Australia Post and Cartier watches

I find it incredible that the CEO of Australia Post – Christine Holgate – would justify spending $12,000 on four Cartier watches to Australia Post senior executives (each receiving a salary of about $800,000 a year) by saying

We do not receive government funding, we are a commercial organisation.

What of the 100% equity by the Australian Government? That’s funding. What about the $12,000 spending on Cartier watches which either reduces the dividend to the Australian Government or increases the subsidy required for the operations of Australia Post.

Government GBEs are taxpayer funded and it is sophistry to suggest otherwise.

What is it about Australia Post that it has been used as a personal wealth generator by executives since Ahmed Fahour was the CEO?

Some postie who rides around the suburbs delivering mail would have better judgement, higher ethical standards, and better business practices.

About Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus

I'm a retired general who occasionally gets called back to save the republic before returning to my plough.
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125 Responses to Australia Post and Cartier watches

  1. Ubique

    The furore has bewildered and confused her. Incredibly poor judgement. Utterly divorced from reality. A woeful choice as ceo of Australia Post.

  2. Dot

    Three grand per trinket.

    Who. Gives. A. Shit.

    The country’s Federal government has over 820 BILLION dollars of debt securities on issue.

  3. Rex Anger

    Who. Gives. A. Shit.

    Squirrels do, Dot.

    I reckon the RSPCA (or Cats masquerading as such) could have great fun publicly shaming our corporate and bureaucratic bugmen classes for their incessant and malicious cruelty to poor, innocent [Distraction] Squirrels.

    How many have been flung into Anglosphere public discourse in the last 24 hours alone?

    Heck, there might even be a lawsuit in it, or a great icebreaker for that $820 billion in debt ylu just described.

  4. stackja

    Gough was happy getting petrodollars from the Iraqi. Then wanted bank depositors money to fund his government. Bureaucrats making health policy have created the “pandemic crisis”. Now other bureaucrats have given themselves an entitlement to spend money.

  5. Noddy

    It is very hard to remain civil and contribute something constructive.
    Victoria once had the State Electricity Commission developing and managing power generation and distribution-it was a great organisation. The Australian Government had the Post Master General’s Department managing Posts and Telegraphs providing good service. The Victorian Railways Commissioners managed the railways from the beginning, providing a rail network across Victoria. They were funded by taxpayers and provided a reliable service. That is just three government departments that were corporatised on the way to the ‘dogs’!
    They are now ‘super-capitalist’ organizations operating along ‘best practice’ socialist lines. Local Government operates likewise with ‘Clyde Cameron’s ‘fat cats’ collecting perks beyond belief. This was not communism but the Government doing as it should do-building a better community for its people. Something is terribly wrong! A pox on the present lot of failed and disgraced elected politicians but it seems the rot is so bad we are all going to rot with them-well I’m not! Watch your back AND FRONT!

  6. John-SA

    Hmmm. So these four, the 2nd tier managers reporting to the CEO, earn around $800k a pop?

    Is it because they’re integral to bringing in the billions in profits that Aus Post makes each year? Can’t be that, because they barely cover their costs these days.

    Is it because their work is so stressful, so demanding, so time consuming you couldn’t justify a lower sum? Well I reckon the PM might just have a tougher job and he’s on $550k.

    According to wiki, the head of the US Post has a salary of $303k USD a year. What makes these underbosses in Aus worth double what the head guy in the US (a rather larger entity than ours) is on?

    Sack. Them. All.

  7. C.L.

    Some postie who rides around the suburbs delivering mail would have better judgement, higher ethical standards, and better business practices.

    And better taste.

    As I pointed out on the OF, $12,000 at Cartier will only buy four quartz Tank Solos – a truly pretentious POS watch. For half that amount, they could have bought four good quality Seiko automatics.

  8. JC

    Cal what about Cartier for a girl? what do you think?

  9. Russell

    Sorry Noddy but you clearly do not understand that those ex-gov organisations were all given “semi-corporate” status because the union movement had them in a strangle-hold at the time. How quick we forget those last-century union tactics to withhold labour in politically-controlled organisations. And that’s why we have so many “private” trucks on the road (not using rail transport and incurring extra road deaths) to avoid unions crippling the bigger players.
    But what really gets my goat is that we have yet another “modern” boss of a GBE/GOE who has not factored cost-of-capital into their economic modelling before making an investment decision or making the statement to justify their decision. Sure, they all use a WACC internally but true capital raising is a totally foreign concept to them. Nothing like a stock price to sharpen the focus on your “commercial” status.

  10. C.L.

    The Solo is a very decent lady’s watch.

  11. tombell

    we need female quotas urgently…….apparently.

