Whose RWC is it?

Written By: - Date published: 6:44 am, February 17th, 2011 - 59 comments
Categories: Economy - Tags:

When people talk about the rugby world cup as if it will buoy the spirits of voters across the country regardless of whether the all blacks win or lose, I find myself asking why.

For a start the whole thing is going to throw infrastructure into turmoil, especially in Auckland and all for a boost of 0.3% of GDP.

Then there’s the cost of the big stadium upgrades that taxpayers and rate payers are having to bear.

And after all that there’s the fact that tickets to the final cost $1500. That’s three times the weekly median income and more than a month of pension.

Of course the Prime Minister will be there in a corporate box and I’m sure most of cabinet too. And I doubt they’ll be paying for their own tickets.

Once upon a time rugby was seen as symbolic of our egalitarian society. Somehow it seems fitting that it’s now too expensive for the majority of Kiwis to attend.

59 comments on “Whose RWC is it?”

  1. chris 1

    Let me guess – if labour were in power tickets would only be $30 and we would be watching it in mallards BILLION dollar waterfront stadium.

    gee really.

  2. Kevin Welsh 2

    Well I would be happier with tax payer dollars spent on a stadium ANYONE can use, not just Rugby or the occasional game of Cricket.

    • Bill 2.1

      Don’t forget Elton! And, and…well, probably two nights of Elton!! Before the endless days of tumble weed and whistling wind. No cricket in Dunedin’s stadium.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        Disaster, sheer disaster. Just you wait, within 5 years there will be loose talk of mothballing the facility, 5 years after that, serious talk.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    The slaves of Rome built Rome’s Colosseum with their bare hands, then they get to die in it.

  4. The fact this will add just $700 million to the economy makes a joke of the idea it will be an economic boon.

    $700 million is 30 hours’ economic output for this country.

    Getting those railcars built here rather than in China would have contributed $500 million to the economy and it wouldn’t have required a huge taxpayer expenditure with us bearing the loss that the RWC is projected to return.

    • The Economic Illiteracy Support Group 4.1

      And not to put too fine a point on it, that $700 million is going exclusively to the hospitality sector – it’s an effective subsidy from the rest of the economy. If you’re a panelbeater in Papatoetoe you’re not going to see a single red cent in economic benefit from the RWC, yet you’ll be paying for it in your rates and taxes.

  5. Bored 5

    Without spectacles, galas and celebrities how else will the eyes of the people be diverted from the daily grind? How else will their focus be averted? And if we can they will feel good for a week or two. Election time?

    Capcha: obey

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Bread and circuses mate. Keep the masses distracted.

      (And only bread, no milk – too expensive you see)

      • The Economic Illiteracy Support Group 5.1.1

        And they increased the GST rate on bread to help pay for the circuses.

  6. Craig Glen Eden 6

    Yup and Keys minders will have him all over this like a pig in shit.

  7. Carol 7

    I like watching rugby on TV & usually support the All Blacks. But the way it’s shaping up, I’m going off the whole world cup thing. I’ll watch some games that are Free-to-Air on TV, and will probably support Samoa and Scotland. I might give the finals a miss.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      Give it another month or two, I think some real RWC fatigue is going to set in. You won’t be able to have weetbix or a hamburger without another round of RWC commercialism in your face.

  8. Leon 8

    This is a global event that happens to be staged in NZ. As with any global event the price of tickets relates to a global market. The amount of time and money that the National government are allocating to RWC indicates that it is far beyond a game. New Zealand’s RWC is about tourism, brand image, business connections and maybe winning the election. Who goes to the games live and the final outcome is purely incidental.

    • joe90 8.1

      So I fork out my hard earned dollars to finance someone else’s opportunity to make a buck out of tourism, brand image, business connections and maybe winning the election but I’m an incidental.

      gfy leon.

      • Leon 8.1.1

        I’m not saying I agree, I’m just explaining what I see happening.

        • Bright Red 8.1.1.1

          it’s not so much the price of the tickets as that we’re expected to subsidise the event on top of that. Someone’s making off with a mint and it isn’t the taxpaying public

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 8.2

      Note that the costs aren’t globalised however. ChCh ratepayers paying 1% more on their rates, Auckland council bailing out the Eden park trust $40 mill, who knows how much its going to cost Dunedin ratepayers.

