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From failure to farce

Written By: - Date published: 7:44 am, October 11th, 2013 - 95 comments
Categories: privatisation - Tags:

“John Key’s asset sales have descended from failure to farce” – that’s how Metiria Turei described the announcement that Mighty River Power will be buying back shares just five months after they were privatised. Clayton Cosgrove put it more bluntly: “It’s a good thing the government doesn’t own a brewery cos they couldn’t organise a pi .. a DRINK in one”.

What a cock-up the whole process has been. The sales costs have blown out to $124m and are set to at least double. Less than half the ‘mum and dads’ they expected showed up. They got less money than they expected for Mighty River (and now, wise after the fact, the analysts all claim it was over-priced).

Now, these shares that were supposedly all about helping Kiwis get diversified savings are being bought back by the company in a transparent attempt by the MRP board to try to revive its ailing share price, which is about to come under even more pressure with the fire-sale of Meridian.

If they get out now, the average ‘mum and dad’ will have lost a grand. And I reckon plenty of them will get out while the getting is good.

I’m really looking for to the referendum. Key’s said he’ll put the ‘no’ vote against the number of people who voted National in 2011 (most of whom, incidentally, opposed asset sales). It’s going to be great when New Zealanders get ot give him an arse-kicking over these stupid asset sales.


95 comments on “From failure to farce”

  1. Tracey 1

    Given the poor turnout in local body elections you shouldnt get too excited about referendum turnout. The govt is doing a gd job dissuading people by telling them they are wasting their time.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 1.1

      They would say that-” Democracy is a waste of time”- which they keep proving in many ways

      Of course their crony capitalist mates want it that way as well.

  2. framu 2

    typo? – should it read “I’m really looking forward to the referendum”?

  3. Lanthanide 3

    “I’m really looking for to the referendum. Key’s said he’ll put the ‘no’ vote against the number of people who voted National in 2011 (most of whom, incidentally, opposed asset sales). It’s going to be great when New Zealanders get ot give him an arse-kicking over these stupid asset sales.”

    Does that mean if more people vote no than voted for National, they’ll cancel the further sales? If he actually committed to that, he could be in for a surprise…

  4. deWithiel 4

    With the MSM ramming home the message that the only important things in life are yachting races, the All Blacks and Lorde, it’s hardly surprising that the local body elections have been a total disaster. Not helped, of course, by a very real recognition that local bodies are political panaceas: voters do realise that if any local body is brave enough to make a decision that runs contrary to the current government’s received ‘wisdom’, it’s almost guaranteed to be overturned either by Steve, Nick and Gerry or all three of them. However, given the emotive quality of the matter, it is possible that the electorate could be motivated to actually vote on the referendum and you would hope that the opposition parties have developed a strategy to deal properly with the issue, one that takes account of voter apathy and the hostility of our ‘masters” voices.

    • Mike S 4.1

      “With the MSM ramming home the message that the only important things in life are yachting races, the All Blacks and Lorde”

      Yes but they would also have us believe that the only important thing in the entire universe is berms.

      (Come to think of it, isn’t ‘berm’ a sort of strange little word. Apparently it comes from a military barricade or mound of earth)

  5. King Kong 5

    I agree with Cosgrove, the less the Government owns the better. It doesn’t matter whether it is breweries or power stations.

    I thought he was meant to be against asset sales.

    As for token Turei, it is impossible to take anything she says seriously, but it may warrant some consideration as there is probably no one in Parliament with more experience of failure and farce.

    • vto 5.1

      Nick Smith has great failure and farce

      Hekia Parata has certainly failed so many times it is farcical

      John Key fails to tell the truth compulsively and is an absolute farce

      Rich people like John Key like to own such assets and the fact that he wants to do the reverse for the people of New Zealand is more failure and farce

    • felix 5.2

      lolz Kong, that’s the funny thing about National and right-wing parties around the world.

