One of the most noticeable changes around Canberra over recent years has been the appearance of uniform government branding – signage with the frillier version of the national crest, the words “Australian Government”, then the title of the department or organisation running below a line. It’s all part of the culture of control – but things have got even worse in the UK, according to The Independent.
When Tony Blair decided to “rebrand” the Department of Trade and Industry after the general election, he announced that it would become the Department for Productivity, Energy and Industry.
Just six days later, he was forced to junk the plan, after it became apparent that the new ministry would boast the acronym Penis.
The cost of this U-turn has just been made public. On Monday, the trade secretary Alan Johnson sneaked out a parliamentary answer, admitting that he’d spent $70,000 on the botched name-change.
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Something must have gone badly wrong, because back in May, smarty pants Johnson said the whole c*ck-up would involve little more than “a man with a screwdriver replacing the sign outside the department’s HQ.”