Australia Post board members Michael Ronaldson, Deidre Willmott and Tony Nutt (Images: AAP)

Australia Post is a standout example of all that can go wrong when governments corporatise an essential service.

CEO Christine Holgate has been stood aside after it was revealed in Senate hearings that she gave $3000 Cartier watches to four executives for, well, doing their job.

But it's not only the CEO. Just look at the million-dollar-a-year board, stacked with ex-Liberal party staffers, politicians and barrackers.