One looks in some horror at the efforts The Donald - hardly a tyrant despite the rhetorical shrieks of his detractors - is having to make to drain his home swamp and the hamstringing of those efforts: there are many in the ''public service' there that need their hamstrings cut and maybe even necks stretched. Yet look at Britain. Look at Oz. (One averts the eye and shakes the head at Canada!). I hazard things are no better here and there.
There are differences in 'democratic' political systems that feed different sorts of swamp. American Presidents have some 4000 political appointments that can be made to 'seed' and lead the large administrative institutions. It can take up the first few years of a Presidency just clearing out all the last one's appointments. There is resistance. Now the Donald is finding sheer opposition.
He is finding traitorous actions from top levels to bottom. But he does not have the power to take decisive and terminal action. He cannot be a Tyrant and run things by decree, as Obama did. The Donald 'tweets' and exposes the rats. It is slow and painstaking and requires a Legal System that is impartial. The American one is anything but, with the DoJ that actively plotted against him. Even the FBI is actively involved in traitorous acts, in conspiracy with and conformity with the Obama- Clinton mafia.
In Oz and Britain there is a 'Westminster System', whereby the political party that gains in election inherits a Permanent Civil Service. Political' appointments do not get a look in. They are supposed to be impartial, but what do we see?
In Britain the weak female Prime Minister, elevated because the last PM resigned having 'gone against' the wishes of the People, and no-one else wanted the hard task of implementing Brexit, is adrift in a 'character' far different from the last female Prime Minister.
Her civil servants are, as she is, Remainers (Bremoaners) almost to a man and woman. They cannot simply be 'replaced' by other more politically friendly people. The place is a shambles. While Brexit dominates the discussion the nation itself is becoming less British by the day.
In Oz we have had a long period of political slaughter with three Prime Ministers in a row being knifed in the back by their own side.
The public service was and is without political or even democratic direction.One might have hoped that the civil service here would hold fast, but what do we find?
Holding fast they are, but not to Oz.
One wonders how long and how deeply the attitudes and actions have been going on, with civil servants deliberately ignoring the best interests of Oz and even the directions of the politicians.
Fiefdoms are ingrained.
Only some firm action can stop the rot.
Heads must roll. Perhaps literally.
It is almost ironic that amid all the political turmoils besetting us today, one of the most popular media entertainments is the fictional 'Game of Thrones'. It is enjoyed by so many who do not realise that it is based on reality.
Yes, Kings were problematic, often, but we have not improved by having Democracy.
At least Kings could rid themselves and their nations of pesky traitors, time wasters and depleters of the treasury. History is replete with examples of good Kings and Bad ones.
One could speak widely but we had a chap in to have a pint and a chat about one aspect of the Oz situation which no-one is even keeping an eye on let alone kicking arses.
Our 'foreign' service. We call it DFAT. It should be called Defeat.
Some of the matters he held forth about may seem trivial compared to FBI conspiracies and the legion of people connected to the modern Lucrezia Borgia Hilary that have died mysteriously.
But they speak to the woeful mindcast. Most of the 'civil servants' in DFAT do not have what it takes for real traitorous behaviour. Ineptitude is more the order. But it is ineptitude in a particular direction.
Leftist, cultural marxist, feminist, PC attitudes lie barely beneath the surface.
They are anti-western in character and colour.
Mark Higgie was Australian ambassador to the EU, 2014-17, so has not only been 'close' to DFAT but was also a former adviser to Tony Abbott.
leftist DFAT holds our foreign policy hostage
Bureaucracies are shaped as much by the political views of those who staff them as their commitment to implementing government policies. Having observed our diplomats from the prime minister’s office as an adviser to Tony Abbott and on five diplomatic postings, I have no doubt that their views of the world, advice and decision-making in the main reflect — to a greater extent than other parts of the federal government machinery — the politically correct pieties that also dominate the ABC, the Fairfax press, our universities and, increasingly, our schools.
To any Canberra insider, especially those in Coalition circles, the fact most of our diplomats are leftish is a given.
That is if they, the Ministers, care. Most seem to be in the business of reefing as much money and perks for themselves. And fighting amongst themselves. And buying 'international office'. That is their priority. The drivel discussed (if that is the word) in Parliament is mostly a distraction from what is really going on.But the foreign service’s political bias matters and is a real issue for Liberal-National governments — obviously not so much for Labor. If the bias isn’t corrected by close government management, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s bureaucracy and operations (cost: $5.1 billion this financial year including overseas aid) will go their own way and capture ministers and even prime ministers along the way.
