What’s Samuel’s next move? There has been quite a bit of media about Graeme Samuel recently. The word is that the various groups, including the Pratt family, Goldberger and Wieland of DFO, are trying to destroy Samuel’s legacy before his term ends on June 30 next year. Pundits are trying to work out what Samuel’s next move will be.

Some say he is desperately trying to get another term as chairman of the ACCC and will be doing anything which will assist the current Labor government, including going into bat for the NBN. Others are guessing that this skilled political player can sense a shift in the wind and will exit gracefully in order to take up board positions with his legacy intact.

Nine newsroom changes? We’ve had denials on information that the Melbourne newsroom of Nine — soon to shift from the old Richmond factory to plush new corporate offices in the Docklands precinct — is due for a leadership shake-up. But Crikey‘s inside informant still insists the move is on…

The exodus from WIN. WIN News Canberra has, in recent months, seen the sacking of chief of staff Jorian Gardner and resignations of long-time presenter Jessica Good and popular reporter Erin Molan. Last week, sports presenter and chief of staff Lachlan Kennedy handed in his resignation but rumour has it that he wasn’t alone with other reporters also resigning in the same week. WIN has long been criticised for paying their staff poorly and providing sub-standard equipment, so it’s no wonder there’s a max exodus in Canberra.

Higher ed warns to fight. Daylight is starting to shine through cracks between government spin and reality. Last night’s Compass program on ABC1 — ‘Challenging the Chaplains’ — provided more evidence of anti-intellectual special interest pandering. As government continues to disengage from the higher education sector it now appears that ‘evidence-based’ policy development was merely a rhetorical flourish of the Rudd era. Watch for increased political engagement from the higher education sector in coming months.

Public sector waste. Overheard in the gym: “If we don’t spend the money allocated we do not get the same funding for next year so we were busy finding training courses and events we could use to spend the money. It is always a busy time at the end of the financial year finding ways to keep our funding…” I assume this is the public service and these are taxpayers dollars which are not benefiting the people who pay them. There appears to be a lack of accountability for outcomes. Business could not have such luxury. Money wasted could be allocated to real training for real wealth creating jobs for our youths and those people who are told they cannot retire too early.

Peter Fray

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