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New Zealand ListenerNew Zealand Listener

New Zealand Listener

Issue 18 2019

New Zealand Listener is the country’s most respected general interest magazine, bringing you a wide variety of news, stories, columns, reviews, plus TV listings, every week.

New Zealand
Bauer Media Pty Ltd
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new zealand listener

Editor-in-Chief PAMELA STIRLINGBooks & Culture Editor RUSSELL BAILLIEArt Director DEREK WARDSenior Writers DONNA CHISHOLM, DIANA WICHTEL (Auckland), SALLY BLUNDELL (Christchurch)Chief Sub-editor GEOFF CUMMINGSub-editor NICK RUSSELLEntertainment Editor FIONA RAEPolitical Columnist JANE CLIFTONAssistant Art Director SHANE KELLYSenior Designer RICHARD KINGSFORDDigital Producer RYAN HOLDEREditorial Assistant LAUREN BUCKERIDGEEditorial office Bauer Media Group, Shed 12, City Works Depot, 90 Wellesley St West, Auckland 1010Editorial postal address Private Bag 92512, Wellesley Street, Auckland 1141, New Zealand.Editorial contact 09-308 2405, listener@bauermedia.co.nzPublished by Bauer Media Group (NZ)Chief Executive and Publisher PAUL DYKZEULManaging Director BRENDON HILLEditorial Director BEN FAHYCommercial Director KAYLENE HURLEYCommercial Brand Manager JOSH WILLIAMS jowilliams@bauermedia.co.nzDirect Account Manager GUY SLATER 09-308 2114, 021 104 0304, gslater@bauermedia.co.nzClassified sales KIM CHAPMAN 07-578 3646, classifieds@xtra.co.nzSubscriptions 09-308 2721 or toll-free on 0800 MAGSHOP (0800 624 746), email magshop@magshop.co.nz or visit magshop.co.nz…

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letting the grass grow

When it comes to protecting the planet, science should always trump ideology.When it comes to genetic engineering, however, ideology has a lot of noisy mates. GE opponents cite “Brand New Zealand”, our burgeoning organics industry, consumer resistance and the sheer fear of the unknown to support their argument. All this is arrayed against science, even if it’s science that could materially benefit the environment.(ALAMY)Gluckman has urged that we open up to it, saying it’s doubtful sustainable farming can continue without gene editing.New Zealand has developed a potentially world-leading curb on greenhouse-gas emissions: a genetically selected rye grass that drastically reduces stock methane emissions.But our strict controls on GE have meant we’ve had to trial the grass in the US. Because it is gene-edited, a form of selective breeding, rather than…

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yvette williams 1929-2019

Yvette Williams winning the long jump at the 1950 British Empire Games in Auckland. (GETTY IMAGES)Yvette Williams, who died a fortnight shy of her 90th birthday, sits in our sporting pantheon as one of six New Zealanders to have won an Olympic gold medal and set a world record in track and field athletics.The company she keeps testifies to her stature. The other members of this exclusive club are Valerie Adams, Murray Halberg, Jack Lovelock, Peter Snell and John Walker. Norm Read is the seventh New Zealander to have won a track and field Olympic gold medal – in the 50km walk at the 1956 Melbourne Games – but he didn’t set a world record.To paraphrase Shakespeare, Williams bestrode the narrow world of New Zealand women’s athletics like a colossus.…

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‘generous’ teacher pay offer

“I left the house with lipstick on my teeth and you didn’t say a thing.” (ALEX SCOTT)In Politics (April 20), Jane Clifton, in relation to teachers’ pay, writes that “if the Government gives in and increases what is already … a generous set of offers, schools will face further resourcing shortages, including fewer … teachers”.How so? Just as beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, generosity is best judged from the receiver’s perspective.The most important resource in education is the teachers – we deprive them at our collective peril. I am not a teacher, but based on those I know, I do not regard teachers’ pay as “generous” compensation for their many duties.Our society has long traded on implicit rewards, and exploited the dedication of teachers. They deserve more…

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winning caption

Margaret Cannon, Palmerston NorthCaption competitionTHIS WEEK’S PICTURE (GETTY IMAGES)FINALISTSGeorge Clooney: “For my next political campaign, Amal and I are going to blockade Brunei with all our used Nespresso capsules.” – Claudia Freeman, GisborneAmal Clooney: “It’s amazing how much pain you can inflict if you hit the pressure point just right.” – Andrea Levarre-Waters, Morningside, AucklandGeorge: “No! Don’t take Gwyneth’s advice and cut down on coffee!” – Kath Jones, WaikanaeCaption: Barrister and barista. – Leoni Bucket, Lake Hayes, QueenstownGeorge: “Vote Clooney 2020!” – Leoni BucketCaption: Ocean’s 28: George leaves the rest home. – Rhonda Ramsay, Thames…

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quips & quotes

“The reward for conformity is that everyone likes you except yourself.” – novelist Rita Mae Brown, quoted in the Times“Bad weather always looks worse through a window.” – singer Tom Lehrer“There’s many a bestseller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.” – Flannery O’Connor, quoted in the Times“Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.” – author Verna Myers“I’m glad I did it, partly because it was well worth it, and chiefly because I shall never have to do it again.” – Mark Twain“Some problems are so complex that you have to be highly intelligent and well informed just to be undecided about them.” – writer Laurence J Peter“When you have seen the Hitler-Jugend in action, you become wary of team spirit.” – scientist Edsger Dijkstra“Nielsen’s departure is not a…