web analytics
The Standard

Kiwirail disgrace

Written By: - Date published: 8:17 am, August 9th, 2012 - 36 comments
Categories: jobs, transport - Tags:

Buying back Kiwirail was a chance for building a cost-, oil-, and carbon-efficient transport network. Instead, its been a tale of false economies: cheap trains from China, cheap sleepers from Peru, cheap labour from contracting out. In the end, it all costs more for worse results.

Smart transport policy, smart procurement policy, smart labour policy – that’s what we need from Labour-Greens in 2014 to make Literal what it can be.

36 comments on “Kiwirail disgrace”

  1. peter 1

    They were not “cheap” sleepers from Peru, the supplier has acted fraudulently by suppplying a lower grade product than specified. And it took some time before his fraud became apparent, as the sleepers are rotting from the inside out !

  2. Tracey 2

    The new definition of capitalism is

    “to move from country to country chasing lower labour rates” –

    • bbfloyd 2.1

      it used to be “to move from country to country chasing cheap raw materials, and slaves”, so I suppose capitalism has at least changed it’s stated goals…..

      Same animal, new hairstyle….

  3. Busman 3

    U are joking ??? right ?? and who ordered the trains ??? and who paid over a billion dollars for it and allowed toll to keep the profitable part of the business ??
    Tui advert eh ?? u are not serious

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      So you’d be one of the ones that say the government should have paid book value, right? Would you also say that the power companies should be sold at book value?

    • marsman 3.2

      One train carries as much as 100 trucks. Fewer trucks on roads equals less damage to roads and fewer holdups of car traffic and fewer accidents.

      • Rob 3.2.1

        I am unsure as to why these things you state are variable under different owenrship structures.. Your ratio’s of truck freight to road freight are constant – independent of who owns it.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.2.1.1

          Well:
          1.) The private sector run down the infrastructure so that trains couldn’t actually be used in many places (it’s a natural monopoly after all and thus engenders rentier behaviour)
          2.) Trucks are massively subsidised by cars resulting in them being used when they shouldn’t

          This requires a few fixes:
          1.) Government ownership and reinvestment in rail
          2.) Getting rid of the subsidy that trucks enjoy

          This would result in trains becoming the preferred choice for transporting long distances while keeping prices down and the infrastructure in good condition.

          • ghostwhowalksnz 3.2.1.1.1

            The Chairman of Toyota NZ is on the Board of Kiwirail.

            Coincidence ? You would think Air NZ or maybe a power company but oh no its something he knows nothing about but the competion to rail transport has quite a bit of involvement.

          • Kiwiiano 3.2.1.1.2

            Why not split the transport taxes raised by petrol & general taxes and road user charges between roads, rail and coastal shipping to find the best performing infrastructure?

            • Draco T Bastard 3.2.1.1.2.1

              Why complicate the matter? Just need to have each paying their true costs.

    • TimD 3.3

      <700million, IIRC, was paid for KiwiRail. It was a high price, but the fact that it don't gush money is probably the thing that will save it from being re-sold.
      If you look at it Cullen as as tight as a fishes ass, but still saw KiwiRail as something good to buy (or maybe lumping the Nats with another monkey on their back), so there must be something worthwhile in buying it back.

  4. marsman 4

    Kiwirail is being sabotaged on NActs behalf by the dickhead who runs it. Auckland to Wellington passenger service is now faster but stops have been cut and they have trebled the cheapest fares and doubled the others. Way to attract passengers, but of course they want to be able to say ‘look it’s failed no-one is using the service’. Back to travelling on overcrowded buses stopping at crummy tea-rooms with one blocked toilet. Great for tourism too.

    • tc 4.1

      Ah yes Jim Quinn, dickhead is generous and misguided. A patsy appointment who does as told, after years at NZPost he’s a good boy who follows orders from the hollowmen for the much bigger bucks than he got for pretending to operate courier post which is a business than runs itself.

