31 December 2011

Who cares?

Recent remarks by the Care Services Minister, Paul Burstow, express the warmest goodwill towards unpaid carers who help elderly relatives. But there is something suspicious about this, as about recent expressions of outrage that house owners who go into care homes should be forced to sell their houses to pay their fees, so that their children will be deprived of their inheritance.

We know that, as a population with above-average IQ, pensioners do not attract sympathy, but are scapegoats and whipping boys. So if a Care Services Minister sounds as if he wants to do them good, we must ask ourselves what is his real motivation. It is a case of ‘Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes’, ‘I fear the Greeks when they come bearing gifts’, as a Trojan is supposed to have said when he saw the Greeks, enemies of Troy, bringing a wooden horse (the Trojan horse). When taken into Troy as a harmless gift, armed warriors emerged from it in the night.

Now we may suppose that not only are pensioners personae non gratae, but also that those who are most likely to give them unpaid help are likely to be relatives with above-average IQs. So the object of the exercise is certainly to prevent pensioners in need of help from getting any, at least not without falling into the power of the Welfare State and surrendering their liberty. Also, no doubt, there is an intention to prevent the carers from deriving any benefit from exerting themselves on behalf of their relatives. It might, for example, be preventing their relative from impoverishing himself, perhaps selling his house, in order to obtain paid help from the Welfare State or the free market. And the unpaid carers, or other relatives with relatively high IQs, might then inherit more assets than if they had failed to provide for the needs of the relative.

Clearly, no Care Services Minister could want this to happen. So carers must be protected against themselves; they must not be allowed to decide for themselves what has priority in their lives.

And, after all, what is the real underlying motivation? Nothing to do with health and well-being, we may be sure. The object of socialism is to destroy freedom. A pensioner and relatives who are looking after him probably have relatively high IQs and some middle-class or upper-class relatives not too far back. They are sitting on a chunk of assets, maybe more than one house, and investments, and this chunk will not be diminished so long as they do not pay money to outside workers or sell a house to pay for a state care home, etc.

So the assets will pass on to a population also with above-average IQs, their descendants. What can be done about this? The carers might wish to live in hardship for a time for the sake of the long-term rewards. However, they must not be allowed to work harder than other people decree is good for them. (My education was ruined by people who ostensibly wanted to save me from working too hard.)

The NHS will have to 'cooperate with carers'? But surely that can only mean that carers will be forced into meeting doctors (!) and getting their permission for everything they do. The doctors will say what the carers will be allowed to do, and that which is not allowed to be done by them will presumably need to be paid for. With any luck that chunk of assets will crumble to nothing, long before it might be inherited.

29 December 2011

The welfare wolves close in

As has been pointed out, pensioners are fair game for anything because they constitute a population with an above-average IQ. At the start of their lives, they are exposed to compulsory education, but at the end of it they are free, with whatever assets they have managed to retain after living for so many decades in the oppressive society. This cannot be allowed.

Britain’s army of unpaid carers are to get new rights to protect their health and wellbeing under plans being considered by the Government.

More than six million people care for loved ones, friends and neighbours but many fail to get the recognition and support they need, say campaigners.

For the first time, plans to reform the social care system, due to be published next spring, will make carers’ needs a priority (Daily Mail, 28 December 2011)

But we know what ‘rights’ and ‘needs’ mean. If you are given a ‘right’, society is given the ‘right’ to force you to have what you have a ‘right’ to.

In the spring, Sainsbury’s will pilot a scheme in 14 of its London stores to identify hidden carers who may need support.

I have already commented on the disgusting idea of having supermarket staff trained to ask ‘unobtrusive’ questions without revealing their motive for doing so. Any supermarket that involves itself in persecution of this kind should be boycotted. I hope Sainsbury’s sales will drop significantly on this piece of news.

The Care Services Minister, Paul Burstow, says disarmingly:

Without the support of relatives and friends, many people who aren’t able to look after themselves would not be able to stay at home.

(Unspoken implication: we will be able to close in on them so much better if it is made illegal for them to get unpaid ‘help’.)

The Care Services Minister continued:

Carers should have their needs looked after as much as the person they are caring for. A carer’s health often suffers because they don’t have time to look after themselves. Some often don’t have time to eat properly. So it’s vital we support them to look after their health and wellbeing.

As ever, any amount of coercion and interference is justifiable because it is assumed that the motives of all agents of the collective are benevolent.

The NHS will have to cooperate with carers, and those being cared for, to ensure their needs are assessed in a bid to make their lives easier.

One proposal is for the rights of carers to be put on a firmer footing so that in social care law they have similar rights to the people they care for.

