Daily Archives: March 5, 2009

I am about as angry as could possibly be!

What a wonderful way to ruin a bloody good day. Holly crap the ODT has gone too far this time. I have read some SHIT about this stadium development in the past, but the ODT have completely ruined my day, nothing like sunshine and a good coffee, still what a terrible start.

If I could adequately express in words how utterly pissed off I am at the ODT running an Opinion piece that is possibly worse than anything Bev Butler has ranted on about, from someone supposedly in a position of responsibility, the CEO of the Southland Regional Council.

Full sorry pathetic woeful and disgraceful crap here!

It seems that Ciaran Keogh doesn’t think that building a stadium in Dunedin is a good idea. Fine, but the way than conclusion is drawn is just laughable a outright bloody joke.

Actually way too angry to even construct a reply that is publishable, so will do the sensible thing and get to work and get a coffee on board.

Coffee aboard, here goes.

OK: Reasoned response to this rubbish, line 1:

“No matter how worthy the motivation for building the proposed covered stadium, it is the wrong answer for ensuring the future prosperity of Dunedin as the principal city in the future of Otago and Southland”

This is not a single strategy issue, this isn’t the one strategy that will take this city forward. This is not nor has it ever been the rock for which the economic future of the city its to be based. Not even the CST or most rabid stadium supporters have stated this.

“It is the commitment of the last of the city’s spare resources, and some, to a grand gesture to the past in the hope that the ancestors’ spirits will smile once again upon the city.”

Over simplistic assumption to what this project is. This is stadium is not looking for ‘daddies’ approval. This is a pretty hollow assumption and poor analysis.

“Dunedin needs to readdress itself to both the future and to its relationship with the remainder of the South.”

Which town or city in this country isn’t constantly doing so? And to assume that the city isn’t currently doing so is again disingenuous.

“Its role in the South of the future is becoming increasingly tenuous”

Eg, this is hyperbole for the sake of seeing one’s own words in print.

“If it weren’t for the hospital and the university it would already have little relevance at all to the rest of us in Otago and Southland. And the issue of relevance is what Dunedin needs to debate if it is to adapt to the changing world ahead.”

OK, this is where the whole article just falls apart into an arrogant rant. This is akin to saying Wellington wouldn’t be without Parliament or the Movie Industry. Or that Invercargill wouldn’t exist without the Dairy Industry and the Polytech. We know this is absolute and utter rubbish. We are constantly having this discussion, seemingly oblivious to this, the author is ignoring this for simple fact of a rant against the stadium. This is possibly one of the SILLIEST and plainly DUMB summations of the place of Dunedin in NZ in the early part of the 21st C I have ever read. It’s actually meaningless drivel.

“The current global economic turmoil is a symptom of a much wider change occurring in the global environment”.

Yes but No. This is a massive over simplification of the socio-political and economic failures of the last 12 months. But in a nutshell (since we are allowed to be so mindless simplistic), a massive failure in economic institutions within the worlds economic powerhouse have had far reaching effects. No one is suggesting that capitalism is at failure (well not outside of the socialist realms, and good on them for questioning so), however there is much reform needed within the financial institutions which dominate the western economic model. The fundamentals of stable government, global trade and free societies will ensure the continuation of western civilisation as we know it. But then nothing is without change, change is good. However this author is somehow suggesting that Dunedin, more than any other centre, isn’t prepared for changing economic times. Pre tell how long have the Southland Regional Council been planning for global economic meltdowns and if so lets hear your plan for the financial nirvana which will be Southland (let me guess it has a hell of a lot to do with primary mineral extraction in the form of coal and oil).

“I have lived on the borders of the city for much of the past decade watching it develop an increasingly inward and backward-looking stance.”

What a ridiculous statement from the Author. I have lived IN the city for near on 12 years now and am continually amazed at how outward looking Dunedin has become, mindful of who or what it is. If the above statement had any grasp on reality then the likes of the Cruise ships and the Taieri Tain would not have eventuated. There would be no Centre for Innovation at the University with the aim to take the knowledge of it’s staff to the world in a commercial venture. There would have been no Animation Research nor Natural History New Zealand, do I need to go on. Fisher and Paykel would not be competing in the very biggest luxury markets in the world if this was so. Hillside workshops would not be courting work abroad. These are but a few of the most obvious examples of how Dunedin is looking past even these shores to brighter and more lucrative economic fields.

“If this stance does not change then the stadium will be the final act for Dunedin.”

Wow, if you were on a game show right now the adjudicator (Lockwood Smith, John Humphrys or Jeremy Paxman) would have pressed the buzzer for an incorrect answer and deducted all of your points for being so bloody stupid.

