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Quote of the Day

From the comments:

As a zoology undergrad & postgrad in Oxford from 92-99 I can confirm that Anderson was a first-class shit. Dick Southwood had created a world class group of ecologists and evolutionary biologists in the department. Giants of the field. Bob May, Paul Harvey, Bill Hamilton, many others. Being taught there was simply extraordinary. Once Anderson arrived his main priorities were to bring as many of his cronies with him as possible (from Imperial, where he ended up going back to after he blotted his copybook) and to de-fund or force out as many people as he could that weren’t going to go along with him.

The atmosphere became completely poisonous. I imagine he was hired because of his connections and his ability to schmooze and network, which are useful in winning funding. But he was hated by 70% of the department. There was graffiti about him in the toilets – neatly typed and printed out, stuck up with blu-tack.

Sadly, academia is rife with people like Anderson – both men and women. It is said that academic fights are so vicious because the stakes are so low. In my experience, there are just some awful, horrible people at the pinnacles of our academic institutions. In the main, the nastiest, most spiteful people I have met were academics.

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6 thoughts on “Quote of the Day

  1. One academic Head of Department I worked for was fired. A professor, in an ancient university! He had a list of charges against him, repeating the same sorts of misbehaviour against different people. But one counted most. He’d committed an actual crime.

  2. “…. But one counted most. He’d committed an actual crime……”

    Er, nowadays it is impossible for the average person to live for a day without performing an action which could earn them a criminal record. If they drive, that time drops to an hour.

    Since some recent legislation relates to thought and attitude crimes, I suspect that passing a night in sleep could now get you convicted. And since some criminal actions depend, not on what you do, but what a bystander (or anyone else unconnected to the event) thinks about it, it is possible to be convicted while literally doing nothing…

  3. Yes Dodgy – the Brave New World started long before Covid-19

    These days even stating what 90% of the population believe can get you in hot water.

    I have said before that I would live my life again willingly – but if you offered me the next 75 years you could take a running jump as we used to say.

  4. We’re told that “ignorance of the law is no defence”.
    Have you seen the bookshelves of “law” at a solicitors office? How can a citizen be expected to know all this when full time lawyers don’t?
    ….and the British disease of writing 50 pages where 5 would suffice!

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