mudcat.org: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?

Iains 05 Nov 19 - 01:28 PM
punkfolkrocker 05 Nov 19 - 02:00 PM
Big Al Whittle 05 Nov 19 - 03:43 PM
Murpholly 05 Nov 19 - 04:09 PM
Mrrzy 05 Nov 19 - 05:00 PM
Stanron 05 Nov 19 - 05:28 PM
Iains 05 Nov 19 - 05:39 PM
Mrrzy 05 Nov 19 - 05:51 PM
Steve Shaw 05 Nov 19 - 06:18 PM
Steve Shaw 05 Nov 19 - 06:33 PM
Iains 06 Nov 19 - 05:52 AM
Howard Jones 06 Nov 19 - 09:01 AM
Steve Shaw 06 Nov 19 - 09:40 AM
Iains 06 Nov 19 - 10:33 AM
punkfolkrocker 06 Nov 19 - 11:31 AM
Backwoodsman 06 Nov 19 - 11:57 AM
Backwoodsman 06 Nov 19 - 11:58 AM
Acorn4 06 Nov 19 - 12:50 PM
Donuel 06 Nov 19 - 02:38 PM
peteaberdeen 06 Nov 19 - 04:33 PM
Raedwulf 06 Nov 19 - 05:20 PM
Big Al Whittle 06 Nov 19 - 07:35 PM
Iains 07 Nov 19 - 01:19 PM
Raedwulf 07 Nov 19 - 02:36 PM
Big Al Whittle 07 Nov 19 - 05:11 PM
Howard Jones 07 Nov 19 - 06:49 PM
Iains 08 Nov 19 - 03:11 AM
Big Al Whittle 08 Nov 19 - 04:08 AM
Steve Shaw 08 Nov 19 - 04:13 AM
Iains 08 Nov 19 - 04:14 AM
Backwoodsman 08 Nov 19 - 04:17 AM
Jim Carroll 08 Nov 19 - 04:21 AM
Iains 08 Nov 19 - 05:37 AM
banjoman 08 Nov 19 - 06:37 AM
Backwoodsman 08 Nov 19 - 08:17 AM
punkfolkrocker 08 Nov 19 - 09:26 AM
punkfolkrocker 08 Nov 19 - 09:30 AM
Backwoodsman 08 Nov 19 - 11:38 AM
DMcG 08 Nov 19 - 11:46 AM
Backwoodsman 08 Nov 19 - 01:41 PM
DMcG 08 Nov 19 - 01:48 PM
DMcG 08 Nov 19 - 02:02 PM
Backwoodsman 08 Nov 19 - 02:37 PM
Backwoodsman 08 Nov 19 - 02:39 PM
punkfolkrocker 08 Nov 19 - 02:51 PM
Donuel 08 Nov 19 - 04:36 PM
Donuel 08 Nov 19 - 07:19 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Nov 19 - 07:34 PM
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:






Subject: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 01:28 PM

From PM Wilson to Johm Major we had a government of the meritocracy.
Now again, Eton, Oxbridge and Spad is the route to British politics.
This latter ascent roughly mirrors the ascent of comprehensives.
What went wrong?
Posh and Posher.Class and Politics in the UK

I am interested in other's views. What is it that Grammar schools offered that is lacking in comprehensives? Or is there another explanation that modern politics is dominated private schooling and Oxbridge?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 02:00 PM

This has the makings of an interesting thread,
providing personal grudges don't bugger it up...

I don't have time now, but can say I attended both,
and suffered the consequences...

Very strict all boys Grammar school until end of third or fourth year [hazy memory]
Then we were forced to join with the nearest secondary school and go Comprehensive...
Better still, the girls Grammar was included in the package deal..
Sheer teenage anarchy ensued...
hooliganism, vandalism, teachers having breakdowns, electric guitars, snogging...
Just as we should have been gearing up for 0 levels...
I went from near top of the class, to skiving off and failing most exams...!!!
..actually, I didn't even bother turning up for some of them...

That summer holiday required emergency meetings between parents and principle
of the new 6th form college I'd be attending...

