Vegetarian website GoVeg.com have a great Top 10 list online, giving good reasons why should keep pork off your fork...
GoVeg says pig products (ham, sausage and bacon strips) are loaded with artery-clogging cholesterol and saturated fat... they'll go straight to your hips and turn you porky.
Many pigs are also raised in cruel factory farms, in very crowded conditions, poor ventilation, and filth. To keep the sick and diseased pigs alive (and to promote faster growth), pigs are often fed antibiotics normally used to treat human illnesses. This has contributed to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains known as "superbacteria".
However, GoVeg do get it wrong with their #10 reason for not eating pig flesh... They advise "feasting on faux pork products instead". Now I've seen bacon-flavoured-chicken-slices in the supermarket, which always seemed silly to me... If you don't like the taste of bacon, why would you buy chicken that's been doctored to taste like it?!
Check out the full list at...
* GoVeg.com: Top 10 Reasons Not To Eat Pigs
* Dave Gee: Life from Right Field (post from October 6 2005) - Don't Eat Pigs 'cause they're made from Ham... Eat that Nasty Butcher Man!
* Toonhound: Oink! Magazine (the comic run by pigs ;-)
* Hat Tip: whoar.co.nz
Posted at 10:58 p.m. Saturday, 29 July 2006
Hillin Cluck's had a bumpy few weeks, with the release of the report into Taito Phillip Field's dodgy immigration dealings, and the embarrassing international tour by the Crown Prince of Farce, Foreign Minister Winston Peters. (Of course, being a Labour MP, Taito's safe as houses - so to speak - PM Cluck would never let any of her MPs come under serious investigation).
Parliament's continued to be a battleground, with Opposition MPs rudely questioning the way the PM deals with wayward MPs, and for the cynical reaction to Finance Minister Michael Cullen's hints that Business and Personal Tax Cuts in 2008... just months out from the next election.
President of the Peace Government of New Zealand, Dr. Graeme Lodge, says "Invincibility Schools" are being established around the country, where students will "practice Yogic Flying together to create coherent collective consciousness — the basis of an invincible nation".
Dr Lodge says, "These Yogic Flyers will neutralize overnight the dangerous buildup of negativity in national consciousness and promote positivity and harmony in the country and throughout the world".
Supporters point to Holland as an indication of the success that can be achieved. 400 Yogic Flyers have been working there for the last three months... Since then, Holland has seen a booming economy, a drop in Governmental problems, growing harmony amongst its citizens, and greater respect from other countries.
The Program will be no doubt welcomed by those in the Middle East... apprently even a few hundred Yogic Flyers is sufficient in a country to "dramatically reduce negative trends, such as crime, violence, and conflict, and to promote positive social, economic, and political tendencies throughout the whole population".
US organisers are aiming to get 3,500 Yogic Flyers. Once they're all busy flying we are told to expect greater success for the Government, for Peace and Prosperity to reign, and for Violence and Conflict to subside completely. Sounds good then!
* Scoop: Peace Govt Launches Program to Make NZ Invincible
* Newswire: Flyers Claim Early Success
* Victory Before War: Maharishi's Homeland Defense
* Stuff: Teflon Helen needn't fear
^ Bo Bice - You Make Me Better
^ Ashley Parker Angel - Let U Go (Max Martin & Dr Luke tracks) ]
Posted at 10:26 p.m. Wednesday, 26 July 2006
No, this is not a joke. The one and only David Hasselhoff (star of Knight Rider, Baywatch, and German/Swiss Pop Superstar) is to star in a musical based on his own life.
David Hasselhoff: The Musical will open in Melbourne, before moving to United States. He's no stranger to the theatre stage, having performed in the musical Jekyll & Hyde on Broadway, and as Billy Flynn in Chicago on the West End.
The Hoff says, "I was offered to go on tour in Australia starting last December with just a concert, and then they came up with the idea for (the musical)".
"It sounds like a bad joke, but it is really going to be a good show...totally campy".
A group of UK fans have launched a website, Get Hasselhoff to Number 1, aimed at getting David Hasselhoff's 1980 European hit single Looking for Freedom to the top of the UK music charts, through internet downloads. When 75,000 people have signed up, a "Hoff Alert" email will be sent out encouraging fans to buy the digital download, and hopefully send the Hoff to the top of the UK singles chart.
