Addressing the National Party regional conference at the weekend, John Key did his usual “shucks, nothing to worry about routine” again. Just like his budget predictions, everything will work out fine. He cited EQC as an example of a “growth business”.

“Look at something like EQC, they’ve gone from having 29 people to something like 1500; that is a growth business.”

That is indeed exponential growth – EQC is now 50 times larger than it was a year ago. By my calculations, we would only need 118* more significant earthquakes until EQC employs the 177,000 people that Key predicted would be employed in the budget last week.

* however, if those 118 earthquakes caused as many deaths as the February quake, then those 21,476 deceased people would provide vacancies that could be filled by other people. Therefore, we’d probably only need around 100 quakes to full employment.