Latham's Law

Latham’s law

8 August 2020

9:00 AM

8 August 2020

9:00 AM

Worried about Covid or skyrocketing unemployment? Maybe you’ve lost your job or your business has had to close? Worry no more, Gladys Berejiklian has a ready-made answer. You might be thinking the NSW Liberal party premier has got her public servants working around the clock on health protection and job creation, leading the nation in economic recovery.

She has got them working all right, but with a dazzling new insight, a policy innovation no one else has thought of. We can solve all our problems through Sexuality. At 2pm, Tuesday last week the NSW public service downed tools to launch a new LGBTIQ Network, with a new name and logo. Forget about job creation and small business support, Gladys has had our NSW public servants engrossed in what really matters: a ‘Naming Competition’ for a new Alphabet network. I sent in an entry: WOTA-MOST-BS, an acronym for Wasting Our Time And Money On Sexuality Trivia BS. But it had no chance of winning. We needed something more creative, more in tune with today’s challenges, rhyming with ‘virus’. A New Universal Sexuality has a certain ring to it.

On the serious side, it’s hard to believe this is the premier’s priority. What an indulgence, to have our public servants working on pointless identity politics. It’s a slap in the face for every person in NSW who has lost their job or lost their business. When Gladys says it’s ‘all about jobs’ what she really means is that, under her government, public servants with guaranteed jobs couldn’t care less about private sector jobs.


The stop-work indulgence was made worse by the preponderance of these identity units. In the NSW Planning Department, for instance, they have an existing LGBTIQ Network, a Harmony Council, Diversity and Inclusion Council, Aboriginal Cultural Team and Australian Diversity Council membership (the wacky outfit trying to enforce David Morrison’s ban on the word ‘guys’). The Planning Department is headed by Jim Betts, one of the speakers at last week’s launch, who is obsessed with this stuff. His real job should be fast tracking development approvals and employment-creating projects in NSW, but seemingly, he spends more time on Diversity than Economic Growth. The NSW government says it’s going deep into deficit, but in June, as part of Betts’ empire building, he advertised for a ‘Manager, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy’ in the Planning Department on $164,000 per annum. The government’s policy is ‘No pay rise for NSW police officers or paramedics’ but they have money for this position, designated to work with the Harmony and Diversity Councils. There is no peer-reviewed academic study anywhere in the world showing that ‘diversity’ improves staff productivity and output. It’s mostly a McKinseys invention to make money from their corporate consultancies. In the promotional picture for the Alphabet event, people in Rainbow tee-shirts were holding up placards reading: ‘Reflecting our Communities’. This is the argument NSW ministers put for this rubbish agenda: our public service must look like the community it serves.

At Budget Estimates, I asked Treasury officials (who have also drunk the Diversity Kool-Aid) how many homeless, unemployed people or public housing tenants they have recruited to be ‘Reflecting Our Communities’ and they said none; they contact the poor in NSW by talking to NCOSS (the social welfare peak body). I asked Betts’ minister Rob Stokes the same question on the Notice Paper, and he said they don’t collect that kind of employment data. This is a Selective ‘Diversity and Inclusion’ policy: only benefitting the sexuality groups that matter to Betts, not the poor and disadvantaged in NSW. Gay or transgender? You’re in the loop. Unemployed or a public housing tenant? Forget about it. The Left complain about ‘colonisation’ but under the likes of Betts, the NSW Public Service has been colonised on the basis of sexuality. The LGBTIQWTF community is 2-3 per cent of the NSW population, yet receives red carpet treatment in the government’s ‘Inclusion’ agenda. Poor people are 10 per cent of NSW and they don’t get a look in. Premier Berejiklian has not only personally endorsed this agenda, but taken it further. After last year’s election, she issued ‘Premier’s Priorities’ for female and Indigenous employment quotas in the public service (even though women already make up two-thirds of that workforce). NSW has special employment programs for women, Aborigines and refugees but not early school leavers, the homeless or public housing tenants. The left-wing NSW Public Service Commission runs special taxpayer-funded ‘diversity’ training sessions for staff, including the zany notion of ‘unconscious bias’ — that we have voices in our heads telling us to discriminate against people.

By this system, a white male public housing tenant, who wants nothing more than to be treated equally and have a fair chance of getting a public service job, is not only discriminated against in NSW government employment processes, but also, if he did fluke a job with them, he has to go to training sessions telling him he’s the one who is racist, sexist and homophobic.We need to understand the sickness of what’s going on here. Ruling elites like Berejiklian and Don Harwin (the NSW Minister for the Public Service) have constructed a system that not only discriminates against people not like them (male and straight) but then justifies it by blaming the victims of the identity discrimination they created.

Bob Menzies must be rolling in his grave, wondering what he created.

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