* Stuff: Hasselhoff to star in musical based on his life
* Get Hasselhoff to Number 1
* Drop It Like It's Hoff
* Hat Tip - Generation XY
Posted at 11:18 p.m. Tuesday, 25 July 2006
A belated post this one, but still worth putting up...
Dunedin recently held its annual Cadbury Chocolate Carnival... a week-long festival of activities and events around Chocolate.
One of the most popular annual events is the Baldwin Street Jaffa Race. Basically 20,000 Orange Chocolate Candies (called Jaffas) are released from the top of what's believed to be the Steepest Street in the World (Baldwin Street, North East Valley, Dunedin).
The jaffas are individually numbered (you buy a number just like a raffle ticket), and the first ones to make it down the hill and through the little chute at the bottom score a prize... :-)
^ Paris Hilton - Stars Are Blind
^ Paris Hilton - Turn It Up ]
Posted at 10:35 p.m.
The first Jaffas took less than 10 seconds to roll through the chute at the bottom...
(Don't believe what they tell you on State TV - 2.5 seconds?! Obviously their expense accounts don't stretch to stopwatches ;-)
Posted at 10:34 p.m.
Posted at 10:33 p.m.
Posted at 10:30 p.m. Sunday, 23 July 2006
Sky Television New Zealand are plannning to add a new specialist Documentary channel to their meagre lineup. The cleverly titled Documentary Channel will launch in November 2006, following next month's launch of MTV NZ and the localised relaunch of kids channel Nickelodeon.
Richard Driver (Visionary TV) will manage the new channel, which Sky say "will be available to all SKY digital subscribers, representing 43% (huh?! What are you people on?!!) of all television homes nationwide"... (presumably what they actually mean is "all SKY Digital subscribers who are paying us at least $46 a month - not those who are just paying us $18 a month to rent a box to get clearer pictures of the free-to-air broadcasters... albeit with lots of digital blotching because we compress them so much").
The Documentary Channel is aimed at "discerning SKY viewers" (which may exclude the 530,000+ viewers who tuned into State TV2's Nicky Watson special on the once-respected current affairs show 20/20, now reduced to - as Ric Salizzo put it - 'Freak of the week' shows ;-)
On a related note, Sky TV is promising more channels and less rain fade, when it moves to the new Optus D1 satellite in September. The new satellite will have "more power", and will deliver greater capacity... It could boost Sky's capacity by 25% to a total of 75 channels - depending on the level of image compression they go with.
* Sky TV: New Homegrown Documentary Channel to Launch on Sky
* NZ Herald: New Sky TV satellite to combat rain fade
Posted at 11:14 p.m.
Sky Television NZ are preparing to launch their localised version of music and youth channel MTV at 6pm on August the 18th. It's the second try for MTV down under, after State TV's experiment of operating the channel Free to Air ended after just a year (closing down the semi-regional Horizon Pacific Television in the process, and rushing MTV to air as competition for CanWest's new TV4).
Sky say MTV NZ will be "a non-stop 24 hour entertainment channel combining MTV favourites as well as home grown locally produced shows, music and talent". It'll be available on Sky Digital Channel 35, to all subscribers on the 'Start Up' package or better (ie. anyone paying over $46 a month).
The new channel will have first run new episodes of Punk’d, as well as the Laguna Beach spin off, The Hills. A new locally produced show Full Tank is promised, which Sky say will "hit the roads in search of the exciting, the kinky, the glamorous and the downright weird". (Free to Air rival C4 will continue to play some MTV-produced shows under its current contract).
C4 is also dropping a number of its specialist music programmes, many of which have been around since its launch in 2003. Locally hosted shows Amp'd, Intellectual Property, Flashbacks, Sound Lab, Holla Hour, and Freestyle are all being dumped from the schedule.
* Scoop: For the first time in NZ’s history MTV is YOURS
* Muzic.net.nz: C4 To Drop Specialist Shows
* Sky TV: MTV NZ
Posted at 10:45 p.m. Thursday, 20 July 2006
The Diet Coke and Mentos Experiment (see post below for details) has become a worldwide phenomenom, generating over 5 million viewings since being posted online in late May.
But while there's plenty of copycat clips out there, you won't find the original on the likes of YouTube... Indie filmmakers Stephen Voltz and Fritz Grobe posted their video clip on Revver.com - a site which adds advertisements to the end of its web films.