  12. Fair Shake

    Umm$3k is not an expensive watch. I was at a business dinner and the business operators did their watch comparison thing. Minimum was worth $12k. Top end was $30k. I alas was a mere employee of a large company and rely on my phone for the time. This story is a beat up. I’m no fan of Auspost. Three weeks to get a small package from Melbourne CBD to Melbourne suburb is appalling. But
    How about Scomo get tough on Andrews and the Trillion dollar deficit.

  13. Candy

    Salaries and bonuses at this level in corporations and top public servants in Australia have been over the top for years now.

    But the humiliation of the CEO by PM Morrison through the media seems so brutal it must have a political basis. I tend to think it is take any focus off the dodginess of Ms Berejiklian and the spivvie types around her.
    A cash bonus would go unremarked these days but a Cartier watch turns the public focus to sharp anger, an image kind of thing.

  14. Bad Samaritan

    My Patek Phillip Nautilus was about 200,000 euros when got it last year, and I reckon it’s as good as the up-market ones from PP; the Split-Seconds is about 50,000 euros more but doesn’t seem to keep better time fro9m what my mates with them say.

    Yeah, I’m frugal and thrifty; kinda have austere tastes…but that comes from my combined Dutch / Scottish heritage.

    All in the DNA, n’est-ce pas?

  15. Up The Workers!

    Also, the worse and shabbier that Australia Post services get, the higher they jack-up the prices for those services.

    That is a distinctly ‘governmental’ trait.

  16. win

    Lets hope this is a ground wave of public dis satisfaction and fury that we provide wages far greater than we our selves can now obtain to slovenly ignorant activists who have high jacked a public funded entity to pay them selves disproportionate salaries for minimum work but maximum luxuries ,( at least the Corona virus has stopped the international travel junkets).
    ABC here we come.

  17. Perfidious Albino

    Rightly or wrongly I think the PM has correctly read the public / politics on this one. And yes, he has taken advantage of a convenient distraction squirrel as well.

    The CEO’s big mistake here I think, triggering an unusually public lynching, was in stating that ‘actually’ she was the head of a commercial organisation and not government funded, whilst attending Senate estimates. Hubris. Especially when everyone remembers the many millions Ahmed Fahour pocketed when he was in charge there.

    I imagine the ‘Posti’ number plates on the Range Rover in her driveway might be grating a bit right now (present from hubby IIRC).

  18. calli

    We do not receive government funding, we are a commercial organisation.

    Stupid, stupid woman. She was parachuted into the job at a much lower salary than her predecessor for a reason. Public perception.

    Had she run a tight ship, ensured executive performance and delivered value for money she’s be applauded by the regular low income joe bloes. It isn’t that hard to work out.

    As Dot says, the watches are a mere bagatelle in the scheme of things, but they are symbolic of a more deep seated problem – entitlement. It’s a creeping arrogance that has mooched its way through all of our corporations and left shareholders and punters seething.

  19. Bruce of Newcastle

    This is a useful lesson for the elite business class. Aust Post may not be a listed public company but the duty of the management is to run the company for the shareholders, not for themselves.

    It would be nice to hold ASX listed company executives to account in this way. Boards are too often of the same class as the senior managers, indeed are often retired CEOs and the like.

    We see rampant groupthink, inflated salaries and perks, and the shareholders often seem to be forgotten.

    Good that one shareholder has now taken a profligate CEO to task.

  20. Eyrie

    Sorry Noddy but you clearly do not understand that those ex-gov organisations were all given “semi-corporate” status because the union movement had them in a strangle-hold at the time.

    Unions are the problem. They should be banned for all government employees. Railways, power generation etc would then have run well and not needed to be sold off.
    Telecoms is the exception. I sure don’t want to go back to the PMG’s restrictive monopoly practices.

  21. mundi

    What do you mean by “increases the subsidy required for the operations of Australia Post”. What subsidy? You mean it would increase postage costs to australians?

  22. Entropy

    Bad optics, and I cannot comprehend how bonuses are allowed at all at a GBE. Then again the boy at an outfit like Australia post or the NBN Co seems more about largess for mates than performance.

    Apparently one of the ALP senators said that the pay if these execs should be linked to average wages. I agree completely. For all government funded or owned positions. Including SES, Commissioners and politicians like the Senator.

  23. Dot

    Australia Post would have died without the regulation that says all other letter/document mail must either be free or charge four times the rate Australia Post does.

  24. Boxcar

    As a long term customer of Startrack it’s been appalling to watch a once innovative carrier being assimilated into the auspost hivemind.

  25. duncanm

    She’s being hammered because she had the balls to stand up to Vic council goons who wanted to stop Pauline’s stubby cooler deliveries.

    This may be a stupid ‘bonus’, but I give her credit for understanding the sanctity of the mail.

  26. Mater

    Unions are the problem. They should be banned for all government employees.

    I agree.
    Like the military, public service jobs should be union free. Especially the Police*!
    Have the conditions set and reviewed by a remuneration tribunal, then let the cards fall where they may.
    Don’t like the conditions? Don’t apply, or leave.

