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Nek minnit

Written By: - Date published: 11:31 am, October 28th, 2011 - 52 comments
Categories: Economy, equality - Tags: , ,

Net benefit of hosting the Rugby World Cup $280m over 7 weeks ($780m tourist spending minus $500m investment and operating losses).

Cost of an 8cm welding crack in the Maui pipeline: $350m after 2 days.

Guess it pays to mind the small stuff. Least it didn’t happen during the Cup when Auckland was chocka with tourists.

52 comments on “Nek minnit ”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    I missed the whole ‘nek minnit’ meme. What the?

  2. Ianupnorth 2

    It was a Facebook thing, gone and best forgotten.
    However, if the country looks at this pragmatically, we should be investing in infrastructure and creating jobs and training opportunities.
    I had an old Volvo once; it had two lighting circuits, so that if one set of lights fused you still had headlights and tail lights. Aircraft have similar back up systems. Now, how about a back up gas pipe (or sections of), so the gas could be rerouted away from the source of the problem – same for the electrical grip, phone system, etc.

    • insider 2.1

      There is a parallel pipeline owned by Vector http://www.vector.co.nz/sites/vector.co.nz/files/Transmission%20pipeline%20map.pdf. That’s why so many businesses and residential customers are able to carry on with a gas supply. But unless it is completely empty waiting for an event it can never provide 100% replacement of the other pipeline’s capacity. We’d have similar capacity issues if there was a major power line down or major highway closed. The fact businesses have made themselves so reliant on gas without back ups shows how reliable the network is. There should be no sympathy for businesses that fail to manage their risk adequately.

    • Deadly_NZ 2.2

      Now why would anyone want to put in backup pipes?? takes profit away from the greedies.

      • vto 2.2.1

        yes well this failure is one of the reasons I aint never put in gas in any of my business dealings. Not reliable.

        It is a bit like telling people to take out their fireplaces and install some dumb-arse electrical heating device. You become reliant on some private business that is not reliable.

      • Monty 2.2.2

        I remember the industry around upgrading the pipeline in the early 1980s. A massive and expensive project and part of the “think big”. To say that there should be a second back-up pipeline is naive. There is a cost of humdreds on millions of dollars. To date the pipeline has been very reliable – i remeber a digger went through a pipeline along a the Foxton Straights a few years ago. But otherwise I am not sure there has been a failure. so maybe the reliability needs to be looked at in the context of service of 30years and the value to all NZers over that time. Pretty bloody good actually.

        • Draco T Bastard


          What we’re really seeing here isn’t a need for a backup pipe but lack of maintenance and upkeep.

  3. Mac1 3

    Regarding nett gain to the economy from the RWC, did I not hear that normal business activity in New Zealand dropped away during the RWC and therefore NZ businesses actually benefitted less than the tourist income suggests?

    • Lanthanide 3.1

      John Key also liked to tout “85,000 tourists over the time period of the RWC”. The normal number of tourists during this time period is 70,000.

    • Kevin Welsh 3.2

      I am involved in the printing/communications industry and the rubber wool cup combined with school holidays has us down about 30% this month.

    • Rich 3.3

      That $780mln is unbelievably bogus (I assume they went down the list of 61 higher ranked universities in the UK before they could find one that would write what they wanted – we’re talking the UK equivalent of Natcol here).

      I’ll be interested to see what Stats come up with on the final tourist numbers – there will be a substantial number of people who stayed away because they got the picture that NZ would be full and expensive. Not to mention that there is an upper capacity limit on what can be milked from tourists, that a lot of the dollars will go overseas (fuel, flights and the like) and that we’re comparing gross turnover against net taxpayer spend. (Tax take from $780 mln would be maybe $250mln, so only half the spend).

      • Puddleglum 3.3.1

        And there’s also the possibility that tourist visitation has simply been shifted from the future to now (during the RWC).

        That is, those who came may have been thinking that “sometime (soon) I’ll visit NZ” – the RWC then simply triggered that decision.

  4. Lanthanide 4

    I’m wondering what all these companies are planning on doing when the maui gas field runs out in 10-15 years time. They’ll start seeing some significant price increases within the next 5-7 years.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      creeping energy depletion

      and higher prices won’t put extra gas in the field.

      • pollywog 4.1.1

        I’m pickin the faster than light neutrino anomaly will lead to a scientific discovery that will revolutionise the energy industry and make the oil years an era best forgotten like the dark ages thus making any worries about peak oil and climate change irrelevant

        and i’m pickin it’ll happen within the next generation and by someone form the next generation.These youngers are gonna have to fend for themselves in ways we can’t imagine.

        there’s your brighter future.

        • lprent

          …scientific discovery that will revolutionise the energy industry…

          Yep I agree. It will all be like the clean fusion energy revolution again….. Ummm wait a minute….

