Let’s talk about White Island, Pike River and she’ll be right Capitalism


Whakaari owner found guilty of health and safety charge

Whakaari Management Limited (WML) has been found guilty of one health and safety charge laid in the wake of the December 2019 White Island eruption which killed 22 people and left dozens more seriously injured. A second charge against WML was dismissed.

The collapse of cases against White Island Operators in the wake of the terrible volcanic explosion was always a quixotic gesture as Work Save scrambled to work out who was really at fault in our poorly regulated, poorly structured she’ll be right Capitalism.

The idea that we had been allowing tourists to traipse around a live active volcano was always fraught, but add in lax rules and someone had to be blamed for such a casual attitude towards safety.

That was the lesson from Pike River as well, our poorly regulated capitalism makes things voluntary rather than mandatory and its laxness is damaging the environments people work in.

Our worker death rate remains one of the worst in the OECD.

The limited number of inspectors MBIE has is about to be slashed if ACT and National win election, meaning our poorly policed regulations will become even more lax!

We’ve seen with the immigration exploitation recently the cost of lax regulation.

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This lack of regulation doesn’t just risk lives, it mutates markets as well.

We’ve seen it in the Drainage Industry, the Supermarket Duopoly, the Petrol Oligopoly and many other industries where crony capitalism and lax regulation creates market dominance rob consumers of actual competition.

Election 2023: Christopher Luxon warns Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment could see 30pct cut under National

Christopher Luxon has again refused to say what specific areas of the public sector he will cut under a National Government.  

ACT and National are promising to gut MBIE because MBIE employs the people who regulate New Zealand’s poorly policed and under regulated capitalism!

27 000 Bosses were given the power to import migrant workers and exploit them, of that number only 2 have had their exploitation scams ended and that’s because there is no State policing the current regulations we have!

We see this time and time and time again, State regulators who are supposedly policing the under regulated markets with barely enough staff to look into anything at all!

Max Rashbrooke highlighted the horror of NZs under regulated market

The bad news is that, to investigate 200,000-300,000 terrible rentals, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has employed a frontline inspectorate numbering … 37. Each inspector will have to check somewhere between 5000 and 8000 rentals.

…there is only 37 inspectors of rental properties for 300 000 terrible rentals?

Similar poorly funded regulation is apparent in the 82 labour inspectorates who are supposed to police hundreds of thousands of migrant worker exploitations!

We saw the impact of lax regulation at Pike River.

ACT and National’s bullshit dismantling of Capitalism’s police tells you all you need to know about the deregulated hellscape a National/ACT monstrosity would birth into this world.

She’ll be right Capitalism is who we is as a people and as a national identity. If you are too much of a pussy to not risk serious injury or death for minimum wage, then move to Socialist Australia!

This is what we is now. This is who we are.

Fuck us.

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  1. What I could never understand was that GNS wouldn’t allow their own people on. So how come – or did they – they didn’t advise the tourist groups that go out there, none of that made any sense to me.

    It is just one more to add to the cowboy country attitude we have.
    Cave Creek
    Pike River
    Whakaari – white island
    Carterton Balloon tragedy

    The young Germany woman who was not properly tied to a bungy jump and was killed, her father came out for the inquest and talked about our cowboy country – its attitude to rules and regulations and now these shits come along and it is going to be even less.


  2. “ACT and National are promising to gut MBIE because MBIE employs the people who regulate New Zealand’s poorly policed and under regulated capitalism!”

    Indeed it is.
    But it also the biggest bugger;s muddle of ineptitude that was ever created.
    And Hark! Who was it that created this monstrosity. Why Mr Fixit and His arse licker Jonathan.
    How appropriate that their allies are now beginning to realise what a total fuckup this institution has been. Everything it touches turns to shit. Organisationally, it’s worse than MSD, Corrections, POSSIBLY OT, NZTA, and various other departments.
    AND it ISN’T its worker bee Public Servants that work IN SPITE of their seriously comfy little PMC muddle and senior management.

    Peel off the various layers of this complete fuckup, properly resource them with people that haven’t been parachuted in from the Empire OR who are well past their used-by date.
    Just for example – the Labour Expectorant had to be embarrassed into doing anything meaningful over worker exploitation that came about by their own stupid policy advice.

    Maybe see the gutting as STEP ! of reform.
    It’s something Labour had become too bloody comfy with as well, AND who had the mandate and motivation to do something about.

    Cudda Shudda Wudda

  3. This is the inevitable result of your much vaunted ‘Number 8 wire’ culture. As an import to these fair isles, I’ve always laughed at the No8 story: It’s basically an excuse for doing things in a half-assed, short-term manner.

    Get a new motto Kiwis!

    • Number 8 wire culture worked in simple situations & provided a cheap way to fix things. The problem occurred when halfwit managers decided that all situations needed to be fixed on the cheap using people not suitable for the job, the half-assed, short-term manner you describe was almost always pushed from the top as a penny-pinching exercise.

  4. We see this time and time and time again, State regulators who are supposedly policing the under regulated markets with barely enough staff to look into anything at all!

    Regulations what are they good for? The USA is interesting in how they protect the viability of their money system with many regulations. Yet the overseas financial stalwarts have sold us the idea of a deregulated epolicy and policing system.

    This may be informative on USA finances – I heave you a brick.

    There is an organisation for whistleblowers in USA!

    And Harvard – so good at everything – probably also at ice skating.

  5. From the judges comments it seems apparent that the missing defendant not even charged for nonfeasance / dereliction of duty in a public office is Worksafe. How else to explain years of audits that never raised substantial concerns or followup.

    Workface were clearly too busy shoveling ordure into the fan to cover themselves to consider looking in the mirror.

    That said: people decided to trek onto a live volcano – what could possibly go wrong?

  6. Looks more like the new MSA trying to establish dominance to me.

    So you have a disaster. Force majeure – not human agency for a change.

    The authorities prosecute the survivors. Yippee.

    Not like Pike River at all – no malefactors.


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