    * Having the their Union as part of the Victorian Trades Hall Council might go some way to explain the issues with VicPol. They are meant to be an enforcement agency and surely that creates a conflict of interest in certain circumstances.

  27. the not very bright Marcus

    I hope she didn’t post the watches……they would never get them and such a gesture would be wasted

  28. min

    Another instance that shows we are not all in this together . Suggest if you have not watched the video Covid normal that is on this site do so and then say what that CEO did was very poor timing and lacked awareness of today’s situation. However I think the NBN lot should go as well .

  29. Major Elvis Newton

    How’s that diversity working out for ya.

    Any more boxes to tick?

  30. IRFM

    Check your notes – the watches were paid for before COVID 19. Holgate receives 25% of the package of the previous incumbent. The most recent of $93 million bonus package specifically excluded the upper management. No doubt the Cartier watches are highly symbolic as a gift. The chronically overblown reaction of Morrison, Bolt and yourself clearly outdoes any of Gillard’s ‘hyperbowl’ moments.

  31. Bruce

    @ Mater:

    “They are meant to be an enforcement agency and surely that creates a conflict of interest in certain circumstances.”

    As Sir Les Patterson would say:

    “That’s not a conflict of interest, that’s a CONVERGENCE of interest!”

    There is, a Pink Floyd noted, “a lot of it about”.

  32. Albatross

    I guess the fops in the Liberal party told us that we hate free enterprise this week, so Holgate must go or something.

    The fact that AP are run better than any other GOC, and most corporates, in spite of being saddled with obligations to carry out loss-making activities, is neither here nor there. Scotty from marketing has spoken!

  33. Michel Lasouris

    This dreadful woman who took over the control of Australia Post from the Rapacious Indian wretch, is no better. How ever did she get the job?

    She has no insight into Australian culture….Cartier watches indeed!

    Moreover, she doesn’t even have the good grace to ensure her manufactured persona is maintained; the black hair roots look hideous. Obviously not self aware.

  34. Albatross

    Michel Lasouris
    #3629324, posted on October 23, 2020 at 8:22 am
    […]
    She has no insight into Australian culture….Cartier watches indeed!

    Burn her as a witch!

  35. miltonf

    So Pauline’s stubbies got delivered after all? If that’s the case, all is forgiven.

  36. Al

    It was the optics of the Cartier watches, and then Holgate’s poorly considered comment about AusPost being a commercial organisation (sounded almost snarky), that brought her undone. If the bonus had been paid as cash, it would not have attracted ANY attention. Poor judgement.

  37. Walter Plinge

    It’s the Cartier watch symbolism that has gotten up people’s noses. If Holgate had given the execs a $3,000 gift card to Target or $3,000 cash bonus it would have passed unremarked.

  38. Albatross

    Muh optics! Let’s kill the goose that lays the golden eggs!

    You want a bureaucracy that delivers mail, then get ready to pay through the nose for it you chuckleheads.

  39. Entropy

    Nobody in a government job should get a bonus.

  40. miltonf

    True entropy- your bonus was meant to be secure employment plus super.

  41. Albatross

    Sinc can you please change miltonf’s name as Friedman is rolling in his grave.

  42. Albatross

    Great to see that rock-ribbed libertarian James Patterson is all over this one.

  43. Morsie

    The watches are a distraction.This organization made a profit of $50 mill on a turnover of billions.It cannot meet it’s performance targets so changes them.Yet it pays it’s management mega bucks.
    It’s one shareholder has no control so it’s run for the benefit of its executives.
    Much like the ABC.

  44. Matt

    Sadly, they will spend more on the subsequent investigation than the watches cost in the first place.

  45. Spurgeon Monkfish III

    I had the misfortune to see the footage from the senate estimates hearing yesterday with Holgate front and centre. Two observations – she looked like a character straight out of Absolutely Fabulous and the creeping realisation on her stupid stupid face after detailing the watch purchase as she beheld the looks of horror and disgust on her hypocritical quisling inquisitors.

    I hate Australia Post and the grubs running it (into the ground) while gifting themselves millions of OPM with an undying passion.

    It’s Mantra™ Time.

  46. Des Deskperson

    ‘If the bonus had been paid as cash, it would not have attracted ANY attention. Poor judgement.’

    Exactly. Performance bonuses are clearly part of are clearly part of AP’s management system and they appear be widely distributed among employees.

    AP bonuses in 2019-20 included $21.6 million paid t0 34,500 frontline workers, including posties. We don’t know whether these bonuses were fair or effective, but there would seem to be a better case for them in an operations-based organisation that is actually required to get things done rather than in a typical hierarchical white-collar bureaucracy where individual performance is always difficult to measure and where bonus are widely perceived – with some justification – as a form of patronage and favouritism.

