What a neurotic, nitpicking and ungrateful little country we can be at times.

The champagne residue was barely dry on Emirates Team New Zealand's triumph at the 35th America's Cup when our leaders started flapping their gums about how private sector funding should fuel the 36th.

Among the revelations of Bermuda was the astonishing, bald-faced hypocrisy that surrounded this last America's Cup campaign.


We're all loving it now, people, but how many now proclaiming the genius DNA of our team were the same folk who took to social media and letters to the editor to bitch about "rich men's toys"? It was the petulant, knee-jerk display of a little country that didn't like losing. Toys, cot, out.

It carried enough force that poll-based politicians like Sir John Key and Steven "who threw that dildo?" Joyce were able to hide the keys to the Treasury and deny ETNZ major funding.

We are all agog at the unexpected victory. And who is in the vanguard of the back-slappers now? Why, that'd be those politicians.

There was the spectacle of PM Bill English dressed in his pyjamas and red socks, holding his arms up in triumph and saying: "Yes!" Bill, you are to social media what Donald Trump is to haircuts. And walls. You're better off mailing out a printed flyer with a photo of you with a red sock pinned to each ear and a caption saying: "Bill English hears Team NZ socked it to the Americans!".

Next was Auckland mayor Phil Goff, gravely intoning that private sector money should back the next Cup. This conveniently overlooked the council's events arm paying out $11m to help host the World Masters Games recently and $1.2m to New Zealand Rugby (yes, our richest sport) to have a second Lions test played in Auckland.

Don't get me started on the government's major events fund which doles out $10m a year to things like the Rotorua Mud Festival. Yup.

That same Phil Goff will be front and centre when it comes to the speeches extolling the virtues of the America's Cup and Team NZ. It's a time-honoured politician's ploy - bathe in the success while invoking civic responsibility to avoid giving them any money.

Goff's priority, he solemnly maintained, is transport and housing - yet we all know those babies won't be solved any time soon; any "solution" will come wrapped in a politically-inspired package.


Auckland's transport woes, for example, require drastic action. It needs a double whammy of massive spending on public transport (not the mere nod in the right direction currently going on) and punitive measures to lever Aucklanders out of their cars - CBD or road charges or tolls.

We all know that the politician who bites into that apple will choke on the worm at the next election. They'll be gone like the $77m Bermuda paid to host the America's Cup and ancillary events over the next few years.

A few media people have also weighed in; one recent editorial pointed out government would be exposed to people who say: "Well, you can't afford to spend more money on education, health and housing but you can spend $XX million on a yacht race."

Estimates for what the Cup will bring to New Zealand range from $500m to $1 billion.

Seems like a bit of profitable wriggle room there. Might even generate money from our biggest earner - tourism - to spend more money on...gee I dunno...education, health and housing.

The editorial also talked about how no public money should go into the mansions of the sailors. Easy. Ring-fence it; require it to be used for certain purposes only and stringently accounted for. If Steven Joyce can handle having a sex toy smack him in the puss, I'm certain he can manage that.

One columnist chose to have a slap at Team NZ CEO Grant Dalton for being acerbic instead of gracious in victory.

You see? Prissy and nitpicking; short and convenient memories. This is the same Grant Dalton vilified by almost everyone after San Francisco 2013. He shouldn't have been on the boat. He shouldn't have given Oracle a lay day. There were nasty and unfounded rumours about his private life which would have been devastating had they been applied to you and me.

He kept the team alive when it seemed terminally ill. Dalton, with his sometimes brutal honesty, isn't everyone's cup of tea - but after years of bitter recriminations and taunts, he can surely be forgiven a touch of schadenfreude.

No one is saying the taxpayer has to fold $36m into ETNZ, as in the previous America's Cup - but let's tone down the hypocrisy, shall we? If we are going to deny them money, let's go with the real reasons as opposed to fake civic responsibility laced with self-serving personal appearances at the happy times.