The spirit of Gough Whitlam continues to hover over DFAT’s RG Casey Building in Canberra. Most of our diplomats dream of an Australia less aligned with the US and have an often unqualified enthusiasm for the UN.
They prefer Greens/Labor approaches to climate change to those of the Coalition. They’re deeply uneasy with recent Coalition border protection policies and like the 1970s version of multiculturalism that “celebrates diversity” without much concern for common values and integration.
As if we were not an independant nation and have been for 118 years. Great Britain in its heyday was Parent to all Anglophile nations which should honour it. These 'multiculturalists' would wish we had 'parents' from Nigeria.They want us unshackled, as they see it, from our symbolic linkages with Britain.
A few examples of DFAT’s thriving leftist bias and the tendency among many of its staff to make judgments out of step with mainstream Australian attitudes:
• Yassmin Abdel-Magied has become notorious for her contemptuous attitude towards Australia, highly controversial views of Islam (“the most feminist religion”) and preparedness to seek advice from the extremist organisation Hizb ut-Tahrir — banned in many countries because of its defence of Islamist terrorism, one of its spokesmen having described Australian troops in Afghanistan as “fair game” whom Muslims had an obligation to attack.
OK. it is not as though DFAT loaded pallets of cash - 150 billion bucks of cash - and sent them to a foreign power. They sent poisonous emissaries.Nevertheless, Abdel-Magied was appointed in 2015 to DFAT’s Council for Australian-Arab Relations and the following year, after she said on the ABC’s The Drum that sharia law was “about mercy” and “kindness”, DFAT funded and promoted her travels around the Middle East, representing Australia.
• This case of DFAT’s desperation to prove itself hip to Islam wasn’t an exception. Its Twitter account for some years has extended greetings to Muslims on the occasion of Ramadan and last year the usual message was supplemented by an additional message from the DFAT secretary. But no equivalent courtesies were tweeted last year to the world’s Jews — or indeed to the world’s Christians.
• DFAT also recently created a Twitter storm by enthusing about the Muslim “modest fashion market” of hijabs and burkinis — apparently oblivious to the fact the pressures and in some cases requirement to wear such garments are deeply controversial in many Muslim communities, as highlighted by recent anti-hijab protests in Iran. There was much social media incredulity that DFAT could imply that women who don’t wear such garments are somehow immodest and what this says about an organisation that is supposed to represent Australia to the world and to champion the rights of women and girls.
• Most Australians would be aghast that about $44 million of their taxes will be paid this financial year for aid projects in the Palestinian territories, while the Palestinian Authority managed to find $US347m last year for payments to convicted terrorists and their families under its “martyr payments policy”, thus encouraging terrorism.
The US House of Representatives in December unanimously passed the Taylor Force Act, which would link continued US aid to the Palestinian Authority ceasing such payments. But the Australian government, advised by DFAT, continues to resist any such linkage.
|Ve vish ve had vays of silenzink you.|
• In June last year the EU funded an EU-Australia Leadership Forum in Sydney, with round tables discussing various matters of mutual interest, organised in co-operation with DFAT. One of the round tables was focused on migration issues, an opportunity for European participants to learn more about Australia’s success in stopping the people-smugglers’ trade while maintaining a generous refugee intake — an achievement in which Europeans have been increasingly interested since their catastrophic and continuing migration crisis.
Who authroised Gillard to give Au$Millions to Hilary Clinton? Was it she herself, or was it some functionary who slid a cheque for signing into her red box? Who did the same with Bishop who seems to have added to the Clinton Foundation's pot of embezzeled taxpayers' monies. Such 'donations' insult every decent Australian.But the round table was chaired by then Human Rights Commission president Gillian Triggs, one of the most strident critics of the government’s border protection policies.
• In Brussels I discovered widespread awareness that a DFAT officer at the mission was moonlighting openly as the president of a political lobby group, using social media to make charges of racism and homophobia against prominent European political figures, including the leader of an EU and NATO member-state with which Australia enjoys cordial relations.
• Another DFAT official at the mission used Twitter to call for Rupert Murdoch to “become a hermit”, to describe the government as “utterly backward” on gay marriage — but Julia Gillard as “a personal hero” and “a strong female progressive” — and to barrack for a Labour win in the 2015 British election.
