There’s been a lot of nasty, carping criticism about the appointment of Donald McGauchie as the new chairman of Telstra, just because he’s a mate of John Howard and will support Howard’s agenda on full privatisation.
Just look at the skills he brings to the job. Some petty-minded people are pointing out that he hasn’t got any experience in telecommunications. Well, that’s what the lower-level employees are for- your engineers and whoever. People like McGauchie are meant to look after the bigger picture, which includes keeping control over said employees and looking after Corporate Governance and that sort of thing.
McGauchie’s valuable experience with P & C Stevedores and the Patrick waterfront dispute show he won’t have any trouble dealing with any troublesome employees and uppity unions. Training sessions in Dubai? Not a problem! Rottweilers? Optional.
Another gem on McGauchie’s CV is James Hardie, which shows when it comes to corporate governance and ethics, Telstra will be right on the cutting edge. (Any oblique reference to asbestos sheeting is completely unintentional.) No need to worry about whether the alleged connection between mobile phone use and brain tumours in the young ever turns out to be true; if it does, they can just move all the assets to Amsterdam and leave the whingeing customers helpless.
We’ve had enough of people who want “our” phone company to be a touchy-feely entity which allows city folks to subsidise the people in the bush. People who plan to get sick or have an accident should just arrange to do it in the city. This is how things are done in the modern world; McGauchie, Howard, Patrick and the rest are just showing us the way it’s done. The rest of us just need to get with the program.