          • pollywog

            heh…prolly be something more like a lossless dark energy converter that filters out the harmful shit through an inert dimension 🙂

          • Lanthanide

            “Yep I agree. It will all be like the clean fusion energy revolution again….. Ummm wait a minute….”

            Outside of the Tokamak fusion boondoggle, there are a variety of groups working on fusion.

            IMO polywell seems to be the furtherest along, and based on actual working (but not net-energy-positive) fusors from the 1950s and 1960s. After initially being funded by the US Navy in 2007, they’ve picked up successive funding contracts up through 2011 and seem to be making progress. Unfortunately the Navy want the research kept classified and confidential at this stage, so it’s difficult to judge how far along they really are.


            • lprent

              Eventually I suspect they will get it (sometime). It is mostly an engineering problem albeit a difficult one.

              But I was really pointing out that there is a hell of a time lag these days between seeing a entry point in the physics to being able to implement a workable engineering solution. Fusion power is the obvious example.

              But if you think that Rutherford split the nucleus about 1917, but the first scaled power reactors based on the same principle didn’t really go into use until 1960 and weren’t significant for power generation until the mid-60’s. It took nearly 50 years to go from experimental proof of the physics to get into widespread usage in power generation.

              Installed nuclear capacity initially rose relatively quickly, rising from less than 1 gigawatt (GW) in 1960 to 100 GW in the late 1970s, and 300 GW in the late 1980s. Since the late 1980s worldwide capacity has risen much more slowly, reaching 366 GW in 2005.

              I think that polly is being just a tad optimistic. And of course fission power was the sprint race of all power generation technologies.

              • pollywog

                Optimistic ?…don’t you know the distance between events is getting shorter and time is speeding up. Bring on the singularity i say.

                It’s our kids kids that are gonna sort this energy shit out and put all the doom n’ gloomy predictors of global warming, peak oil, over population and lack of resources to shame. Unfortunately it’s gonna get worse before it gets better and it’s gonna be our kids which revolt.

                …and there’s something fishy about fission. I think it’s a red herring eh ?

              • McFlock

                ” And of course fission power was the sprint race of all power generation technologies.”

                That’s the factor, not just time.
                And the thing is that corporations and governments now have a real point to investing in technologies like fusion and green energy – because oil is running out and even fission might have a fuel issue, according to some.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  …even fission might have a fuel issue, according to some.

                  All physical resources have peaks and u235 (needed for fission reactions in today’s reactors) is, IIRC, past it.

              • Blighty

                “And of course fission power was the sprint race of all power generation technologies.”

                yeah because of the massive government investment in it’s twin, nuclear weapons programs that needed breeder reactors – a huge subsidy on commercial nuclear electricity development.

                Fusion would be awesome though. And, if all goes according to plan http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DEMO , we could have commercial generation by the middle of the century and there would be huge cost and environmental incentives for rapid uptake after that.

                Just got to get through the next 30-50 years of falling energy availability first.

                I do love that the fusion research is looking forward on that kind of timescale though, not demanding results now or giving up.

                It’s kind of like Labour’s policies – you fix big, long-term problems with big, long-term policies.

                It’s a new outlook for industralised society, that isn’t used to thinking beyond the next quarter, and democracies, that aren’t used to thinking beyond the next election.

  5. Tariana Turia was gonna solve all Maori problems with the millions of reprioritised funds skimmed off general gov’t dep’ts to bankroll Whanau Ora…NEK MINNIT

    Anyone seen Aunty Tari lately ?

    • Lanthanide 5.1

      Maori Party have been remarkably quiet of late. Maybe they’re wishing they went with Mana’s non-aggression pact after all.

    • Ianupnorth 5.2

      She’s a muppet; all the money for Whanau Ora Nact style has been pilfered from other services helping Maori, robbing Peter to pay Paul – just like free afetr hours care for under 6 year olds is going to be funded by cutting other services.

  6. Carol 6

    How much did it cost the health services as a result of a record number of people through the Auckland Hospital emergency dept, a significant amount due to RWC revelries? A large number of injuries were alcohol-related.

    • Tigger 6.1

      Any figures reported Carol? Great point, what other costs like this aren’t being taken into account when we look at what that bloated ‘event’ cost us.

    • prism 6.2

      I think that emergemcy clinic treatment at hospital should have a set charge. And that government have a small optional insurance cover for this. The cost would be discretionary so that community card holders would pay less but most drunk and disorderly would have to front up for their mayhem or get sued. These are the real bludgers on the state.

      And children would be seen free at an after dinner clinic for them say 7 to 8pm. Help parents particularly low income, and stem outbreaks of whatever, a win-win policy.

      • Carol 6.2.1

        I think the blame for the RWC emergency spike goes to the government & IRB that encouraged and enabled widespread alcohol-fueled partying. Did the IRB/NZRU have some kind of deal with alcohol companies?

