web analytics

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

        🙄 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 🙄

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Statement on proposed United Nations role
    “There has been a high degree of media interest in New Zealand about a possible post with the United Nations. “My name has been proposed to the United Nations Secretary General to be his Special Representative in South Sudan. ...
    24 mins ago
  • David Shearer proposed for UN peacekeeping role
    Mt Albert MP David Shearer is being proposed for a demanding and exciting role heading the United Nations peacekeeping force in South Sudan, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “David has kept me fully informed about this opportunity and we are ...
    30 mins ago
  • Karori Kids and Campbell Kindergarten must be saved
    The Minister of Education needs to show some leadership and secure the future of two not-for-profit early childhood education centres that could be faced with closure as the land they sit on is up for sale, Grant Robertson Labour MP ...
    34 mins ago
  • Ministry reveals shocking charter school results
    NCEA results for charter schools have been massively overstated with documents revealing many students leaving school without basic NCEA level two qualifications despite this being a main educational target for the Government, says Labour Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Documents obtained ...
    2 hours ago
  • Minister must protect MSD staff
      The Minister of Social Development should immediately implement safer work practices to ensure tragedies such as the Ashburton killings don’t happen again, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni.   ...
    18 hours ago
  • A vote for the Māori Party is a vote for National
    Comments made by the Māori Party leadership in the wake of John Key’s surprise resignation make one thing clear: a vote for them is a vote for a fourth term National Government, and the increasing inequality and poverty for Māori ...
    20 hours ago
  • Collins and English split over police funding
    The bloodletting has already begun with splits and divisions emerging after the Police Minister knifed the Finance Minister via the media, says Labour Police spokesman Stuart Nash. ...
    21 hours ago
  • Next Prime Minister must tackle foreign speculators
    The public rightly puts much of the blame for the housing bubble at the feet of foreign speculators, and the next Prime Minister must listen to their concerns, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    22 hours ago
  • NZ student performance slips in international study – again
    The continuing fall in Kiwi kids’ performance in the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) study shows the damage being inflicted by National’s cuts to education and one-size-fits-all approach, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “For years, National has ...
    22 hours ago
  • CYF reforms dangerous backward step
    Child protection has taken a massive step backwards today with the Government passing a Bill that will give significant powers to unspecified ‘professionals’ or contract holders, says Labour’s Acting Children’s spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    1 day ago
  • Improve workplaces, and address domestic violence
    Last week the Productivity Commission put out a report about how to grow “weak labour productivity”. These views are being criticised as being straight out of the 1980s. What is a real problem is that we have a problem of ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 days ago
  • Palm oil industry implicated in human rights abuses
    The Green Party has campaigned for several years for mandatory palm oil labeling to give consumers choice. Most consumers do not want to support a palm oil industry that is destroying tropical rainforests and contributing to dangerous climate change emissions. ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    2 days ago
  • Syphilis on the rise in NZ
    Cases of syphilis are increasing in Auckland. You read that right, syphilis!  RNZ reported today that rates of syphilis have increased by 71 percent (between 2013-2015). We have known about the increase in syphilis figures for a while, but nothing ...
    GreensBy Julie Anne Genter
    3 days ago
  • We need to work smarter not longer
    The charade of this Government’s sound economic management is unraveling. Misleading GDP figures, pumped up by property speculation and high immigration, have given the impression that all is well, masking our continued productivity decline compared to OECD countries. In fact, ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    3 days ago
  • Statement on John Key’s resignation
    Labour Party Leader Andrew Little has acknowledged John Key’s contribution to Government.  “John Key has served New Zealand generously and with dedication. Although we may have had our policy differences over the years, I respect the Prime Minister’s decision to ...
    3 days ago
  • Positive plan secures victory
    The victory of Labour’s newest MP, Michael Wood, in Mt Roskill is the result of a well-organised campaign run with honesty and integrity, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “I congratulate Michael Wood on his great victory. He will be a ...
    4 days ago
  • Wave of support for Kiwibuild continues to grow
    Apartment builder Ockham Residential has become the latest voice to call for the government to build affordable homes for Kiwi families to buy, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Helen O'Sullivan of Ockham has now joined prominent businesspeople like EMA ...
