Markus Mannheim in the Canberra Times has an interesting story on a pretty major crackdown in the public service on tweeting and blogging by public service employees.
The commission’s head of ethics, Karin Fisher, said bureaucrats had the same right to freedom of expression as other citizens.
But that right was ”subject to legitimate public interests, such as the maintenance of an impartial and effective public service in which the community can have confidence”.
The Public Service Act says bureaucrats ”must at all times behave in a way that upholds … the integrity and the good reputation of Australia”.
Ms Fisher said this applied to comments made outside office hours and on issues unrelated to a public servant’s work.
So that pretty much rules out any sort of useful contribution to public debate by anyone who actually understands the reasons for government policy.
Well done Greg Jericho.