“For those who wish to explore the consequence of this pattern of societal behaviour I would suggest reading Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond.”

This book is not without it’s criticism, while on the whole painting a grim picture, nothing is set in stone yet. This is the beauty of being human, the ability to rationally evaluate our surroundings and adjust accordingly. But then to further blight his colourful soliloquy, the Author goes on:


The stadium is no different in concept than the moai of Easter Island, the temples of the Aztecs or the coliseums of ancient Rome.

The monuments all got more elaborate as these societies responded to a changing environment by desperately doing more of the same hoping that some deity would be appeased, or at least the inhabitants would be distracted until things improved.”

Please Mr Paxman hit your bloody buzzer once again. Wrong answer. If, just if your assumption and wildly idiotic conclusions were correct, then why is every other western, eastern or in between society building these monuments. Seemingly stadia construction is one of the last steps in the demise of a society.

However, I guess without even knowing it, the author does raise an important issue. That is the power and place of a stadium or like structure within the social and economic fabric of society. The counter argument to Ciaran’s claims can be found in “The New Cathederals. Politics and Media in the History of Stadium Construction” by Robert C Trumpour {Syracuse University Press 2007}. This work simply and dispassionately describes how the place of the stadium and/or major sporting team associated with a region has become increasingly important economically and socially. Could the author please explain the rational behind the very singular use velodrome facility built in Southland, or the Events Centre, surely these must come under the same criticism?

“The most insightful document I have read recently on where we might all be heading is a report released in November 2008 by the United States Joint Forces Command entitled The Joint Operating Environment 2008 (JOE2008).

This document is remarkably frank, insightful and alarming.”

OK, I am starting to get the picture. Correct me if I am wrong, but I am guessing this gentleman is of an older generation with somewhat conservative or right wing ideologies, because why else would you use a US Military document to argue against a Stadium Development in Dunedin. Unsurprisingly this document is not without it’s critics. Seemingly the author is keen for Dunedin to look outwards and engage the world, I (and others) would argue that to pin the economic development hopes of this city on a flawed Military document is somewhat problematic.

“It is not militaristic alarmism but a concise and comprehensive geographer’s analysis of the possible consequences on our collective futures of the mixing of the demographics of massive population growth, the ageing of the West, competition for resources, economic instability and indebtedness, pandemic, international interconnectedness, technological change and relative changes in the economic and military power of nations over the next two decades.”

Buzzer Mr Humphrys? It has been found to be flawed in both is assessments scientifically and thus it’s conclusions. But if they Author again thinks that the city leaders, indeed the countries political, social and economic leaders aren’t already engaging these issues, then Mr Keogh is sorely mistaken.

“What is not uncertain is that the world will see change the like of which it has never been seen before”

And the world in 1925, 1945, 1955, 1965 (you get the picture) will change like it has never changed before. To plant future success or failure on suggested simple assumption is incredibly weak and somewhat, I hate to use the term again and again, disingenuous.

“Dunedin also seems in denial of the fact that without the support of provincial Otago and Southland it would cease to exist, while the reverse is not true.

Gore and Invercargill both possess more secure dynamic and productive economies, where Dunedin is critically dependent on the future of two large state-funded institutions.”

I am sorry, did I really just read this? Are you joking. Gore and Invercargill are independently progressive economic units, seemingly non-reliant on the wider Southland economy. This is possibly the second silliest thing I have ever read with regard to criticism of the Stadium development (and that’s saying something). Dunedin is an economic identity into itself, operating within not only the wider Otago, but (this may astonish the author) South Island, New Zealand and global economy. This is just too bloody silly to even contemplate countering, suffice to say, if the Author thinks that Invercargill or Gore has not worked symbolically with the wider economy to get to where they are today, this person obviously did go to University to eat his lunch on his way to an MBA.

“These institutions are not just vulnerable to change in government policy, they are the most exposed of institutions to the oncoming changes in society and technology.”

Hello – Southland Institute of Technology, Comalco and the Dairy Industry, are all subject to the very same pressures. Sorry, there is a term used in the new web technology Twitter, in which brevity is essential in the 140 character allocation of message construction – FAIL. It is a term we should use here with this analysis.

“Both universities and hospitals are hugely costly and inherently resource-inefficient beasts. There are technologies presently in their early phase of development that will render redundant much of their physical infrastructure and compete for provision of services.”

