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A Waiheke Island Myth Part 1 On Waiheke Island, New Zealand, a myth has grown up among a handful of people in the Rocky Bay Village th...

Friday, 20 December 2019


Colin Homan, Group Manager - Integrated Networks - Auckland Transport (AT), made a three-page response to Case Number CAS-17112-M7B8S3 (how do they get those enormous codes?), ie., the response to this blogger's abbreviated complaints about the mess that AT has made of the bus service on Waiheke Island--a profligate mess made at profligate expense.

His letter covered a lot of paper, but the sub-text right through it was 'we are right, anything else is wrong' and showed how divorced from Waiheke's reality he is, and how incapable he is of listening to facts and of making decisions on them.

Colin Homan
It would be a waste of time going through all his letter, because it is just another wearisome sample of bureaucratic flim-flam, a transparent attempt at manipulative mollification, but amongst other things he said: 'We’ve put the network together with residents at front of mind, as well as offering a more intuitive system for tourists.'

That 'we've put the network together' is a rather grandiose way of describing services that are only to and from the ferry to two places (Onetangi and Rocky Bay), with  Kennedy Point to Oneroa to be added perhaps. But bureaucrats like to make everything sound very important, thus putting themselves above everyone else. And 'network' is as bad as 'hub', because using words that do not apply misleads those who use them; they are led into la-la land by their la-la terminology,

His 'intuitive' is an interesting choice of words, because later in the letter he 'explains' why the destination signs on buses and the codes for routes in timetables are what they are--i.e., why AT chose to use those silly codes 50A, 50B, 50C, 502, 503, 504. First, he cannot see that when all the codes start with the same two characters--50--that makes them useless, because they convey nothing, which is not intuitive, it is anti-intuitive. But he is content to make them consistent with the codes used on the mainland, as if that could make them right, as if that has anything to do with reality, but it again has nothing to do with intuition.

Then he explains what is oh-so very, very obvious and oh-so very, very intuitive--i.e., why there are letters on the ends of some codes and numbers on the ends of others. It should of course be oh-so obvious to us insular Waiheke dummies, and should be oh-so important to us, why it should be as obvious and important as in his 'intuitive' mind, namely, that islanders and visitors from all over the world will instantly know 'intuitively' that when we see a letter on the end that means the service is every 15 minutes, and when we see a number that means it is every 30 minutes.

Of course! That's obvious!!! How silly of us not to get that 'intuitively'!!!! But Mr Homan, apart from your not being able to see that that is not obvious, not intuitive, and not of any use to anyone, not even you, you also do not see that the services with numbers as suffixes are not in fact running at 30-minute intervals. For instance, your timetables say that Rocky Bay buses from the ferry are passing Placemakers at a mix of 20 and 40 minute intervals, which is not 30, but that in fact they are taking the better part of an hour, because they are late or not coming at all because the timetable has been mucked up and because there are not enough drivers. Why are there not enough? Because there never were, and then fifteen quit in disgust at the insane mess that you, Mr Homan, have made of the 'network.'

Mr Homan, you have to learn that your pronouncements do not create reality. Your artefacts are not facts, and you have to base your decisions on facts if you are to make wise decisions for people. Such as the fact that your 'network' needs well over forty drivers (forty-nine says a reliable source) and a fleet of buses that are not there. They were never there at the beginning, and because you caused fifteen  drivers to quit there are far fewer now. And there was never enough accommodation at the bus deport for anything more than a fraction of that number in the lunch/tea-room, another pesky fact.

Your diploma in Road Transport from Rand Africaans University showed you none of those facts nor any others... Nor did your claim on Linked-In of having in excess of thirty years experience, because that would have to have started in the mid 1980s, when your Linked-In CV says you were a university student. University is not experience in the real world. The same applies to the years 1981 to 1984 when your Linked-In CV says you were gaining a Bachelor of Commerce in Business Accounting and Management. The evidence on the Waiheke ground shows that none of that was of any use in the real world.

When Waihekeans did the services they wisely tailored them to match the juice-and-chips resources. But you, Mr Homan, tailored them for champagne-and-caviar resources that did not exist, do not exist, never will exist, and the resultant mess destroyed a large chunk of what was there. Your 'intuition' got everything wrong. If you had the guts you would admit that you have fouled it up, hand it back to Waiheke, and leave us alone. We need a Boer-constrictor crushing the sense out of our bus service like we need sunken ferryies.