Monday, May 18, 2009

Did the State Government Goofy phone call the Editor and tell him to lay off?

Do Politicians pick up their telephones, call the Big Kahuna at the newspaper and say; “I would consider it a personal favour if you did not draw attention to this issue”.

I am not a Journalist. I am not a Politician. I do not work for anyone in the media or within the confines of Parlie House. Like many others, I read papers, I watch the telly and I talk at the pub.

In March of 2000, I embarked on what I thought was to be a two day quest to sort out some silly behaviour by my Manager in the Public Service.

For the past nine years, I have been embroiled in a war seeking justice. Unfortunately for me, the more I ranted & raved, the more I was punished!

Here in Adelaide South Australia, there was a furore in 2008 when the Manager of a rural prison gave permission for a Christmas Party, a gathering of the inmates. Some of these inmates dressed in drag and sang YMCA.

When the story broke, it was front-page news. For days, the media flooded the community with exquisite detail of every possible aspect surrounding the event.

The Manager was named, and shamed. Maybe rightly so.

The Government moved swiftly. Before the ink dried, she was relocated to an administrative position in the city, and an Inquiry convened. Moreover, before we were allowed to forget, the Inquiry meted out punishment and the media twirled the torchlight elsewhere.

Now, this is where I get confused, and when I get confused, I draw conclusions, rightly or wrongly. I try to explain away the confusions.

The office of the Public Trustee is responsible for, as reported in its 2007/2008 Annual Report, ‘…more than $1 billion of clients’ funds and assets under management…’

This Agency has been under the spotlight in recent years for all the wrong reasons. Allegations of entrenched workplace bullying, financial mismanagement, and sexual improprieties. Throw in a Police investigation, an extensive Government internal investigation, and a current Parliamentary Inquiry and you have all the ingredients for a media frenzy.

Considering the enormity of the sum total of events, and the fact that ONE BILLION DOLLARS of the public's money is involved, many others and I expected more from the local media. Other than my appearance on a local Current Affairs television show, there has been bugger all else!

I just cannot reconcile the attention given to the cross-dressing affair at the Port Lincoln Prison, to the lack of attention given to the alleged mismanagement of other people’s money, ONE BILLION DOLLARS of other people’s money.

One thing I know. The Government, for many years, moved very, very slowly on issues at Public Trustee. On the other hand, the Government moved very, very quickly to dump the Port Lincoln prison manager.

Do politicians pick up the phone? I do not know. However, it would be disturbing if this were a practice to which the media favourably reacted.

From what I have read in the local press, our Premier, Mike Rann, did just that when he chucked a mental at an Advertiser reporter during a press conference. I saw the video on television. He behaved like a goose. It was reported he demanded that the reporter pull his head in.

Maybe some of them do pick up the phone!

Country Prison frenzy.,23599,21752777-2,00.html
Financial Mismanagement allegations, Public Trustee.,,24663578-5006301,00.html

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Of course they pick up the phone. Warn them off. Cast doubt on the accusor. Get Mr Rann's PR heavies to do their bit to undermine the person who has been bullied.
Makes me thing Rann and runn Inc are bullies of the highest order - otherwise why have they done nothing effective? And how they have Adelaide journalists trembling, failing to ask the questions they should ask of Rann and runn inc.
Ever seen any Advertiser journlist really ask the hard questions?
No, they are too scared to.
Keep the peace, then the invitations to all the State Government gab/fest/ gourmet nosh ups will come their way, or to their bosses. So power can rub shoulders with power. Worked for the Spanish guy.
But do not ever question Rann and run inc.
no no no. not done in Adelaide.
And yes those CEO whenever confronted with a real ugly problem of an abusive manager abusing staff(and they know it is true) will regroup and re-shuffle and then tell lies and spread lying rumours about the person who dares to expose the underbelly of bullying in the SA public service.
If you don't like bullies people - then avoid applying for ANY JOB in the SA public service. Don't think the Liberals will be any better.
And if you like bullying, like ruining careers and lives, like hurting people, and get pleasure in humiliating people, then brush up your CV and apply to work as a manager in the SA public service. Your skills will be appreciated by your superiors, and they will turn a blind eye to all the harm you inflict. Do it really well and you will get promoted too to do more bullying.

What SA parliament needs is a whole lot of independants. Trouble is it is too hard to get elected to the lower house. Easier to get elected to the upper house. Whch is why Rann and run Inc may want to abolish the upper house. Worked for Qld. Qld has terrible government - helped no doubt because they have no upper house.
Imagine Rann and run inc with more power? That would be really bad.
And Rann and runn inc are the people behind the people who choose the top people to lead government departments in SA. No wonder Transport SA, RAH, Health SA and others have bullying. But Public Trustee must have a really bad hidden bullying problem, otherwise why an inquiry? Bet they are trying to hide the bullying. Bet no one who works there would dare to accuse publically that bullying is there - not after what happened to you. They would have a vested interest in hiding the bullying if it still happens. Maybe they should have allowed the people there to put in submissions where their names were not given.
Have heard that the SA police public servants (not the police) also go through hell there from some managers who are bullies in Flinders Street. The problem is rife in SA.
And the buck should stop with Rann and Atkinson and anyone else who is in charge of a Department that has bullies.