Again wrong. Sorry if the public is a drain on the government coffers, but these “inherently resource-inefficient beasts” are some of the basis of the social democratic institutions on which New Zealand proudly sits. However if we are to assume this line of argument has any sane conclusion, could someone please inform Oxford, Cambridge, Yale and Harvard that they are to be redundant soon. OMG this is a bloody joke.

But again if he thinks that the leaders and future leaders of said institutions aren’t aware of these pressures, then again I am assuming that this person is living with one’s head in the sand. I am coming to the conclusion that the author seemingly recently came across this document and is somewhat startled by it. Is it irony (or some other linguistic term) that the University actually teaches and encourages this so called technological revolution. Similar claims have been made in the past, cars will render horses useless, electricity will save us all, the cell phone will kill the telephone, we will all have 4 day working weeks… The future is yet unwritten my friend.

“Dunedin is at vitally important stage of its history.

Its initial reason for existence has nearly run its course.

Its only natural asset is its character.”

Ok, now you are getting personal and arrogant. Does one need to point out that Dunedin does not exist in an economic bubble, that the economic strength of the city is symbiotic with the surrounding region. Does not Gold and other mineral exploration have positive economic impact on this city. But to be even more local, Dunedin’s assest are greater than simply ‘character’. Again you are doing a great disservice to the wonderful business and institutions which are creating wealth in Dunedin. In 2004 it was shown that the University annually contributes over $900m towards the local economy. The natural environment itself is a wonderful asset to the city. The Harbour is physical, emotional, cultural and economic asset for this city. As is the surrounding landscape, from the productive city forests through to the Albatross Colony, the penguins, and other wonderful wildlife found within the city limits. This hollow statement by the author also rudely ignores the greatest asset this town has, the people. Without the Emmy Award winning, industry and science leading, world class artists and other creatives (musicians), business leaders, global technology leaders, through to the everyday people, Dunedin would be nothing, and to ignore them with such simplistic ease is a discredit to himself and us. In fact what he said is bloody disgusting.

“It has no inherent physical resources or productive base upon which to build. The city’s economic core is about to experience a life threatening exposure to virtual education and virtual health services and its main street to e-commerce.

We’ll let this stand on it’s own stupidity. Un bloody believable.

“If we are lucky and insightful, these changes will occur positively, driven by adaptive necessity as our nation becomes increasingly impoverished through indebtedness, a loss of wealth through foreign ownership of our resources and infrastructure, and an ever-increasing dependence on imports.

If we are not lucky and insightful we will fail to adapt and succumb to terminal economic decline.

If Dunedin is to survive then it must look to the future, not the past.”

Again sir you are doing this city and it’s people a great disservice to suggest that we aren’t currently doing so.

“It is a future where the wealth of the South will be increasingly focused in Southland and the Clutha where energy and agricultural developments will drive economic growth”

Once again sir, you are the one riding on old economic modes of development. it is not a given that the southern oil fields will be serviced in Invercargill. Oh crap, I’ve had enough of this, it’s taken way too much of my time countering these bloody disingenuous arguments.

“It is a future where the city could become increasingly isolated through travel being constrained by the cost and availability of fossil fuels and limits on its use by climate change policies.”

Buzz, bloody wrong once again. You are on one hand talking technology will save us, yet you are assuming that modern travel will be old technology based. People will always travel, it is a very in built trait of humans. There will be better economic times and relative to the past, travel will continue to get cheaper, greener and easier. Who is the one rooted in past economic modes now?

“The stadium is an old idea from an era nearly past. Dunedin needs new ideas for a new era and it needs to conserve its scarce economic resources until this strategy for the future is resolved”

Someone had better tell New York, Beijing, London, Christchurch… that their stadiums are doomed.

Could I be more depressed. A sham and a blur on the ODT for publishing this.

EDIT: What annoys me possibly most about this article is how it is intended to divide. Sometimes I literally don’t care if it’s built or if it isn’t, the apathy is sometimes too great. Most of the stuff published about the stadium I’ve heard before and it’s like background noise, and life seems pretty normal. I like not really caring too. But when something as poor as this comes along it makes me put my too pro hat on, and I just don’t want to. There was no need for this rubbish, and it certainly didn’t need to be published.

22 Comments

Filed under Disinformation, Economics, Geography, Hot air, Media, Politics, Stadiums, STS, Stupidity

StS appeal found, at Environment Court

### ODT Thu, 5 Mar 2009

By Mark Price

Stop the Stadium’s missing “notice of appeal” against the Dunedin City Council’s rezoning of land for the stadium has been found – at the Environment Court in Christchurch.

Read More Online Here…

ODT link

1 Comment

Filed under Media, Name, Other, Politics, Stadiums, STS, Stupidity