Calvin Oaten's conviction

### ODT Online comment by Calvin Oaten on Mon, 09/03/2009 – 10:43pm.

Otago Stadium a done deal

Regardless of what we have read, been shown or told…we can come to no other conclusion but that the stadium was decided right from the beginning. The problem was simply how to sell it. It all began when the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) told the Otago Rugby Football Union (ORFU) that Carisbrook no longer met the standards required by the NZRU and that if we were to retain class A tests it would have to be upgraded. Consternation, the ORFU didn’t know what to do. You see, it was in debt to the Dunedin City Council (DCC) to the tune of $2 million and owed the bank over $4 million. Worse, it was, and had been for some time operating at a loss. It decided to commission a report from consultants to see what could be done. It was resolved that a DCC working party should be set up chaired by Jim Harland.

The working party began its investigations but quickly realised that the DCC should not be seen to be coming to the aid of a stricken private commercial operation. It was therefore resolved to set up an independent body to be named the Carisbrook Stadium Trust (CST), to investigate what could or should be done to bring Carisbrook up to standard and what it was likely to cost. The CST quickly decided that Carisbrook was out and that a new stand alone facility should be built. Both councils [DCC and ORC] embraced the concept providing they were regularly appraised of developments as the project was progressed. This became a charade of selective information, misleading information, information withholding due to commercial sensitivity and just plain old humbug…

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Housekeeping -we abridge Mr Oaten’s comment and commend the full version to readers.

10 Comments

Filed under CST, Economics, Hot air, Name, Politics, Site, Stadiums

10 responses to “Calvin Oaten's conviction

  1. Or meanwhile not on Planet Conspiracy Theory you could accept the work of the professional people involved.

    It was not the CST who have been trimming the cost of construction, it has been HOK Sport.

    No the brief was not totally about Carisbrook, and thank god we didn’t go with that option because to put a roof on an oval shaped structure would have cost nearer the conspiracy theory numbers.

    Or you could say, why do I need to be privy to commercially sensitive material, will that get the best deal for the people.

    Sorry won’t do the poor man the curtsey of reading the rest of his rant, having too good a day for that, sun has just come out in time for football training.

  2. Calvin Oaten

    Paul,
    The fact that you won’t bother to read the full story just shows how closed your mind really is. Is it that you are frightened that you might read something which could upset your set in concrete prejudices? I do so abhor narrow minded people who take it upon themselves to lecture on any and all subjects, but at the faintest sign of opposition wilt away to play football Unless you read the whole story you are in no position to comment, so just butt out. And by the way, don’t bother curtseying to me, lest I might think you were bent. Someone who won’t use his/her full name also deserves little credence.

  3. God Calvin get over yourself.

    I was at work and didn’t have time to read the post, not everything revolves around this bloody stadium, thank god.

    I am more than willing to read more or less anything and everything, this is why I set up this forum, for free and frank discussion, why else do you think I invited an intelligent Anti Stadium campaigner on as co-editor. I am also more than willing to be convinced that this stadium isn’t a good idea, if the argument supports that. To date I haven’t.

    Wilting away to play football, actually involves coaching 50-75 people, something that far too many people aren’t willing to do in their spare time these days. Sorry if this community service offends so.

    Calvin calm down, my name is on the About page of this blog for the whole bloody world to see. I don’t hide from it, for I fear no bloody tartan army, nor do I fear the conspiracy theorists whom oppose the stadium, filthy dirty tricks campaigns and all.

    However considering the start of the opinion piece is erroneous, why would I hold much hope for the rest of the piece to be less so, least of all informative.

    For instance, the so called “honey pot labelled professional fees”. I mean really what the hell are we to do with that. Of course there was going to be millions of dollars going to ‘experts’ and ‘professionals’. This ‘honey pot’ is actually what you pay good people to do a good job, the very use of the term suggests some sort of suspicion of the level of expertise. Would I at this stage be so bold as to remind you of the $1trillion USD+ worth of stadium, arena and concert/opera hall developments over the last decade completed by HOK Sport. This is no ‘boys club’ meeting to have drinks and fleece the community. In fact if there was such a boys club putting pen to paper and planning a big shed, I too would be on your side. But these are some of the best people in their area, like it or not, to get the best, you have to pay for the best (something the StS has stunningly only just discovered). If we didn’t pay out this ‘honey pot’ then we would be getting a sub standard stadium, full of errors and not up to the task. But once again the conspiracy theorists belittle these professionals with rubbish about honey pots.

    You say “This became a charade of selective information, misleading information”, thank you for very aptly describing the opposition campaign. Seemingly this stadium was responsible for poor broadband costing the city jobs, it would keep the beaches full of poo and unusable, the drinking water would remain unsafe, it would be a terrorist target, it would flood as a result of anthropocentric global warming, south dunedin would float away – the council needs to save it, etc etc. When you put all of these together it sounds less like a comedy, more like a bloody tragedy. It has been the public which have been taken for fools. Could someone please explain to me in words of simple syllables (as I obviously don’t seem to get it), why is it hard to understand that YES some stuff needs to be commercially sensitive.

    I will acknowledge that some of the pro stadium claims were fanatical and hard to believe, but a common sense dose of salt should have prevailed. But the campaign against the stadium has been farcical.

  4. Calvin Oaten

    Paul obviously still hasn’t read my full article. The golden rule of journalism is to first get fully informed before commenting. That way you avoid painting yourself into corners.

  5. Calvin, this blog doesn’t pretend to be journalism, it is an opinion blog.

    The golden rule of not embarrassing oneself is to not assume anything or make ridiculous statements. FYI I read the piece, the bits I disagreed with I commented on, the bits I’m not qualified to comment on I left alone. Shame the StS didn’t follow this rule.

    The problem with such binary debates is the pathetic assumption that one is 100% correct or 100% wrong. Statements have been made by both the StS and CST which have been silly to say the least, that does not preclude intelligent people on either side form being partially correct from time to time, but that is lost in the big right or wrong debate.

  6. Calvin Oaten

    Paul, It’s the partially bits that worry.

  7. Fliss

    I stopped boring myself with Calvin’s rants many years ago. Suggest you take up knitting instead – much more sustainable. I’m about to get the needles out and start this years collection of beanies in Otago Highlander colours. Any takers?

  8. Calvin Oaten

    Flis, you get your needles out with remarkable frequency. By now I would have thought your would be knitting something more cerebral than beanies(pun intended). Something like a Bayou Tapestry perhaps, or instead try getting your head around just what it was that I said. As a councillor it would be more productive, and, who knows, you may learn something.

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