Monday, March 15, 2021

Who is a smart bear????

Monday, March 15, 2021 0

oldbearnews editor

My fav quote from Yogi bear ---  "I am a smart bear - sometimes I am so smart - it hurts"  next minute he's flat on his face from his picnic basket robbing days - rubbing a sore spot on his head!!

or like this 

“I’m so smart it hurts.”

“It’s because I’m smarter than the average bear.”

yogi bear hunting picnic baskets

Yowp: Yogi Bear — Ring-a-Ding Picnic Basket 



humpf - well - the other day I did feel rather silly

I used to be able to do this:

In LibreOffice - you used to be able to select a range of cells (some empty some not) and copy them - then select another spreadsheet or file and do a Paste/Link!! Meaning that when you update or fill a cell at the source - it would update and accurately reflect that change made in the destination cell's. 

Well for some reason LibreOffice would no longer copy EMPTY Cells.

In MS Excel and Lotus123 (yes remember that good software???)  it does copy empty cells! sooo hmmmmm

Research says you ought to be able to do this in Libreoffice - so there is either a bug or some software  program no longer providing the function!

  WHAT to DO?????

After a lot of trial and head scratching -- I found a work around!! 

Select any single empty cell - click in it - push the space bar once and hit enter! This will in effect add an "indent" into the cell - and voila it is no longer empty - but showing nothing - since  no text/data/formula etc has been entered into this cell yet! Now copy that cell and paste into your source spreadsheet as far and wide as you want / need too (or indeed the whole spreadsheet)  and paste it.

Now you can select your few cells and copy them and do the paste link cmd ( seeing it will recognize the cells now, seeing they are no longer "empty" and of course any future data entered in the source cell will be reflected in the destination cells!!) 


Where is my picnic basket with Nutella sandwich's !! 


Have fun! bear print

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Our late annual Christmas Epistle

Tuesday, January 26, 2021 0

oldbearnews editor
Yup - I started the draft on 2 November 2020 - then set it aside for corrections, spelling etc. and to be completed and included in the 15 Calendars we usually post out pre Dec.  N e x t   day we were informed that Michael is back into the Hospital for a test and yup - they confirmed his leukemia has returned.  Thus the rest of our time since then, was consumed with trips to and from the Hospital and many things got - shall we say - re-prioritized!!! We spent Christmas day in his private hospital room!! 

The draft never got corrected - so here it is in its full faulty glory....

23 Oldwood St

Christchurch 8053

New Zealand

2 Nov 2020

Ooooooh is it this time of the year again – already???? Seems only like yesterday when I scribbled the last news letter together! So here it goes.


Another eventful year for us but one with more highs than lows for which we are truly grateful. Trusting that you have all had some success in 2019 and wishing you all the best for a peaceful 2020!

    Humpf – this was the opening and closing line from our 2019 letter. I F only we had known then what 2020 would bring!!!!! As I type we hear that Europe is going for yet another lockdown thanks to the Virus ex-China!! It would be really weird if Christmas is being canccelled, already a number of Christkindl markets are not happening!! Sighs – where to begin ? ? ? ?

    Yes; we had our fair share of the Virus– and thanks to the large moat around our little paradise island we have escaped most of the drama! We too had a 4 week strict lockdown around March / April – then eased off afterwards. Our borders are still closed to returning Kiwis only (and “essential other workers”) - and any incoming persons have to be in a “managed” facility for 2 weeks – AND pay some NZ $ 3000!!! hmmmmm enough of this – lets try and be positive!

    We did manage to get away again for a few weekends in our Bear-mobile – including a chilly midwinter camp and a long week round trip that included two nights at Ross!! We give thanks for this ability as it is acting as a mental circuit breaker from all the bad news in 2020! We feel like being seasoned campers now, and are looking to take “our trainerwheels” off eg – selling it, and do an upgrade in the near future – a permanent bed would be nice! One of the downstream effects from this Virus-Year has been less, or no international tourists and at the same time an increase in Kiwis touring in their own country – so there is less then normal tourist traffic and still enough to make things busy!

    Reinhold has gone nuts and bought on the cheap a few dilapidated and severely neglected Rimu (nz native timber) coffee tables and then spend some of his lock-down time restoring them. He has sold 2 back, making some small gains in $$ - which will go towards buying a new power tool to complete the woodworking setup. His other creations involved making a few crosses (pics as always on FB) many of which have found new homes! Yes Margit – yours will be here waiting for you to take home – I am not posting it!!! Two other major woodworking projects were: making a very special Rimu coffee table and a larger CD book case for us; oh - and a special stepping-stool for MB so she can reach the upper shelves in the kitchen!!

    Pam has been very busy working from home during the lock-down (which brought it’s own marital challenges) and then back at work. Her workplace bought a new accounting software and its implementation is as long and as tedious as Tooth-extractions! She certainly has and is working LONG hours! Her reward for this is a brand new (it had only 5km on the clock) company car!

    A black shiny new set of wheels!! She is also very happy having splashed out in January for a new couch – one she found that would let her sit down on it and her feet touching the floor (turns out – it is the ONLY one in NZ that will let her do that) – and – due to virus and lock-downs it took 6 months for delivery!