This could entail pledges to facilitate the wishes of carers who want to stay in employment, while young carers could be given help to stay in education.

Carers must, of course, be given help to enable them to stop caring at all, and to subject themselves to socially approved ways of spending their time, especially of course educational incarceration.

Who wants the NHS taking an interest in their health and well-being? I certainly do not. Why should the NHS be regarded as benevolent? Its motivation is a composite of those who run and work in it. I certainly do not regard the motivation towards me of the man in the street or of the average politician as benevolent; and that of qualified medical sadists is even more likely to be malevolent, since they are willing to work for financial reward in an oppressive and immoral capacity.

What would relieve the stress on carers much more effectively than interference, medical or otherwise, would be to restore pensions to something more like what the pensioners who paid into them for forty years or more might have expected.

Suppose the basic (non-means-tested) state pension were raised from about £5K per annum to about £15K per annum – then every pensioner would have an extra £10K per annum to spend on paid help, delivered meals, etc, which would certainly relieve the burden on many carers, at present unpaid.

If carers are given a right to have their needs assessed, will they also have a right to refuse assessment of their needs?

23 December 2011

Lucid dreams, Disney, and a new philosophy department

copy of a letter to a salaried philosopher

I suppose a Philosophy Department would be the most obvious thing for my incipient (squashed and suppressed) independent university to start with. It is incredible that no university anywhere has taken any interest, nor any sufficiently wealthy individual.

On the face of it, a Philosophy Department is cheaper to set up than a Science Department, which makes it less good from our point of view. The larger the scale of the operation, the easier to include a dining hall and kitchens, and live-in staff.

A further shocking reminder of our continued lack of support (not to mention hostility towards us) is provided by the fact that lucid dreams are now part of the popular culture, as well as continuing to provide an area of research for many salaried academics. A recent episode of a popular new Disney cartoon series, evidently expected to reach a wide audience, starts with one of the main characters having some odd experiences, then saying, ‘Oh, this must be one of those lucid dreams.’

I was shocked when I first found that lucid dreams were being taken up by various American academics without the slightest benefit to me, and I have been more amazed the longer lucid dreams have continued to receive attention (of a kind – though not of such a kind as to advance understanding of them, or to provide the slightest opportunity to any of us).

As you know, I worked on them in bad circumstances as the best thing I could find with which to regain entry to a suitable academic career.

I do not think you, or any other senior academic, should find the continuance of our cold-shouldered position acceptable.

David Cameron is proposing to spend about half a billion pounds on advising ‘problem families’, and it is long odds that this will do no good to anyone, in fact it may make things somewhat worse. But that amount of money, although small for setting up a full-scale university with several research departments, would enable me and some other downtrodden people with high IQs to use our abilities to be productive.

16 December 2011

NHS budget ‘to rise for ever’

Andrew Lansley last night warned that NHS spending may have to rise for ever, simply to keep pace with rising life expectancy.

The Health Secretary told the Spectator magazine he was not satisfied with managing to get a real-terms rise in health spending for this Parliament – he wanted to see increases in the years beyond. Mr Lansley said the NHS was still immune from cuts, even though other departments were having to cut back on spending.

He added: ‘We have been very clear that the NHS is going to have real terms increases year on year. We have a profile of rising demographics and demand and cost pressures and technology in the NHS.’

