Thursday 09 Apr 2020 | 23:50 | SYDNEY
Thursday 09 Apr 2020 | 23:50 | SYDNEY

DFAT gets a grilling


Sam Roggeveen


4 June 2008 15:59

Andrew Leigh blogs about an SMH article from yesterday that I had missed, about DFAT Deputy Secretary Doug Chester's appearance before a Senate Estimates committee. Andrew addresses the DFAT cutbacks, and suggests that bringing diplomats home might just increase inflation. I'm out of my depth on the economic theory, but it's probably by the by anyway. I reckon the Government just wanted to find spending cuts for their own sake, and DFAT is an easy target. The constituency that opposes it is very small, and you won't see A Current Affair or The Tele running hard luck stories about the heartless government's attitude to benighted diplomats.

Chester also rebutted some rumours I'd been hearing (obviously the opposition had heard them too) that Foreign Minister Stephen Smith's office is a black hole from which submissions never emerge. As far as I know, Smith has still yet to find a permanent chief of staff, but perhaps he doesn't need one.