The silence of the plods

Monday 9 May 2011 1:55 AM

I would love to know what really went on between Mr Overland and his former deputy, Sir Ken Jones - just as between Nixon and Ashby, Rudd and Gillard, Turnbull and Abbott, Howard and Costello, Hawke and Keating ... and a horde of other leadership intrigues if I'd only known about them. And if starved of facts, then I have sufficient time, intelligence, imagination- and Twitter - to feed an exhaustive cache of urban myths, innuendo and conspiracy theory.

But then would we really want to live in a world of unconstrained accountability? Anyone who's been an executive leader of just about anything, has dealt with the sometimes daily necessity of keeping certain information restricted to a very few. The absence of such constraints could be a recipe for anarchy - or worse. This is precisely because we humans love to know and love to tell. When the organisation in question is the one chiefly responsible for keeping all of us safe from the darkest of human intent, we might just be especially glad that some files stay locked and some lips stay sealed.

I still wish I knew. But I like being safe.