    Michael continues his journey in Hanmer working as a sales person in a hardware store. He is more or less medically speaking on the good side – fingers crossed! Jonno of course lost his job at Milford and had to be here for lock-down – then went to a limited job in Queenstown for the ski season. He now plans to do the Te Araroa walk ( - all of 3000km down the spine of NZ (from the very top of the north to the bottom of the south)! Mid winter we said goodbye to our cat who had deteriorated and was not happy! Her ashes are now with Max’s ashes and awaiting interring as I type. Thus we are pet-free at the moment!

Have fun! bear print

Saturday, October 3, 2020

The mysteries from a restored Rimu coffee table

Saturday, October 3, 2020 0
oldbearnews editor

The client arrived at surgery showing serious distress in the skin department. The team was assembled and the first action that took place was by the Podiatrist who promptly amputated 4 legs.  Then a call was made to our resident Baker - we needed to re-constitute some Oat biscuits! The Baker and Foot-surgeon took the 4 legs away to their own in-house department for further cellular re-construction!

The Dermatologist and Anesthetist as well as the Radiologist determined that a full and complete skin replacement was needed - so swing into action.  After several hours of carefully chipping away at the layers of old dead skin - a Botox specialist was required to *stitch* together several deep-seated tissue traumas! At this point the patient was doing well!! Before the final skin graft would be applied a special sterilizing liquid cleansing solution was applied revealing a deep seated rooting problem.  2 round ring stains were discovered that are only visible once a final skin graft would have been applied.  A meeting was called between all medical staff as well as their lawyers and after several hours of consuming low coffee drinks - urm - several hours of debate - it was decided to call in some overseas expertise - which eventually revealed that the only way to remove the deep-seated flesh-trauma would be a bone deep skin/flesh extraction and as you can never successfully match and  re-seal it, it was decided to leave these 2 beauties for eternity!  It goes begging the question what might have caused this damage!! Suggestions came freely from the imaginative staff -- the husband having a celebratory drink upon learning he was going to be a father??? The teenage girl having her first drink and kiss of her life???  Granny celebrating her granddaughters graduation from Uni?? Santa Claus not being careful where he put the empty cup of hot milk, which was left behind for him at Christmas time??  Sadly ongoing investigations have not revealed any further clues as to how these stains came to be.  It was decided not to take a DNA sample and send off to some foreign lab!  Eventually the final skin graft was applied. 

The legs came back bionically enhanced and were surgically re-attached to the main body (taking care that all the toes point inwards) --- and success - the patient lives yet another day/week/month/decade or century! The successful new owner will have the freedom to spin his own creative story on the two rings and their past history, once the auction has ran its course and the patient has left the Restoration Clinic!!  The staff wish him well on it's future endeavors!  

No batteries included in Sale!

Have fun! bear print

Friday, August 14, 2020

Does the large moat around New Zealand help or hinder us with Covid19

Friday, August 14, 2020 0

oldbearnews editor 


    We humans - social animals that we are, have many traits similar to other social animals! Sheep roam freely - yet if they are sensing a threat - they bunch up in a tight big circle!

As humans we have done similar through out history. During the settling of the American Wild West - the wagons would be circling ever tighter until they formed a makeshift defensive wall against Mr Nasty out there!

Moreover we have always built defenses that protect our living places - once we stopped from hunter-gatherer to agricultural based living! We have big fences (in early days mostly wooden) that keep Mr Nasty (human or animal) outside, while we wait securely inside for the threat to pass. 

Of course no defensive system is ever completely foolproof and can be overcome. No matter how big or tall or thick a defensive wall one builds, there is always a way around, over or under it!*rvFN0aT0M3Oj_ixRXrGEU... 

One of the defensive matters cleverly built around medieval times was a moat! Most people did not know how to swim - so a 10 meter wide 5 meter deep water *bath* - possibly filled with flesh-eating *things* (and most certainly unhealthy to your life by just stepping in) was a genius idea at the time! In case of a external threat to your life / town - you simply retreated behind the wall and once all where safely inside you raised the draw-bridge and just waited it out!  There are many many samples of Moats and towns/ castles that can still to be found in Europe!!

The only major flaw in this system is - that occasionally there is a Mr Nasty outside who has determination and patience on its side!  The choice for those safely stashed inside the moat would eventually come down to one of two things - Starve - or give up!

Let me explain! Once safely inside - you can live of your stored food for x nr of days - (simple Math's of x nr of people inside and their daily rations required versus how much is stored away - and no online ordering / delivery of McDonalds - recently so graphically used by the book/film *The Martian* )!   Of course - Mr Nasty outside has a similar issue - can they wait long enough (or have more food resources)!! History will tell you that almost always the outsider has a better chance - samples are Salzburg / Peking / Stalingrad (perhaps) and their sieges which all eventually led to surrender and be conquered! 

Alternatively - a human marooned on a sandbank being stalked by a hungry (and VERY patient) alligator has no chance of escaping alive, unless there is an outside influence!  

Most of the places have just living places - a room to bed down! Thus they were totally dependent on stored food resources.   Even the livestock (if you had any) would need to be fed and watered at some stage! Try that on the gravel path leading forth and back between whatever buildings that were inside the moat.