      See the trick is having these good old boys who do as instructed, the NACT is bulging with them whereas Labour just doesn’t have the connections so SOE’s like TVNZ got away with a lot of shite under Clark as they just couldn’t find the equivalent Quinns to look after the shop.

  5. Julian 5

    The masses in our beautiful 100% pure country do not want or even entertain the idea of economic environmentally sound public transport. We are lazy and love our cars too much. It is not until a kiwi travels over seas and sees for them selves what an amazing difference an effective public transportation by rail makes to the commuters life coming from the suburbs and rural communities as opposed to the mind bending, crawling, angry traffic on motorways of big cities.

    If we did want it as a country we would demand it. No one gives a shit outside their four car doors.
    I’m sure their are a minority of environmentally sound members of the public who would love it but the masses don’t, they want roads not rail. That is what we as a country voted for with King Key.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Wrong:

      People using public transport in Auckland continues to take giant leaps – a 9.1% increase in the last 12 months.

      Auckland public transport patronage totalled 69,032,572 passengers for the 12-months to Nov 2011 an increase of 5,738,734 boardings or +9.1%.

      People are more than happy to use PT but the government (both local and central) has been building only for cars and trucks since the 1950s. It’s going to take awhile to correct that misallocation. Especially when this government is increasing that misallocation.

      • mike e 5.1.1

        Funny that the Tories in the UK have figured out PT but the butt holes we have for Tories in this country are only interested in those who pay the biggest donations ie oil co’s and road transport lobbies.
        Corrupt crapitalists.

  6. Cnut 6

    “Smart transport policy, smart procurement policy, smart labour policy – that’s what we need from Labour-Greens in 2014 to make Literal what it can be.”

    Indeed. Let’s pray Labour will stop shooting itself in the foot and stabbing itself in the back for long enough to garner at least a few MPs to make a Greens-with-Labour-support Government a possibility.

  7. BernyD 7

    And trains can be run on electricity, something to consider in the mix.

  8. captain hook 8

    i wuz born in a boomers shack
    bout that far from the railroad track
    choo choo rattled my window pane
    sheet iron on the roof tell me eva time it rained.

  9. tracey 9

    A person earning a living as the head of a car selling company advises kiwirail?!

  10. burt 10

    Yeah, we could have borrowed billions more to spend on kiwirail…. doooh. Damn shame we paid way to much to buy it back just in time for a hard to win election…. if we had paid the book price for it then we might have more to spend on maintenance – such is the price of trying to be popular using other peoples money.

  11. Lloyd 11

    Just remember that Japan and Taiwan run tilting trains carrying passengers on the New Zealand gauge over similar country to New Zealand at scheduled speeds of 140 km per hour. This means that the trains can be faster than a car, and you can go to the bar during the trip.

    The reason New Zealanders prefer the car is that the car generally is faster. the reason it is faster is that New Zealand hasn’t invested in the railway network…….

    • OneTrack 11.1

      The other, albeit minor, problem is that the trains don’t go where you want to go and don’t go when you want them to go. Not everybody lives in upper Hutt and works in a ministry job in the city.

      • Colonial Viper 11.1.1

        :roll: That’s what your legs are for, dumbass.

        And instead of addressing Lloyd’s excellent points, you attempted a derail with a snide remark about our faithful public servants :roll:

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Meth ring under Serco’s nose
    The news that two Serco inmates have been arrested for helping to run a methamphetamine ring from prison should be the final straw and see their contract cancelled, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “National has stood by Serco despite… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Ministers failing women and their own targets
    New figures showing just five Ministers have met the Government’s own reduced targets for appointing women to state sector boards is evidence National is failing Kiwi women, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The Ministry for Women’s 2015 Gender… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Charges up for some as funding up for grabs
    A proposal being considered by the Government would see some people having to pay more for health care and district health boards forced to fight amongst themselves to fund regional health services, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Information leaked… ...
    6 hours ago
  • Stop experimenting on kids
    The trouble with the Charter school model is that it is a publicly funded experiment on children. The National Government has consistently put its desire to open charter schools ahead of the safety of the children in them, ignoring repeated… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    23 hours ago
  • Bank puts the squeeze on mid Canterbury farmers
    News that an unnamed bank in Ashburton has put a receiver on notice over financially vulnerable farmers will send a chill through rural New Zealand, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government needs to work with  New Zealand’s banks… ...
    1 day ago
  • Key is trading away New Zealand land and homes
    John Key yesterday admitted what National dishonestly refused to confirm in Parliament last week – he is trading away New Zealand’s right to control who buys our homes and land, says Opposition leader Andrew Little. “The Prime Minister must now… ...
    1 day ago
  • Razor gang takes scalpel to health
    Plans by the Government to take a scalpel to democratically elected health boards are deceitful and underhand, coming just months after an election during which they were never signalled, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says “Leaked documents reveals a radical… ...
    1 day ago
  • Spin lines show a department in chaos
    Corrections Spin Doctors sending their place holder lines to journalists instead of responding to serious allegations shows the scale of chaos at the department over the Serco scandal, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “As more and more serious allegations… ...
    3 days ago
  • Court ruling shows law should never have been passed
    A High Court ruling that a law banning prisoners from voting is inconsistent with a properly functioning democracy should be a wake-up call for the Government, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. In an unprecedented ruling Justice Paul Heath has… ...
    4 days ago
  • Judicial Review Gamble Pays Off for Problem Gambling Foundation
    Congratulations are due to the Problem Gambling Foundation (PGFNZ) who have won their legal case around how the Ministry of Health decided to award their contracts for problem gambling services to another service provider. Congratulations are due not just for&hellip; ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    4 days ago
  • Environmental Protection Agency appoints GE advocate as new CEO
    This week, the Environmental Protection Authority Amendment Bill passed its first reading in Parliament. The Bill puts protection of the environment into the core purpose of the Environmental Protection Authority. This month, Dr Allan Freeth, the former Chief Executive of… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    4 days ago
  • Charanpreet Dhaliwal death demands genuine health and safety reform
    The killing of a security guard on his first night on the job is exactly the kind of incident that National’s watered-down health and safety bill won’t prevent, says Te Atatu MP Phil Twyford. The coronial inquest into 22-year-old Charanpreet… ...
    4 days ago
  • Arbitrary sanctions hit children hardest
    Increasing numbers of single parents are being penalised under a regime that is overly focussed on sanctions rather than getting more people into work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Figures, obtained through Parliamentary questions show 3000 more sanctions,… ...
    4 days ago
  • Hekia just won’t face the facts
    Hekia Parata’s decision to keep troubled Whangaruru Charter school open despite being presented with a catalogue of failure defies belief, goes against official advice and breaks a Government promise to close these schools if they were failing, says Labour’s Education… ...
    4 days ago
  • No more silent witnesses
    Yesterday I attended the launch of a new initiative developed by and for Asian, Middle eastern and African youth to support young people to name and get support if there is domestic violence at home. The impact on children of… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    4 days ago
  • Single Use Plastic Bags campaign – Some wins and some green-washing
    As we near the end of Plastic Free July I’m nearing the conclusion of my Say No To Plastic Bag tour when I will have completed all 30 of my public meetings. The campaign was designed to work with community… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    4 days ago
  • Minister must take responsibility for problem gambling debacle