      In opposition they whinge about how the state isn’t capable of running anything properly and then when they get into govt, they prove it.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.2.1

        😆 😈

      • McFlock 5.2.2


        I had just thought that tories believed everyone to be grasping, insecure, small-minded, avaricious, amoral, sociopathic, bitter, shallow, exploitative, unregenerate, paranoid, intensely stupid, and evil little scrotes because they themselves were.

        I’d never made the logical extension to that being an explanation for their obsessive belief in government incompetence, too.

      • Self-fulfilling prophecies are the easiest type to fool the voters with. 😉

    • fender 5.3

      You should really do some independent thinking around government ownership and the role governments play in getting industry and services up and running. It’s a shame up repeat your tea party lines without any consideration for reality. There was an interesting piece on RNZ last night about how the I-phone for instance is a device that relies on technology that was created by the US government.

      If the NZ government hadn’t created these power generators we would still be using candles and cooking over open fires, now that might not bother an ape who eats raw meat but it’s quite important to humans.

      Please use your limited intelligence to write better comments KK, because at the moment I’m seeing Rodney Hide in every one of your foolish comments.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.3.1

        There was an interesting piece on RNZ last night about how the I-phone for instance is a device that relies on technology that was created by the US government.

        It’s all part of the re-write of history that the RWNJs are doing:

        The personal computer emerged during this time with Apple introducing the first one in 1976. Following this, the computer industry’s boom in Silicon Valley and the key role of DARPA in the massive growth of personal computing received significant attention, but has since been forgotten by those who claim Silicon Valley is an example of ‘free market’ capitalism. In a recent documentary, Something Ventured, Something Gained, for example, the role of the State is not mentioned once in the 85 minutes spent describing the development of Silicon Valley (Geller and Goldfine 2012).

        Mazzucato, Mariana (2013-05-15). The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking Public vs. Private Myths in Risk and Innovation (Kindle Locations 1764-1768). Anthem Press. Kindle Edition.

        Private innovation has done very little to progress technology. The real risky, blue sky development has been done by governments which the private sector has then used.

        • Naturesong

          Not always.

          WWW, linux and the open source movement are good examples where socialist collectives have done the heavy lifting.
          Though even there, with the high incidence of academics, governments have been picking up some of the bill.

          • Draco T Bastard

            You do understand that the internet (WWW) was a development of DARPA back in the 1960s don’t you?

            What the research is showing is that the government does the research that may not actually produce stuff and, once they have a working idea, it’s passed over to the private sector to continue with. Apple and other tech firms wouldn’t exist without the US government having done the basic research into semi-conductors and operating systems. This applies to a hell of a lot of research.

            Yes, the private sector does some basic research but it’s very little to what the governments have done.

            • Naturesong


              You’re confusing the internet (ARPAnet), which was developed by ARPA (later to become DARPA) with the World Wide Web, which was developed by Tim Berners Lee with others at CERN (http://info.cern.ch), and given free to the world.

              I agree with your second paragraph, but your third appears to be a criticism of something unrelated to anything I said.

              • McFlock

                either way, private enterprise is the R&D equivalent of the cuckoo, using other people’s work to raise the next generation of thieves.

                • Naturesong


                  I’m of the view that goverment funding of research either directly, through institutions like university, or even providing infrastructure to enable open source projects to develop is a very good thing indeed.

                  At which point it can be made available to the public.

                  Take as a for instance, the Americas Cup.
                  I’d be very happy to see government funding into research for more efficient harnessing of wind. And making the results of that research available to folks who like to race boats.
                  But funding the actual team? Not so much.

                  That same research might also be useful to people wanting to make better wind powered generators, or wind assisted freight ships etc …

              • Draco T Bastard

                ou’re confusing the internet (ARPAnet), which was developed by ARPA (later to become DARPA) with the World Wide Web,

                No I’m not. Without the first you wouldn’t have got the second.

                • McFlock

                  Ug invented the wheel.
                  Without the wheel we would not have the motorcar.
                  Therefore, Ug invented the motor car.

                  Printers invented markup language
                  Without markup language we wouldn’t have the WWW
                  Therefore, printers invented the WWW

                  Nah. doesn’t follow.

