Senator Stephen Conroy is a "Communist" hellbent on destroying Telstra out of "ego" and "spite", according to submissions from Telstra shareholders to a Senate Standing Committee inquiry into the Communications Ministers' plan to split Telstra.
Submissions to the inquiry into the Telecommunications Legislation Amendment (Competition and Consumer Safeguards) Bill 2009 are due by midnight. Those posted to the Australian Parliament House website are mostly from Telstra shareholders expressing their disgust at Conroy's plan to split Telstra's wholesale and retail arm.
iTnews has collated some of the more explosive comments:
1. YOURS IN DISGUST
- Peter Thornhill
"As a long-suffering shareholder of Telstra I am amazed at the 'spiteful' way in which this Government is attacking shareholders. Yours in disgust."
2. IT'S IMMORAL
- Frank Johnson
"I bought my Telstra shares in good faith from the Government. I feel that it is quite immoral of you to now reduce the value of that enterprise by forcing it to off load a major part of it's operation."
3. WHAT MONOPOLY?
- Tony Bergman
"Telstra is not a monopoly, with the company having around a 40 percent share in the mobile and internet broadband sectors. Forcing the break-up of this company by the Federal Government seems unbelievable to me in our free, democratic society which our forefathers fought for. If this is Constitutional, who or what could the next target be?
4. WHAT ABOUT WOOLWORTHS, FOR THAT MATTER?
- Ken Jones
"I am amazed that the Government can dictate that a public company like Telstra must be broken up. Surely Woolworths has at least 40 percent of the Australian retail grocery market, will the Government next be asking Woolworths to sell down part of their holding, too?"
5. IT'S BLACKMAIL
- David Lunn
"Please stop it and stop it now as it also severely impacting on the market price of the assets we have all paid for and sold to by the very same government now exercising thievery and blackmail. Who will benefit from this change - a foreign company like Optus (Singapore) or other players that are not Australian-owned or operated. What other country on the planet would connive an idea that is so not in the interests of its own citizens?"
6. IT'S INSIDER TRADING
- Wade McGirr
"It raises serious concerns given the timing of the Government's exit from the stock and the more recent reduction of holding in the Future Fund."
7. THE GODFATHER
- Richard Zielinski
"Your actions in this instance replicate nothing short of a Mafia standover tactic and cannot be interpreted in any other comprehensible way."
8. BLAME THE KIWIS!
- Greg Lane
"I have taken a quick look at the companies who want Telstra broken up. Optus and Powertel [owned by Telecom New Zealand] are overseas companies, their interests aren't in the Australian people. They want more income to pass on to their relevant shareholders in other countries.
"Bottom line is I bought a company from the Government in the form of Telstra. The Government took my money, spent my money and is now coming back to destroy value in my company."
9. IT'S AN EGO TRIP BY A BULLY
- Frederic Materne
"Why is Telstra being singled out as the whipping boy by a politician who is on an ego trip and who's ego is being fed by self-interested parties?
"I request a challenge to the government's plans in the high court as what they are doing is clearly unconstitutional - actually this is just a bullying exercise of the worse kind."
10. IT'S COMMUNISM
- Michael Rosenthal
"This is supposed to be a democracy and now we have a government telling a public company that they must break up. This ... only happens in a Communist company. This proposal by Senator Conroy is a disgrace and draconian."
- Brett Rosenthal
"It is absolutely outrageous for the Australian Government to command a publicly listed company to sell its assets. The only precedence for this type of behaviour is from the Dictator Hugo Chavez in Venezuela and also by the old Communist Soviet Union or China."