Being forced to go through that sudden ill prepared transition from gramar to comprehensive
fucked me up for the rest of my life..
..and my family had their hopes dashed that grammar school would guarantee me
a passport from council estate to a career in the middle class professsions...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 03:43 PM

'What is it that Grammar schools offered that is lacking in comprehensives? Or is there another explanation that modern politics is dominated private schooling and Oxbridge?'

rote learning;, physical violence; acceptance of your lowly position in the feudal society where your oxbrige educated teachers were lords of the manor; a sense of achievement at passing the 11+, for some of us O levels that weren't attainable for sec mod kids.

It was a shitty experience - a sort of 1930's theme park. The teachers were threatening - playing Mr Quelch in a sort of Greyfriars fantasy - and woe to the ones who didn't play along with it. Having said that, it was a crap grammar school.

My wife attended a better one, and her recollections are more positive


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Murpholly
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 04:09 PM

I taught for a while in a secondary school in an area where there were quite a few Grammar Schools, both single sex and mixed. In our Secondary schhol we got quite a large number of O levels and some A levels with pupils going on to teacher training college and a couple to university. I also managed to get some non-readers actually reading. All of this would not have been possible in a comprehensive.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 05:00 PM

Translate to US? I know a public school there is a private school here, but grammar v. comprehensive?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Stanron
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 05:28 PM

Mrrzy wrote: Translate to US? I know a public school there is a private school here, but grammar v. comprehensive?
The Grammar School system preceded the Comprehensive School system. In the Grammar School system 11 year olds were given a series of intelligence tests called the '11 plus'. Those who 'passed' went to Grammar Schools and those who 'failed' went to what were called Secondary Modern schools.

In Grammar schools successful students took 'O level' exams at 16 and, if successful 'A level' exams at 18 and if successful went on to university without having to pay any fees. I think it might have been about 5% of all students went on to university but that might not be correct.

When it worked this system meant that any child from the humblest origins, who passed the right tests, could get a university education free, and with living costs paid for by a government grant.

Some time in the 1970s some 'do-gooders' decided that this was unfair to all those who didn't pass the 11 plus and pushed for 'Comprehensive' schools which were attended by all children.

Eventually the Comprehensive system became predominant although a small number of Grammar Schools still exist.

Some people see this as egalitarianism resulting in a loss of an elite and a race to mediocrity in modern education.

Because of the debts accrued in university education it is unlikely that the very poor but bright kids of today will go to university.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 05:39 PM

Mitzy A grammar school was selective,taking those who passed an exam at age 11. By contrast a comprehensive took children of mixed ability.The documentary linked suggests something was lost during the change to comprehensive education. This has resulted in the political class again being dominated by those that have received a fee paying education.
This is not a healthy trend in a democracy. Our rulers are turning into a self perpetuating elite.

Mr Rees-Mogg denied any claim he reached his present position by nepotism on the basis his father sat in the House of Lords!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 05:51 PM

Thank you.

American schools can't teach more things to smart kids as it is not egalitarian, or some such nonsense.

Glad I went to French school.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 06:18 PM

Well I went to a Catholic direct grant grammar school for boys. When I first arrived there in 1962, I had been the best pupil in my primary school for 20 years (I have my final school report to prove it). I had even been promoted from the third junior form to the fourth, and I came top of that class (of 48) despite being a year below everyone else.

Now I was a secondary teacher for 25 years for my sins, so I am at least able to take a view on my own childhood experience and contrast it with the regime that obtained during my career, whilst at the same time acknowledging that other regimes are available. I can see now that most of my teachers were just terrible. They were dictatorial, authoritarian, punitive, unimaginative and frequently relied on our keeping silent while we copied interminable passages from out-of-date books. For three years I had a chemistry teacher and a biology teacher who never took us into a lab or into the field to do any practical work. The hold they had over both us and our working-class parents ensured that no-one complained. We knew no different. Of course, there were shining exceptions, and they're the teachers you always remember the most. Being a bit of a rebel, I slid downhill for the whole seven years of my secondary education and I wasn't alone. I did OK in the end and got to university, but loads of other lads did better than me, and loads of other lads followed my slippery path and did a lot worse. Only two other lads had passed the eleven-plus along with me at my primary school, and by 15 they had both been expelled.

My teaching career was entirely within comprehensive schools, three in all. There were various strategies for dealing with the wide ability range, we didn't always get it right but we tried, and we always opposed those troglodytes who tried to impose "grammar streams" versus the rest. Given the right support via classroom assistants and decently-small class sizes, mixed-ability teaching can be amazingly successful, and I saw (and was personally involved in) many shining examples of its success.

