yARN: Life’s a cup of $0.085 coffee at NBN Co

Or how NBN Co and the Senate Estimates Committee combined to waste a lot more money than that

Is this a $0.085 cup of coffee?

Is this a $0.085 cup of coffee?

And so we degenerate into pure idiocy. Today, NBN Co sent out a press release headlined: Coffee claims roasted.

It begins this missive: “NBN Co has dismissed claims about the high cost of coffee on the company’s premises.

“A single cup of coffee at NBN Co works out at around eight and a half cents per cup per working day per person.

“When the cost of the coffee machines and their annual maintenance is added to the equation, the price comes to about 16 cents a cup.

“The company was responding to media reports arising from an answer to a Question on Notice from the Senate Estimates Committee.”

The release goes onto state that a detailed, multi-part question sought from NBN Co the cost of coffee, coffee pods, coffee machines and their maintenance, specifics about the type of coffee machines purchased as well as the reason for their purchase.

It then explains that coffee and coffee machines have been purchased by NBN Co as an amenity for employees, contractors and visitors in order to aid productivity by reducing the time spent by staff purchasing coffee outside their offices.

This is all in the name of accountability of taxpayers' money, I assume.

There are so many questions this begs that I literally can’t handle them. The coffee is too hot!

Why is the Senate Estimates Committee wasting its time checking on the price of coffee at NBN CO? I mean, is it doing coffee/cup checks right across all government bodies. Are the folks in the tax office under scrutiny or maritime. Maybe roads – you know, I reckon coffee out there in the middle of rural Australia could be a tad expensive.

And then we have to ask? Why just coffee? Is tea a proven low cost alternative? Has the Senate Estimates Committee looked, for instance, at whether NBN Co or any sector of government is using designer tea bags. Not your cheap brands but the good stuff. Hell, even tea leaves.

And what about hot chocolate? Whoa! Worse still - with marshmallows.

Of course, maybe the Senate Estimates Committee thinks NBN Co is using beans way above its station and is just plain jealous.

One thing is certain: I don't think the balance of payments is going to be affected by the cost of coffee at NBN Co.

It’s almost enough to think that somebody is pulling our proverbial leg – but it’s not April 1.

So next question: Why on earth would NBN Co think it necessary to put out a press release defending the cost of a cup of coffee on its premises.

What was the cost to NBN Co of a PR sitting down and writing this dark brown defense, taking into account the time spent in meetings getting briefed and the release approved?

I know it’s an election year but surely the stupidity hasn’t already started.

And how much is it costing me to sit here and wax lyrical about the sheer stupidity of bureaucrats and governments?

For those of you who can’t get enough of the rich aroma of this debate, you should apparently see Question on Notice No.420, Supplementary Estimates Hearings, Broadband, Communications & the Digital Economy Portfolio, October 2012.

The rest of us, I’m sure, will find it all just hard to swallow.

Tags Senate Estimates Committeecoffeenational broadband networknbn co

6 Comments

karl_w_w

1

"Why is the Senate Estimates Committee wasting its time checking on the price of coffee at NBN CO?"
Well that should be obvious, the Liberal party is desperate to find any reason that NBN Co is failing. Given it can't, it just tries everything. Next they'll be accusing NBN Co of using 2 ply bog roll!

YG

2

I think this is in relation to this article http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/department-in-hot-water-over-its-coffee-machines-20121211-2b7tl.html.

It's not one of those $1500-3000 machines.

Citizen Kane

3

Dear Mike, welcome to Planet Earth, Region Australia, Location Canberra: Inhabited by the Tribe Idiotus Totalus...

You should have visited earlier, Mike, otherwise a wise man like yourself would not have missed the long ongoing saga of sad and ignorant senators from the Coalition benches asking often impertinent, arrogant, desperate and clearly politically motivated questions about subjects and matters that they are obviously devoid of any knowledge, and then careering off into lang sagas of character assassinations and rumour mongering in their increasingly inane attempts to throw around some pernicious power and thus hopefully waste enough time and effort to make their own predictions of an NBN failure come to a grimy self-fulfillment...

Swaggering like political drunkards, they espouse an endless stream of negative accusations, mindless assertions, unfounded allegations and nit-picking demands for what appears to them to be mind-bendingly crucial information...

Like the average cost of a cup of coffee in a corporate environment...

Clearly these senators have never run a business or actually productively worked at a management level, or they now just happily wallow in a grimy pond of untruths in order to attain some shadowy and shallow political gain, as if Australia and the rest of us have nothing better to do than entertain their blatant misuse of senate hearings.

The whole NBN saga has enough challenges, without people with little or no interest in what will benefit Australia working from within to bring it down. But then again, a successful NBN would hinder a coalition election victory, therefore it must be destroyed at any cost, with any method?

They show no bipartisian interest to improve the overall NBN model and execution. They have a single minded interest in bringing the NBN and all associated with it into disrepute...

And this lot would attain power and run Australia? They will run the country like they run these hearings...

Woe betide us...

Welcome to Planet Earth, Region Australia, Location Canberra: Inhabited by the Tribe Idiotus Totalus...

Disclaimer: The above is not a political comment and I do not represent nor have affiliation with any political organisation. Just another independant citizen tired of people who do not seek to create or support the best technology options for Australia, but only seek to besmirch in order to attain political gain.

gxdata

4

And the reason NBNCo would be drawing this nonsense to the attention of the IT press is for the very reason that it is yet another dumbing-down, simplistic fiasco that is a part of the conservative political parties' strategy. NBNCo can't say directly that the Libs - and to a lesser extent the Nats - are nitpicking on the NBN for no good reason other than winning an election, after which they would leave the rollout plans largely the same as they are.

iHope

5

My estimates committee (AKA my wife) insisted on owning a fancy Swiss made coffee machine so that the real money we eventually save by making our own "real" cups of joe more than covers the daily cost of our current less than ideal overpriced broadband internet service, also severely hampered by delivery over copper.
Additionally, we can utilise tastier certified organic coffee beans (the conventional type have the highest amount of pesticides of any crop, except tobacco) and the organic caffeine buzz is lower but lasts longer.

Mike, maritime and roads are, I thought, mostly state government run, and in that context their workforce are fortunate to even have employment, let alone access to quality coffee in the workplace.

On a serious note that may interest the industry members, NBN Co pay far lower rates for Telco professionals than the private sector does, therefore it could be said that many of the people working at NBN Co are perhaps more dedicated to the goal of creating a better data network facility for all Australians, even those Australians that don't yet understand the value of it, probably the same people would not understand the value of quality inhouse coffee!

The lesson in all of this is the self evident truth, being that quality does not cost, it pays.

gnome

6

Yes, Mike, it's election year; and yes again, the idiocy has well and truly started.

It's hard to tell who are worse - the MSM who breathlessly peddle this crap as if it was news, or the politicians who are responsible for creating it in the first place.

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