How very diplomatic. They are traitors. Parasites. Playing for the other team.• At a US embassy reception arranged on November 9, 2016, to watch the results of the presidential election, a DFAT officer present wept openly once it became clear Donald Trump had won.
The problem with our foreign affairs bureaucracy isn’t just the consistent political correctness and suspicion of the Coalition. Much effort is devoted to activity often marginal to Australia’s international interests.
Much fretting goes into how to achieve increased staffing diversity in DFAT, including through “diversity networks” and “champions” — even though the days when it was dominated by Anglo heterosexual men are long gone.
|From DFAT's blog.|
Every one with a budget, of course.
No one wants discrimination against minorities, but most taxpayers would see DFAT’s participation in last year’s Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras as an activity remote from the protection of our international interests.
Agonised introspection chews up much effort more broadly, with the regular generation of often impenetrable managerialese: for example, with its “capability improvement program” — not to be confused with its “capability action plan” — DFAT is on a “capability development journey”, ever on the lookout for “capability champions” (to supplement the “diversity champions”).
The effort put into this gibberish, which now includes “unconscious bias” training for managers, requires much expensive staff time.
The appalling lapse by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet in losing hundreds of cabinet documents raises the question of whether these fashionable corporate obsessions distract attention from important priorities, such as ensuring national security and maintaining the confidence of our allies in sharing their secrets with us.
Even more effort goes into DFAT’s favourite activity, campaigning for more influence in the UN.
The phenomenal outflows of Taxpayers' monies to cronies all over the world make the mind boggle. Oz has a huge foreign debt. To give away a dollar, we have to borrow it and enough to cover the ever growing interest accruing. Our debt grows by the day and Mrs Bishop spends $30,000 on a dress to woe dictators and muslims, both of which sorts sneer at her behind her back.If this didn’t require such effort, money and distortion to our foreign policy, it might not matter. But, as with Labor’s campaign for the UN Security Council, that’s rarely the case. In that instance, in pursuit of votes, hundreds of millions of dollars of extra aid money were pumped into Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa, and we softened our traditionally strong support for Israel.
We send hundreds of millions of dollars to larger populated nations that have nuclear power, nuclear weapons, huge armed forces and space programs.
We ourselves have none of these other than a small armed force. No political party has a mandate to give such wasted largesse.
No Minister has a list in her handbag. The cheques are raised in DFAT by some nameless (to the public) civil servant who says "Sign Here".
Those civil servants say it is a drop in the ocean in GDP terms, and perhaps it is. But the fact is we are in enormous debt and that is not going to be paid for by cups of coffee.
There are just 13 million income tax payers in Oz. $5000,000,000 is just $385 per head. I do not begrudge 'foreign aid' to those that need it, but I also know many people in Oz who could keep their nostrils just above the waterline with $385. And it does appear that some of that money goes to waste and to people not in need. For example Oz gives $330 million to Indonesia, which has an enormous military: much larger than ours. Indonesia has 230 million people: ten times our population. They are just as capable as any to manage their affairs but seem to have a GDP of just under a $Trillion compared to our $1.2 Trillion. Why are we giving them a cent?
Indonesia does not give us aid when we have natural disasters - which are annual in Oz.
No-one elected the civil servants, who seem scared of Indonesia. They are the bloke and the woman down the street. Commoners, like you and me. (Well, not me). They rise up the greasy pole by conforming to the dogmas learned in University at their Marxist lecturers' knee.
To avoid a repeat performance, Abbott resisted DFAT pressure to launch a campaign for a seat on the UN Human Rights Council. That partly reflected its particularly dubious nature — its members include Saudi Arabia, Cuba and China. But after Abbott lost the leadership, DFAT quickly got the green light.
As The Australian’s Greg Sheridan observed, this signalled that the Turnbull administration was going to be a bit more cuddly and progressive internationally.
It chewed up huge amounts of effort as we hawked our credentials to be admitted into the company of some of the world’s worst human rights violators.
With its managerial and UN preoccupations, DFAT has long neglected some of the basics of what we should expect of a foreign service. Foreign language skills, one of the keys to understanding other countries, aren’t taken all that seriously. Unlike most diplomatic services, foreign language ability isn’t compulsory for recruits. Several officers in Brussels, after years in the city, hadn’t bothered to learn enough French to be able to order a cup of coffee.
The writing skills of recruits are generally poor considering the competitive selection process. Many struggle to string together a coherent paragraph, let alone reports that may find their way towards the top of a minister’s or prime minister’s in-tray.
