I don't think it's wrong in most (nearly all) cases. The cost of running software, keeping it updated, changing the HW it runs on, keeping it compliant, etc over time costs much more than the dev time to build it.
Unless your service is completely replaced every couple years, I'd venture operations cost more than development. (even if dev handles the ops).
The point of the statement is designing for operability helps with ownership and combats the "leave it in the corner and hope for the best" mentality.