    6 days ago
  • Cuba Si Yankee No – Fidel Castro and the Revolution
    The death of Fidel Castro is a huge historical moment for the older generation who grew up with the toppling of Batista, the Bay of Pigs debacle, the death of Che Guevara and the US blockade against Cuba. For younger ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Government slashes observer coverage, fails snapper fishery
    The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has more than halved the number of fisheries observers in the East Coast North Island snapper trawl fishery (SNA1). This reduction in observer days, combined with major failures in an unproven and controversial video ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    6 days ago
  • ‘Exemplar’ Māori Land Court under siege
    TheMāori Land Court, hailed as an “exemplar” by the Ministry of Justice chief executive and Secretary, Andrew Bridgman is under siege by the Government through Māori land reforms and a Ministry restructure, says Labour’s Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri. ...
    6 days ago
  • He Poroporoaki ki a Te Awanuiārangi Black
    Kua hinga he whatukura o Tauranga Moana. Kua hinga rangatira o te iwi Māori. Ka tangi tonu ana te ngākau nā tāna wehe kei tua o te ārai. E rere haere ana ngā mihi aroha o mātou o Te Rōpū ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    6 days ago
  • CYF reforms ignoring whānau based solution
    When approximately 60 per cent of children in state care are Māori processes need to change in favour of whānau, hapū and iwi solutions, said Labour’s Whānau Ora spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta.  “Widespread concern about Government reforms of Child Youth and ...
    7 days ago
  • Hip and knees surgery takes a tumble
    The statistics for hip and knee electives under this Government make depressing reading, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “Under the last Labour Government we achieved a 91 per cent growth in hip and knee elective surgery. Sadly under this ...
    7 days ago
  • Parata’s spin can’t hide cuts to early childhood education
    No amount of spin from Hekia Parata can hide the fact that per-child funding for early childhood education has been steadily decreasing under the National government, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “In the 2009/10 year early childhood services received ...
    7 days ago
  • Nats will jump at chance to vote for KiwiBuild Bill
    National will welcome the chance to vote for a real solution to the housing crisis after their many, many failed attempts, says Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis. Kelvin Davis’s Housing Corporation (Affordable Housing Development) Amendment Bill was ...
    7 days ago
  • Million dollar houses put homeownership out of reach of middle New Zealand
    35% of New Zealanders now live in places where the average house costs over a million dollars, and it’s killing the Kiwi dream of owning your own place, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. Latest QV stats show that Queenstown ...
    7 days ago
  • Opportunity for political parties to back Kiwi-made and Kiwi jobs
    The First Reading in Parliament today of his Our Work, Our Future Bill is a chance for political parties to ensure the government buys Kiwi-made more often and backs Kiwi jobs, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. The reading ...
    7 days ago
  • Solid Energy must open the drift
    Solid Energy is showing no moral spine and should not have any legal right to block re-entry into the Pike River drift, says Damien O’Connor MP for West Coast-Tasman.  “Todays failed meeting with  representatives from the state owned company is ...
    1 week ago
  • 20,000 at risk students “missing”
    A briefing to the Minister of Education reveals 20,000 at-risk students can’t be found, undermining claims by Hekia Parata that a new funding model would ensure additional funding reached students identified as at-risk, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. ...
    1 week ago
  • Crime continues to rise
    Overall crime is up five per cent and the Government just doesn’t seem to care, says Labour’s Police Spokesperson Stuart Nash. ...
    1 week ago
  • Treasury fritters $10 million on failed state house sell off
    The Treasury has wasted $10 million in two years on the National Government's flawed state house sell off programme, including nearly $5.5 million on consultants, says Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. "New Zealand needs more state housing than ever, with ...
    1 week ago
  • National slow to learn new trade lessons post TPPA
    Yesterday, the Minister for Trade misused economic data in order to try to make the case for more so-called ‘trade agreements’ like the TPPA which are actually deregulatory straitjackets in disguise. In welcoming a Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    1 week ago
  • Skilled migrant wages plummeting under National
    Wages have plummeted for people with skilled migrant visas working in low-skilled occupations, driving down wages for workers in a number of industries, says Labour’s Immigration Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Documents acquired by Labour under the Official Information Act reveal that ...