                • Naturesong

                  Yes and no.

                  ARPAnet was not the only game in town. Work had been done on the NPL Data Communications Network, though funding was an issue.
                  It was solving the packet switching problem that changed the game.

                  The OSI framework was also taking shape before ARPAnet
                  And given that the web is not on layers 1 – 4 it is entirely feasible that the WWW could have come into existance on a network using different protocols.

                  But, ARPAnet solved the packet switching issue, universities were connected, ethernet was developed (Xerox iirc), and the rest is history.

                  • Draco T Bastard



                    ARPAnet was not the only game in town. Work had been done on the NPL Data Communications Network, though funding was an issue.

                    Yep, the government provided funding – something that private enterprise failed to do. Which is what Ive been saying all along. The government provides two major things that the private sector simply wont, and probably cant, do: 1.) Long term funding and 2.) stability.

                    …ethernet was developed (Xerox iirc), and the rest is history.

                    Ethernet couldnt have been developed without the US governments support of the semi-conductor industry (research and development) from the late 50s

              • Murray Olsen

                CERN is publicly funded. In fact, it is funded at a supranational level.
                The development of commercial air travel was publicly funded, to a large extent through the US Post Office. It is extremely difficult to find any research that became applied and useful thanks to nothing but the efforts of a Randian superhero. Even the obscene economic theories which allow them to make these claims were generally developed in public institutions. The main things they come up with in the private sector are new justiifications to get public money shovelled into their offshore accounts.

    • Shane Gallagher 5.4

      Explain how the economies of China, Singapore and South Korea are doing so well when the state owns and directs so much of those economies. Go on. Have a go.

      One is Communist, one is an oligarchy and one is a democracy.

      Oh and if you have to call someone names then you have lost the argument already. 🙂

      • Puckish Rogue 5.4.1

        If Labour announced that they were going to do everything the respective governments of China, Singapore and South Korea do then I would vote labour or are you just cherry picking the bits you like?

        • framu

          how is that in any way relevant to SGs comment?

          why cant you make even a single decent argument?

        • McFlock

          We should so everything that China, Singapore and South Korea do? Including the contradictory bits, sauch as a one-child policy and setting up dating advice and opportunities for civil servants in order to combat falling fertility. And that’s just the first one that springs to mind.

          Basically, you ever voting labour involves Labour having a brain-fry that results in massive failures in logic and common sense. This, I can agree with.

  6. Sosoo 6

    I enrolled to vote yesterday for the sole purpose of voting against the nats in this referendum.

    • Chris 6.1

      Sosoo, why stop at the referendum… best way to stop asset sales is to vote National out at the 2014 elections

    • Tiger Mountain 6.2

      They don’t like it up ’em! The Asset Sales referendum is a chance for timid torys to say what they really think about the issue without an election attached. As well as the rest of us to send ShonKey a message.

      Power generation and supply should be returned to public ownership, simple as. Eddie’s post touches on the absurdity of Nationals “the patient died but the operation was a great success” approach to the whole debacle.

      Buying shares back so soon?

  7. tricldrown 7

    Kluless klutz so if a govt was able to run on returns from investments meaning that we would pay less tax or no tax at all you no doubt would be in favour of that.
    No you being a primitive primate want society to gone back to the laws of the jungle where only the strongest survive.
    Research has shown that civilization has progressed by cooperation of the human species for the benefit of all.
    Selfishness is a regression to primative behaviour .
    You have chosen your name and it fits your lack of sophistication and nanderthal behaviour well!
    So well!

    • Mike S 7.1

      “Research has shown that civilization has progressed by cooperation of the human species for the benefit of all.”

      +1 and further, research has also shown that competition is a hindrance to progress and to successful outcomes.

      “Selfishness is a regression to primative behaviour”

      Sort of disagree on that one. Selfishness is a learned behaviour.