My strong feeling is thst it's far better for all children to get in there and mix it with the best and the worst. Schools should never be places where cases division is perpetuated. I don't believe in private schools, home schooling, single-sex schools and religious schools. Every one of those concepts will increase division in society. That doesn't mean that I think everyone should end up being a part of the homogeneous same. Not at all. A good education system starts off with the predication that everyone starts off with the same chances. After that, we can develop, and celebrate, different rates of progress an a diversity of progress. Given the resources, of course, at which point any Tory will tell you that all we really want is more money to waste....


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 06:33 PM

class division


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 05:52 AM

To widen the discussion a little

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2017/oct/19/oxbridge-becoming-less-diverse-as-richest-gain-80-of-offers

Is an Oxbdidge degree a measure of intelligence or membership of a largely exclusive moneyed elite?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Howard Jones
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 09:01 AM

How posh is parliament?

it concludes: Clearly, every young person in the UK does not have an equal opportunity to become an MP.”

However, to what extent should that be a realistic expectation? Of course MPs are there to represent their constituents but does that mean that parliament's social make-up should match that of the country as a whole? Being an MP is a peculiar job which requires peculiar talents. Among other things, it requires a certain type of intelligence to understand complicated issues and to handle, even relish, the plotting necessary to achieve success in a political career. Of course, education doesn't equate to intelligence and neither does it always teach the skills a politician needs, but it is unsurprising that MPs tend to be better educated than most, whether through the private or public sectors.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 09:40 AM

Define "better educated," Howard.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 10:33 AM

Seven per cent of the UK population went to private school. But, for years, Parliament has massively over-represented this demographic.
It used to be far worse, though. Back in the 1979, around half of all MPs from the main three parties had been to private school. That included nearly three quarters of Conservatives and more than half of the Lib Dem MPs. Labour has always had a far lower proportion of privately educated MPs, but it has nevertheless remained significantly above the 7 percent national average. According to research by the Sutton Trust, the figures are slowly becoming more representative of the population. Among the current(2017) crop of MPs, 29 per cent are privately educated.

52% went to comprehensive schools, and 17% to grammar schools.
Over one in ten of the privately educated MPs went to Eton.
87% of MPs are UK university graduates, 24% went to Oxford or Cambridge, 30% went to non-Oxbridge Russell Group universities and 33% went to other universities in the UK. Approximately 10% of MPs hold a postgraduate qualification.
45% of Conservative MPs were privately educated, down from 48% in 2015. 15% of 2017 Labour party MPs attended an independent school, down from 16% in 2015.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/general-election-2015/politics-blog/11498660/Revealed-how-many-General-Election-candidates-have


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 11:31 AM

Back in the 70s when me and my mates were involved in bands and youth theatre...
We fancied a group of girls who were sisters of Millfield boys..

The boys were cocky litle dicks who we didn't think were too bright.
At that time our rebuff to their egotistcal sense of superiority was..

"We got to Grammar School because of our own innate better than average intelligence..
You only went to Millfield because of your family's affluence and contacts..."


Yeahh.. accepted.. we were also arrogant young pricks to some extent...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 11:57 AM

Funny thing is, when I was at our local Grammar School, I was never aware of anyone ‘looking down’ on the secondary school kids. In fact, I wished I was at the secondary school because they had girls!

Quite a few of my friends were from the secondary school and, other than the usual inter-school rivalries - who was best at football, athletics, cricket, etc. - the subject of comparative ‘cleverness’ never seemed to arise.

I’ve always had a deep suspicion that it was parental ambition, rather than dissatisfaction, that was at the root of the introduction of the comprehensives.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 11:58 AM

“ rather than dissatisfaction”

Should have been “ rather than pupils’ dissatisfaction” of course.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Acorn4
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 12:50 PM

I went to a boys grammar school where you its seemed you needed 3 things to qualify as a teacher:-

1. A degree from Oxford or Cambridge
2. Some kind of speech impediment which rendered the lessons all but incomprehensible.
3. To be somewhat round the twist.

There were two music teachers both deaf.

