RIP Owen McShane

March 6th, 2012 at 8:38 pm by David Farrar

Fran O’Sullivan facebooks:

Just a note to say that died suddenly today. He had a major heart operation a year or so ago. Was a contributor to NBR in recent years but long time commentator on Auckland planning issues and RMA.

Owen contributed a huge amount to public policy in New Zealand ranging from being a commentator here at one end of the scale to having done a ministerial reviews of the RMA. He was a wealth of knowledge on planning issues, and a consistent voice for less regulation and centralised control.

He was a fine New Zealander, and will be missed my many,

My thoughts go out to his family and close friends.

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23 Responses to “RIP Owen McShane”

  1. Alan Wilkinson (1,878 comments) says:

    I’m very sorry to hear that. Owen is a huge loss.

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  2. Scott Chris (6,139 comments) says:

    My thoughts go out to his family and close friends.

    Ditto. He often made insightful comments on KB.

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  3. Chuck Bird (4,892 comments) says:

    My condolences to his family. I knew Owen better some years ago when I was a member of the Skeptics. I heard him call Leighton Smith recently. He kept working for what he believed in till the end. RIP.

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  4. mara (787 comments) says:

    Damm shame. I enjoyed his sensible and considered opinions. Condolences to his family.

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  5. tom hunter (4,863 comments) says:

    And here’s his last comment on Kiwiblog on February 27 – typically it was on Council amalgamation.

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  6. Ross Nixon (559 comments) says:

    Wow! Shane was so knowledgeable, a good communicator, had common sense. Will be missed by all right thinking people. RIP.

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  7. libertyscott (359 comments) says:

    Very sad news.

    Owen was always an articulate and well balanced commentator on a wide range of public policy issues, particularly the RMA and urban planning. He was the nemesis of the SmartGrowth “green” led philosophy that now dominates most NZ cities which promotes intensification, urban boundaries and pouring taxpayers’ money down the black hole of rail based public transport. He has a proud legacy of intelligent writing and thought, supporting property rights and market mechanisms to address the distortions seen in urban outcomes.

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  8. Dave Mann (1,222 comments) says:

    Oh shit shit shit! I never met Owen, but I often read his comments here and on other blogs and it seemed that I knew him through having an insight into his mind. My condolences to his family and those he was close to. His common sense and rationality will be missed by many people.

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  9. Stephen Stratford (45 comments) says:

    Sad news. He was a good man and I felt privileged to work with him, briefly as it was at Metro. He was a clear thinker and focused on the issues – nothing was ever personal.

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  10. Anthony (796 comments) says:

    I’ll miss reading any pieces written by him – he was great for injecting some practicalities into debates on transport and planning.

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  11. Peter (1,712 comments) says:

    Very sad.

    I enjoyed his posts, especially when he was talking reason to the greenists over on Frogblog!

    RIP Owen.

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  12. davidp (3,581 comments) says:

    I’ve been a fan of Owen’s since he used to contribute to the NZ newsgroups. He had views on a wide range of issues and always argued those views effectively. I’ll miss having him around.

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  13. DJP6-25 (1,387 comments) says:

    That’s a shame. He wrote good articles in magazines, and good posts on here too. My condolences to his family.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  14. Manolo (13,783 comments) says:

    A loss to the country. My condolences to his family.

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  15. kiwi in america (2,454 comments) says:

    I met Owen on a number of occasions, was a recipient of his most insightful regular newsletter and enjoyed his always knowledgable contribution to the debate here at kiwiblog. Owen was an absolute giant in understanding the pernicious impacts of the Resource Management Act, he brought sensible realism to the subject most dear to his heart that of urban planning and he was particularly adept at blasting through the contorted thinking of the left leaning smart planning philosophers who have captured so many council planning departments and left leaning elected officials. His could always link to studies that would blow massive holes in the arguments cited by the proponents of the Auckland City Loop and he was an excellent and articulate commentator on the reasons why NZ cities continue to rise up the unaffordability rankings in the Demographia International Affordability Survey http://www.demographia.com/dhi.pdf.

    I do hope that he was able to mentor someone over the years as he was able to bring to bear on this vexed issue a tremendous level of skill and experience.

    My thoughts and prayers are for his wife and family at this time.

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  16. Brian Smaller (4,023 comments) says:

    I only knew him from his blog comments here. Condolences.

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  17. Farmerpete (48 comments) says:

    Good man, independent thinker, advocate for rational thinking, and a fierce defender of individual rights visa vi council bureaucracy etc. He had a good sense of humour, good values and he was a tireless worker. There is no other voice like his out there at the moment. We are much poorer for his passing.

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  18. Chris Diack (741 comments) says:

    Very sad news.

    I recall with pleasure the time I spent with him. He was a man one could always learn something from. He also wrote well.

    Like the hills I suspect those with an interest in local government matters (both friend and foe) always expected Owen to be around – a constant.

    His influence will continue to be felt.

    My condolences to his family.

    RIP Owen.

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  19. labrator (1,850 comments) says:

    I didn’t know of him outside of KiwiBlog but I really appreciated his articulate input here. Condolences.

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  20. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    Ahh shit. That freakin’ sucks. I was reading his NBR article earlier this morning.

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  21. backster (2,174 comments) says:

    I also only know him from this blog, but I invariably agreed with him, and always looked forward to his contributions. I feel so sad that he has passed on.

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  22. the deity formerly known as nigel6888 (852 comments) says:

    I am truly shocked by this.

    Owen, I never met you in person, but I think you made a huge contribution to the public debate, particularly around the RMA and the role of “planning” in driving up the costs of land and property ownership.

    Rest in peace, you will be missed

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  23. Nick K (1,244 comments) says:

    This is terrible news. I read his local government/RMA newsletters often and had some email contact with him occasionally. He was an articulate and passionate New Zealander and is going to be a huge loss to rational thinking. RIP Owen.

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