  8. bad12 8

    What i think has happened with Mighty River Power is that the big boys, the Goldman Saches et al, that Cartel of major banking institutions who are the hidden whip crackers behind this current Government have become impatient with what they expected would be a steady flow of shares from Ma and Pa into the coffers of the Banking Cartel,

    It appears that Ma and Pa, loath to take a financial hit on bailing out of Mighty River have not done the expected and sold off Mighty river en masse so the circling sharks can snap them up,

    Hence the rather insipid attempt to inject a little ‘electricity’ into the share price with the ‘faux buy back’, many commentators believing that the shares bought back will be cancelled thus increasing the dividend yield of the remaining shares,

    The slight bump in share price this false buy back, false in the sense that these shares WILL NOT be cancelled, is supposed to give Ma and Pa yet another chance to unload in a better to take the ‘better loss’ now in case the share price drops again,(inevitably),

    Either way, the Banking Cartels are happy, Mighty River is now sitting on 2% of ‘live’ shares which quietly at some point in the future,(when no-one is looking to closely), Mighty River will swap with the Banking Cartels the shares it holds for a pile of ‘cash’,(cash which because of the US ongoing quantitative easing the Banking Cartels are awash with),

    Whichever way Ma and Pa look at their Mighty River share parcels into the future, they must now realize that this National Government have sold them, with deliberation, a Lemon, the current sleight of hand surrounding Might River shares was always going to occur one way or another…

    • SpaceMonkey 8.1

      Agreed though Goldman Sachs, et al may have made a small sum off the share price slide after shorting the MRP shares as they were listed. Well known tactic… tried and tested on many other IPO clients, e.g. Facebook.

      • bad12 8.1.1

        Aha, and if you have the biggest bag of coin putting in the bigger orders for shares at the short end of the price is always going to make that happen,

        For the Banking Cartels it’s a clean up whichever way they are playing when you consider where all those US dollars they play in the pool with have come from…

  9. Puckish Rogue 9

    “John Key’s asset sales have descended from failure to farce”

    – Oh well if Metiria Turei says it then it must be true

    • fender 9.1

      Metiria Turei makes a great deal more sense than your beloved bumbling Judith, Pukey Boy. I heard Judith talking from Sidney this morning and have concluded that she must have been drunk. But I suspect you wouldn’t care about that, and probably prefer woman who are under the influence.

    • Paul 9.2

      Your usual useless contribution.

    • bad12 9.3

      Pucker up, hows that wee parcel of Mighty river shares looking, ah choices choices, unload them now and take the hit in the pocket,(thank Slippery and National for selling you a slice of a rotten Lemon while your counting the loss),

      OR, wait and see how KiwiPower, coming to you soon after November 2014, makes the pile of useless paper you hold look, snigger…

      • ghostwhowalksnz 9.3.1

        “Unload them now ” Thats so 90s

        Do what Key did with falling value of his secret Tranzrail shares- Short them

        That why you win the bet they will fall some more- and collect on the way down

        Whats next in the great power company shell game.

        MRP has been a debacle, now they power company is becoming a share investor – who knew ?

        Meridian- buy now pay later, is just the opening gambit, lets guess the underwriters are left with 20% of the shares no one wants at nay price

        Genesis ?. yet to come, maybe it will be just like Hallensteins, buy two get one free

        Or maybe , one power company could buy up MRP ?…… oops Ive said too much all ready

        • bad12

          Mighty River a debacle???, that depends upon who you believe the ‘end user’ of the shares in Mighty River was intended by Slippery and this National Government to be,

          That also depends whether you believe that Slippery the Prime Minister had any great belief or even cared what the sale of Mighty River accrued to the Government accounts,

          If you believe the above, and i would suggest only the gullible could, then yeah sure the sale of Mighty River was one big cluster-f**k,

          Of course if you believe that the sale of Mighty River to Ma and Pa was simply political smoke and mirrors, a pathway for the likes of Goldman Saches to gain a large interest in Mighty River without the negative political connotations then what looks like one really really big f**king mess as far as Ma and Pa are concerned will be looking from the Boardroom of Goldman Saches and the other members of the Banking Cartels to be the golden egg that the golden goose has just shat out into the nest…

