Thursday, July 7, 2011

PME - It Could be Worse. A LOT LOT Worse

How much worse I hear you cry? How about granting a PhD, in political science no less, to the son of a dictator who is currently mowing his people down in the streets? Dissertation title? "Operation Regime Stay: Convincing the West You Can Change Your Spots While You Exterminate the Opposition" - no but it might as well have been. But wait... thats not all.... During the course of mini-me's time at the school the family foundation donated millions to the school. Buying a degree? How could you think such a thing?

It gets worse.... No really, it does. Having taken millions from the dictator and given mini-me a PhD you might think that holding a "Seminar" with the great leader might be going a tad too far (by video conference of course because he was too afraid of being arrested for his crimes against humanity - including proven acts of terrorism against the University's host country). How about throwing in a fawning academic (allegedly on the dictator's gravy train) to praise his longevity in power (sans election naturally).

Any guesses yet? Kim Jong Il Polytechnic? The Stalin Academy of Human Rights? The Pol Pot Center for the Study of Human Kindness?
NO! The LSE of course! Oh and yes the whole seminar was video taped.... Student riots? Not very likely... just more apologies. "Its all in hindsight" - that's right there was no track record whatsoever of Ghadaffi doing anything wrong prior to 2011. This from students at a British university. I wonder what the good burghers of Lockerbie might think of their tax dollars funding LSE.

While daddy threatens a new round of terrorism aimed at European capitals, mini-me's greatest accomplishment of late, forgive me Dr Gaddafi (PhD, LSE), was a political science discourse on the rivers of blood he and daddy will  - "We will fight to the last minute, until the last bullet.. We will eradicate [the rebels]". One wonders if the eradication program does not go to plan whether Dr Gaddafi will be offered a Chair of Genocide Studies at LSE?

OK so Gaddafi was brought back into the fold by the West between Lockerbie and the revolt in Libya. Western leaders rushed to embrace him, or at least the contracts their firms could lock up in the embrace. The LSE got a contract to spin a PR campaign for the dictator and hold a series of seminars etc. Questionable, especially in light of mini-me's PhD, but no crimes. The thing that really niggles me is the fawning on this monster - it is one thing to be polite if you have to run a seminar in the interests of free speech and putting alternative points of view (which I think is very important) even if they are anathema. But its another thing to treat the speaker like a hero. Imagine Columbia University fawning on Ahmadinejad when he spoke there? I am also shocked that some of Britain's top political thinkers could be so easily compromised. This was not a bunch of administrators who didnt really know history or international affairs - this was a group of top thinkers who put cash before principle pure and simple. PME might have its problems but on the whole we can be pretty proud of our work.

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