    It’s for this reason that performance bonuses in the APS, particularly at Senior levels, are now rare and becoming rarer. In 2019, only 114 Senior Executive Service employees, or about 4%, received bonuses.

  47. The Manager

    Should have supported local industry and given them a few bottles of Grange
    (If Penfolds is still Aus. owned?)

  48. Albatross

    Morsie
    #3629372, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:06 am
    The watches are a distraction.This organization made a profit of $50 mill on a turnover of billions

    AP accrues hundreds of millions in losses carrying out its statutory obligation to deliver mail.

  49. H B Bear

    A beat-up but any public service head on a stick is something to celebrate.

  50. Albatross

    H B Bear
    #3629387, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:21 am
    A beat-up but any public service head on a stick is something to celebrate.

    Not APS.

  51. egg_

    Three grand per trinket.

    Who. Gives. A. Shit.

    +1

    The Telcos – OTC* (for Overseas) made the same money or the Govt as QANTAS, Telecom four times that – all parts of the former Postmaster General’s Dept (PMG).

    Now, every Houso tard has smartphone on the “Public Carrier” network which you are currently keyboarding over at this second.

    *”Telstra’s” actual title is AOTC, the merger of Telecom and OTC.

  52. Mater

    I find it hard to perceive these watches as a ‘bonus’. Bonuses are signed up to during employment negotiations and is a documented element of remuneration. I can’t believe that it is legal for a CEO to spend someone’s negotiated bonus on a watch, not of their choosing. I’d be plenty pissed (I’m an Omega fan).

    These were clearly a gift, above a beyond agreed employment terms. Like a ‘Thank You’ morning tea, but slightly more extravagant. Thinking of them as a bonuses gives the action more legitimacy than it likely deserves.

  53. Bad Samaritan

    Back in the day, because the public service was for second raters who could never make it ever in private industry……what Kim Beazley Snr described as the dregs of the middle class…..they got average pay and were never sacked.

    Now the dregs get to lord it over the non-dregs, get big bucks and bonuses, and are still never sacked? WTF?

  54. H B Bear

    Not APS

    100% taxpayer owned and funded. A distinction without a difference.

  55. Wyndham Dix

    Small beer in the overall scheme of things, but symptomatic of the bane of the age: entitlement.

    Many have lost, or never discovered, the moral compass such as is to be found in Luke 17:10 and elsewhere.

  56. Albatross

    H B Bear
    #3629394, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:31 am
    Not APS

    100% taxpayer owned and funded. A distinction without a difference.

    How much funding did we provide last year? Remind me mate.

    I get the feeling commenters he would just rather state bureaucracy. So would the Government; more sinecures.

    The absolute state of libertarianism.

  57. egg_

    the “Public Carrier” network which you are currently keyboarding over at this second.

    “Data” has never carried its weigh compared to “Voice” – voice circuits were always sacrificed, particularly with regards to analogue TV transmission (particularly Satellite) – Telecom built a National TV Network via their Microwave link backup circuits and also carried Electronic News Gathering (ENG) for News and Sport across the country – including Race Courses for the Sky Racing channel that Betting firms now filch off.

    Beware when you set your targets with your Adding Machine as cross subsidisation and complexity even rules in Private Enterprise – even to the extent of companies sharing resources when those resources become major assets (read very high Costs).

  58. H B Bear

    How much funding did we provide last year? Remind me mate.

    Who do you think gets the bill when the business runs at a loss from year to year or a new “investment “ needs to be made? Mate.

  59. Candy

    Unless it is criminal what the lady did though, not just mystifyingly generous, can the PM demand she resign as he did?
    That is why I think it is a political issue for Scott Morrison. It makes him look a fighter against the wealthy and successful and takes the heat off the spiv types in the NSW Libs.

  60. Albatross

    H B Bear
    #3629406, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:40 am
    How much funding did we provide last year? Remind me mate.

    Who do you think gets the bill when the business runs at a loss from year to year or a new “investment “ needs to be made? Mate.

    Please quantify these losses incurred under Holgate big guy.

  61. egg_

    Telecom built a National TV Network via their Microwave link backup circuits and also carried Electronic News Gathering (ENG) for News and Sport across the country

    Through then Super League and Foxtel*, Rupert Murdoch put optical fibres into every Super League football stadium and IIRC some Sky Racing race courses benefitted also.

    *The “tel” is Telstra!

  62. Nighthawk the Elder

    I wish Morrison would show the same amount of passion for the waste over at the ABC.

    Start with a full, independent, weapon’s grade audit of expenditure. I reckon there could be millions to be saved just by cutting out frivolous spending and tighter financial accountability at various management levels.