Asked whether he believed that spending would have to rise in real terms every year from now ‘until kingdom come’, he said: ‘I believe so.’ (Daily Mail, 14 December 2011)
This is misdirection of attention in order to focus attention and blame on those of pensionable age – a population with above-average IQs. The ‘rising demographics’ referred to – rising expectation of life – may owe something to the increasing number of people who reach pensionable age as a result of NHS expenditure throughout their lives, rather than as a result of their own genetic endowment and prudent life-style. But is the expectation of life not also somewhat reduced by the ever-increasing population of life dependents? Kept alive at considerable expense, the genetically dysfunctional must, statistically, have a below-average expectation of life.
And surely this ever-growing population must contribute far more to the increasing costs of the NHS (and also of ‘education’ and other forms of ‘welfare’) than does the population of pensioners which statistically has an above-average IQ, and is hence the most convenient scapegoat.
On page 23 of the same issue of the Daily Mail there is a report on the case of a girl who has died at 13 after a short lifetime of painful and expensive medical treatments, reduced in her case by her convincing her parents that she would prefer to be free to get what she could out of life without treatment (at least without the most expensive treatment, which kept her in constant pain).
How does the life expectancy of those who never have a normal expectation of life, but are kept alive as victims of the NHS, affect the overall life expectancy figures?
* * *
The state pension system was not originally part of the (oppressive) Welfare State, but mimicked commercial schemes, in which what you paid in was supposed to be what determined what was to be paid out to you at a certain predetermined age, whether or not it provided adequately for your ‘needs’, as determined either by your own aims in life, or by what other people would consider acceptable.
As the costs of the Welfare State, and its growing population of dependents, increased, the state pension was brought under the umbrella of Welfare by being retrospectively means-tested. This brought the population of pensioners, with its above-average IQ, into play as an acceptable scapegoat on whom the rising costs of the NHS etc. could be blamed.
So long as they had commercial-type pensions they were outside the benefits system, and pensions were paid ‘as of right’. That is the reason that I, as a victim of state-funded ’education’, made voluntary contributions for so many years.
Now attention can be focussed on this above-average population as the cause of the rising costs.
* * *
Further misdirection of attention is in asserting that it is not ‘fair’ that those who go into ‘care homes’ should have to sell their houses (if they have them) to pay for the ‘care’ they receive. This, of course, will lead to families being deprived of their inheritance.
Families are said to be ‘betrayed’ by care home funding, which leads to many pensioners being forced to sell their homes. This is described as a ‘scandal’, and it is hoped that a ‘fairer’ system can be devised. This rhetoric in itself should make one aware that a misdirection of attention is involved.
The population of those who reach pensionable age, and have homes to sell, are a population with an above-average IQ; so will their offspring be. So surely the modern mind can see nothing ‘unfair’ in a relatively high-IQ population being deprived of the inheritance it might have had from its parents, also with (statistically) above-average IQs. It is the obtaining of advantages from a previous generation of above-average people which is regarded as unfair, surely? How can ‘fairness’ be increased by transferring assets from one relatively high-IQ population to another?
And so we infer that these expressions of concern that homes will be lost to some of those who might have inherited them must have an ulterior motive. What is presumably aimed at is justification for an additional tax of some kind, resulting in the usual transfer of resources to a relatively low-IQ population.
It is suggested that what a pensioner pays towards his care home fees should be ‘capped’ with ‘the state stepping in’ to pay the rest. That means taxpayers stepping in to pay the rest, including pensioners who do not go into care homes. ‘In a further blow Health Secretary Andrew Lansley refused to rule out a pensioner tax to pay for old age care.’ Aha! This idea – an extra tax on those above retirement age, mooted in the Dilnot Report – approaches more closely the principle of transferring assets from the relatively high to relatively low IQs.
The population of pensioners who do not go into care homes at all may be expected to have higher average IQs than those who do go into them and have homes they might be required to sell, because the former are likely to have better genetic constitutions, have lived more prudently and/or successfully, or because they have devoted relatives, which are all factors likely to be correlated with high IQs.
So it may be seen as ‘fair’ that those pensioners who do not go into care homes should be taxed in order to transfer assets to those who do go into them.
This is no doubt the real reason for blaming the rise in life expectancy of pensioners for the increasing costs of the NHS, so that as usual a population of people with above-average IQs can be penalised for the benefit of a population with below-average IQs.
As for changing demographics, figures for life expectancy are usually quoted in relation to specific ages. E.g. people who are 50 now have a life expectancy of so much. But by the ages one sees quoted, the majority of those with a low life expectancy at birth are likely to have died off, although not before being a considerable drain on the NHS, state education (with ‘special needs’ tutors?), etc. Clearly these are an important part of the real demography, usually left out of the discussion. Those who are still alive at pensionable age (a population with a relatively high average IQ) are certainly not responsible for the rise in the costs of the NHS caused by the genetically dysfunctional (a population with a low average IQ).

Two footnotes

notes on photos of my parents

1. My father missed getting a First by one mark. There was an easy explanation of a shortfall in his marks, but the examiners made no allowance for it, and awarded him second class honours. There was no oral examination for borderline cases at London University in those days, as there was at Oxford and Cambridge.

In fact he had arrived 40 minutes late for the practical exam, to which he had to travel on an unaccustomed Tube route. He was working too hard in the Gas Works to try out the route in advance, and missed a connection on the day of the exam.

2. Classes taught by my mother were getting such good results that she was expected to become a headmistress almost immediately, in spite of some resentful grumbling among other teachers to the effect that she must be ‘pushing’ her pupils.

06 December 2011

Photos of my parents

My parents were great people (‘great’ in the old-fashioned sense) who had terrible lives. Like me, they were models of what the modern world most wishes to destroy, having aristocratic genes and high IQs. They were very idealistic, honest and responsible, perhaps too much so for their own good (or for mine). Here are a few photographs which may convey more than is easy to verbalise.