YouTube claims it plays around 100 million videos a day... but creators don't receive any revenue for all those eyes. However they hold the lions share of the online video market, restricting the likes of Revver and Eefoof.com (another site offering to pay content creators) to niche players.
Another player that's been online for much longer is AtomFilms. It's been distributing short films since 1998, and claims to have paid out millions of dollars in royalties, with top filmmakers making making six figure sums. AtomFilms' revenue comes from banner ads, and from commercials inserted before film clips.
* InformationWeek: Internet Video
Posted at 8:49 p.m. Monday, 17 July 2006
Firefox, the web browser promoted by the Mozilla Foundation, is being readied for its next big battle against Microsoft's Internet Explorer. Both are preparing for major new releases of their browsers later this year.
Microsoft were initially keen to rest on their laurels after "winning the browser wars", but a small but steady drop in the market share of Internet Explorer forced a rethink by the software giant. They're now preparing to release Internet Explorer 7 - a major upgrade of their aging browser, with a new look, tabbed browsing (popular with Firefox and Opera users), support for the likes of RSS (Really Simple Syndication), and better security and protection against 'phishing'.
With Microsoft putting together a better product, the challenge for Firefox to further grow its market share will be even tougher... Studies put its current reach at anything from 10% to as high as over 30% in parts of Europe.
* eWeek.com: Firefox 2.0 Beta 1 Is No Slam-Dunk
* Lifehacker.com: Firefox 2.0 Beta 1 Screenshots
* Computerworld: Firefox use growing around the world
* PCWorld.com: Master Firefox's Hidden Configuration Tools
Posted at 10:24 p.m. Friday, 14 July 2006
Disney's megahit original tv movie High School Musical is finally making an impact in New Zealand.
The modern day Grease is the highest rated movie of the year in the USA (on both cable and network) amongst kids and teens. The singles, album soundtrack, and DVD have set sales records.
Now High School Musical is up for six Emmy awards... Outstanding Children's Program, Best Director, Best Choreography, Best Casting, and two nominations for Outstanding Music and Lyrics ("Get'cha Head in the Game" and "Breaking Free").
Sequels are already in the planning stages... Producers are now working on the script and music for High School Musical 2: Sing It All Or Nothing! Zac Efron, Ashley Tisdale, and other main stars will all return for that tv movie (to begin shooting when Efron finishes doing Hairspray), along with Director and Choreographer Kenny Ortega (Dirty Dancing, Newsies).
Production is now delayed until early next year, and may not be released until 2008. A third film - High School Musical 3 - is also planned, along with a Broadway show.
* ABC 4: Utah-filmed "High School Musical" gets 6 Emmy nominations
* Zap2it.com: 'High School Musical' Star Lands 'Hairspray' Lead
* Los Angeles Times: It sells like teen spirit
* Deseret News: Disney high on 'Musical'
Posted at 6:14 p.m.
Zac Efron and co. show off their hoop skills on the court...
Posted at 6:12 p.m.
Television promo for the Encore DVD Edition of the hit Disney Channel TV movie High School Musical...
Posted at 6:10 p.m.
New Zealand's National Party has launched a new website, dedicated to keeping a tally of wasted spending by the Labour-led minority coalition Government currently running the country (with the help of NZ First and United Future).
Monitoring and pointing out Government wastage was previously the hobby of ACT Party leader Rodney Hide. However, with that party represented by just two MPs in the current parliament it seems National have decided to have a crack at it.
Former Act MP Ken Shirley highlighted the scandal at Te Wananga o Aotearoa before the last election, where millions of dollars was spent on "muppet" courses like twilight golf, hip-hop tours, Cuban literacy programmes, along with free laptops for students.
National Party leader Don Brash says he's collected many fresh examples of wasteful spending of taxpayer dollars, including the $490 million blowout in building four new prisons (doesn't anyone work to budgets these days?!), and $1 million for a pilot phoneline scheme in the Bay of Plenty where 12 staff answer an average of 3 calls each per day.
* Stuff: Nats launch website exposing 'wasteful Govt spending'
* Scoop: Website to highlight Labour's wasteful spending
* David Farrar: Waste Watch
* Waste Watch website
Posted at 4:58 p.m.