It’s been a curious start to a new Government and a curious end to an old year. 2023 – don’t want to see that one again. I know, its only mid-December and we haven’t even got to Christmas, let alone New Year’s Eve, but honestly, what a clusterfuck this election has turned out to be. Cerberus, the three-headed dog, is turning out just as dysfunctional as we all thought it would, with Winston yapping away like a terrier, Seymour more like a Pekinese, and Luxon the labrador trying to wag its tail and keep everyone happy in the centre.
As I thought, the real worry point is not so much the front row Crufts dog show, as entertaining as that may be watching Luxon try to justify why it is fine for him to have a Tesla and claim a rebate, but not OK for other people; or why it is perfectly reasonable for him to pick up free / paid for by others lessons in te Reo, when that is not acceptable for others; or why it makes sense to stop virtually everything Labour ever did and revert back to 20 or 30 years ago. But the real danger point is the second tier of Muppets behind the front desk: Chrisp Bishop, Nicolla Willis, and Simpleton Brown. Far too much power in the hands of people who really haven’t got a clue, and the inclination to wield it forcefully and immediately. Cutting this, cutting that, cutting back anything that ever tried to do anything aspirational for Aotearoa.
Cutting “Lets Get Wellington Moving” was actually a good move, because it was a dog that had never worked properly right from the beginning. I actually went up there once, to their office, and found to my surprise that there was absolutely nobody there. So I wandered around their offices for a while, waiting for someone to turn up, but not so much as a turnip. Marie Celeste. Crickets. Tumbleweed. Bermuda Triangle. These have nothing on LGWM – the site where 7 years and a $100 million in funds disappeared without trace. “Consultants”. I know some of the architects working on some of their LGWM projects, but I also know that none of them got a share of $100 million. Perhaps by “consultants” they mean the useless former bean-counters and “management consultants” like KPMG, Deloitte, and PWC – a more useless bunch of time-wasting worshippers of Onan I have never met. But man, they sure now how to charge outrageous fees and get away with it.
While I’m happy that LGWM have been axed (although their website is still optimistically alive), we have Bishop and Brown making decisions for the future of Wellington based upon… what? So, axing the prospect of Light Rail, and going for More Roads and More Buses. Axing cycle route building and axing a tunnel for Public Transport, but instead proposing a tunnel for More Cars and More Roads. And after years and years of buying cheap and nasty second hand ferries and running them out of second rate ageing crappy ferry terminals, when there was actually a proposal for once for NZ to plan coherently for the future and buy some proper ferries, and build some proper ferry terminals – instead, it is back to the dark ages once more of buying cheap ancient old second hand ferries, and running them out of aged infrastructure for another 20 years. Yes, I know that the price is astronomical, but the ferry cost is really not the issue – instead, it is the plan – and the urgent need, to completely rebuild the termini that has caused the glitch. The termini need to be rebuilt as the proposed new ships are 50% longer, and a bit wider, so the ships won’t fit the existing berths. This is pretty basic, Day One, sort of questioning, that should not be having an effect 5 years down the track, when work has already started on building the island, on which to build the new terminal. I mean, come on guys, sort this shit out early !
If it was possible for Bishop Brown to make a funding decision in 10 days over the future of Wellington’s transport infrastructure, then why has it taken LGWM 8 years to not even get to the same point – ie a decision? Any decision! For God’s sake LGWM, won’t someone from your team stand up and tell us what the hell you have been doing and / or why nothing was ever started / completed / attempted / decided? How come we have a highly funded multiple year long project with a zillion documents and files stored on a website talking about Mass Transit, and yet no decision could be made on whether it would be Light Rail, or Trackless Trams, or Double Decker buses, or Bendy Buses, or Tram Trains, or Trolleys, or Pods, or Aerial Cableways, and yet these two Muppets Bishop and Brown can come into power and within a week or two have made all the decisions about what we are going to get, where we are going to get it, and of course the answer is inevitably More Buses running on More Roads, through More Traffic Tunnels. If the decision was that easy to make, why didn’t LGWM make it themselves in their 8 years of existence? Or if the decision was so hard to make, and impossible to know what to do, does that not mean that the Muppet brothers have made a decision based on no more than the wave of a hand in the soft summer breeze and a “she’ll be right, mate” attitude towards accurate public planning? How come study after study after study has shown that Wellington is already at bus saturation point – and so the answer to the city’s problems is “more buses”? Am I missing something here?