One or two really good exceptions however and, on recollection and by way of excusing things a bit, most of them had probably had a hard time of it during the war.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Donuel
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 02:38 PM

In the US we used IQ tests at around 11 to seperate alphas from betas and worker bee deltas, then later a Minnisota Multiphisic Inventory test was used to define older kids abilities and interests. Neither of these tests could measure and contrast dyslexic/autistic genius from excellent test takers.

Mining talent is easy for musical genius', you can hear it, but other abilities can be more challenging to detect, if included at all.

Today we could measure white matter in the brain compared to cerebral cortex if we really need to speculate on who are the young Einsteins.

A public education is considered less preitigious than elite education that includes prepratory and finishing schools but I believe much of its reputation is bologna. Its who you know or who to bribe, more than what you know among the 'elites'.

I like comparing Obama's education to Trump's.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: peteaberdeen
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 04:33 PM

bologna has a high academic reputation - am i right in thinking that the world's first university was there? and a good reputation for food and political awareness - hence 'red' bologna. and it's beautiful


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Raedwulf
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 05:20 PM

Politics has never been a meritocracy. Without, as pfr wisely cautions, having a personal grudge, or even bias, the premise of the thread is wholly flawed.

Politics is, and always has been, about "Does your face fit". I can easily go on at length but, for once, shan't (huge sighs of relief all round, I'm sure {bg}). Just think about it. Who gets to stand for election? Someone whose face fits. "When a new party turns up...", I can hear the thought crossing some minds. A new party either fades or establishes; if it establishes, then who gets to stand is still whose face fits for that party.

Politics is the art of the possible; a famous & accurate quote. Because politics is fought with words, it's always made sense to select candidates from the better educated. They have more words, generally; they are better at being rational, about expressing their ideas & ideals, generally; they are better at thinking about whether what they are about to say is going to add or subtract, generally (Rees-Muppet is currently providing a shining exception to the generally!).

None of that makes politics a 'meritocracy'. It is the nature of things that if leadership is not simply a matter of brute force, as it sometimes is / has been, it will naturally fall to those more able to think things through & able to persuade the flock of their point of view, fitness, virtues, etc.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 07:35 PM

I wrote a song about the 11plus.


https://soundcloud.com/denise_whittle/grammarschoolpuppydog


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 07 Nov 19 - 01:19 PM

Raedwulf. I would argue that a consummate politcian has two essential qualities:
The ability to think on the feet.
The ability to speak in public in what is often a boisterous heckling environment.

The average school produces few with these qualities, the public schools an abundance.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Raedwulf
Date: 07 Nov 19 - 02:36 PM

Iain - this time, I wouldn't disagree with you, but that still doesn't make politics a meritocracy, does it? Politics is only a meritocracy in the same sense that every other walk of life is i.e. those that are good at it go further. Only the best footballers get Premier League wages, only the 'best' (spot the cynic! ;-) ) managers get to be FTSE 100 directors & CEO's, etc.

It may well be true that public schools, for many reasons, produce more 'leaders' in various spheres. But then again, I'm sure I don't need to explain to you how that is a statistic that, like the worm Ouroboros, can be made to eat its own tail! ;-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 07 Nov 19 - 05:11 PM

I'm sorry I don't understand the point you're making Iains.

The over representation of the public schoolboys and Oxbrige in the running of our country. Do you think its a good thing or a bad thing. I'm not sure...?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Howard Jones
Date: 07 Nov 19 - 06:49 PM

By "better educated" I meant having broad knowledge of a range of subjects, having been taught to think logically, analyse an issue objectively and present an argument persuasively. That does not necessarily depend on which school someone went to, but going to a school or university which can consistently instil those in its pupils is likely to considerably achieve ones chances of acquiring them.