        • Rogue Trooper

          one generator to spin them all

      • Puckish Rogue 9.3.2

        Why would I sell them? I was more than happy with the divedend result but I’m even happier that the company is buying back shares. Its what Warren Buffett does with his companies and I’d take more notice of what he says when it comes to shares then some yahoos on a leftie website

        So if they are bought back I’ll still have made more money then if I’d left it in the bank so its all good

        and yeah I’m buying more shares

        • bad12

          Lolz, pucker up, like i said the other day, don’t forget to bend over while your at it, it is going to be a great laugh reading your whining bleat after the incoming Labour/Green Government Legislate for KiwiPower,

          Go on buy up Might River shares big-time the thought of your self inflicted losses despite being warned is laughter that will be savored repeatedly in years to come…

        • ghostwhowalksnz

          Buying more /

          So your strategy is countercylical, buy when every one else is selling ( 70 million sold on the first day of trading alone) .

          Good luck with that

        • Saarbo

          PR, if you are buying more of these shares you have no idea how Warren Buffett works. Even if NZ Power didnt go ahead, electricity shares are a very average buy at the momengt, but given NZ Power, these shares are a loser…like you I suspect.

    • Tracey 9.4

      can you point to links which show Turei has lied about anything?

      Here’s a list from your guy


      • Puckish Rogue 9.4.1

        Oh sorry my mistake, I didn’t mean to imply shes a liar* just that shes completely hopeless and out of her depth and should stick to smoking bongs (I’m assuming thats how she comes up with whatever comes out of her mouth, I’m not actually saying she does smoke bongs)

        She earned in excess of 500 grand (mp from 2002-2007 with appropriate pay rises and perks) yet couldn’t get it together to afford a deposit on house in Auckland so had to move to Dunedin to afford a house?

        Yet somehow thousands of other people on a lot less money then her manage to do exactly that and shes now a quotable expert of anything financial?

        Labour in power: not so bad (Cunliffes already got his outs sorted for his promises)

        Labour in power with the Greens anywhere near the books: very bad

        *All politicans lie of course

        • framu


          [translates as ]

          it would be wiser to stop making assumptions – met doesnt smoke weed you ignoramus. Shes a qualified corporate lawyer. And yes i do know that for 100% fact.

          And you dont know shit about why she moved to dunedin

          it might suit your stupid little fantasies – but all your doing is showing that you yourself are out of your depth

          i suggest actually knowing what your talking about before proving your idiocy to all and sundry.

          In fact – have you ever added anything other that entry level brainless one liners?

          [lprent: I think that something has a problem. Will look at it later. ]

          • framu


            [translated as]

            what the hell is going on?

            What i meant o say was

            fact) – meteria doesnt smoke – anything, full stop
            fact) – her moving to dunedin had absolutely nothing to do with auckland house prices

            considering your whole argument is based on things you invented, and that these things arent true, i think you need to make an aplogoy for engaging in personal attacks on people who you know nothing about

          • King Kong

            According to the ODT;

            “Mrs Turei and her husband, Worik Stanton, moved to Dunedin in 2004 when it became apparent they could not afford a home in Auckland. The list MP is based in Dunedin.”

            So either fatso lied to the ODT during the interview she did or it is you that doesn’t know shit.

            I didn’t realise her husbands name was Worik. His parents should be shot. What kind of cum knuckle does that to a kid

            [lprent: We all cannot be named the many variants of “Ook” ]

            • framu

              shes a very old personal friend – so i think i know more than you or the media.

              just because the papers have a single quote doesnt mean that was the only thing in play

              what the fuck is it with you and the name calling – grow the fuck up, its fucking offensive

              • King Kong

                Where as I find the poor usage of the word fuck, three times in one sentence offensive.

                Different strokes for different folks, eh?

                • framu

                  difference is – its just a word – im not applying it to you personally

                  difficult concept for a monkey sure – but there is a difference

            • Paul

              That’s mature…’fatso,
              Can’t you debate the issues or is personal name calling the level of your debating skills?