      All for a group of hooray henry’s to come out and brag to their mates back in the Uk that they were there.

  9. Rich 9

    I saw England play Fiji at Twickenham in the 1999 RWC. Twenty quid.

    If I remember rightly, most of the tickets were distributed through small rugby clubs, so they only went to people involved in the game and their friends.

    Everyone in NZ has paid out several hundred dollars for stadium upgrades, highway upgrades and party central’s that will stand idle for the next 24 years. You’d have thought we could at least get some cheap tickets.

    • The Voice of Reason 9.1

      Quite right, Rich. At the real World Cup in South Africa last year plenty of tickets were made available for the locals at prices that they could afford. And that’s at a tournament that actually has global significance, as opposed to a competition that only half a dozen commonwealth countries and the French bourgeiosie are even interested in trying to win.

  10. Lanthanide 10

    I either read or heard (on Nat Rad) something about the stadium in CHCH needing to seek increased funding from ratepayers over the coming years, which they pinned to a “distinct downturn in attendance of rugby games” that has happened recently. More and more frequently you can read comments from people saying they aren’t that interested in rugby any more, or they prefer soccer.

    Seems our culture is changing. I wonder why.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      Unfortunately that won’t stop the establishment from sucking more and more funds out of us to keep sport enjoyed by (only affordable by) the elites going.

      • Vicky32 10.1.1

        I remember a bizarre little rant by Danny Watson (back in the 90s when I used to listen to him). He’s a ‘taxation is theft’ neo-liberal, not that he’s actually know what one is, I gather. But he was advocating a special tax purely for the support of sport – especially rugby. Abolish all PAYE, introduce a 25% GST, oh and wait a minute, let’s have a 5% tax on all incomes under $75,000 pa to support thugby.
        I vomited in my mouth. It had never occurred to the little weirdo that he might have anyone listening to him who wasn’t a rugby fan!
        Deb

    • Puddleglum 10.2

      Here’s a Press editorial about Vbase’s parlous financial situation, largely courtesy of the AMI Stadium upgrade (i.e., Lancaster Park).

    • Carol 10.3

      Part of the problem (probably a major part) of dwindling support for rugby is professionalisation and that pay TV has taken most of the coverage. So now there’s some wanting more tax payer money to support an industry that makes profits for media corporates?

  11. luva 11

    seriously, does anything make you people happy

    • Bright Red 11.1

      subsidising a sporting event I can’t hope to afford to attend certainly doesn’t. Does it make you happy?

    • bbfloyd 11.2

      yes luva… luring dickheads like you out of hiding so that we can make fun of you. you’re always good for a laugh..

    • mcflock 11.3

      Things that make me happy:
      The laugh of a small child, a lavender scent carried on the morning breeze, and soft but strong toilet paper (1001 uses).

    • Kevin Welsh 11.4

      Plenty Luva. Watching the Reds dick the Scum at Old Toilet last season, watching the Phoenix at the ‘tin, The Breakers at the Sweatbox and the Warriors at Mt Smart. I love it to bits.

      Sick to fucking death of having the most boring sport in the world shoved down my throat almost 12 months of the year.

  12. Richard 12

    Maybe this can be an opportunity to start learning how to save money?

    It is possible to afford the final if you cut down wasteful expenditure

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      The rich can save money because they have discretionary income which is not used on staples and paying basic utilities.

      If you have less than $20K p.a. coming in as a single, or less than $35K p.a. coming in as a family, you’re basically screwed on the savings front.

      You might be able to save a bean a fortnight.

      And by the way, why should someone who lives in NZ be expected to live like a pauper and not be able to participate in society e.g. buy a Sunday paper, buy a coffee at the cafe, see a movie etc.

      We aren’t talking about BMW 7 series limo rides at $90/hr are we?

      • The Baron 12.1.1

        Who knew that “participation in society” was defined as a copy of the Sunday Star-Times, a skinny Latte and a trip out to Dinner with Shmucks with the Mrs!