    The Government’s handling of the Problem Gambling Foundation’s axing in a cost-cutting exercise has been ham-fisted and harmful to some of the most vulnerable people in society, Associate Health Labour spokesperson David Clark says.“Today’s court ruling overturning the axing of… ...
    5 days ago
  • Labour will not support TPP if it undermines NZ sovereignty
    The Labour Party will not support the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement unless key protections for New Zealanders are met, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.“Labour supports free trade. However, we will not support a TPP agreement that undermines New Zealand’s sovereignty. ...
    5 days ago
  • Coleman can’t ignore latest warnings
    Resident doctors have advised that a severe staffing shortage at North Shore Hospital is putting patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “They say a mismatch between staffing levels and patient workloads at North Shore has… ...
    5 days ago
  • ACC must remove barriers to appeals
    The Government must prioritise removing barriers to justice for ACC claimants following a damning report by Acclaim Otago, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “ACC Minister Nikki Kaye must urgently scrap her flawed plan to remove claimant’s right to redress… ...
    5 days ago
  • Six months’ paid parental leave back on the agenda
    Six months’ paid parental leave is back on the agenda and a step closer to reality for Kiwi parents after Labour’s new Member’s Bill was pulled from today’s ballot, the Bill’s sponsor and Labour MP Sue Moroney says. “My Bill… ...
    5 days ago
  • Sole parents at risk of having no income
    New requirements for sole parents to undertake a reapplication process after a year is likely to mean a large number will face benefit cancellations, but not because they have obtained work, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Increasing numbers… ...
    5 days ago
  • Juking the Welfare Stats Again
    Last week the government’s major initiative to combat child poverty (a paltry $25 increase) was exposed for what it is, a lie. The Government, through the Budget this year, claims to be engaging in the child poverty debate, but instead,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    5 days ago
  • OCR rate cut a result of flagging economy
    The Reserve Bank's decision to cut the Official Cash Rate to 3 per cent shows there is no encore for the so-called 'rock star' economy, says Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.   "Today's interest rate cut comes off the back… ...
    5 days ago
  • Reboot to an innovation economy, an Internet economy and a clean economy
    In my short 33 years on this planet we’ve seen phenomenal technological, economic and social change, and it’s realistic to expect the next 33 will see even more, even faster change. You can see it in the non-descript warehouse near… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    6 days ago
  • Bill that puts the environment into the EPA passes first hurdle
    A Bill that puts the environment squarely into legislation governing the Environmental Protection Authority passed its first reading today, says Meka Whaitiri.  “I introduced this member’s bill as the current law doesn’t actually make protecting the environment a goal of… ...
    6 days ago
  • Key’s KiwiSaver deception exposed
    KiwiSaver statistics released today expose John Key's claim that the cutting of the kickstart payment "will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver” to be duplicitous, says Labour Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “Official… ...
    6 days ago
  • Minimum Wage Amendment Bill to protect contractors
    All New Zealanders should be treated fairly at work. Currently, the law allows non-employment relationships to be used to get around the minimum wage. This is unfair, says Labour MP David Parker. “The Minimum Wage (Contractor Remuneration) Amendment Bill, a… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill raises bar to protect Kiwi farmland
    The Government’s rubber-stamping of every one of the nearly 400 applications from overseas investors to buy New Zealand farm land over the last three years proves tougher laws are needed, Labour MP Phil Goff says. “In the last term of… ...
    6 days ago
  • Costly flag referendum should be dumped
    John Key must ditch the flag referendum before any more taxpayer money is wasted, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Millions of dollars could be saved if the Prime Minister called a halt to this hugely expensive, and highly unpopular, vanity… ...
    6 days ago
  • Nats letting Serco off scot free
    Government members have prevented Parliament’s Law and Order select committee from getting answers out of a senior Serco director about the fight clubs being run at Mt Eden prisons, says Labour’s Corrections Spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “At today’s Law and Order… ...
    6 days ago
  • Charter school experiment turns into shambles
    The National Government’s charter school experiment has descended into chaos and it’s time for Hekia Parata to stop trying to cover up the full extent of the problems, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The Education Minister must release all… ...
    6 days ago
  • Disconnect between rates and income must be fixed
    Local Government New Zealand’s 10 Point Plan is a chance to stop the widening chasm between the rates some households are charged and their ability to pay, Labour’s Local Government spokesperson Su’a William Sio says. “There is a huge disconnect… ...