          • Mike S

            “i suggest actually knowing what your talking about before….”

            Shhh… Let them keep going the way they are, it’s way more fun… It can be sometimes absolutely astounding to read what some people actually think, I wouldn’t want to lose that entertaining (and admittedly at times enraging) insight into their thought processes.

            The phrase “Don’t always believe what you think..” is one that some posters should dwell on.

        • RedBaronCV

          Around about the amount key has trousered from his high end tax cuts $0.5m

  10. tricldrown 10

    Pukish lack of imagination their.
    Govt bribes to get rid of shares at fire sale prices.
    Blinglish said they would not sell if they couldn’t get the minimum price
    Now with nearly $800 million of taxpayer bailout its means just another broken promise.
    $476 million write down in meridian for losses selling cheap power to tiwae.
    $30 million to rio tinto
    $60 million to bribe meridian sharee buyers
    $125 million to goldman sachs
    $120 million to advertise sales
    $50 million MRP to prop up share value.
    +Another $1 to 2 billion in lost value to existing share holders that is every NZ citizen.
    Then loss of divdends.
    This is what Key was doing at Merril Lynch.
    Riping off clients.
    Goldman sachs the same.
    Goldman sachs are facing a raft of SEC charges .
    Goldman Sachs are one of the most corrupt organizations on earth receiving $666 billion in bailouts from US treasury.
    BofA Incorporating Merril Lynch
    Received $336 billion in bailouts.
    Now shonkey is looking out for his future.
    When He moves to Hawaii He will be immediatly be appointed to the board of BofA or Goldman Sachs!

    • TightyRighty 10.1

      only at the standard could you see that much stupid in one comment and not have it moderated. Obviously you’re the average labour/greens voter who has found their voice on the internet. Congratulations on discovering modern technology. use your new found awareness sparingly though, it doesn’t seem to extend to your lack of knowledge.

      [lprent: That is because we don’t moderate on content, we moderate on behaviour. For instance the behaviour that is known as “pointless abuse” which you seem to have just wandered into.

      If you read your lame and really stupid comment you will realise that there is absolutely *no* point in it. You haven’t said anywhere in the comment *what* you found to be a problem in the content of the the comment you were replying to. You just jerked off on the abuse without bothering to explain why you thought it was a problem – a characteristic pig-ignorant right wing wanker compensating for their lack of intelligence with a inflated ego and little talent..

      Congratulations, you have just won a weeks ban for pointless abuse. Have an extra week for being stupid enough to be a pious wannabe PG clone trying to tell us how we should run the site (and thereby attracting my attention to your comment).. ]

      • Mike S 10.1.1

        😆 😆 😆 😆 😆 😆 😆

        lprent you just made me cry…..and my sides are hurting…..love it…

      • Chooky 10.1.2

        …me too…jolly good laugh…thanks Iprent ! (thanx Big Daddy….ooops….Esteemed Facilitator)

        (.btw…speaking of Big Daddys ….cant we have Mr Dotcom on here as an invited poster ….IT is increasingly ruling the world (even bank robbers, according to the latest New Scientist)….and I would love to know where IT /webs/devts are influencing/determining the political schemes of States and Nations…a bit of Sci Fi futuristic conjecture would also be interesting…I think it could be a big draw card to this site..and the MSM may pick up onit as well…….just a thought from a computer/technology retard)

    • Chooky 10.2

      + 100 trickledown…this is DAMNING!……maybe you should put this up again on a new Open Mike for discussion on the facts and figures….. or put it in a Post?…this is important!

      (….I for one got sidetracked by the mirth of Tighty Righty getting banned…you must have gotten under his/her skin!)

  11. Ad 11

    We are used to understanding that the state should own utilities because they are near-monopolies, with solid returns that are good for thengovernment’s accounts.

    But Lprent posted a little while back about preferring government investment into high-tech rather than pastoral industries as high tech gave far higher likelihood of higher salaries, faster innovation uptake, etc.