New Zealand of course is blessed with a  V E R Y  large Moat - being an island in or near the Southern Ocean.  To go by boat (cruise) to Sydney will take approximately 14-16 days - boat speed depending!  Sailboats of course take much longer!! Our *drawbridge* currently are our airports - and they are half up = letting some of the *locals* in but keeping everything and anyone else out! 

The major advantage we have is that there are enough agricultural spaces that we can feed the local population - if only seasonal in some respects (Fruit / Veggies)!  We will not starve!! There will be other things that we will have to leave outside our *moat* - manufacturing products (cars / PC's / furniture etc etc) or they will take much much longer to arrive in! So no yearly upgrade of your Car / TV ! You may have to wait 3-6 month's for delivery! 

Unfortunately our current *Mr Nasty* outside is a Virus (Covid-19) that takes no prisoners and only needs a human host - it does not care about colour / race / age / nationality etc just as long as it can go forth and spread itself far and wide!

So New Zealand will need to make up its mind soon - how long do we keep up our *drawbridge* - live in isolation from the rest of the world (at least we will not starve)  - or do we bite the apple and lower our *drawbridge* and run whatever risk may still be lurking outside!  Either way  - some will get sick and some will die from it! You can count on that happening either way.  Suicides are up / divorcees are up / unemployment no doubt will rise / Cancer patients treatments delayed or cancelled altogether (which will lead to premature deaths no doubt)

So really the only question is - - ??? which is the lesser evil here ??? . .  Unfortunately as a country we cannot have a side by side test comparison - it has to be one or the other! The best we can do is comparing ourselves with the only Nation (Sweden) that has gone down a different path in dealing with this!  

Time will tell - do we have that time???

Have fun! bear print

Thursday, April 30, 2020

"800sunnytourist" is redundant during the coronorvirus epedemic!

Thursday, April 30, 2020 0

oldbearnews editor

Just a quick update
With this virus thing knackering all air travel and the tourism industry -
I am redundant!!!  More correctly - being laid of - until further notice!
The local airline is hardly flying - as we are all in lockdown mode!!
So no point in keeping 0800sunnytourist program going.
Will we be up and running again????? Who knows!!
Will keep you posted.

Meanwhile - you can track the planes - what little there are up and flying (oh there are lots of choppers and little cessnas now visible)  here --->,172.63/8

From the other day - just ONE plane in the sky!!!  Sad to see

Have fun! bear print

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Vanishing clouds or does the 0800sunnytourist program work after all ? ?

Thursday, January 9, 2020 0
oldbearnews editor

With the prop planes flying at lower altitude - the spray dispersal system is not yet properly set and has given mixed results so far.  There are many factors playing into this - least of all the wind direction!!
Recently we had a plane flying West to East - just to prove the point and there is a clear line where the chem-trail seems to work!!  Can you see the clouds disappearing into thin air?!?!?!?!
Still - a half blue sky is better then a non-blue sky filled with rainclouds - although I am sure there are countries who are praying for rain right now!!!
Guess the tourist here will be happy for now.
Once we got this sorted (MORE testing to be done yet) then we can consider which ''local'' route we shall employ this system . . . . . .
Will keep you posted

Have fun!

bear print

Monday, January 6, 2020

The 0800sunnytourist program is still work in progress

Monday, January 6, 2020 0
oldbearnews editor

Thought I give an update on this special program!!
The cat is well and truly out of the bag by now anyhow, so there is no longer a need to keep anything secret.  The recent trip to Europe - ostensibly for me to be on holiday, but in reality I was meeting with the Germans and trying to sell the 0800sunnytourist program to them - well - it fell flat out of the sky so to speak.  Some things must have gotten lost in translations. . . . .


Not to sit on our laurels - the NZ Goverment has done some more research into this and as a result added 2 more "citizens" or employees to their list.  The changes are as follows:

1 - the sign in procedure as previously explained here ....  (chemtrails-in-nz-and-the-magic-password)   have had some additional protocols added. We now have a one time pad and a 40 000 pages book(s) and a code book that makes James Bond envious.  Using  t h a t,  will lead to a new password and that - well - you know the drill. . .

2 - Some places in New Zealand are missing out on the "0800sunnytourist" program as they are not under a direct flight plan for the big jet planes. So our NZ Govt has tinkered with lower flying planes such as a De Havilland Canada DHC-8, commonly known as the Dash 8, or our very own planes (ATR72-600)!!  That would mean for example that Dunedin COULD experience the results of this special and no longer secret program - as one of the Turbo-props routes is to Invercargill from say Wellington and thus they fly directly over Dunedin.  This particular city has had rain almost every day in November and December 2020 - in stark contrast to its northern city sister of Christchurch which is almost in draught conditions.  (Not saying that our secert program has anything to do with that!!!)  HOWEVER we did use Christchurch as a guinea pig of a place (very conveniently as a lot of smaller planes do zip past overhead) and the results are promising. 
Sadly a end destination such as Invercargill will still be out of luck as it is a dead end (as in - get there and back out) destination - similar to the Cook Islands - where no planes fly overhead.  Rumor thou has it that the Antarctic program does use Invercargill as a waypoint (speak fly over the city) when the fly down to the various Antarctic bases (only during summer) and supply them with food and other stuff so that has got another possibility. . . . .