However my real point was that politics is a profession which requires a certain amount of intellectual ability (although some do a very good job of concealing this). The idea implicit in the original question, that the composition of parliament should somehow reflect the whole of society, is misguided. Some members of society are, lets face it, thick as mince, and whilst that does not disqualify them from being decent people it should disqualify them from being MPs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 03:11 AM

Big Al having a series of PM's from a restricted social class cannot be ideal. Such a state of affairs cannot possibly be a meritocracy. If top talent is required for the job( a meritocracy) then all niches of society should be included. Having a winnowing process to select MPs, where the wheat is the public schools and the chaff is the remaining grammar schools and comprehensives can hardly merit the term meritocracy. Wilson, Callaghan, Heath and even Major were all grammar schoolboys and were all exceedingly intelligent. Wilson the youngest Oxford Don of the century, Major from lowly insurance clerk to Standard Chartered executive. With the exception of Major, all the PMs from Wilson to Major had Oxbridge degrees.
These PMs mentioned were the meritocracy in action but it did not last,we are back to the connections of the public schools to smooth the way.I suspect Wilson to Major were highly intelligent people and hence rose above the public schoolboy dross to gain the highest office.
It was a time when the apples reigned supreme, now we have the oranges screwing up the scene again. I do not think any MP can afford to be stupid, misguided perhaps. We have our MPs thrust upon us for the most part. Do we select them on raw talent or on the basis of who they know,and who imposed them on us. I would argue the system is deeply flawed and needs a root and branch revision. Is our Mp selection based on intelligence(and other qualities) or their affiliations formed before they became selected?
Superficially we seem to have three routes to becoming an MP
1)Public schools
2)Council officials
3)Trade Union Officials
and latterly a forth route via SPAD


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 04:08 AM

SPAD...?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 04:13 AM

It's a posh person's potato, Al.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 04:14 AM

SPAD:A special adviser works in a supporting role to the British government. With media, political or policy expertise, their duty is to assist and advise government ministers. They are often referred to as "SpAds" or "Spads". Being a special adviser has become a frequent career stage for young politicians, before being elected Members of Parliament, which has attracted criticism in recent years.

Special advisers are paid by central government and are styled as so-called "temporary civil servants" appointed under Article 3 of the Civil Service Order in Council 1995. They contrast with "permanent" civil servants in the respect that they are political appointees whose loyalties are claimed by the governing party and often particular ministers with whom they have a close relationship. For this reason, advisers may resign when a general election is called to campaign on behalf of their party.Special advisers have sometimes been criticised for engaging in advocacy while still on the government payroll or switching directly between lobbying roles and the special adviser role.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 04:17 AM

SPecial ADvisor.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 04:21 AM

Anybody enjoy the kicking the Tory (silent) mouthpiece was given as much as I did on last night's 'Question Time'
If not - watch the repeat - very heartening
Jim


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Iains
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 05:37 AM

Anybody enjoy Corbyn making a prat of himself yesterday, while on the stump? Not very edifying.
I guess the conversation goes to hell now the troublemaker is on scene.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: banjoman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 06:37 AM

Having suffered the cruelty and forced by a cane or taws wielded by a "Christian Brother" in the 1950's I eventually was challenged by one to a Boxing Match. I won and was beaten for it. Anyway, I know of at least four of my mates who got to university despite all that and ended up as teachers. One is also an ex local councillor and another served as an MP


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 08:17 AM

When punishment was to be meted out at my GS, Many of the teachers would give the option of lines (usually several hundred, at least twenty words long, and to be written backroads and forwards alternately), detention (Friday after school, usually an hour, sometimes more), or a specified number of whacks with a plimsole, cricket-stump, etc.

On the occasions when I had transgressed, I always elected for the whacks, on the basis that the whacks were over and done with in a few seconds, whereas lines or detention stole large chunks of time which I could put to better use.

Perhaps I have a low pain threshold, but it never bothered me apart from the initial few seconds until the sting began to subside, and I hold no grudges against the teachers involved - I’m pretty sure I got what I deserved.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 09:26 AM

The BIG punishment we feared most was "expulsion"..
which would mean being sent back down to our local estate Secondary Modern,
where old primary school mates we had to leave behind now hated us for becoming 'posh snobs'...

That fear was always there when sent to the headmaster's office for fighting..

Fortunately all I ever got from the head was a severe telling off and warnings...
He was firm but fair..

What we had to beware though was arbitrary sneaky smacks to the back of our heads
with a text book from the Maths/Games teacher...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 09:30 AM

We used to provoke one trainee teacher into giving us lines,
so we could be held in at breaks with him.
That was an oportunity we made most of to torment him even more...

I guesss in hindsight, we were taking out our fear and hatred of other teachers
on this poor young sap...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 11:38 AM

Funny, pfr, I never hated any of my teachers - even the one who pulled you out from behind your desk by twisting and pulling the short hairs just above your ear, and dragging you to the door by them, before shoving you through it and telling you to report to The Boss for a knackering.

