The Pike River coal mine disaster highlights why you cannot rely on government to be engaged in operating or executive roles. There are several problems:
1. They are idiots - they do not know about life. Their entire thought process is antithetical to critical thinking. They are modern-day serfs; not suited to regulation or monitoring under the current system of govt.
2. They have a conflict of interest - The Pike River Mine was owned by the operating & marketing company Pike River Coal. This company was listed in Australia and NZ; but in reality the company was not so independent. It was substantially owned by Solid Energy; a 100% government owned enterprise. You can imagine how little compliance or accountability will result when you have two idiots talking to each other.
In the context of this case - a disaster was imminent:
1. The lack of public oversight
2. The gassy coals
3. The lack of UG mine experience
4. The recruitment of poor staff - those that couldn't get a job in Australia for 2x the wage.
Read this article. The problem here is public adminstration under representative democracy - it does not matter whether it was a Labour Party or National Party government. i.e. Labour cut coal mining inspectors; and National Party could equally care less.