washington, D.C. Then the people panic, the city and suburbs are paralyzed and nothing gets done. That is only partially true in this, the great snowfall of... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00196.htm

Martin LeFevre: Global Warming As Metaphor
The verdict is in. Copenhagen proved that national governments and international institutions, even led by the wunderkind Barack Obama, cannot and will not provide an adequate response to the man-made ecological crisis. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00195.htm

Torture In Afghanistan: New UK Court Orders
Reprieve, the legal action charity, the lawyers of which represent dozens of prisoners still held at Guantánamo, won a court victory in the case of the British resident Shaker Aamer, which appears to draw on the organization's success in securing a judicial ... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00170.htm

Allen Roland: Are You Really Unemployed And Does Anyone Care?
It's all a game of deception in Washington where the truth often lies buried under meaningless and deceiving figures. No where is that more obvious than in the bureau of labor statistics. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00176.htm

Gordon Campbell: Peter Jackson, And Catching The Aussies
The most recent pointers we have on Jackson’s thinking about the local film industry were comments he made at the press conference for his recent Lovely Bones premiere in Wellington – which, in odd counterpoint to the recent 2025 Task Force report ... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00173.htm

Ramzy Baroud: The Lobby Within
A just and peaceful solution to the protracted Palestinian-Israeli conflict is only possible when the US ceases to block every attempt made towards it. This assertion might raise many questions, for example, just how is one to define a just and peaceful resolution? And for what reasons would the... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0912/S00175.htm

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LIFESTYLE

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Scoop Survey: Choose Your Favourite Wellington Christmas Tree
The Christmas tree which Telecom has sponsored on the Wellington waterfront may be the biggest … but there are other trees all over town. Look in any direction, and there’s another Christmas tree. One of the other big... More »[1]

[1] - http://wellington.scoop.co.nz/?p=17576

C K Stead: Abroad 2009
I was in the UK in May of this year, mainly to launch the Carcanet edition of my Collected Poems 1951–2006. A mini-tour had been organised by the publisher, the first reading to the Wordsworth Trust in Grasmere. I had not been in the Lake... More »[1]

[1] - http://books.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/22/ck-stead-abroad-2009/

Scoop Review Of Books: Best of the Best of Lists for 2009
It’s that time of year when newspapers and magazines the world over publish their best of lists. So the Scoop Review of Books has decided to end the year with a best of the best of books list for 2009. Criminal - from the NY Times best graphic novels list... More »[1]

[1] - http://books.scoop.co.nz/

10 Reasons: Why Christmas Is Not The Season To Be Sexy
1 - Because you drink too much and Sam from accounting and/or the uptight and difficult PA down the hall you usually go out of your way to avoid ends up having the opportunity to ask if they can stay for breakfast…or you pass out in the stair well with th IT guys. More »[1]

[1] - http://sex.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/21/10-reasons-why-christmas-is-not-the-season-to-be-sexy/

Odd Combinations: Smashproof And Susan Boyle Top 2009 RIANZ Charts
South Auckland trios Smashproof broke into the record books with the longest running local number one single this year, and the run has seen them also become the highest selling single of the year. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/CU0912/S00243.htm

Like Rugby Superphospate: Grassroots Rugby The Winner In RWC
The organisers of the Rugby World Cup have pulled out all the stops to bring the cream of international rugby to grassroots New Zealand, Rugby World Cup Associate Minister Gerry Brownlee said today. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0912/S00338.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK0912/S00312.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK0912/S00309.htm [3]

Scoop Review Of Books: The Birth Of Suburbia
Like most early New Zealand settlements, Wellington was sited on the edge of a good harbour... By 1900 it was overcrowded, land prices were rising, and new suburbs were urgently needed on or beyond the hills. More »[1]

[1] - http://books.scoop.co.nz/2009/12/15/the-birth-of-suburbia/

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WORLD

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United Nations Report: Poor Weather Drives Tea Prices To Record High
Tea prices reached a record high in 2009, but should ease next year as weather improves in the main tea-producing regions in Asia and Africa, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reported today. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00604.htm

Organ Theft: What If Everyone Just Kept Their Mouth's Shut?
There are things going on in this world that are reprehensible to the degree that one hardly knows what to say. One of these is the recent admission that a country has been harvesting organs from those upon whom they are practicing irrefutable genocide. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00625.htm

Akanimo Sampson: Shell Accused Of Media Whitewash
NIGERIA's leading environmental rights advocacy group, Environmental Rights Action (ERA) has again indicted the Anglo-Dutch super oil and gas major, Shell, of fuelling environmental terrorism in the volatile Niger Delta area. The group said the oil ... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00610.htm

Whale Protection: Sea Shepherd Ship Attacked With Water Cannons
From the Steve Irwin , 1445 Hours December 22nd, 2009 61 Degrees 59 Minutes South, 148 Degrees 47 Minutes East More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00608.htm

DR Congo:Rebels Murder, Rape, Mutilate & Displace Thousands
In a 10-month rampage of killings, rape and mutilation in neighbouring countries that may constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity, the rebel Ugandan Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), has killed some 1,300 civilians, abducted 1,400 more, including ... More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00565.htm

ALSO:

[2] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00584.htm [2]

[3] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00585.htm [3]

[4] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00586.htm [4]

India: Pro-Mining ‘Goons’ Harass And Intimidate
Human rights investigators in India have been harassed and intimidated by large gangs of men apparently paid to stop any outsiders reaching the site of a controversial proposed mine in India. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00578.htm

Philippines: Eruption Of Volcano Is Imminent
United Nations humanitarian officials are working with authorities in the Philippines to prepare for what scientists believe to be the imminent eruption of Mount Mayon, an active volcano within close reach of tens of thousands of people. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00582.htm

Organ Theft: Israel Harvested Palestinian Organs Without Permission
Israel has admitted that in the 1990s, its forensic pathologists harvested organs from dead bodies, including Palestinians, without permission of their families. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00560.htm

Copenhagen: Historic Moment, Historic Gathering And Historical Cop Out
The ‘climate deal’ announced in Copenhagen today is a triumph of spin over substance said Oxfam International. The agreement – which was announced by the US, India, China and South Africa - has not been endorsed by the EU and many other countries. More »[1]

[1] - http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0912/S00540.htm

ENDS

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