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The Ralph Miliband lectures remind us how stupid ‘clever’ people can be

7 January 2013

5:30 PM

7 January 2013

5:30 PM

For anybody who needs reminding of how stupid ‘clever’ people can be, can I recommend Guido’s post on the Ralph Miliband lecture series?  Each year the London School of Economics still holds an annual commemoration of the dead Marxist now best known of as the father of David and Ed.  Much that has gone wrong with our universities can be learnt by briefly considering these events.

This year the lectures will include the blogger Laurie Penny talking about ‘Women, protest and the nature of female rebellion’.  She will be doing this in LSE’s Sheikh Zayed Theatre. But best of all is to recall the 2010 lecture given by LSE alumnus Saif Gaddafi.  People really should watch Professor David Held’s introduction.  I had forgotten how funny it is.

Whilst Ghaddafi Junior grins and waves away at lackeys in the audience, Professor Held says by way of introduction:

‘Saif is committed to resolving contentious international and domestic issues through dialogue, debate and peaceful negotiations.’

Obviously this was the year before Saif began massacring everybody and promised to ‘fight until the last man, the last woman, the last bullet’.

But perhaps we shouldn’t dwell on this.  It could have happened to anyone.  After all, there was no sign of any of the Gaddafis being bad eggs before 2011. How fitting it seems that a lecture series named after a Marxist should develop a reputation for such foresight.

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