Cut a long story short - we did trial the amended and now supplementary 0800sunnytourist program ( the new version being now called "0800sunnytourist-atr" ) in or better over Christchurch and I was part of that testing team.  The video below is a snapshot from one of the days we trialled this program.  We call this a partial success . . . . . . enjoy watching the clouds disappear . . .

Have fun! bear print

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Michael Buble Duets for CD

Thursday, November 21, 2019 1
oldbearnews editor

As some of you regular friends on mine would know - I am unashamedly a Michael Buble Fan.  We were lucky enough to go to one of his concerts in Auckland where we had a ball!
Since then a lot has happened.  We both had our Boys sick with Cancer.
Michael Buble  dropped out from his work - as did I and we took care of our family.  That meant too that I stopped writing on this Blog for a while.
Must say - I do miss his Christmas shows.  I understand he does do one show - at NBC??? but it is not broadcast worldwide.   Sighs

One comment was made about there being a lot of Duets and if there was enough to make a special CD.  This got me hunting!  I know there are a number of songs ( "All Shook up" for example) that are not on any of his released CD's - rather they feature on You-tube! There is a song where clearly he is still - hmmm a young lad!!!
Anyhow - after a long search and so forth I found what I believe to be a complete list.  I let you decide which 14 "best of" duets could/should/might be on a future release!

One Caveat - the Song "A song for you" with Chris Botti - is not a Duet in strictest sense of the word - as Chris is playing some Trumpet, yet there is  a lovely forth and back interchange!!

hmmmm wonder If I can extract them and put up as a list here . . . .
:)  Seems I can

Help Me Make It Through The Night         Loren Allred
Besame Mucho                                          Thalia
You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine    Laura Pausini
Don't get around much anymore              Tony Bennett
Someday                                                   Meghan Trainor
Quando Quando                                      Nelly Furtado
Pennies From Heaven                             Paul Anka
 A Song For You                                    Chris Botti
Baby (You've Got What It Takes)                Sharon Jones
Comin' Home Baby                                    Boyz II
La Vie En Rose                                       Cécile Mclorin Salvant
Nobody But Me                                     Black Thought – The roots
Something Stupid                                   Reece Whitherspoon
How deep is your love                             Kelly Rowland
Just in Time                                             Tony Bennett
After All                                                   Bryan Adams
Nevertheless (I'm in Love with You)    The Puppini sisters
Whatever It Takes                                Ron Sexsmith
Stardust                                               Naturally 7
I Won't Dance                                     Jane Monheit
Baby It's Cold Outside                         Idina Menzel
Wonderful Tonight                               Ivan Lins
Alone Again (Naturally)                      Diana Krall
All Shook up                                       Elvis Presley
It Had to Be You (with Michael Bublé)    Barbra Streisand
Jingle Bells                                         The Puppini sisters
Mis Deseos/Feliz Navidad                 Thalia
Home                                                 Blake Shelton
White Christmas                                Shania Twain
All I Want For Christmas Is You        Mariah Carey
Jingle Bell Rock                                 Carly Jephson
White Christmas                               Shy’m
Winter Wonderland                          Rod Stewart
White Christmas                              Kelly Rowland
Santa Claus is coming to Town      Ariana Grande
White Christmas                             Kelly Pickler

PS - there is a new Elvis Presley CD release were they Digitally "married' him with Michael Buble - the song being "Fever", and while it is a lovely rendition - I am not sure if that should be included as - well - as the King is no longer with us!!!

If you find another song that should be included in this list - please let me know

Have fun! bear print

Monday, June 24, 2019

The myth of Global sea level rises

Monday, June 24, 2019 0
oldbearnews editor

Soooo,  I know, I will get some flak for this . . .
Shrugs shoulders - sooo?????
This has been bugging me for some time -
the notion (which was re-inforced in last nights TV program "Russia from above" with the line being peddled that the (North) polar sea ice melting will cause widespread flooding.  Now I know - this could just not be - as long as I remember my history lesson from way back - you know 'that' Eureka moment.

Related imagesnip -- Let's begin with the story: the local tyrant contracts the ancient Greek polymath Archimedes to detect fraud in the manufacture of a golden crown. Said tyrant, name of Hiero, suspects his goldsmith of leaving out some measure of gold and replacing it with (cheaper) silver in a wreath dedicated to the gods. Archimedes accepts the challenge and, during a subsequent trip to the public baths, realizes that the more his body sinks into the water, the more water is displaced--making the displaced water an exact measure of his volume. Because gold weighs more than silver, he reasons that a crown mixed with silver would have to be bulkier to reach the same weight as one composed only of gold; therefore it would displace more water than its pure gold counterpart. Realizing he has hit upon a solution, the young Greek math whiz leaps out of the bath and rushes home naked crying "Eureka! Eureka!" Or, translated: "I've found it! I've found it!" 
end snip

So this morning I run a totally non-scientific kitchen experiment - I got a measuring glass jar - filled it with water (300ML) and  then tossed in a 20 frozen ice-cubes and saw that the water level rose to 500ml - guess I froze 200ml.  Anyhow - by a stroke of unintended luck the water-level rose to exactly 500ml - and not to be outdone I leveled it and marked it with some insulation tape.  So we had some beautiful cubes below the surface and some on the top and one ice cube even sticking out like a decent Titanic cutting bit!!  Now just to wait - and wait - and wait.

