Posted by: Witch Doctor | March 10, 2011

The Intelligentsia

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Once upon a time, The Witch Doctor was called upon to attend a course on education and learning. It was very interesting and informative. However, she felt she was indulging herself in wallowing in some thinking time rather than running around the NHS like a headless chicken trying to keep on top of an increasing workload.

One of the people who talked to us was a philosopher. Most of the doctors there had never had a conversation with an academic philospher before, so we were breaking into new ground as far as our own education was concerned.

At one point the philosopher raised the issue about the importance of education being a means of avoiding atrocities in the world.

Everbody agreed.

Except The Witch Doctor.

The Witch doctor’s view is very simple. She believes everyone is susceptible to Creep regardless of their intelligence and education. She is of the opinion that if you are intelligent and well educated there is a good chance that you may become quite powerful within your own community or country or even the world at large. The intelligent individual may become a well known leader or alternatively be relatively unknown but have great influence on the leaders of our society.

Therefore, in The Witch Doctor’s opinion intelligence, education, leadership and power carry with them a great responsibility not to creep in a direction which could damage humanity.

She quoted the science of eugenics to the philosopher as an example.

Those of you who read this blog will be aware of My Black Cat’s interest in Intertwinglements. She sees them as conspiratorial in nature. The Witch Doctor doesn’t. She perceives them as Creep.

The Intelligentsia who appear scattered among The Intertwinglements seem to have a recognised way of thinking and expressing themselves. This is difficult to explain, but both me an My Black Cat recognise it when we see it.

Yesterdays Times carried an article illustrating this in relation to Gaddafi and his links with the London School of Economics.

THE LSE SCANDAL IS INTELLECTUAL, NOT FINANCIAL by Daniel Finkelstein

“Here’s my theory. It wasn’t so much that the LSE accepted money from Saif Gaddafi, realised that he was a wrong’un but wanted the dough, so took it and in return granted Saif a PhD and academic respectability. It was, in a way, worse than that.

It was that the LSE academics thought that the Gaddafis were politically and intellectually interesting. They really thought that Saif was worth debating with and giving a PhD, because he had some intriguing thoughts about democracy and human rights. And they took his money because there was more work to be done, bottoming out Gaddafism and its theories. The error at the LSE was all about bad ideas. This is primarily an intellectual scandal rather than a financial one…….”

He also picks up on “The Third Way” – the same Third Way that My Black Cat labours on and on about in this blog.

“This general point applies particularly to the central idea shared between Saif Gaddafi and his academic colleagues at the LSE — the Third Way. Two people can reasonably claim authorship of this idea. The first is Professor Anthony Giddens, the Director of the LSE when Saif arrived there. The second? Colonel Gaddafi, the dictator of Libya.

The Third Way has become associated with the centrism of Tony Blair and Bill Clinton, but Lord Giddens regrets the association. For him it is a philosophy of the Left. It is not communist or capitalist, but a modernised social democracy. The same claim, the claim to have found a third path other than capitalism or communism, is a feature of Colonel Gaddafi’s Green Book (which Lord Giddens pricelessly observed was “on display almost everywhere in Libya” — gosh, how did that happen, it must be a rip-roaring read)……”

Enter Father Miliband…….

“As part of Saif Gaddafi’s association with the LSE, he delivered a Ralph Miliband lecture, named after the Labour leader’s father. It was an interesting feature of Ralph Miliband’s socialism that he, too, thought that there was a third way. For him it was between parliamentary democracy and what he thought was a debased Soviet communism.

Towards the end of his life he regretted that he had not spent more time developing his own option, but he thought that it lay in the encouragement of some sort of direct democracy, mass participation if you like, alongside representative democracy. And this sort of idea — elusive, complicated, hard to grasp, easy to bend — is also present in Professor Held’s work, in Lord Giddens’s Third Way and in Colonel Gaddafi’s Green Book. It is also at the heart of Saif Gaddafi’s PhD thesis.

“Participative democracy,” Where have we heard that before, My Black Cat?

Is it not one of the vague themes that wisps around The Intertwinglements?

No, The Intelligentsia are not immune from Creep, and they are much more dangerous than Jo and Josephine Bloggs when they succumb to it.

Goodness, My Black Cat, you want me to give you money to go and buy a copy of  Colonel Gaddafi’s Green Book?

Whatever next!

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Responses

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