    So there will likely be a decision point for a Cunliffe administration on (a) what it does with the remaining unspent cash from the shares sales, and (b) could it be better to put the cash into supporting high tech R&D firms rather than old school electricity utilities in further buy-backs.

    Labour will sooner than later face what to spend their money on, there is never enough of it, so does it really make sense to get control of the electricity utilities again?

    • ghostwhowalksnz 11.1

      Your reasoning is all wrong.

      Its the hisk risk startup and new technologies that the private sector should finance.

      The essential utility safe as houses sector is where the state belongs

      As we have seen they are ‘back in the housing sector’, so National is really throwing their manifesto to the winds

    • lprent 11.2

      …Lprent posted a little while back about preferring government investment into high-tech rather than pastoral industries as high tech gave far higher likelihood of higher salaries, faster innovation uptake, etc

      Not to mention lower environmental impacts, less emphasis on service industries (important to me as I’m seldom polite or nice), and flatter tiered managerial organisations which are invariably more pleasant to work in (fewer meetings for a starter) etc etc.

      They’re also generally more fun to work in than generating agricultural commodities. And yes, I have worked the arse end of a cow (and dodged hooves and assorted liquids), done lambing beats in “spring” (cold windy squalls coming off Taupo while you have a hand stuck in a ewe’s cervix are a real downer), and carried strainers up the cliffs that some farmers laughingly call “pasture”. I did enjoy it. But not nearly as much as writing code and directly developing export markets.

  12. Ad 12

    I know Ghost and still think Lprent was wrong. I was trying to apply the reasoning from the previous debate onto asset sales.
    Having said that, we are being royally screwed as consumers by power utilities in public ownership. Unless a new government is going to regulate much harder, I can’t yet see a price benefit to public ownership.

    The other utility really bothering me is Chorus, which MSavage has posted on. Key is so weak in this area and deliberately undermining the regulator. Again, regulation and enforcement is the problem.

    So what problem are we really trying to solve bringing the power companies back into full public ownership?

    [lprent: I am often wrong as I don’t have infinite time to get things right. But what am I being wrong in here? I lack context. ]

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      Having said that. we are being royally screwed as consumers by power utilities in public ownership.

      It’s not government ownership that does that. it’s the profit motive that does it.

      Unless a new government is going to regulate much harder. I can’t yet see a price benefit to public ownership.

      The government doesn’t need to make a profit and thus the cost should be lower.

      So what problem are we really trying to solve bringing the power companies back into full public ownership

      Three problems
      1) The dead-weight loss of profit
      2.) The inefficiency inherent in competition and
      3.) Natural monopolies.

      [lprent: Looks like a comment done in something else and passed through as a escaped URL. Run through slickedit to fix it. ]

      • Ad 12.1.1

        Can’t seem to open this.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.1.2

        NFI what happened there. Just submitted it as normal.

        • lprent

          There was an update in the re-edit plugin this morning. That would be my bet. But it did check out ok on the quick test on the test box.

          I’ll keep an eye on it. Found 2 more in the comment stream.

          Update: And 4 more in the trash. It is a classic URL/HTML escape sequence (eg %20 = space in hexadecimal)

          If anyone spots it, tell me if there was anything unusual and what browser/OS you are using.

          • bad12

            LPrent, the 20% is occurring all through a comment when it appears after an ‘edit’, i am using firefox…

            [lprent: Good – different browser. Bet it is the re-edit. ]

          • Draco T Bastard


            [lprent: translated that is..]

            Im using Chrome Version 30.0.1599.69 m on Win7.

            Made several comments today and thats the only one that went bung.

            [lprent: I happen to have a win7 box like that next to me right now, and a long compile. ]

      • greywarbler 12.1.3

        Interesting mind test you set there Draco. I’ve sorted through the maze and think this summation of yours needs to be seen.

        So what problem are we really trying to solve bringing the power companies back into full public ownership?
        Three problems –
        1 The dead weight loss of profit.
        2 The inefficiency inherent in competition and,
        3 Natural monopolies.

