The brutality of stupidity

If you ever wanted to see a synthesis of the ideas expressed in the fiction of Kafka and Orwell, you need look no further than the Post Office and this government. Kafka’s protagonists, accused of non-existent crimes by a brutal bureaucratic behemoth, a ministry of lies, have escaped the realm of dark imagination and become reality. For the poor sub-postmasters, only just beginning to emerge from their nightmare, there are encouraging signs that justice will be served, and hopefully adequate compensation paid; and the guilty, especially the egregious Paula Vennells, will be brought to account and punished for their malice and dishonesty. You’d think that the Post Office and the many other organisations who behave badly were run by daleks, but no, human beings are in charge. But instead of acting like humans, they are prepared to cause immeasurable harm to others to protect a ‘brand’, keep the big salaries and bonuses flowing and cover their arses. They knowingly made false accusations which led to financial ruin, imprisonment (a pregnant woman in one case) and the suicides of at least four who could not bear the stress.

Are there any parallels in UK universities, especially Kingston? Yes, of course there are. It’s a question of scale. Staff have not been illegally prosecuted in their hundreds, nor been victims of cover-ups of seriously flawed software (though Kingston staff have had to put up with plenty of dodgy IT). But at least one academic has been driven to suicide at Imperial. And the non-disclosure agreements that Kingston pinched from dodgy companies always suspend the threat of court action over the signatories. Universities around the country, including Kingston, have harried and bullied their staff, delivered summary sackings (see some past Blog posts), generally made our lives a misery. Who can forget the principal lecturer abuse in which they were made to reapply for their jobs, or those forced to reapply in a forlorn effort to save their livelihoods when management shrunk schools? Certainly not those who suffered under such a brutal regime. Think of all the bullying heads of faculty we’ve had here — Tuninga in Business, Edith Sim in Computing, to name just two, both long gone thankfully. You will no doubt have your own bête noires in mind. And what do the faceless ones on the Board of Governors do? Like the PO’s board — nod everything through and look the other way.

As with the Post Office, money and reputation are at the forefront of the machine minds of Kingston’s management. The stupidity of it all is that they, like the PO managers, think they can get away with their dalek contempt without causing long term damage to the organisation’s function and reputation. Too many times in the past dodgy people have moved on, leaving the ruins of their actions behind them. In the case of Vennells her past looks set to catch her up, a priest about to feel the flames of her diabolical actions. Spiers and co. may be too low profile to face the disgrace they deserve. We can but hope.

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5 Responses to The brutality of stupidity

  1. Miss Mary says:

    Update from shit hill

    The new interim HOS Jane clueless is busy telling everyone that she knows nothing, has no answers and will try to find out from Helen shitville who nurses ambitions to be VC (virtual clown). Brain on lease and my lovely not so young and not so smart has been joined by a Spanish Frankenstein monster who people tell me is so hyper that some folks have set up GP appointments to check their BP after spending 5 minutes with her
    The entire SMG (shitty manipulative group) looks like ole white girly band from 1950s with dresses to match. This is no different from ole gastric old men forming the SMG 15 years ago.

    Dean Dandy refuses to meet or do anything while Sex pest Northern Napoleon is controlling all these oldies with his toxic masculinity.

    The entire KBS smells like an ole whore house with nasty creepy madams

  2. Townhouse Tart says:

    Authoritarian leadership styles abound in prof services too with a Trump – Hyacinth Bucket hybrid currently ruling the roost and upsetting course leaders by slashing their entry reqs (sorry, ‘removing barriers’).

  3. Former Kingston Board of Governors members Jerry Cope and Gren Collings had been top officials at Royal Mail/Post Office, and their favorite in-house Chief Counsel, Michael Zuke then became Employment Tribunal Judge, likely in no small part due to the recommendations of Mssrs Cope and Collings. Lo and behold, nearly all cases heard by the Tribunal involving claims against Kingston University were mysteriously assigned to Judge Zuke, and, of course, we know how that turned out for the claimants.
    Then, of course, is the sad case of Diana Winstanley, one of Britain’s leading experts on ethical practices in HR Management, who, despite being mother to two young children, allegedly committed suicide after attending a training session for newly appointed Kingston University senior staff, at which they were instructed by then HR Director, Liz Lanchberry in Stasi-inspired methods for eliminating troublesome junior staff by gaslighting them until they either resigned on health grounds or acted out, thereby justifying dismissal for good cause.
    And then the University hired the Chair of the Board of Governors of a primary school, who lost public funding after they were found to be a front for now-proscribed Hizb ut Tahrir indoctrination to investigate a Jewish staff member, writing multiple successively more damning “independent” reports to justify dismissal. When this staff member went public in a press interview about the connection between the University and this rather dodgy HT-connected investigator, who’d also been previously kicked out of the Labour party for manufacturing ghost voters, and who’d committed other misdeeds in his role as a CAB director, the wife of the staff member was attacked in the streets of Kingston, with death threats issued. Hmmm…
    Then there was the fact that a certain former VC had apparently ordered the sending of threatening letters by the then University Secretary to said staff member, his wife and solicitor, resulting in private prosecution criminal charges authorized by a panel of magistrates following a closed door hearing, only to see the matter swooped up by a certain DPP, and current political leader, and unceremoniously dropped.
    There have been some serious nefarious scandals at this University. But stay tuned, you will soon be hearing more about this in a medium that may surprise you.

  4. Dismayed says:

    Perhaps the Dean or that overpaid idiot Spiersy should put KBS into special measures? It sounds like its a horrible place to work.

  5. Miss Mary says:

    If you want to see Project Stupid look no further than KBS and it’s circus of clowns. The new interim HOS sources say is totally inadequate and out of depth. Dean Dandy is out of action and nowhere to be seen. The repulsive sex hound former HOS the Northern Napoleon is still giving orders to his sleeper cells to self destruct KBS with brain on lease and my lovely not so young and not so sharp head of disaster primary clowns.

    The league of overpaid and underperforming professors are even bigger drag on KBS with classic clowns like Down-Hill, Frenchies, stalking hand ( another creep from whom all females should be protected) and Italian fatso. all should have been sacked like years ago

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