An especially insidious manifestation of DFAT’s right-on tendencies is the widespread instinct to shun political forces its officials disapprove of, be it members of Trump’s team during the US presidential campaign or Brexiteers ahead of the British referendum on EU membership.
On networking skills, many DFAT staff are painfully shy and passive about developing contacts. More useful than unconscious bias courses for DFAT staff would be training on developing networks, writing well, and developing conversation skills.
|Meetings, meetings, and the essential sandwiches.|
A curiosity is that as skills once considered core for our diplomats have declined, accommodation of dietary preferences has seen explosive growth. Colleagues at Meat & Livestock Australia have encountered vegetarianism so often among DFAT staff at their promotional events that they would occasionally ask in semi-jest if it was a selection criterion.
One of our young diplomats once, when told that fish was to be served at an embassy function, demanded evidence that it had been sustainably sourced.
Our foreign affairs bureaucracy can be sloppy when it comes to what should be basics such as how we define our key area of strategic interest — where precision is important. The recent foreign policy white paper confirmed this as the “Indo-Pacific”, defined as the eastern Indian Ocean to the Pacific — so excluding the western parts of South Asia, Pakistan and Afghanistan. But at another point in the document, the authors treat the whole of South Asia as part of the Indo-Pacific.
Another basic is that DFAT should be prudent with taxpayers’ money.
Our elected politicians - of all stripes - are inept and corrupt. The civil service is the same. It is a swamp.In 2012 it famously paid $388,000 to send 23 officials to a climate change summit in Rio de Janeiro; four years later it paid $192,000 to send a similar number to Paris to find ways to save costs. There was further extravagance last year when our 113 heads of mission were recalled home for discussions at a cost of $1.17m. As reported by The Australian, Alexander Downer, when foreign minister, rejected proposals for such meetings as a waste of money and time. Nothing about last year’s meeting suggested this assessment needed revision.
The 2015 review of DFAT led by Brendan Nelson recommended extending postings to four years, which would have saved millions of dollars. But after union objections, DFAT dropped the idea. To her credit, Julie Bishop, on becoming Foreign Minister, banned first-class travel in DFAT, prompting probably the most bitter objections from its leadership to any decision of the current government.
But probably DFAT’s worst failing is its lack of alertness to opportunities to advance the national interest. Why, for example did it not persuade Kevin Rudd or Gillard to pursue a free trade agreement with the EU?
The EU is the world’s second largest economy but its protectionism heavily restricts Australian exports in key areas such as beef and lamb. During Labor’s last term in office, the US, Canada and Japan launched talks on securing free trade agreements with the EU. The Canadians in 2012 estimated that an FTA with the EU would result in a $C12bn increase in Canada’s gross domestic product and 80,000 new jobs. Such analysis should have prompted Australia also to bang on doors in Brussels to start FTA talks. Why did that have to await the Abbott government?
Or perhaps a moral desert.
We have a lot of desert on Oz. We call it the Red Centre.
There is a marxist-red centre in the mindset of our 'authorities': the leaders and servants.
Between them they advocate and implement the killing of near 100,000 Australian babies in the womb every years and bring in as immigrants twice as many. Many of those foreigners who come here do not like us; they do not like our Institutions; they do not like our Government and Governance.
I do not either.
The Democracy we 'enjoy' does not work. Those we elect do not act on our behalf first and foremost. Their hired hands actively work against the will and tenor of the ordinary Australian. Most if not all are Immoral.
They all need to be swept away.
So, I refer you back to the video at the top. Who do you get to Govern?
I give my allegiance to the King of Kings. He who shall come again will sweep away Prime Ministers and Presidents. I have little doubt He will sweep away all those men (and women) who are not of 'Goodwill' who populate our Departments of State.
Meanwhile a firm hand is needed and I would welcome a Morally Righteous King to Rule over Oz.
Not that I am putting m'self up for the job (I am a knackered old chap) but I do have experience.
I might be a bit terse in the first few years.
Drink up and pray for the day when my Supplier comes to take charge.
This is the 1000th post from the Tavern.
I am also pleased to say that we have just had our 400,000th customer take a tankard of fine ale to toast my Supplier.
That represents 400 'page views' per post overall, although the number has grown over time and some posts have had as many as 2500 visits.
Many thanks to all the readers and drinkers. Please continue to drop by.