  63. Epicurious

    If you were one of the executives you might feel miffed when a decent Cartier will cost more than $10k. Maybe she bought them watches so they could get to work on time or to ensure they got to the boardroom for G&T’s on time. Now lets be fair here, she wasted what $12k while SLOMO wasted what….$800 billion, thats around 1 billion dollars per death. Really, who’s screwing who?

  64. Albatross

    By way of comparison, the Victorian DHHS spent 18bn last year, but nobody received any watches. Truly the model of government service delivery.

  65. Leigh Lowe

    H B Bear

    #3629387, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:21 am

    A beat-up but any public service head on a stick is something to celebrate.

    Not quite.
    Heads lopped off by Peta Credlin are not to be celebrated.
    At all.
    Ever.

  66. Sinclair Davidson

    Hard to get excited – the LIBERAL government just pissed billions up against the wall.

  67. Albatross

    Exactly Sinc, but LOOK OVER HERE SOME RICH BASTARD HAS A WATCH!

  68. Albatross

    Sir Joh used to call this “feeding the chooks”. Watch the feathers fly!

  69. stackja

    Memories from when Australia Post delivered by horseback. Lest We Forget.
    Thursday, 22 October 2020
    michaelsmithnews.com
    The 19th of April, 1917 was a Thursday.
    That’s when my great uncle George Claude Ryan’s dad wrote to Victoria Barracks, Melbourne from his farmhouse in the tiny Snowy Mountains hamlet, Bibbenluke.

  70. Roger

    As Dot says, the watches are a mere bagatelle in the scheme of things, but they are symbolic of a more deep seated problem – entitlement. It’s a creeping arrogance that has mooched its way through all of our corporations and left shareholders and punters seething.

    We”re not far away from having lords, vassals and serfs.

  71. Albatross

    Roger
    #3629439, posted on October 23, 2020 at 10:17 am
    […]
    We”re not far away from having lords, vassals and serfs

    Not far away? We got there ages ago. Our ruling class is permanent and we may exert no effective control over it.

  72. What a great post by our Roman contributor!

    The sustained decline in “service” to the general public over the last couple of decades is appalling, given the remuneration of these head bureaucrats.

    The selling of “franchises” of Australia Post retail outlets is a case in point. While there are no doubt many well run outlets, there are some goddam awful ones. While the rural one that I have most contact with is excellent, the Sydney local branch with which I have casual contact (thank goodness) is “rubbish”! The ethnic proprietors have been offensively suspicious of many of our transactions, and their English is very poor for a business that is in constant contact with the public.

    I can’t imagine how difficult it is for the city elderly who rely on a service that has been excellent in the past, but which no longer seems to want to serve their needs.

  73. Sinclair Davidson

    The more I think about this, she should get a medal.

    Fuck Morrison and his morons. Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

  74. Roger

    Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    The posties are excellent in my experience, as are the contracted parcel delivery people.

    But I dont imagine they get bonuses for doing a good job.

    The executives are amply rewarded according to Australian standards and provisions for their supposedlky onerous conditions of work are already written into their contracts. Their is no rationale for gifitng them with expensive watches in reward for something they are already handsomely compensated for, especially when it is a government owned business enterprise.

  75. Albatross

    I’ve consulted for organisations including AP, ASX100s, Telstra and State Government Departments. In aggregate, AP make the rest look like hives of corruption, varying only by degree. They have built multiple commercial products of high utility while delivering hundreds of millions worth of services to the taxpayer, paying money to the Treasury while doing so. Yeah, let’s f**k with that formula over $12k of watches.

    F**k the Libs.

  76. candy

    If the Morrison Government is going down the path of investigating salaries of AP then surely the NDIS and NBN should be included, perhaps DFAT, Austrac – a host of entities. There’s some really big money floating around and the value provided might be questionable.

  77. Spurgeon Monkfish III

    Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    No they do not, which is I detest Oz Post as much as I do. Recent example – bought a set of speaker brackets from a shop in Marrickville for delivery to my workplace in the CBD. It took Oz Post eight “business days” to traverse the six kms distance. More recent example – bought a set of speaker stands from a shop 13 kms from my home. Delivered by a private courier company the next day. And don’t get me started on all the times the postie has been unable to deliver mine or my neighbores’ mail to the correct address.

  78. John Brumble

    Albatross
    #3629408, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:44 am
    H B Bear
    #3629406, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:40 am
    How much funding did we provide last year? Remind me mate.

    Who do you think gets the bill when the business runs at a loss from year to year or a new “investment “ needs to be made? Mate.

    Please quantify these losses incurred under Holgate big guy.

    Stop moving the goal post. You claimed that Australia Post wasn’t public service; it was pointed out to you that it was 100% government owned and therefore is was “a distinction without a difference”.

    The loss or not of Australia Post is irrelevant to whether or not it is APS or equivalent. And even if the discussion is to be about the revenue of Australia Post, it could equally be about them not making enough money rather than just whether they made or lost money.