      • McFlock 6.2.2

        “I think that emergemcy clinic treatment at hospital should have a set charge.”

        So what’ll happen is a drunk guy GPFOs, has a bit of a headache, decides against going to A&E, and ends up dead. Or someone puts off the call over a bit of angina, and has a massive coronary. Everybody loses.
        A better (and probably cheaper) idea is just to fund the heck out of hospitals, social workers and the education system, and better enforce the current liquor legislation, as well as incorporating community opinions in liquor license applications after a certain threshhold.

        • prism

          What about some personal responsibility when drinking? How come that there are so many wailing wallies worrying about the alcoholics and the druggies giving them a licence to get wasted and no recriminations.

          The drunks and druggies themselves don’t care about others – they even turn on the social workers the ambulance people the nurses etc. who try and help. It’s so wet that no-one can be blamed.

          I am really angry at the way that government greases the way for people becoming drunks, in return for revenue from liquor. Fagin was more direct and honest. But people must try to set standards for themselves for their own self respect – to think otherwise is to despise and infantilise them.

    • Vicky32 6.3

      A large number of injuries were alcohol-related.

      Sad but not surprising..

  7. Peak Oil is Near 7

    What part of a pipeline owned by a private company going bust, the government’s fault? Are you saying this wouldn’t have happened under Labour?

    • Ed 7.1

      You are the first to suggest it was the government’s fault, POiS – but it does illustrate how small things can have a large impact on us all.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      It shouldn’t be privately owned.

    • Ianupnorth 7.3

      How about the cries for help from the poor farmers who might lose money? They expect a handout but then begrudge the unemployed or disabled….

  8. \Craig 8

    Want to bet that this is attributable to hamfisted redundancies, loss of skilled staff, neglect of pipe maintenance and overall execrable risk management? Ah, Tory crisis management, what a wonderful oxymoron…

    • KJT 8.1

      “”Many corporations and State or private enterprises run despite management, not because of them. In fact the constant parade of new brooms trying to make a name for themselves, with rapid changes and cost cutting, cause competent staff to resign and demoralise the rest.

      How many times, within a company, when you want the person who get things done. You ignore the suits staring out the windows in the corner offices and talk to the person, usually a women, who actually does things. Normally someone several pay grades below the suits.
      Or when you are ordering something. The bright well dressed manager calls some wizened old guy from the shop floor to ask if it can be done.””

      It has already been made clear to me by an executive, in an SOE, power company, that, instead of doing their best for the current shareholders, Us! They are actively working towards privatisation so they can get rewarded by the new owners, with increased salaries and share options.
      They do not want it to work to well now so they can pretend privatisation has made the company more successful. At the same time collecting their bribes from the new owners. Just Like Simon Power.

      • Wouldn’t surprise me. That’s the principle of self-interest for you.
        The other side of the corporate/soe ladder is when they are appointed as the new broom – institute some high sounding new policy that makes the gut, cut, slash & burn sound reasonable – then wait until the balance sheet looks good, record their success on their CV, get a new high paying job on the basis of the success and they stay one step ahead of the consequences.
        Years later, when the chickens come home to roost (eg. oil on the sea and no oil spill equipment or people lying dead because there was no psych institution/service for the killer) the “New Broom” is long gone, living off the profits off a failed policy and we have to pick up the tab.
        I still wonder where the fuck Max Bradford is every time I get my power bill.

    • Vicky32 8.2

      Want to bet that this is attributable to hamfisted redundancies, loss of skilled staff, neglect of pipe maintenance and overall execrable risk management? Ah, Tory crisis management, what a wonderful oxymoron…

      I am reminded of the partial privatisation of electricity companies under the AID government of 1984 (Act in Disguise) and the immediate lack of maintenance.. Going past the Meremere station on a bus and seeing it all dark…

  9. randal 9

    nek minnit along come gas leak and all earnings of bars and restarauteurs from the cup wiped out.
    hah mus be nationals fault.

  10. Afewknowthetruth 10

    The succession of failures we have witnessed over recent months must surely put the CEOs and senior executives of the organisations involved in line for stupendous performance bonuses.


  11. One of the Masses 11

    So what back-up systems did all these “essential”industries have in place for a disruption in gas supply (for whatever reason) – ability to maintain steam pressure via alternative energy sources (e.g. electricity, LPG).
    I the farmers are so financially crippled by emptying their milk vats – why not have a second “back up” vat to cover them in the eventuality that the milk tankers, for whatever reason, cannot pick up your milk for 4 days.
    Telephone, Power, Gas, Internet, EftPos are all taken for granted – but not guaranteed. Like the AB’s have done recently – it pays to plan for every worst case scenario, including losing 43 players in 1 crucial decision making role.

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