CivilSerf blog closed down

Whitehall would prefer to keep its failings hidden under its hat

The hunt is on to discover the identity of an anonymous blogger from the Civil Service, whose CivilSerf blog has been ridiculing ministers and mocking the shortcomings of other public servants since November.

The blog, which was inexplicably removed from the web on Sunday, purported to reveal how the Civil Service is crippled by inept ministers, a culture of long-winded meetings and political in-fighting.

Department of Work and Pensions

The author claims to be a 33-year-old female who describes herself as “a faceless bureaucrat type ... just senior enough to really know what is going on”.

Among her more poignant observations, she calls PM Gordon Brown “Velcro” on account of the way negative press tends to stick on him.

Unfortunately, the person behind CivilSerf may have given away enough clues about her true identity to be tracked down. From what she’s written it appears that she could well work in the Department of Work and Pensions.

If that’s the case and her identity is revealed, then she’ll almost certainly be handed her P45.

While writing negatively about one’s employer and placing it in the public domain could hardly be classed as the smartest career move ever made, there is an element of a Whitehall witch-hunt about proceedings.

After all, given that it’s a publicly funded organisation it’s surely right and correct that the Civil Service is held to account. And who better to do that than someone with inside information?