Allan Takes Aim Blog

Directorates: another name for BIG BROTHER

Posted on: 9 January 2013

Every time I see the word Directorate being applied to the work of an ACT Government Department my blood races and my heart beast so loudly that if standing within walking distance and hadn’t already started screaming in terror, you’d probably need to wear ear plugs. Apart from that Directorate seems an odd word to use to describe a cohort of bureaucrats who so often seem to lack direction. But that’s Canberra.

No doubt the word is meant to suggest that Canberra’s progress is under control and being well directed even if a majority of Canberrans seem to think the opposite. Indeed, some think Directorates have been established to discourage people from being able to direct questions to the people with overall control of Canberra’s progress.

The word Directorate also takes me back many years to the time when directorates formed the bureaucracy of Soviet Russia, a practice followed by many other countries in the Soviet Bloc whose opponents, including Australia, for many years did their utmost to undermine.

These Bloc countries are now Independent and their Directorates gone. However, it seems some policy wonks in ACT Labor still think Directorates are the ACT Government’s best control mechanism.

Mind you to put residents’ minds at rest that Directorates are not a strategy designed to keep them from complaining, each Drectorate has a ‘complaint or compliment’ section where complainers, who might become complainants at a later stage, can vent their spleen about the Government’s action or lack of it. On the other hand they can lavishly compliment the Government about the actions that caused the complainers to vent their spleen.

All of the information about the structure of the Directorates is available on the ACT Government website which people can Google up. Googling seems an unfortunate description of the method used to gain information because, some older residents without computers who are cricket enthusiasts are still wondering how googlies got into politics.

However, if you don’t have a computer and even if you have but can’t afford the internet, the workings of the Government will remain mysterious because decisions had been made about issues you weren’t even aware had been discussed.

The alternative: you could listen for reports about these issues on radio or TV. Indeed, once upon a time, you could be sure of getting your 8 cents a day worth of balanced news from your ABC. Sadly I have to say that the more the ABC has progressed the more its radio and TV broadcasts seem out of balance.

Of course, you could try either the commercial alternatives and get different programmes of unbalanced news or you could buy the Times. On the newspaper front however, it has to be said many people are now of the view that as it has progressed, the quality of its news has declined in inverse proportion to its increase in price.

I am in no doubt that many people in Canberra do not share my opinions. Let me say that if you do or don’t I invite you to let Canberrans know what you think either by replying in the comment section at the end of this blog or by sending me a 500-700 word article for publishing by e-mail saying why you do or you don’t.

Blog: Don Allan Takes Aim; web:; e-mail:


7 Responses to "Directorates: another name for BIG BROTHER"

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