    Ignored by you too is that Australia Post operates under massive government protection. With other carriers required to delivery free or at inflated prices, Australia Post should be expected to deliver a return to the Australian Government at a percentage well above the market.

    Now, whether or not the bonuses were reasonable is a separate question. But they should be based on the value that Australia Post returned to its shareholder against expectations (the Australian Government), not on whether or not they made a profit. And the statement that Australia Post just gets to decide without reference to the government because it is a private organisation is just b#ll5h!t.

    Any government owned organisation, with backing from the government in terms of protection from failure and massive regulatory barriers to entry for competition is, in for all intents and purposes, Australian public service… champ.

  79. Albatross

    Goal post remains in the same place. You have a comprehension problem.

  80. Spurgeon Monkfish III

    then surely the NDIS

    Joe Aston wrote some very interesting pieces a while back on the remuneration of the NDIA senior management, the frequency of turnover of senior management and the “results” achieved for taxpayers and people with disability while this was happening (including the payment of enormous amounts to external consultants).

    The NDIS is an abomination, for which Gillard and Abbott are jointly responsible.

  81. Cassie of Sydney

    “Nighthawk the Elder
    #3629410, posted on October 23, 2020 at 9:46 am
    I wish Morrison would show the same amount of passion for the waste over at the ABC.”

    That’s how I feel……I can’t get to worked up about the Oz post Cartier watch nonsense. To me it is a storm in a teacup. Watching Morrison get into a flap yesterday was cringe worthy. If only he would get so inflamed about their ABC but he doesn’t. The wastage at their ABC is much, much worse……remind me how much Paul Barry gets paid for 15 minutes of television per week…and that’s not even for a full work…how long is Barry’s hiatus over Xmas?

  82. Cassie of Sydney

    “The NDIS is an abomination, for which Gillard and Abbott are jointly responsible.”

    Yep…..that was (and is) Mr Abbott the eternally nice, accommodating, always be nice to my enemies guy.

  83. Roger

    Ignored by you too is that Australia Post operates under massive government protection.

    Which is why they can charge $25.00 for a standard parcel delivered from metropolitan Sydney to metropolitan Qld.

    For about the same cost I can get the same parcel delivered from anywhere in the US via FIMS (USPS/FedEx hybrid) in as little as 7 days, which is at least what it would take from Sydney.

  84. John Brumble

    All salary packages from any 100% government-owned organisation should be subject to possible questioning by the shareholder.

  85. Reagent

    I wish ScoMo had got as incendiary over the Govt’s $30m gift to the Leppington dairy billionaires.

  86. Perfidious Albino

    The problem, Albatross, is that they have been paying themselves tens of millions of dollars in profit share year in and year out, over and above their reportedly very generous salaries and benefits. Bonuses and’thank you’s’ that are a multiple of the profit they report and the dividends they reluctantly pay back to Treasury. Seems like a pretty sweet deal.

    I would argue that most of their ‘commercial products’ have invariably been either a) copied from elsewhere, b) of limited utility, c) failed or d) all of the above.

  87. Albatross

    Roger
    #3629530, posted on October 23, 2020 at 11:05 am
    Ignored by you too is that Australia Post operates under massive government protection.

    Which is why they can charge $25.00 for a standard parcel delivered from metropolitan Sydney to metropolitan Qld.

    Show me the legislative instrument that prevents competition for parcel carriage.

  88. John Brumble

    So how’s the watch, Albatross?

  89. Albatross

    Wanted a Seiko TBQH John.

  90. H B Bear

    Thanks John. I have gone and found something more useful to do with my time.

  91. Roger

    Show me the legislative instrument that prevents competition for parcel carriage.

    Fair point, parcels are not a reserved service.

    But how do AusPost executives justify those prices in light of what the USPS can achieve over greater international distances at about the same cost? With tracking.

  92. Perfidious Albino

    Oh, there’s competition for parcel carriage, sure, but the margins are consequently very thin. certainly too thin to be funding tens of millions of dollars of profit share and Cartier watches year in, year out, and for what? just for doing their comfortably remunerated head office jobs…

    The interesting thing will be whether AP makes a play for Toll’s courier business if Japan Post cut their losses and break it up, and whether the ACCC would allow it.

  93. Albatross

    USPS lost 2.2bn last quarter.

  94. Tel

    All salary packages from any 100% government-owned organisation should be subject to possible questioning by the shareholder.

    They are … but the two nominal shareholders are the Finance Minister (Mathias Cormann) and the Post Master General (Paul Fletcher) which means any investigation automatically becomes political.

    http://classic.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/apca1989337/s49.html

    They can also simply give directions to the board, and it’s not even clear whether those directions need to be published. Essentially, everything is political, but Australia Post is structurally giving the appearance of an independent commercial enterprise. What’s that system of government that makes the trains run on time?

