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Public Sector Informant : PSI - October
THE PUBLIC SECTOR INFORMANT 31 [OCTOBER 2010] Schedule of Fees & Charges and Terms and Conditions may be obtained by calling 1300 13 23 28 or calling into any ADCU Branch. The terms and conditions should be considered in deciding whether to acquire the product. To receive this product you must become a member of ADCU. Lending Criteria applies. ABN 48 087 649 741 AFSL No. 237988. Hit the road. Whatever you want in life, we can help with a Personal Loan For more information visit www.adcu.com.au, call 1300 13 23 28 or visit your local ADCU branch. first Tuesday of the month STAY INFORMED . . . [NOTES FOR FILE] Rainbow dreaming of the endless lunch The new paradigm Even hung parliaments eventually get back to work, much to the section's regret 'The Director's shut herself away watching breaking news on TV so let's adjourn to the restaurant for a final hung Parliament lunch.' We took advantage of the extended caretaker period to stroll the cor- ridors networking with our colleagues, empty our ''in'' and ''out'' trays, tidy our cluttered desks, do some filing, parcel up classified waste and, in our spare time, fit in some shopping. Our lovely reception- ist, Sharon, enthusiastically organised daily long lunches, features of our corporate collegiality which had long since disappeared. ''I could go on caretaking forever,'' Sharon smiled. ''Here's the menu for today's lunch. Please indicate your preferences so I can order in advance.'' For a time, confusion and appre- hension had hung over us, replacing the euphoria and expectation that usually followed the formation of a new government or a remaking of the old. Paul had become noticeably sullen. ''I know what it is,'' Adrian said, diagnosing the mood in the office. ''We just seem to be hanging around a hung Parliament. It's remi- niscent of those 5c fruit poker machines. To hit the jackpot, you had to score three lemons in one row, or was it four?'' Paul surrendered to a loud yawn, stretching his arms as far as they would go behind his head, tipping his chair backwards onto the floor. ''Sorry,'' he said. ''I just can't stand all this hanging on.'' Even our Director seemed a differ- ent person, displaying unusual friend- liness towards us on the morning she arrived late for work. Sharon explain- ed afterwards that she was merely trying to attract attention. ''You guys are so hung up with the hung Parliament you didn't even notice she had dyed her hair a vivid red. You know how she likes attention.'' We had planned a ceremonial shredding of the incoming Govern- ment briefs over which we had laboured, until Sharon asked, ''Which brief: the blue or the red one?'' Paul answered, ''Why don't we just shred both and get on with it.''As the caretaker period hung on and the negotiations to form a government continued like a daily anti-climatic episode of a TV soap opera, the Secretary felt compelled to call a special Executive meeting. ''Gentlemen,'' he said, quickly adding ''and lady'', acknowledging the person with red hair at the end of the long conference table. ''We find ourselves in extraordinary circum- stances. We are experiencing a virtual double-dip election, without the peo- ple having to vote twice. We now have a profound responsibility to exercise our own deliberative judg- ment and prepare for a likely out- come.'' The Secretary went on to announce to everyone's inert consternation that we would take our own action and stitch together an anticipatory brief- ing folder for an alternative govern- ment. To the existing red and blue briefs we would cobble non-election promises and agreements made to secure a majority for a minority government. Being an enthusiastic trout fisherman, enjoying weekend retreats beside mountain streams, he called this the ''rainbow brief'', explaining that it would cover any melded colour contingency while maintaining our political neutrality. ''In the current state of uncertainty,'' the Secretary said, ''no possibility can be excluded.'' When the parliamentary numbers finally added up to a majority, the Secretary called all staff together, confidently telling them after the event that he had never doubted the outcome, of course. ''What you have observed on this Independents' Day,'' he said, ''is truly historic. As we have seen, long speeches maketh the event. In years to come, you will recall this day and proudly say, 'I was there to witness the new paradigm in the making.' '' Our team missed the Secretary's address. Anticipating the end of her caretaker lunchtime activities, and having just secured a good deal for a banquet at a new Indian restaurant, with two bottles of red thrown in to secure the arrangement, Sharon said, ''I haven't done all this negotiating for nothing. It's time for us to hang out. The Director's shut herself away watching breaking news on television so let's adjourn to the restaurant for a final hung Parliament lunch.'' Stirring lazily from his computer game, Paul said, ''The adjournment has been moved. I think the ayes have it. That's the agreement. Let us go forward together into the sunshine.'' By the time word reached us that the government's winning row of lemons had come up, the afternoon had extended itself. Having begun humming a tune to himself, Paul was prompted by his colleagues to give voice to the song. He rose unsteadily to his feet. Somewhere over the rainbow way up high, There's a land that I heard of once in a lullaby. Somewhere over the rainbow skies are blue, And the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true. He stopped abruptly. ''Excuse me,'' he said, ''I think I'm a tad hung over,'' and escaped with his hand over his mouth, leaving us to add more red to the rainbow highway.
PSI - September