        • Ad

          1. Big utilities should have sufficient profits to run their assets. That’s a regulatory not political task.
          2. Not sure how you would prove the comparison
          3. Again, regulation and enforcement

          • Draco T Bastard

            1.) Profit is over and above the costs of running the assets.
            2.) Competition increases duplication especially in unproductive administration. Also increases the need for regulation and enforcement through having to tell private companies to be nice to each other.
            3.) Transparent government ownership of natural monopolies is cheaper than massive regulation and enforcement.

            • Ad

              1. Not for utilities like ports airports and electricity. Commerce Commission has huge hearings about them.
              2. Agree they are inefficient, but it would be hard for anyone to prove the rative administrative efficiency of s public system.
              3. Well possibly, but where would you stop renationalising, why, how much, and which companies would hang around to find out?

              • Draco T Bastard

                1. Not for utilities like ports airports and electricity. Commerce Commission has huge hearings about them.

                Has absolutely nothing to do with what I said.

                2. Agree they are inefficient, but it would be hard for anyone to prove the rative administrative efficiency of s public system.
                Not really

                3. Well possibly, but where would you stop renationalising, why, how much, and which companies would hang around to find out?

                That would have to be open to discussion. I’d renationalise all natural monopolies, e.g. All international airports, ports, telecommunications, power, health etc. I’d also look at what I call demand monopolies – services that everyone uses and so having it as a state monopoly would bring about efficiencies of scale that would be lacking in a competitive environment.

  13. tricldrown 13

    Materia Turei bought a castle in Dunedin probably for the same price you would buy a garage in Auckland.
    I’ve met her and hubby in person and they are just lovely people.
    Primitive primate.
    Can’t help but resort to primal bullying.l

    • TightyRighty 13.1

      Metiria Turei and her hubby bought a castle in dunedin? Larnach? thought it was owned by a trust still?

      Have you tried buying a garage in auckland, it’s relatively cheap for the potential return. probably one of the best property investments you can make right now. certainly better than a draughty old castle, the ever imposing signal of oppression of the working class that it is.

      • Mike S 13.1.1

        A garage??? That’s luxury..

        Jeez, it’d be hard to buy a bloomin’ carpark these days (some sell for 100k plus) let alone a garage..

        Hmmmm, I’m talking with a banned person…not sure how I feel about that….hmmmm

        What’s your view on that TightyRighty?
        Hello…? You there Tighty?

        😆 😆 😆 😆 😆

  14. tricldrown 14

    Pukesh rogue so you take more notice of warren buffet Hey saysthe rich should pay their fair share of taxes and that CGT should be at the same rate as income tax after all it is income.
    You are just the minion the big boys send to do their dirty work.
    So if the returns are so good then the shortfall in dividends to the govt will have to be made up
    by you and everone elsr paying more tax.
    Your the idiot Pukesh.

    • Puckish Rogue 14.1

      I listen to his views on the share market but it doesn’t mean I slavishly agree with everything he says, for example if he wants to pay his fair share of tax he can voluntarily pay more but he doesn’t

      • Mike S 14.1.1


        You can’t voluntarily pay more tax than what you legally are required to pay. If, for example, you sent IRD a check saying it was for extra tax over and above what you are required to pay, they will send it back or destroy it. Probably because it can’t be allocated to any legal tax item.

  15. Whatever next 15

    Going back to Tracey’s point about potential poor turnout at referendum.
    National have consistently driven propaganda that the electorate’s role in democracy is redundant, and we should leave to the ” big boys” (bit ironic).
    The results of selling assets have hit home in UK, and in the news as we speak, but it is too late. How do we point out that we could learn from what is happening there, and stop it before it starts??

  16. Whatever next 16

    Going back to Tracey’s point about potential poor turnout at referendum.
    National have consistently driven propaganda that the electorate’s role in democracy is redundant, and we should leave to the ” big boys” (bit ironic).
    The results of selling assets have hit home in UK, and in the news as we speak, but it is too late. How do we point out that we could learn from what is happening there, and stop it before it starts??

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