    1 week ago
  • Child abuse apology needed
    The Government's failure to act on recommendations from Judge Henwood, based on years of work by the Confidential Listening and Assistance Service (CLAS) will further undermine any faith victims may have put into the process, says Labour’s Children’s Spokesperson Jacinda ...
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank again highlights National’s housing failure
    National’s failure to deal with the housing crisis in New Zealand is once again being exposed by the Reserve Bank today, in a scathing assessment of the Government’s response, says Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson “Governor Wheeler is clearly worried ...
    1 week ago
  • Palm Oil Labelling: Possible Progress?
    On Friday, the Minister for Food Safety, along with her Australian colleagues finally looked at the issue of mandatory labelling of palm oil. We’ve been calling for mandatory labelling for years and we were hoping that the Ministers would agree ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    1 week ago
  • National: Fails to achieve
    The ineffectiveness of the National Government’s approach to schooling has been highlighted by the latest Trends in International Maths and Science Study (TIMSS) report released overnight, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. ...
    1 week ago
  • Faster into Homes – a new pathway for first home buyers
    This week Parliament will select another members’ bill from the cookie tin (I kid you not, it really is a cookie tin) and I’ve just launched a new bill I’m hoping will get pulled – to help people get into ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 week ago
  • Selling off our state housing stock isn’t working for NZers
    I want to end homelessness and ensure that everyone has a warm, safe, dry home. This National Government has let down New Zealanders, especially the thousands of New Zealanders who are struggling with something so basic and important as housing. ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Government needs to ensure fair deal on EQC assessments
    Kiwis affected by earthquakes might not get a fair deal if the Government pushes ahead with secret plans to let private insurers take over the assessment of claims, says Labour’s Canterbury spokesperson Megan Woods. “Under questioning from Labour the Government ...
    1 week ago
  • Key’s priorities the real ‘load of nonsense’
    The Prime Minister’s fixation with tax cuts, despite a failure to pay down any debt and growing pressure on public services is the real ‘load of nonsense’, says Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “We’re getting mixed messages from National. John ...
    1 week ago
  • Free Speech and Hate Speech
    Last week we were very concerned to hear that an Auckland imam, Dr Anwar Sahib, had been preaching divisive and derogatory messages about Jewish people and women during his sermons. It was a disturbing incident coming at the end of ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    1 week ago
  • Young Kiwis struggling under record mortgage debt
    The Government needs to step in and start building affordable homes for first homebuyers now more than ever, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    1 week ago
  • Tairāwhiti says No Stat Oil!
    Tairāwhiti says yes to a clean environment for our mokopuna today and for generations to come. Tairāwhiti are have a responsibility to uphold their mana motuhake over their land and their peoples and are calling on the Government to honour ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Swimmable Rivers tour – Ōkahukura/Lucas Creek
    When Environment Minister Nick Smith said in Parliament that some waterways – like Auckland’s Lucas Creek – are not worth saving because no-one wants to swim in them, he forgot to ask the locals we met last week who have put ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Wellington business relief package needs flexibility
    The Government’s Wellington business support package is welcome news but needs to be implemented so that all affected businesses get the help they need, says Labour MP for Wellington Central Grant Robertson. “Wellington businesses will be pleased that the Government ...
    1 week ago
  • EQC’s staff cuts show disregard for quake victims
    The Earthquake Commission’s stubborn insistence on slashing its workforce and its operational funding by nearly half shows callous disregard for victims of the Kaikoura earthquake and the thousands of Cantabrians still waiting to resolve claims, says Labour’s Canterbury spokesperson Megan ...
    1 week ago
  • Maori Land Court job losses must be delayed
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell must request that pending job losses at the Māori Land Court are put on hold until the Māori land reform process is resolved and the risk of losing centuries of collective institutional knowledge is ...
    1 week ago
  • Financial support needed for urgent earthquake strengthening
    The Government must provide urgent support to residents for important earthquake strengthening work so that it happens quickly, says Grant Robertson, Wellington Central MP.  "I support the call from Wellington Mayor Justin Lester to bring forward work to strengthen the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour welcomes equal pay
    Labour has long appreciated the value of women’s work and welcomes the Government’s decision to address pay equity for women, say’s Labour’s associate Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson Sue Moroney. ...
    2 weeks ago