The teachers I remember most fondly are the ones who were the strictest, and the freest with corporal punishment. And the one I remember most fondly, is the then-young PE teacher who kept a foot-long piece of garden-hose, with a piece of wood pushed into it as a handle, in his office, which he used to administer punishment to transgressors. From my leaving school, he and I became, at first, ‘good acquaintances’ who stopped and had a few words when we met around the town, and later, friends who met only occasionally but enjoyed a couple of pints in each others’ company when we did meet.

Very odd, but true.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: DMcG
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 11:46 AM

When punishment was to be meted out at my GS, Many of the teachers would give the option of lines (usually several hundred, at least twenty words long, ..

Ah, ingrained in my mind was the classic 'line' the whole class was set on one occasion. 1000 please, of:

Natural phenomena are to be marvelled at but not to be discussed unless discussion is appropriate."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 01:41 PM

DMcG, the standard at my school was, “The inability to maintain a civilised level of decorum in the classroom is a regrettable flaw in the character of a schoolboy”!

Forwards and backwards, X-hundred times...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: DMcG
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 01:48 PM

Can you explain what you mean by backwards. Do you write that then "yobloohcs .." Or "schoolboy a of character...".


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: DMcG
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 02:02 PM

Also (meandering off topic, but following up friendships with teachers.)

The standard punishment in my school was a few strokes of a leather strap about 1cm thick, 3cm wide and perhaps 30cm long. I was really interested in Chemistry - to the extent of borrowing textbooks from the Public library, which I preferred to novels - but I was not interested in drawing pictures of Bunsen burners or Blast furnaces. So my Chemistry teacher and I soon settled into a routine where every week I did not do the homework and every week he would strap me. But I was also a member of the British Association of Young Scientists (BAYS) and through that got involved in computing and set up a group at school under his authority. So we had two quite separate relationships: since he had no specific computing experience I was in effect teaching him and it was entirely amicable and friendly- in the end I wrote the syllabus for a CSE exam - and in the other he was 'strapping' me every week...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 02:37 PM

”Can you explain what you mean by backwards. Do you write that then "yobloohcs .." Or "schoolboy a of character...".”

So.....

The inability to maintain a civilised level of decorum is a regrettable flaw in the character of a schoolboy.
Schoolboy a of character the in flaw regrettable a is decorum of level civilised a maintain to inability the.
The inability to maintain a civilised level of decorum is a regrettable flaw in the character of a schoolboy.
Schoolboy a of character the in flaw regrettable a is decorum of level civilised a maintain to inability the.

Etc., etc.

Done that way in order to make the writing of the lines downwards, one word at a time, more difficult.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 02:39 PM

...and therefore extend the time that was taken to accomplish the punishment task.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 02:51 PM

I don't think I got enough corporal punishment at school to join the tory party ...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 04:36 PM

Nationalities and cultures aside, we are usually measured by tests.
Most of the testing I endured seemed to want to measure who were the followers who would be the leaders to carry out orders and who were the lone troublemakers. Personality inventories measured anything but personality. MEASURING SUBJECT MATTER MASTERY IS AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT THING. I'm talking about things like what Naval Intel or the CIA tests were like desperately trying to hide their agenda.
I hope that the scales that weigh ability is more advanced today.
Most people have a high intelligence in one localized area. Outside of that one area there is often a vast wasteland. The merits of a jeopardy champion who has an omni command of facts is not my idea of practaical intelligence or wisdom.

In conclusion the people who excel or go into politics are usually the very people who should not be in politics. Those who seek to control or have power are the least likely to benefit civilization.
There is a strong likelyhood that those who seek CEO status are social psychopaths. Thats why the real social leaders be it Mandella, Ghandi or MLK tend to be imprisoned or martyrs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 07:19 PM

"power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absoutely"
Cpt. Obvious

Talent or future talent may have no measurement.
You may have to wait for the flower to bloom.

Even Poker can't be played by mathamatics alone.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: BS: meritocracy dead in British Politics?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 07:34 PM

Let's get it right.

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men."

Cheers.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
 


You must be a member to post in non-music threads. Join here.


You must be a member to post in non-music threads. Join here.



Mudcat time: 14 November 5:22 AM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.