Latvia

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Russian Jack was known all around the lower half of the North Island, and is remembered for the large loads he carried. Russian Jack, after his arrival in New Zealand in 1912, was the nickname of Barrett Crumen, a Latvian who walked around the lower North Island for over 50 years.

Russian Jack was known all around the lower half of the North Island, and is remembered for the large loads he carried. Russian Jack, after his arrival in New Zealand in 1912, was the nickname of Barrett Crumen, a Latvian who walked around the lower North Island for over 50 years.

Russian Jack

For well nigh a hundred years swaggers were a common sight on the roads of Wairarapa. Men of all ages, all sizes and nearly all races, walked the dusty roads with all their worldly possessions tied in a swag held over their shoulder, usually balanced with a stick. Originally they were a mobile work force, moving from station to station, hoping to pick up seasonal work. Later they came to be men who were looking for a life of freedom on the road.

The first big swell of men on the roads of New Zealand came in the 1880’s when large groups of itinerant labourers walked the country roads, moving from farm to farm. Word quickly spread through the swagger network when a station owner was hiring casual labour, and many men would take up their swag and head for the work.

Sometimes they were disappointed.

The most famous of all the Wairarapa swaggers, is the man everyone came to call Russian Jack. He was not in New Zealand during the hungry years or even for the first years of this century. He arrived, rather abruptly, in New Zealand on 23 June, 1912. The man officially known as Barrett Crumen but known to all as “Russian Jack” was born in Latvia on 26 March 1878, in a small village called Alexandra. He later said that he had received a small amount of schooling in his village, before being sent out to work in the forestry camps around his hometown.

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Kraut pushback against doing deal to help dodgy socialist Greek ratbags

Angela Merkel is in a spot of bother for daring to entertain bailing out the dodgy, socialist Greek ratbags for a third time.

Germany’s ruling coalition appears to be deeply split over Greece’s latest reform proposals ahead of a climactic meeting of EU leaders at the weekend.

While senior Social Democrats (SPD), the junior partners in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government, welcomed the list of concessions from the Greek prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, members of her own conservative bloc were scathing about Greece’s position.

As financial experts digested the plan from Athens, the joint chief executive of Berlin’s stock exchange, Artur Fischer, said that business leaders in Germany felt Greece had squandered its credibility, and that if Merkel agreed to a third bailout for Greece, she could also be signing up to the continuation of the crisis for years to come, thereby risking her chancellorship.

“This is the toughest time in her chancellorship so far. Can she resist the voices of opposition within her own party to push through a third bailout in the Bundestag that most of them are against?” said Fischer.

WhaleTech: Spam Storm brewing

2342Unsolicited emails, or SPAM, have been flowing past the usually clever anti-SPAM measures of many email systems, including those of Google.

The scary part is that they appear to be accessing the address book.

As incredible as that sounds, similar stories are being reported from other corners of the Internet

Kiwi internet users are complaining of hundreds of spam emails being sent out from servers overnight.

The issue appears to affect yahoo and xtra accounts.

Emails containing spam links have been sent to people on users’ address lists.

ONE News has received dozens of the emails, and people have reported similar problems on message boards and Twitter.

This is a massive push using some very smart email address matching technology.  Early analysis seems to show that they are able to match addresses that are likely to be known to each other.  It then sends you a spam email with about half a dozen addresses in the To field, and with some luck, one of them matches someone you know.

This has organised crime written all over it.   Read more »