If I am right - along with old Alchi - then the melting of the ice will not increase the water-level one bit - because - it has already done so when the cubes first went in - right!??!?!?!
So as all the ice swimming round the north-pole is concerned = it is already displacing the sea-levels as it came from there in the first place - right?!?!?!  Logic - right!!!

Re-checks the glass - nope, no increase in the levels and all the cubes  have almost completely melted - bar one!!
So the only way the sea-levels could raise IF there was additional ice melt (water)  from ice that is currently on land - Greenland and Antarctica!!
I cannot speak for Greenland - as far as Antarctica is concerned - Yes - it could melt!  Indeed in past years (speak many many many thousands years back) it was a GREEN continent complete with flowers and grasses and - ice free and all! OK guess so could Greenland be!

However - before you get all excited with doom and gloom - CURRENTLY - it is too bloody cold down (in Antarctica) and no global warming man-made or other is going to change that in the next 50 thousand years.

 snip --Antarctica, Scott Base yearly average mean temperature  (-14.6)

The lowest reliably measured temperature of a continuously occupied station on Earth of −89.2 °C was on 21 July 1983 at Vostok Station. For comparison, this is 10.7 °C colder than subliming dry ice (at sea level pressure). The altitude of the location is 3,488 meters (11,444 feet).
The lowest recorded temperature of any location on Earth's surface at 81.8°S 63.5°E was revised with new data in 2018 in nearly 100 locations, ranging from −93.2 °C  to −98 °C . This unnamed part of the Antarctic plateau, between Dome A and Dome F, was measured on August 10, 2010, and the temperature was deduced from radiance measured by the Landsat 8 and other satellites, and discovered during a National Snow and Ice Data Center review of stored data in December, 2013 but revised by researcher on June 25 2018. This temperature is not directly comparable to the –89.2 °C reading quoted above, since it is a skin temperature deduced from satellite-measured upwelling radiance, rather than a thermometer-measured temperature of the air 1.5 m (4.9 ft) above the ground surface.

The highest temperature ever recorded on the Antarctic continent was 17.5 °C (63.5 °F) at Esperanza Base, on the Antarctic Peninsula, on 24 March 2015. A higher temperature of 19.8 °C  at Signy Research Station on 30 January 1982 is the record for the Antarctic region encompassing all land and ice south of 60° S.

------->  The mean annual temperature of the interior is −57 °C.  <---------

The coast is warmer; on the coast Antarctic average temperatures are around −10 °C  (in the warmest parts of Antarctica) and in the elevated inland they average about −55 °C  in Vostok. Monthly means at McMurdo Station range from −26 °C  in August to −3 °C  in January. 

At the South Pole, the highest (ie - the 'warmest') temperature ever recorded was −12.3 °C  on 25 December 2011.  

Severe low temperatures vary with latitude, elevation, and distance from the ocean. East Antarctica is colder than West Antarctica because of its higher elevation.

End snip

Thus - I maintain that there is nothing to worry about any sea-levels rising and swallowing Al Gore's precious multi-million dollar mansion on the Florida coast anytime soon or anyone else's property!

Ah I know - no amount of reason or logic, let alone emotion will be convincing some folks - for them it has become a religion - with unshakable dogma!  After all - for Christians it works with Jesus - where no proof ever in any shape or form can detract them from believing!

Image result for green belt AfricaWhat bugs me is that Policy is being made based on this 'faulty' logic/belief, A policy that is costly and not needed (by the 'guilt' ridden western countries)  - WHEN at the same time those efforts could be much better directed, to, for example, to raise Africa out of its poverty and give that continent a decent chance for life!
I am heartened by the efforts to create a "Green belt" in Africa,  right across from coast to coast to stop the Sahara from growing and further erode arable land; - This will eventually lead to a better ability to grow food crops!   Who knows - if this green belt gets wider - you just might have   a l l   your fruit you can eat coming from that region!!  Wouldn't that be a hoot - Africa feeding the world!!!! :)

bear print

Have fun!

PS - I forgot to add - and you will not find this in the main stream media - you will have to hunt for the data - turns out that in the last 20-35 years the average temperature in Antarctica has been going lower - meaning it is getting COLDER!!! No chance of defrosting ice there for the foreseeable future . . .

Monday, May 6, 2019

What if it's true - then what?

Monday, May 6, 2019 0
oldbearnews editor

For those not living in the online world - just a quick re-cap.
Israel Folau is a Tongan born rugby player (NSW and Rugby Australia [Wallabies]) and this is the second time he posted on social media about sin and hell - again just before Easter.
The following media storm that happened since then is somewhat astounding. Being a Facebook user only, I have not seen his full post - although there are plenty of redacted versions floating around the printed news media and of course social mediums.
Today I made an effort and found it

it goes like this:

 You will of course notice the difference in the image and the quoted Biblical text!?!?!?  You will also remember that the full biblical text has almost never been added to the written news stories - at best simply as a reference point eg Gal 5 etc . . .

