In a recent article, writer James Bartholomew noted that British universities with their hard left, levelling economic doctrines have spread disaster far and wide, across the world. In particular he noted that ‘the London School of Economics can rightly claim more that it’s share.’ It certainly has, leading the world in propounding fruitless economic misery to millions.
Among its former sons are Jomo Kenyatta, the first prime minister of independent Kenya, who quickly wrecked that economy, followed by another LSE graduate, Mwai Kibaki, who stayed in power for eleven years. Kwame Nkrumah, an alumni of the LSE, became President for Life in Ghana and quickly did the same there. Saif al-Islam Gaddafi the second son of President Gaddafi was a student there. He is still in custody awaiting trial for crimes against humanity. Other less well known graduates have been Sher Bahadur Deuba, PM of the failed state of Nepal, and Paul Kagame, the current ruler for life of Rwanda which is now a one party state, and let’s not forget George Papandreau the recent Prime Minister of Greece, enough said I think.
It is pleasing to see that the LSE has lost none of its ability to spout fatuous, dangerously divisive rubbish. A report has just been published by the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission, written by one Dr Abigail McKnight, Senior Research Fellow of the LSE. Her previous publications include ‘The Economic Basis of Social Class,’ but this one is a real humdinger for good old historic class warfare as she claims that the middle classes are actively stopping the lower orders from rising by the deliberate creation of a ‘glass floor,’ which stops the ones trapped below, little noses pressed upwards.
She says that the better off ‘hoard the best opportunities,’ over poorer peers, the modern equivalent of stealing the peasants’ grain. According to Dr McKnight they do this by such crafty measures as giving their children ‘self confidence’ (bourgeois parents in my day certainly didn’t do this but cultural norms towards children have changed) getting them good careers advice and most cunning of all, some of course buy their little ones extra tuition.
As the Guardian reported. ‘Wealthier parents often help their children by using their social networks and finding them useful unpaid internships. They may also provide better careers guidance and focus on so-called soft skills including self-confidence and leadership.’
The word wealthier there could apply to anyone in work rather than on benefits, but it reads as a social crime. Presumably these ‘wealthier’ parents also commit social crimes such as sewing name tapes into their offspring’s school clothes, forcing them to turn up for classes on time, and teaching them table manners.
Only in the UK could this old Marxist claptrap still be considered respectable. To anyone lacking belief in this archaic and discredited ideology, the answer to social mobility is less sinister and far more obvious. We need to improve our schools from the earliest years until the end of secondary school. At present we educate everyone for free, from the age of five to eighteen and achieve the lowest success of any developed nation. If left wing education theory was junked and we got back to real education we would gain social mobility. But as the role of teachers has been diminished with all authority now regarded as authoritarianism, and individual ability treated with suspicion, there is little hope of any change.
My grandparents, lower middle class people growing up in the 1890s and my parents in the 1930s ,received a better basic education than many children in our cities do today. That is due to the same thinking which motivates academics at the LSE. They have destroyed large parts of Africa and should be seen as a wrecking ball here.