Tuesday, 12 April 2016
Achievers Or Just Numbskulls?
There appear to be some very contradictory views coming from the Tory party at the moment. MP Alan Duncan believes that criticising David Cameron could lead to parliament being filled with "low achievers". who "hate people who look after their own family and who know absolutely nothing about the outside world". This is pretty punchy stuff especially when you consider that the Tory party seems to hate everyone who isn't a Tory, look after their own families at the expense of everyone else's and have absolutely no idea about the lives of ordinary people outside the Westminster bubble. At the same time his comments seem to confuse achievement with making money. Albert Einstein, Mahatma Gandhi, Leonardo Da Vinci and Archimedes certainly achieved a great deal but, as far as I know, none of them were millionaires. What Mr.Duncan doesn't seem to understand is that greed does not equal achievement while obsessively piling up huge amounts of money in offshore accounts is not an achievement but a mental health issue. Nor does inheriting large amounts of money from dead relatives make you an "achiever". Still, to redress the balance William Hague then said something equally as shallow, misleading and downright stupid. Looking too closely at a politician's financial dealings, according to Mr.Hague, might frighten off otherwise talented people. It might, for instance, frighten off those whose personal finances are an absolute shambles and deny us all the valuable experience they might bring to high office. "Personal circumstances are not necessarily a good guide to how good they will be as a prime minister, a chancellor or anything else," he said. So a really good politician, according to Mr.Hague, might be stupid, he might be feckless and he might even be dishonest. This is in sharp contrast to the way in which the Tories regard everyone else however. If you are poor, disadvantaged, disabled and badly educated, then you cannot by definition be deserving. But, if you are rich, privileged, expensively educated and stupid, then you deserve to wield power and should be given every opportunity to prove how worthy you are. Accustomed as we are to the Tories turning the world on its head these mental gymnastics are truly awesome. It is certainly true that being greedy, over-privileged and utterly stupid has never held back either Mr.Duncan or Mr.Hague. What holds the rest of us back, however, is a system that puts too much emphasis on wealth and not enough on real ability.