So there are several aspects to this:
  1. there is a question of what is free speech versus what is hate speech - not an easy topic at the best of time.
  2. There are questions on contractual obligations with his employer (AU rugby Union) and possible breeches - something that the lawyers currently arguing for the last two days and still with no end in sight! 
  3. What is 'news' and what is 'social commentary' and which is more important??
  4. Being Easter and all - where are the messages of 'Hope' and what is "Sin"  (not something that is discussed or understood easily in our modern times) and let alone what constitutes 'Hell'

I will strongly argue that any "free speech" that has an impact on your employment eg loose your job or business etc - is not "Free Speech" in its truest sense of its meaning - rather  it is more of a censorship at its best form.  There is also a strong current ideology - thinking,  that anyone is free to express their thoughts AS LONG AS those thoughts are not offensive to ME personally!!  Of course what is offensive to me would change from day to day, minute by minute and depend on a whole lot of things - like which side of the bed I got up from  or whether our Cat walked left to right or vis-a-vis in the morning!! It is also different from person to person!!

The media - to most of their credit - have tried to stay very neutral on this. Sadly sometimes they portrayed this as an attack just on Homosexuals only.  It was interesting to read many news articles where they couched it as an attack on homosexuals "and others" by then afterwards quoting the full text from the image - and certainly not the full Biblical reference!  A case in point - notice how it is written ---> fights for his job
If he had left out the word homosexual in the graphic - do you think there would be a media storm???

What many have forgotten or ignored is - that yes this was posted by Israel Folau just a few weeks before Easter - on the Christian Calendar.  An Easter message of being "saved" from hell through the sacrifice made by this person - "Jesus"  who voluntarily died on the cross for everyone. A message which no doubt featured in many Easter Sunday services! A message which does not sit comfortably with many folks.

It should also be noted that many many folks have of course made comments on Israel Folaus post.  News Media have reported it as 'news' and then often  the reporters added their own 2 Cents of thoughts to this - rather then just reporting the 'fact'.  Then there are wannabe social stars masquerading as news folks writing columns (admittedly some are noted as "Opinion" pieces) and  then there are just folks who have their day in public - literally any high profile person (from any unknown two-time singer / actor/ author/ politician/ or any other office holder to any (former glorious) sports person) who feel it is their right and duty to give their opinions to everyone who wants to listen to them (and of course believe that their own opinion is the ONLY correct way of thinking;- if you doubt that - try and engage them in dialog and be prepared for some colorful replies).

Intriguingly -- it is ONLY the gay community (or supporters of) that is making a meal of this issue.  I have not yet heard a single objection or any other comment from any of the other affected communities mentioned in his Instagram post!!

Feel free if you belong to any of the following to correct me!!
  • Alcoholics anonymous 
  • Any prison Inmate / Advocates
  • The Liqueur industry 
  • The Casinos / Gambling industry
  • Gamblers Anonymous
  • Gigolos Inc
  • MILF's inc and the Cougar Club
  • ANY religious group / church / organization (other then Brian Tamaki's Destiny Church)
  • Any Actor / Writer / TV producer and their masses of followers from TV shows  such as: Married at First Sight / The Bachelor AU or any other Country / Wife-swap USA or any other country etc etc etc 
  • Any Harry Potter Fan

I am sure there are other groups and feel free to add them to the list.

Silence is and can be a very powerful tool - if used correctly.  There is a lesson here - I am sure. (As the saying goes: 'Silence is golden'!)

As an aside - I will happily own up to having 3 or 4 "sins" being committed by myself, at some stage during my life! 

It will be interesting to see how this will play out  - how we define free speech vs hate speech - what Israels future employment will look like - and if we will have a serious public discussion on the Easter message itself, or if the Christian communities are now relegated to an oddball minority!?

On that note - the BEST ever starting place!!

A picture I took last Sunday - in Geraldine - so yes ask yourself this question  -- WHAT IF INDEED IT IS TRUE??????

Have fun! bear print

Monday, January 21, 2019

The myth of the "0800sunny tourist" NZ Chemtrail spraying program debunked

Monday, January 21, 2019 0
oldbearnews editor

Ok - not really - seriously - like I would own up to that!!   :P 

There are people who can make that happen - you just have to belief - have faith!!!!

Below some extracts from articles and studies and for keeping.

snip - - - - - - 

Conspiracy theories have been cooked up throughout history, but they're increasingly visible lately.
Given that any particular conspiracy theory is unlikely to be the subject of mainstream consensus, what draws people to them?

New research suggests that people with certain personality traits and cognitive styles are more likely to believe in conspiracy theories.
"These people tend to be more suspicious, un-trusting, eccentric, needing to feel special, with a tendency to regard the world as an inherently dangerous place," said Josh Hart, an associate professor at Union College in the US. "They are also more likely to detect meaningful patterns where they might not exist. "People who are reluctant to believe in conspiracy theories tend to have the opposite qualities."