    1 week ago
  • Parole and ‘surviving the first year’
    “Intensive psychological treatment and early release to parole is far more effective at reducing reoffending among high risk prisoners than serving out the full prison sentence.” That’s reportedly the finding of Surviving the First Year, a recently-released study into Corrections’… ...
    GreensBy David Clendon MP
    1 week ago
  • Parole and ‘surviving the first year’
    “Intensive psychological treatment and early release to parole is far more effective at reducing reoffending among high risk prisoners than serving out the full prison sentence.” That’s reportedly the finding of Surviving the First Year, a recently-released study into Corrections’… ...
    GreensBy David Clendon MP
    1 week ago
  • If it’s good enough for Lake Taupō…
    Nick Smith supports helping farmers transition away from dairying and agrees we must set nitrogen caps that limit the number of animals on farms. He says this strategy is “world leading”. However we need action and pressure from him, on to… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • The importance of swamp kauri for climate research
    As early as 2010, international climate scientists were expressing concern at the rate of ancient swamp kauri extraction in Northland. Swamp kauri provides one of the best sources in the world for measuring climate fluctuations over the last 30,000 years.… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • Govt needs to heed warnings on med students
    The Government is being urged to act on advice it has received about the negative impact its seven year study cap will have on hundreds of medical students, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “The 7EFTS lifetime limit unfairly disadvantages… ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministers at sea over overseas buyers register
    The Prime Minister and three of his ministers are at odds over the collection of information about offshore speculators buying our houses and seem to be making things up as they go, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “John Key… ...
    1 week ago
  • Time for Key to ditch the King Canute routine
    With the economic mood in New Zealand souring, it is time for John Key to admit reality and drop the King Canute approach, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “John Key is claiming that 95 per cent of the economy… ...
    1 week ago
  • Botched contract leads to charter school rort
    A botched Government contract has allowed an Auckland charter school to double dip by getting funding for students it has accommodated for free, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Information received by Labour through written Parliamentary questions show the Ministry… ...
    1 week ago
  • Flawed system costs $3 million and counting
    New figures obtained* by Labour show the Government’s shambolic ACC car registration levy system has cost more than $3 million to implement and the costs are set to escalate, Labour's ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “That’s $3 million that could… ...
    1 week ago
  • Radio NZ facing death by 1000 cuts
    The National Government’s seven year funding freeze on Radio New Zealand has put its vital public broadcasting services in serious jeopardy, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Clare Curran says. "The axing of 20 jobs at our only publicly funded broadcaster shows the… ...
    1 week ago
  • Trades funding cut short-sighted
      Short-sighted funding cuts could lead to fewer school students learning trades, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. "Schools are now being financially penalised for enrolling students in trades academies. They could lose teachers and school management positions as a… ...
    1 week ago
  • The rock star economy is well out of tune
    The bad news is mounting for the economy with job ads falling in June, suggesting employment is taking a hit, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “ANZs Job Ads data shows job advertising fell 0.6 per cent in June and is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Treasury latest to withhold Saudi sheep scandal information
    The Labour Party will today lodge a complaint with the Ombudsman after the Treasury became the latest government department to withhold information on the Saudi sheep scandal. Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Parker says the Government has been… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Calls to extend life-saving training
    The Government must ensure all health sector workers are not only be trained to routinely check for medical identification bracelets but have access to critical online patient information, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “The tragic death of an 80-year-old… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Making business tax more flexible
    Labour is launching a new proposal to give businesses more flexibility and control over when they pay their tax, Opposition Leader Andrew Little announced today. “Today I am launching a discussion document to give businesses the option of paying their… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ICT graduates a drop in the sector’s empty bucket
    The Government’s ICT graduate schools announced today will only train a tiny fraction of the workers the sector is crying out for, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “The industry estimates it has a shortage of 10,000 skilled workers,… ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere