The Curmudgeon


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Pearls Before Proles

The parliamentary select committee on education seems to have rather missed the point of the Government's reform (demolition, in Standard English) of careers advice for schoolchildren. Careers advice used to be the responsibility of local authorities, but Michael Gove's Department for Consumer Training has foisted it on schools instead, while simultaneously cutting back on the resources available to deliver it. This means, of course, that the deserving schools, i.e. the ones whose pupils pay the most, will give the best careers advice, just as market forces decree.

Now, as everyone knows, a career is quite different from a job. A job is essentially something a prole does in order to avoid the attentions of the Idleness Police. A job, in the ineffable vision of Triple-Dip George and his chums, is something from which one may be sacked at any moment, without recourse or compensation; it is by nature makeshift, insecure and temporary, like the proles themselves. A career, by contrast, is a lifetime's planned ascent from the humble but hard-working to the fulfilled and exalted. The trust fund leads to the political appointment, which leads to the chancellor's office which leads to a happy retirement with some juicy directorships; that is a career. The long, dedicated years as a wealth creator lead to the opportunity for rigging interest rates and thence to the undying gratitude of one's fellow beings; that is a career. The tax-dodging father leads to the brief stint as an office boy which leads to 10 Downing Street and a glorious coalition with statesmen of the calibre of Nick Clegg; that is a career, or very nearly. The years spent spouting tripe for Rupert Murdoch lead, somehow or other, to the Department of Education; that, I suppose, might in certain circles be considered an achievement of sorts.

In any case, it should be obvious that on the vast majority of education industry consumers, careers advice is simply wasted. Worthy proles will move merrily from job to job and breed hard-working families with or without interference from meddling bureaucrats; unworthy proles will be subject to the ministrations of the Idleness Police and the manifold deterrents of Universal Credit. Since this is simple enough to be understood by the likes of Triple-Dip George and Britain's best argument in favour of entomophagy, it is rather difficult to understand how the parliamentary select committee on education has failed to grasp the idea.


  • At 4:26 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hilarious!! I don't understan why you dont have more comments on this blog, it makes me roll

  • At 8:05 pm , Blogger Philip said...


    I assume the lack of comments means either a reverent silence, or else that I am a few people's guilty secret.


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