Sunday, November 15, 2009

Senator Shane Ross - fearless or toothless?

Saturday’s Irish Times Weekend section contains a review by Labour’s Joan Burton of Shane Ross’s “The Bankers: How the Banks brought Ireland to its knees”.

Ms. Burton tells us that Ross “has been a constant thorn in the side of corporate Ireland and has never flinched from exposing its practices to the public gaze”.

Shareholder in IN&M, Ross’s employers, might well be wishing that this was actually true as, in terms of the loss of value of their shares, they have now surpassed the beleaguered shareholders in AIB & BOI.

For many years the boardroom of IN&M was populated with various old faithful retainers and the offspring of our most notable press baron. Sir Anthony also filled the dual roles, for several years, of Chairman and Chief Executive - another clear breach of best practice in corporate governance principles.

While Senator Ross was routinely railing about comfortable cliques in other Irish boardrooms, he never once focused attention on his own employer.

The bold senator may like to present himself as a fearless newshound but, in matters relating to the business affairs of his paymaster, he has consistently shown himself to have all the bite of a toothless lapdog.

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