  95. Roger

    USPS lost 2.2bn last quarter.

    No doubt they could use a shake up at the managerial level, too.

    But their service is excellent in my experience.

  96. Lee

    Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    With all due respect, no they don’t, Sinc.
    Not when it takes less than a week for a parcel to get from the U.S. to Melbourne, then another two weeks to get a Melbourne suburb.

  97. Bar Beach Swimmer

    But the humiliation of the CEO by PM Morrison through the media seems so brutal it must have a political basis. I tend to think it is take any focus off the dodginess of Ms Berejiklian and the spivvie types around her.

    It’s a pity that the PM didn’t care to display the same level of anger and disgust at the antics of another, dare I say it, “government funded entity” when its “productive work” was pilloried by a higher authority. Perhaps it was because it’s funded not by the federal taxpayer but by an individual state’s taxpaying residents.

    Whatever the reason for the PM’s refusal to at the very least to acknowledge the great wrong that was righted by the HC and instead deliberately to continue the charade that the accuser was still a “victim” was disgusting.

    So a CEO spends $12,000 on watches, is well overpaid like every other top tier (and not so top tier) public servant/bureaucrat/employee-of-a-government-related-entity and the idea is to stick in the knife to this one.

    But an innocent man spends 400+ days in gaol after being wrongly accused and convicted of a heinous crime and no mention is made of his just restoration by the nation’s highest court from the leader of the country. Says it all, really.

  98. Albatross

    Lee
    #3629579, posted on October 23, 2020 at 11:43 am
    Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    With all due respect, no they don’t, Sinc.
    Not when it takes less than a week for a parcel to get from the U.S. to Melbourne, then another two weeks to get a Melbourne suburb.

    Use.another.domestic.parcel.carrier.

  99. Albatross

    Better yet, complain to USPS. They obviously have a commercial arrangement with AP to carry their parcels domestically. No doubt they’ve decided that cost is more important than prompt delivery.

  100. Diogenes

    I wish ScoMo had got as incendiary over the Govt’s $30m gift to the Leppington dairy billionaires.

    On this they are using two different lenses the Auditor said it was currently worth 3million. What will it be worth in 30 years when they really need to buy it. Then as it is being leased back, that headline 30mill is reduced by rent payments.

    Back to AP
    She said it was a suggestion from the Chairman of the Board, who is the guy she reports to.

    Neither he nor his deputies have made themselves available to the Senate Estimates Committee

    Then again the is the nearly 100k on her corporate card and the 300 or so K on the “Office of the CEO” credit card. AP has, unless something changed this morning, not provided the requested summary to Sen Kitching.

  101. sabena

    Lets face it this story is a distraction.I don’t have a problem with a watch being given as a thank you for good performance.
    But:-
    1.It wasn’t the only reward they got-they got bonuses as well.
    2.The performance of Australia Post is dreadful-the reliabilty is extremely poor and there is no reason for the restricting of ordinary post.
    If and when those matters are fixed,then bonuses/gifts might be in order

  102. Albatross

    sabena
    #3629602, posted on October 23, 2020 at 11:55 am
    […] there is no reason for the restricting of ordinary post.

    Agreed, but AP lose a bomb carrying letters domestically.

  103. Lee

    Use.another.domestic.parcel.carrier.

    When I order from the U.S. or U.K. I get no choice of domestic carrier.

    2.The performance of Australia Post is dreadful-the reliabilty is extremely poor and there is no reason for the restricting of ordinary post.

    True.

  104. Albatross

    Let me put it in terms I hope people here can understand. AP have an obligation to carry letter post imposed by statute. They have some monopoly granted as well over the delivery of letter post at some price. They lose money fulfilling this obligation; hundreds of millions. AP would abandon their “monopoly” in a heartbeat. Their shareholder, the Government, has told them: go and run profitable businesses to subsidise this massive loss. Amazingly, AP have done just that. Net cost to the taxpayer to achieve the objective of national letter carriage is zero.

    What’s the problem here?

  105. John A

    Sinclair Davidson #3629477, posted on October 23, 2020, at 10:35 am

    The more I think about this, she should get a medal.

    Fuck Morrison and his morons. Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    No, Sinc. You are seeing the last of the momentum from the early days.

    My family ran a mail-order business pre-internet (and post-internet) when AusPost had just been corporatised.

    Then, it was innovative and did an excellent job, which couriers and private carriers could not match. The prepaid parcel satchels and Express Post satchels won them almost all the sub-5kg parcel business.

    Then, the motto was “We Deliver” – and they did. It was the best Mission Statement ever seen in Australia. Perfectly described the business, perfectly motivated the troops in a positive way, and was killed off later when they lost their way and began paying CEOs stratospheric remuneration packages.

    AusPost did better out of the privatisation of the PMG than Telecom did. Paddy McGinty’s Goats and their stupid regulations all stayed on the Telecom side of the great divide.