William Alfred Green, aged 15
The first is of my father (William Alfred Green) at the age of 15. He must have left the East Ham Grammar School by then, since the school-leaving age was 14, and his ostensible father did not want to support him for a moment longer than was necessary. So he left school and home, as his ostensible father (an engine-driver) had taken a mistress and did not want to have any children from his former family living at home after their ‘mother’ had died.
My father was the youngest and the only one still living at home. His ‘mother’ (who may have been an aunt) died when my father was 12. From the age of 14 onwards, my father supported himself by working very long hours as a junior (hack) chemist at the Beckton Gas Works, preparing at night school for the equivalent of the exams taken at 16 and 18. He did his homework on the Tube train which he took to get to the night school.
Then, also from night school, he took an Honours degree in chemistry, externally from London University. As he was very tired from his day’s work at the gas works, he found this difficult, in spite of his high IQ, and did not take the degree until he was 24. [1]
He disliked the working-class environment in which he grew up, and felt a strong need to rise in the world. His ‘mother’ was an invalid until she died, so she cannot have contributed much in the way of emotional support.
He read very few books while he was living at home, in fact I do not think he can ever have had time to read many. Nevertheless he came top of the borough in the grammar school scholarship.
He was fortunate to meet my mother (Dorothy Elizabeth Green, née Cleare), when they were both 14, at the East Ham Grammar School. She was precocious and brilliantly maternal, and must have supplied at least some of the deficits which resulted from the insecurities of his early life.

William Green and Dorothy Green (on left)
The second photograph shows them together, in their late teens, on a seaside holiday, or more likely weekend break. They both look older than I was told they were, which sometimes results from high IQs. In my father’s case the discrepancy with his chronological age is particularly marked, which probably results from the hardships of his early life, and from his continuing to work hard in his determination to rise in the world by taking a degree, in the first instance. At the time this photo was taken my mother was probably at the teacher training college, and the third person in the photograph (on the right) was at the college with her. This person later became a teacher at the primary school at the docks of which my father was then headmaster.

William Green at East Ham Grammar School
The third photo shows my father with other teachers at the East Ham Grammar School (middle of back row). He would now have been in his late twenties, having completed his degree but found no prospects open to him. With my mother’s support, he had hastily qualified as a teacher in the last year that this was possible without attending a two-year residential course, as my mother had done.
His hopes of rising to an adequate position in society had, however, been destroyed, and my mother married him when they were both about 24, recognising, I think, his need for support in living out his ruined life. This was damaging to her own prospects of a successful teaching career, although she continued to work as a supply teacher until I was born. [2]

02 December 2011

Hitting the high-IQs (as usual)

There are complaints that George Osborne’s ‘Austerity Budget’ fails to provide sufficient protection for ‘the most vulnerable’ sections of the population. Populations regarded as ‘vulnerable’ and ‘deserving of protection’ are highly correlated with ‘populations with the lowest average IQ’.

Confirming that most benefits will rise in line with inflation, Mr Osborne insisted the move was ‘fair and affordable’ and would protect the most vulnerable in society.

The Chancellor is understood to have stuck to plans to uprate benefits after seeing polling which confirms that capping or freezing benefits for the unemployed or other groups – such as the disabled – would be very unpopular. (Daily Mail, 30th November 2011)

Pensioners have always been a useful target for cuts in benefits and increases in taxation as, whatever modifications are made in living circumstances, the population which reaches pensionable age continues to have an average IQ which is higher than that of the population as a whole.

The result of such cuts is that this population will have less money with which to provide support and assistance for its offspring, and reduced assets to leave to them. And, if there is a genetic component to IQ and associated characteristics, reducing the advantages of this population will tend in the direction of reducing the proportion of the population as a whole which has above-average IQs.

Similarly, a population which has its income reduced by the austerity budget is that of those earning over a certain amount (£40,000 p.a. or in some cases £26,000) who will no longer be eligible for child benefit. Those with lower incomes will continue to receive child benefit, in fact it will be increased by the full rate of inflation as measured by the CPI.

Thus those who ‘need’ it most will continue to receive it. Those who have incomes above a certain level will no longer do so, but they are supposed to ‘need’ it less.

It may be noted that this achieves a further shift of resources from a population with a higher average IQ to one with a lower one, and (if there should happen to be an inherited element in IQ) this will, as usual, tend in the direction of discouraging those with above-average IQs from having large, or perhaps any, families.

So the rate at which the proportion of low IQs in the population is rising will once more be increased.

