PSsst! Stepford snipe

By The Mandarin

July 8, 2021

Who is she? (Lightfield Studios/Adobe)


Another gig for Halton, and maybe another

Jane Halton might have been loaded up with yet another gig, but that hasn’t stopped rumours something else could be heading her way.

The former Health secretary has just joined the board of French submarine builders The Naval Group. She ran the inquiry into hotel quarantine, is a director of Crown, ANZ and also chairs the global Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, in the fight against COVID. She also represents Australia in the Quad Leaders’ Vaccines Experts Working Group to help facilitate vaccine delivery in the Indo-Pacific region.

That’s a lot of appointments and consulting – to government and the private sector.

Her consulting work with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet is, however, now sparking rumours that she could be asked to head up the department as secretary.

It’s just a rumour of course … but let’s all watch this space.

Screaming man

Another word going around is that Caroline Edwards recently quit her job as associate secretary at the federal Department of Health because she got so sick and tired of being screamed at by health minister Greg Hunt. Hard to believe, we know.

Move on minister

And speaking of health ministers under pressure, Brad Hazzard can’t seem to handle it.

The NSW health minister couldn’t explain why more than 150 Sydney private schoolboys from St Joseph’s College jumped the queue to receive Pfizer shots, from a health district they do not belong to, and while teachers and vulnerable adults are having to wait for their vaccinations.

“The school intended it well. There was a mistake and so what? It’s happened, out of a million vaccinations. Move on,” Hazzard told reporters when asked about the incident.

Hazzard described it as ‘embarrassing’ to even ask him questions about it. Something is embarrassing here and it’s a bit of a hazard for the NSW government.                 

Stepford snipe

Former federal Liberal MP Julia Banks has revealed a great deal about the sexism inside the party she once belonged to. In her 7.30 interview with Laura Tingle this week, as well as in her newly-released book Power Play: Breaking through the bias, barriers and boys’ clubs, Banks says a great deal that should cause more than a few men to hang their heads in shame.

But she has also reserved some criticism for women buying into it all. While rarely naming names (of men or women), Banks makes some very pointed remarks. One comment, on page 116 of her book, Banks says:

“After the leadership coup had seen the toxic workplace culture magnified, the following message was sent to the group (with that faux-chirpy Stepford-wife tone of ‘nothing to see here’) by a female MP to whom many, including me , had confided in about workplace misconduct for years…”

We don’t know who she is referring to and we are not suggesting which Liberal female MP it could be. But if ever there was a search for a ‘Stepford wife’ in the federal parliament, surely Michaelia Cash’s door would be knocked on.

It all adds up

It has recently come to our attention that accountants who want to read something other than spicy political memoirs on public transport are now able to get a copy of their code of ethics for mobile devices. The ethical standards, which are developed by the Accounting Professional and Ethical Standards Board, set down the rights and wrongs for accounting professionals in Australia. Riveting reading, no doubt.

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