        But then again, when was the last time you knew what it was like to live on $20k CV? Does your Mrs only give you a $400 a week allowance from her massive family fortune?

        Oh diddums, you do need a top up.

        • felix 12.1.1.1

          Let me get this straight, Baron.

          You’re hassling CV because he’s well off but hasn’t stopped giving a shit about other people?

          Is that it?

          • Bored 12.1.1.1.1

            Hah Felix, its got nothing to do with CVs status, or care / empathey for others. Trolls are habitually cruel and uncaring, its genetically imprinted.

            • bbfloyd 12.1.1.1.1.1

              it’s also not necessary for a troll to have the slightest knowledge on any given subject to be able to comment on it. preferable in fact. reality would be an impediment to good slagging.

    • Bright Red 12.2

      I don’t see how a person with a family on the median income ($27K before tax) can be expected to save $1,500 per ticket plus other expenses. You’re going to be talking over 10% of net annual income all up to watch a rugby game.

      And if they could get that money together would the RWC final be a responsible thing to spend the money on when they have kids?

      • Colonial Viper 12.2.1

        Minimum 4 weeks minimum wages, living under bridges and eating air.

        In other words to those low paid workers: you’re not the kind of people we’re looking for to attend the finals.

  13. Richard 13

    CV you seem to have a lot of free time, i assume you are on the dole because “there is no work”.

    Would you like a job working for my wife?

    Thought so.

  14. Richard 14

    Your link says you married into wealth so you are “doing ok without employment”.

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      I’ve no real reason to work (although I am degree qualified) as my needs are pretty well provided for.

      And thanks to her accountant, its completely legit the dole and accommodation supplement is handy for a Friday/Saturday night out, dinner and a few drinks on the town. So its not like I’m ungrateful to you and your wife paying your GST etc.

      • Rob 14.1.1

        Wow, thats really interesting. How do you actually contribute to society , and I dont mean through burning electrons by continually posting on blog sites. Do you pay any tax of any nature or do you have various mechanisms to protect your or your wifes wealth.

  15. Zaphod Beeblebrox 15

    My advice- for about 1/2 the cost you could ring your travel agent and book a ticket to Melbourne to watch some AFL at the MCG. Better game (lasts 3 hours not two), bigger crowds (70-90K for the big games)., excellent public transport straight to the stadium connected to the metro rail network (they don’t force you to get ther 3 hours behorehand), it won’t be pissing rain (might be slightly colder than Auckland- even if it is you can go watch at the dome), excellent city restaurants walking distance to the stadium and you won’t be ripped off.

    If rugby’s your go (not mine as can be seen previously) there is now a S15 franchise there or the Storm to watch. So you can even watch the kiwi teams over there in comfort.

    Then of course you can go to Syd or Bris but everyone really knows where the capital of sport is.

  16. randal 16

    once he was a sophisticated new york banker and now he is a mewing maundering spruiker for everything that is juvenile and infantilised about new zealand society.
    he has been dragged down to our level.

  17. kriswgtn 17

    I would have loved to go to @ least one match
    I work 40 hours a week inc Sat mornings once a month.

    I earn bout $41000 a year $788 gross a week-minus tax and student loan=$611.15

    $150 rent
    Visa$150
    Food$120
    Power $40
    Petrol$120

    i cant save whats remains-

    Def aint my RWC

    thanks Key for nothing

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      $120 petrol a week. That’s rough. $3/L petrol is going to frag a lot of ordinary working people. And we’ll be there in a year or two.

      • Lanthanide 17.1.1

        Potentially sooner if the dollar keeps dropping.

        We had high petrol prices back in 2004 because the dollar was a lot lower then, even though oil wasn’t much more than $60 or $70US barrel I think. The difference between 2004 and 2008 was our dollar – it has risen a lot in the meantime. I have a gut feeling that, apart from everything else, the NZ$ rises to help insulate the economy from costly oil prices, that is if the NZ $ didn’t rise, the oil prices would kill the economy quick-smart and the $ would be worth even less. Sort of like a built in feedback mechanism: the dollar appreciates to ensure that it’s still worth something.