    We can argue about this political spat, the main point being about elites and entitlement. But the poor politics here doesn’t excuse the change those elites have wrought in a previously outstanding enterprise.

  106. Albatross

    “These … hacks, dragging people down. Why go and hire her if you don’t want to have her? Go get some public servants to tick the boxes.” (Eddie McGuire)

    About the size of it.

  107. egg_

    Three grand per trinket.

    (Texan) Telstra CEO Frank Blount reportedly had a $10k glassware service for his drinks cabinet back in 1993.

    Whoopee!

  108. egg_

    But the humiliation of the CEO by PM Morrison through the media seems so brutal it must have a political basis.

    Ya think?

    Scummo is Andrews lite.

  109. Tel

    2.The performance of Australia Post is dreadful-the reliabilty is extremely poor and there is no reason for the restricting of ordinary post.

    I dunno … I often tick the Australia Post eParcel checkbox when ordering online and get the package sent to my P.O. box at the local post office. You get tracking, and it pings your phone and also sends email when the parcel is ready to pick up. Generally the local post office keeps this stuff behind the counter so you show some ID, and it’s decently secure. I mean, not Fort Knox level security … but better than the courier who slings it on your doorstep and then shoots off.

    I wouldn’t say it’s fast, but so far (touch wood) it’s been reliable for me.

    With deliveries to my house they have been a bit sketchy … my recommendation is that a P.O. box is worth the little bit you pay for it. Also, with a P.O. box you can choose where you get one, based on ease of access and also reputation of that particular post office. Each office is franchised out, or at least that’s what I heard, so service in some might be better than others.

  110. egg_

    That is why I think it is a political issue for Scott Morrison. It makes him look a fighter against the wealthy and successful

    Any left in Veneztralia?

  111. egg_

    I wish Morrison would show the same amount of passion for the waste over at the ABC.

    Wouldn’t have the [email protected] to touch that sacred cow.

    How many in house Production companies are owned by ABC staff?

  112. calli

    John Brumble
    #3629535, posted on October 23, 2020 at 11:08 am
    So how’s the watch, Albatross?
    Albatross
    #3629540, posted on October 23, 2020 at 11:10 am
    Wanted a Seiko TBQH John.

    🤣 I love this place.

    She should have known better. She does know better. If she doesn’t, she shouldn’t have been hired in the first place.

    In business, optics are important, in a quango, they’re everything.

    I always imagined watches were for other people’s retirements, not your own.

  113. old bloke

    Sinclair Davidson
    #3629477, posted on October 23, 2020 at 10:35 am

    The more I think about this, she should get a medal.

    Fuck Morrison and his morons. Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    I disagree Sinc. I received a postal item today which I ordered from the USA last month. According to the tracking notifications, it went from Utah to Chicago to Los Angles to Singapore to Perth in less than three days. Then it sat somewhere in Perth for almost three weeks before Australia Post (Startrack) decided to deliver it.

    I paid US $49.50 for this express delivery “service,” lucky I didn’t ask for standard delivery.

  114. Bar Beach Swimmer

    Then it sat somewhere in Perth for almost three weeks before Australia Post (Startrack) decided to deliver it

    Same.

  115. calli

    Australia Post actually does work that can be readily observed and they do it well.

    No. They can’t be trusted. Do not send anything valuable, like a gift card, by mail. It will likely be stolen.

    What the hell is wrong with these people? Once you could trust the sorters and posties. Today…not so much.

    So if the old adage that “the rot starts at the head” is true, the stupid at this particular head is breathtaking. And I don’t blame just her – the rot started long ago.

  116. Albatross

    Evidence: the plural of anecdote. The thread.

  117. Albatross

    Anyhow, rest assured that further Government meddling in the operations of AP will lead to greater efficiency. As it does in every other field of endeavour.

  118. Megan

    We can argue about this political spat, the main point being about elites and entitlement. But the poor politics here doesn’t excuse the change those elites have wrought in a previously outstanding enterprise.

    +1000

  119. Megan

    I’ve looked at Sendle. It still costs $19.00 to post a tiny 100 gram packet containing a small trinket to the UK or USA in comparison to AP’s $24.00. The damned thing is only worth $5.00, is both smaller and weighs less than a card.

    I now buy these mini gifts for friends and family from local suppliers in their own countries and I can save $10 to $15 each time.

    Way to cut your own throat, Australia.

  120. Albatross

    If only Australia were to relocate overseas, the cost of postage could be drastically reduced.

  121. Noddy

    Why should Australia Post generate a financial profit?
    There are other ways to measure profit and in this case reduced costs coupled to a better service.
    Not happening because the ‘profit’ is drained off by high cost management practices.
    I am willing to bet the managers all have MBA’s and suffer with ‘entitlement syndrome’!

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