It helps to realise that conspiracy theories differ from other worldviews in that they are fundamentally gloomy," Hart said.
"This sets them apart from the typically uplifting messages conveyed by, say, religious and spiritual beliefs. At first blush this is a conundrum.
"However, if you are the type of person who looks out at the world and sees a chaotic, malevolent landscape full of senseless injustice and suffering, then perhaps there is a modicum of comfort to be found in the notion that there is someone, or some small group of people, responsible for it all.
"If 'there's something going on,' then at least there is something that could be done about it."
 it is important to realise that when reality is ambiguous, our personalities and cognitive biases cause us to adopt the beliefs that we do.  As always, conspiracy theories could be true. The most prominent example is the reporting the National Enquirer did in the 2008 presidential campaign about a child then-Senator John Edwards had fathered out of wedlock.

But, for every one conspiracy theory that winds up being right, there are a thousand - or a million - that are totally without merit. That used to be a sentence that 98 per cent of the population could agree on. No longer. Our retreat into partisan camps, the rising dislike and distrust of "elites", the surge in partisan media outlets and the collapse of trust in the mainstream media has created a toxic environment in which conspiracy theories not only can bloom but are nurtured.
We all now see the hidden hand of government/media/corporations/foreign entities behind everything everyone does. And, what's worse, there's no trusted source of facts that we all agree can be used to debunk conspiracies.

Conspiracies grow and grow. And we believe them in ways we've never done before.
"This knowledge can help us understand our own intuitions."

The role of Facebook and other social media:

These theories are not circulating willy-nilly around Facebook as a whole. They spread within specific, defined, ideologically homogenous communities, or echo chambers, which might not be visible to the naked eye - but may as well be walled off.
Researchers found that: Users tend to aggregate in communities of interest, which causes reinforcement and fosters confirmation bias, segregation, and polarization. This comes at the expense of the quality of the information and leads to proliferation of biased narratives fomented by unsubstantiated rumours, mistrust, and paranoia.
Because users create these walled communities themselves - choosing to read only news that agrees with their biases, or unfriending people who challenge their socio-political views - there's not much Facebook (or anyone for that matter) can do to remedy the situation.
 Conspiracy theories, hoaxes and other variants of baloney have become so prevalent and intractable on Facebook that we no longer bother to debunk them.
But a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences provides some insight on exactly how misinformation spreads - with big implications for the fight against it.
The paper, titled: 'The spreading of misinformation online', comes from researchers at Boston University and several prominent Italian institutions. It draws on five years of posts from 67 public Facebook pages, roughly half devoted to conspiracy theories and half about science news, plus two unrelated pages that served as a control group.
They found that, in essence, conspiracy theories and hoaxes spread in a predictable, three-step pattern.

Step 1: An individual or page posts a piece of conspiracy news or information, introducing it to their social network. (think "0800sunnytourist"  :)  )
Step 2: That conspiracy is voluntarily shared and propagated by individuals who agree with the narrative - largely within the first two hours, but again at the 20-hour mark.
Step 3: The conspiracy gradually branches throughout the network over a period of days, its speed slowing but its audience growing continuously. Within a period of two weeks or so, the theory has been adopted by large portions of the community - and once they've been adopted, they're "highly resistant to correction".
In fact, as this group of researchers has found before, attempts to correct conspiracy theories often have the opposite effect: They make conspiracists grip their beliefs all the more strongly.

:P   so - you read it all now - the only question remaining is:  - do you have faith???

Have fun! bear print

Friday, January 11, 2019

The Austrian changes colours (and citizenship)

Friday, January 11, 2019 0
oldbearnews editor

Did you hear about the chap who got arrested for spying - he carried 5 valid passports and the reason given was - which person would carry 5???  Two are understandable - maybe even 3 in some circumstances - but 5????

Usually - you would associate a passport with citizenship - eg being a citizen of a particular country.  Of course - here in 2018/9 the issue of citizenship and changes thereof along with Immigration are a very hot and contemptuous  topic.  People have moved around - always since we climbed down from the tree and started to walk upright!  It is what defines us as humans - the thirst for discovery and new things and places.  We have a curious quest for discoveries.  So ever since we left that proverbial tree we moved around the country side - often just for no other reason then a new source of meat / berries etc and other times simply because we could.  Back in those days - humanity was way less then 1 billion folks - so a rare breed. In some places you could move for years and not meet another human.   Then folks discovered that actually right here is not a bad place - plenty of meat walking by or grazing permanently and lots of seasonal greenery - eventually learning to move from Hunter-gatherer to being Farmer. The need to move around and keep hunting / gathering was replaced with a "security" for your survival by having a source of food permanently and plentiful close by.  The Farmers quickly learned that their particular patch of earth is worth something so needed or wanted to protect that and themselves and voila - the first Wall was build around their own settlement - in order to keep themselves save and intruders (both in animals and other humans) out.

Sounds familiar???? 

Today we have many tribes scattered  around the globe - and of course all still have a  "border-wall" - a means of controlling who can and cannot simply walk in.  Each tribe had several "crossing points" or in the olden days - GATES - which you crossed every-time you wanted to leave your village or city or country thus controlling who was allowed in and out and stay.  In that sense nothing - and I do mean nothing has changed since the olden days when we build fences around our 3 or 5 huts.

What defined you as being a citizen of that particular group of people? Usually your birth.  Eg you were born into that community.  In some cases travelers would arrive and an exchange of goods and services as well as ideas on almost anything would take place at a mutual agreeable time and fashion.  Sometimes that traveler would meet someone rather special or fill a need and stay beyond a friendly meet and greet time - and eventually settle down in the new village/town etc.  In doing so said traveler would become part of the new community - warts and all.  Contribution by the 'immigrant' to the greater good was a given.

