Some people are born mediocre, some people achieve mediocrity, and some people have mediocrity thrust upon them.
George Parker, writing in the Financial Times, reports that David Cameron is being urged to appoint a full-time lead negotiator in order to secure his proposed new deal for Britain in the EU. The person behind this suggestion is David Frost; who was, until recently, the UK’s most senior trade diplomat, as Director for Europe, Trade and International Affairs at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. Frost’s ‘paper’, one entitled: Gearing up for delivery, How to manage the renegotiation (produced by Open Europe), can be read here.
As will have been noted, Frost joins a long list of those who believe their idea is original, when in fact it has already been thought of. In this regard, one can dismiss ‘the Frost Report’ as a comprehensive proposal on how to handle any renegotiation process already exists (page 28).
Seemingly day after day we have political columnists imparting their views on the UK’s relationship with the European Union and the possible referendum on that relationship only to illustrate their complete lack of knowledge on the subject. One such unknowing columnist is Rafael Behr with this article.
Not that political columnists are the only culprits guilty of talking out of their lower orifice; witness the wanna-be prime minister, Boris Johnson, informing Cameron to ‘get it done‘.
When considering present-say politicians, political columnists – coupled with the ‘experts’ to whom we are requested to pay attention – one can but be reminded of a quotation from P.J. O’Rourke, namely: Anyway, no drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we’re looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn’t test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power. What we witness within all three groups is that stupidity, combined with arrogance and an inflated ego will get you a long way – especially when the audience, to which all three address themselves, have been ‘engineered’ to forget they have the power of reason and thought.
As an aside, it is a source of constant amazement to this blog that we have so many experts and that, unrecognised, the accolade ‘expert’ has now been devalued by the increasing numbers of those accorded the title who demonstrate that actually they know nothing, or at best, very, very, little – yet still they receive the attention of the masses, their words being accepted as ‘gospel’.
Afterthought: Well, two really: (a) perhaps people are being ‘led’ to demand freedom of speech as a form of compensation for the freedom of thought which they now seldom use; and (b) is the UK being run by smart people who would have us believe they are stupid – or by imbeciles who really mean it.