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The rise of the Bluffocracy

jrwlynch

LE
Book Reviewer
#22
Was that the sound of a pin being pulled from a grenade?

I seem to remember @jrwlynch commented on (or quoted someone who did) politicians being educated in the wrong things, with no idea how to form a hypothesis and test it, how to understand statistics, or how to accept advice from Subject Matter Experts.
The Hollow Men II: Some reflections on Westminster and Whitehall dysfunction

A longish read, and Cummings is mad as a box of frogs, but he does make some very good points.
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
#24
I did not write it. Would a female have a higher probability of being a STEM graduate? Is this a new problem though - traditionally politicians and senior civil servants were Oxbridge Classics graduates.
Reported this morning that analysis of the A levels showed females had performed better than males at Physics.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
#25
Our politicians are soundbite spouting demagogues.

Yet large swathes of the public respond like subservient pets to what's been described as dog whistle politics.

Boris's comments on the burka the other day were simply about maintaining his public profile and courting the right wing of his party for his own ambitions.

Mongs regularly swallow soundbites like brexit means brexit as if they actually mean anything.

In short the political figures we have today are shallow because much of the population is intellectually shallow.

Brexit and the contempt for informed opinion is testament to this
Your post neatly encapsulates much of the problem with modern politics defining, as it does, 'informed opinion' on the basis of whether that opinion supports your own.
 
#26
Reported this morning that analysis of the A levels showed females had performed better than males at Physics.
Looking at the photos the various media used they probably meant females performed better than males at physiques.
 
#27
Your post neatly encapsulates much of the problem with modern politics defining, as it does, 'informed opinion' on the basis of whether that opinion supports your own.
I rely on data, rather than soundbites.

I often wonder whether voting rights should be qualified upon intellect. Although I fully recognise that it's a dicey path to go down.
 
#28
Oh God how much of this is has become so painfully obvious:

The bluffocracy: how Britain ended up being run by eloquent chancers | The Spectator

Not new but my particular identification with this over the past few years has come from being dragged into working groups on Industry bodies dealing with "Calls for Evidence" and "Consultations" which usually try to beat to death idiotic policy proposals based off grand theories or political constructs from such chancers that sound great but require vastly expensive and immensly complex changes.

And they never listen to the output because they can't or won't get to anywhere near a level of proper understanding.

IMHO this is where the Brexit negotiations have kept hitting the brick wall: for two years nobody on the UK negotiation side really got into the weeds whilst the EC Technocrats live there
They say an Oxbridge PPE graduate can talk about anything eloquently as long as they aren't talking to an expert in the field and the conversation doesn't last more than three minutes
 
#29
The Hollow Men II: Some reflections on Westminster and Whitehall dysfunction

A longish read, and Cummings is mad as a box of frogs, but he does make some very good points.
Longish is putting it mildly.

They say an Oxbridge PPE graduate can talk about anything eloquently as long as they aren't talking to an expert in the field and the conversation doesn't last more than three minutes
Three minutes? That long?

I was watching a BBC Horizon programme about air crashes last night, and one of the things they talked about was the problem of Captains reverting to acting a pilot in a crisis instead of delegating tasks and using their experience to solve the problem. I wonder if the same could be said for the generalist manager?
 
#31
They say an Oxbridge PPE graduate can talk about anything eloquently as long as they aren't talking to an expert in the field and the conversation doesn't last more than three minutes
Sounds like JRM described perfectly
 
#32
#34
They say an Oxbridge PPE graduate can talk about anything eloquently as long as they aren't talking to an expert in the field and the conversation doesn't last more than three minutes
Seen that it action: senior types from DCMS & Home Office being told in as many words after about 5 minutes of generic waffle to an audience of SME's that they were talking vastly expensive yet practically unworkable nonsense that might read well in the Guardian and sound great in a grand ministerial statement but was laughable did it not have the capacity to screw things up so badly.

But it was OK: they did note that there were "a number of significant technical challenges still to be overcome"

And blundered on
 
#36
47 Medicine/STEM careers out of 650 is still kinda shit if you ask me.
I would have thought it quite a decent turn out. It compares favourably with the five who have a military background;

Meet The MPs With Military Careers

Medicine/STEM comes third after Barrister/Solicitor and white collar businessman (which is a broad definition IMO).
 
#37
Ah, the rise (or more accurately, the dogged, chewing-gum-on-the-pavement persistence) of sophistry.
First examined and codified by a chap called Aristotle, who got a bit pissed off with the utter f*ckwittery of his fellow Athenians and their tendency to bring Athens to the edge of ruin by mindlessly following eloquent cretins.

Sound familiar?

This might help:

shenefelt.jpg

Amazon Review said:
While logical principles seem timeless, placeless, and eternal, their discovery is a story of personal accidents, political tragedies, and broad social change. If A, Then B begins with logic's emergence twenty-three centuries ago and tracks its expansion as a discipline ever since. It explores where our sense of logic comes from and what it really is a sense of. It also explains what drove human beings to start studying logic in the first place. Logic is more than the work of logicians alone. Its discoveries have survived only because logicians have also been able to find a willing audience, and audiences are a consequence of social forces affecting large numbers of people, quite apart from individual will. This study therefore treats politics, economics, technology, and geography as fundamental factors in generating an audience for logic-grounding the discipline's abstract principles in a compelling material narrative. The authors explain the turbulent times of the enigmatic Aristotle, the ancient Stoic Chrysippus, the medieval theologian Peter Abelard, and the modern thinkers Rene Descartes, David Hume, Jeremy Bentham, George Boole, Augustus De Morgan, John Stuart Mill, Gottlob Frege, Bertrand Russell, and Alan Turing. Examining a variety of mysteries, such as why so many branches of logic (syllogistic, Stoic, inductive, and symbolic) have arisen only in particular places and periods, If A, Then B is the first book to situate the history of logic within the movements of a larger social world. If A, Then B is the 2013 Gold Medal winner of Foreword Reviews' IndieFab Book of the Year Award for Philosophy.
If A, then B.
 
#38
Yay.

Another Tory-bashing thread with added Brexit.
Nay! Applies equally to all of our glorious political parties. All peopled or led largely by PPE graduates with minimal if any experience outside of school/university politics, let alone business or anything else remotely connected to the 'real' world.
 
#39
Ah, the rise (or more accurately, the dogged, chewing-gum-on-the-pavement persistence) of sophistry.
First examined and codified by a chap called Aristotle, who got a bit pissed off with the utter f*ckwittery of his fellow Athenians and their tendency to bring Athens to the edge of ruin by mindlessly following eloquent cretins.

Sound familiar?
Wasn't attempting to prove the general dimness of the Athenian political class what got Socrates into a spot of bother?
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
#40
Whilst deploring the lightweight shoite which is currently massively over-represented in the higher echelons of the British Establishment, I feel equally repelled by crypto-Fascist (and Socialist) fetishists who are uncritical in their endorsement of 'experts' in the narrowest sense - to the extent that I look forward to someone defining exactly what constitutes an 'expert' and explaining quite what their unique advantage might be in a multi-disciplinary environment.

Am I alone in believing that the optimal leadership cadre should combine intelligence, education and life experience - as was, historically, generally the case with those who built and maintained this country?















 

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