      • kriswgtn 17.1.2

        well i live on the coast and cant rely on trains yup here- i dont like long bus trips so yeah i leave for work real early to beat congestion
        my mate lets me park my truk on his property in mt vic for $20 a week so all good

        paying back student loan – i managed to get it down to 7800- if nact go ahead and take off the interest free- ill be fucked
        itll never get paid

        sometimes i feel like fucking off-this is one of those days- go to OZ, make double what i am doing here but i stay to contribute to making this country great again.Thing is with Nact and its allies the MP-theyre making it so fucking hard to stay

  18. Alwyn 18

    At last you seem to have realised what a lot of us did years ago.
    The people who pushed so hard for the RWC were the idiots lke Helen Clark and Trevor Mallard in the last Labour government.
    I, and a lot of my acquaintances who have to earn and live off our own money didn’t want it here. We knew, because of the way the IRB is set up, that we would not see any of the main matches and we were pissed off when the then PM spent our money travelling around the world to try and get something she thought would be a vote-getter for the Labour party.
    Don’t just blame Key for it. It’s every bloody trough swilling politician that is guilty.

  19. s y d 19

    if you can’t afford the tickets it’s probably due to your own poor lifestyle choices

  20. kultur 20

    it seems to me that whether we like it or not – New Zealand as those of us old enough to remember – has GONE. Whether it has gone for good – is up to the voters this year. My belief is that Phil Goff and a rejuvenated Labour Party can bring it back to where it needs to be. I think everyone got fixated on the “big idea” and one big thing “that put us on the map” … now we’re all descending to reality – its just that Key and the Nats and their sycophants are still on planet finance fantasy. They want anyone below the middle income line to pay for their ideals, suck it up and take it up the ass.

    Phil Goff was involved in the Government that started this mess – he realises it and admits it – there is a lot of retained value in someone at the top who REMEMBERS. Prof Niall Fergusson in his doco “the ascent of money” makes the comment when examining the Quants – the nobel prize winning boffins / Maths geniuses who arrived at a pristine probability maths system for trading in “options” on the financial markets and then went totally tits-up and had to have a Govt bailout in the USA … he said and i quote – “they knew a lot about maths and economics … but they didnt know anything about history….” What goes up – does come down – its been happening for decades and centuries. Phil Goff REMEMBERS – and we need a PM who doesnt hide from or try to rewrite the past. And we DONT need a money man who participated in meaningless paper transactions that produced nothing of any real value – running this country. Give Key a free BMW and tell him to bugger off and dont come back again.

    Rugby World Cup – spare me – its just another opportunity for smile and wave and his sycophants to seek a temporary reprieve from growing public discontent.

  21. millsy 21

    Seriously, why would you want to go anyway.

    Assuming you dont get turned away due to a ticketing glitch, youll probably be patted down by the goons in flouro vests, and made to hand over things such as cameras watches and food/drink that you brought in (so you have to buy overpriced soggy chips, stale sandwiches and thimbles of softdrink). The ‘beer’ youll have is low alcohol so essentially it will be warm pee in a plastic cup.

    (mean while up in the corporate boxes it would be drunken debauchery a go go)

    Therll be no booing, no banners, no mexican waves, no suggestive dancing, no swearing, no no no no no.. and youll have to sit down like good little boys and girls and watch the match quietly.

    Then when they let you out, and go to ‘party central’, you will have to party in the approved manner, or else youll be out on your ear, courtesy of the aforementioned flouro vested goons who will hang around everywhere.

    And DONT drink the wrong beer, or wear the wrong shirt, or have anything with the wrong logo on it in a clean zone. The goons will probably be all over you like a rash.

    Pay 1200 for that. No fucking way.

    The TV barons should pay for it. They are the ones who are going to make the most money from it, followed by the hospo barons, and the landlord class, who will start throwing out their tenants so they can rip off rugby fans who come here by letting out their houses at 500 a night or something like that.

    The RWC should have gone to Argentina or Japan, or some other developing nation.

  22. In the end it’s the public will decide on election day. Having the world cup in the country also helps the tourism industry that would boost the economy’s revenue and I think they’ll just have to raise the taxes on network coverage(chuckles)to make it fair at least.

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