In my case - I met a Kiwi Girl who innocently flattered her eyelids and said to me - 'You do me'!  I got hitched and after a while we made a decision to stay in the great Kiwi-land!  I was always known as 'That Austrian'!  Which is quite natural - after all the locals who lived here for generations would always see me (for as long as they live) as the dude who came from another country.  Certainly at first.  Then there is my accent - seems it is still a bit unusual - even though I now speak perfectly kiwi lingo and given my heritage away.  However after 30 years of living here  - it was time to make it official.  Basically you give up your rights as a dude from one tribe and pledge to part of the new group of people.  Sounds simple??  yes and no!!

In my case - I had to give up my Austrian citizenship.   That's Ok!  There was a time when you could have dual citizenship - and the rules changed at least once if not 2 or 3 times.  Other countries will be more forgiving.  Personally - I cannot see how you can serve two masters at the same time - especially if they are so far apart - so no problemo for me in this matter. 
In short - I went from red- white-red to black and white!! Also I am pretty sure I done my bit for the greater good in the new living place.

Globalization, mass tourism, ease of travel and communication across the globe  challenge all of the old established understandings (citizenship / hospitality etc)  and the various systems established which we have developed and are commonly and instinctively understood (ingrained even) ever since we climbed down from that proverbial tree.  It is not too surprising that some tribes close-up shop.
Change is never easy.
So they go back to the familiar and comfort.  After all - even in to-days world - your local tribal identity still defines you.  The only question remaining is: - will we always be a planet with lots of local tribes and identity or will we move into a truly global single tribe?

These are interesting times we live in.

Have fun! bear print

Monday, December 3, 2018

annual christmas letter 2018

Monday, December 3, 2018 0
oldbearnews editor

Christchurch, NZ – November 2018

C H A N G E S ! !

    Changes - always things change – your weather / life / health / waistline :) yes that too! Generally speaking, most folks dislike the changes. Some happenings are good changes. One change that is not going to happen is Mama-bear writing the annual Christmas-epistle. Seems she thinks I am so great with the words that she just “delegates” this task . . . :P

Well – this year has seen a number of changes for us. Reinhold did go to the 7 night Scout camp in Staveley last January– and instead of sleeping in a tent – he bunked out in the newly acquired “Bear-mobile”! He then left scouting – having received his Bronze Tiki award for 15 years of excellent service to the movement. Which meant that Reinhold is more at home and not always away with Scouts – a change that took Mamabear a bit of getting used to. Seems she enjoyed the “peace and quiet” at home, while still missing Reinhold’s presence!

     The Bear-mobile then got used on a number of occasions for various trips away – 7 nights in Alexandra / Wanaka and a couple of times at least to our favorite South Island spot – Tekapo.
Thus – we went from sleeping in motels to sleeping on wheels – another change for us. Pam getting used to the “camping” bit and enjoying the home comforts away from home.

     Michael has a passion for Film – photography so we had a couple of nights in Tekapo and did the “capture the Milky-way” on film thing. Very cold and challenging. Mama-bear needed to be exposed to a winter camping experience too– so again we went to Tekapo and plugged the Motorhome into power and spent 2 nights there. Comfy if refreshing!!

     Michael seems to recover well and his weekly check-ups went to fortnightly to monthly. Eventually he was cleared to go back to work and so he started half days – eventually making it to full time by mid-year of 2018. He’s since had his triple-immunity shots (which knocked him a bit back) but seems to be handling everything ok.

     Jonathan enjoyed his time in Japan and had fun ‘tunnelling’ in the snow. Locally the area there seems to get anything from 2-15 meters of snow annually. Once he had returned to New Zealand – he applied for a job in Queenstown as ski – instructor – and just missed out on that. Still he managed to pick a job in the ski-hire business – kitting out the day tourists and sending them to the right ski-instructor for their lessons as well as occasionally giving lessons or helping out with the ski-lift!

  Mr and Mrs Bear decided to have another change and we booked ourselves a mid-winter holiday at the tropical Island of Rarotonga. The lowest temp there was 22 degrees at night compared to Christchurch at 2degrees!! Very enjoyable and relaxing – especially the 4pm happy hour time – where we had fun testing the various cocktails! We also had a natural alarm-clock – the local roosters, which seem to come to life by 4 or 5 am!!! Stayed where Pam’s Mum and Dad used to stay so that was interesting and emotional to see the places and meet the staff that remembered them.

The most important change for us happened in Sep. Reinhold finally decided to make an “honest woman” out of his wife and applied for NZ Citizenship. Not a given – still eventually it got approved and the official “swearing in’ ceremony was held on 25 Sep. This would be the only time Reinhold was allowed to swear at – no wait urm - with no- hmmm ok – FOR ol’ Lizzy (the Queen) :) Reinhold has lived in NZ for 34 years so you understand the comments from his family - “About time it happened” !!

    Highlights for Pam have been watching Michael get better and being able to take breaks in the camper.

Merry Christmas and a Happy 2019 for you all.

Have fun! bear print
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