The age at which pensions become payable is of course to increase, and we may expect that it will be progressively increased in the future, thus penalising those who have successfully survived to a certain age (albeit in some cases with expensive assistance from the NHS), and who are therefore likely to constitute a population with above-average IQ.

Mr Osborne insisted the changes were vital as life expectancy continues to increase. He said that standing still was not an option, warning that the cost of paying the state pension is going to become ‘more and more unaffordable.’

What is meant by ‘affordable’? Apparently something cannot be afforded if it can only be paid out of money left over when other, supposedly ‘ring-fenced’ obligations have been met. Does the rise in life expectancy have a great deal to do with the ever-rising costs of the NHS, schools and universities, and other ‘social services’? Every child that is added to the population is an immense potential burden on the taxpaying population; those which are genetically dysfunctional the most.

The cost of the dependent population, which includes those who are dysfunctional by reason of low IQ, is certainly increasing much faster than the cost of supporting pensioners is increasing by reason of a lengthening lifespan.

Once again the (relatively high-IQ) population of pensioners is a convenient scapegoat, and is penalised to offset the massively increasing costs per generation of the dependent population, which on average seems likely to have a lower average IQ than that of the pensioners.

The relevant departments of my unfunded independent university are effectively censored and suppressed. They have been prevented for decades from publishing analyses of the complex issues involved, while misleading and tendentious representations of them have continued to flood out from socially recognised sources. I hereby apply for financial support on a scale at least adequate for one active and fully financed university research department, to all universities, and to corporations or individuals who consider themselves to be in a position to give support to socially recognised academic establishments.

29 November 2011

Morals or money?

Melanie Phillips complains of the loss of moral principles in modern society.

Two ... incidents happened recently. A 79-year-old woman has died from head injuries after trying to fight off teenage muggers who robbed her of the bag containing her husband’s ashes.

This attack followed hard on the heels of a story about a teenage burglar who, asked to write a letter of apology to his victims, wrote instead that he wasn’t bothered or sorry at all, and that the burglary was all their fault for leaving their window open.

Such incidents suggest that we are dealing with something beyond merely ruthless acquisitiveness and contempt for the law. They suggest a total absence of empathy for another person, which is the basic requirement of morality and, in turn, of a civilised society. They illustrate a brutalisation of humanity. (Daily Mail, 28 November 2011)

Describing a speech by Phillip Blond (credited as a key architect of David Cameron’s ‘Big Society’ idea), she writes:

He [Blond] condemned the doctrine of ‘moral relativism’ according to which no values or way of life can be said to be better than any other.

Melanie Phillips concludes her article thus:

For if we really want to stop Britain’s terrifying drift into brutalisation, where a widow is robbed of her husband’s ashes and the young become strangers to remorse or reason — not to mention the summer’s riots and the economic crash — we surely have to accept that the moral vacuum into which we are staring is one that Britain’s bedrock faith must once again fill.

In 1945, with the onset of the Oppressive State, the link between the individual and reality was broken. Henceforth what determined the well-being or otherwise of yourself and your children would not be whether you could pay for what you and they needed, but whether other people would accept your needs as deserving of support with the money confiscated from other people in taxation.

This achieved a progressive shift in the ownership of resources from the middle class and aristocracy (the elite) to the least functional sections of society.

Nearly 70 years on from 1945, we read of the reduction in the size of families of the middle class, and of the deterioration in the quality of the upbringing which they are able to provide for their offspring. At the same time we read of reduction of benefits available to pensioners, and of unemployed fathers of large numbers of children, many of whom are living on benefits and all of whom, presumably, are receiving an expensive state education.

Attempts may be made to tweak the situation and to ‘kick-start’ the economy by further taxation of the above-average in order to provide ‘help’ for individuals or projects considered socially acceptable, but can such attempts ever work?

Over any considerable period of time it appears to be impossible that policies of this kind could prevent the continuous decline of civilisation. This is because the real causes of the ever-increasing drains on ‘public money’ are never mentioned. Among them is the geometrically increasing cost of supporting the population of those who are not, and never can be, productive members of society (even if interfering in other people’s lives as a doctor, teacher or social worker is considered as a positive contribution to society).

If you do everything possible to multiply the population with the lowest IQs, you will soon have an immense and growing burden on the resources which can be provided by taxpayers.

Oh, but that is only if the factors that influence IQ are at least to some extent hereditary, you may exclaim, and this is something that we find quite unacceptable and will on no account consider.

Nevertheless if, as I strongly suspect, the size of the dysfunctional population, and the expense of providing for it, continues to increase with every generation, it is a matter of indifference how far the factors which lead to this outcome are hereditary or otherwise. This population becomes a burden on the economy which outweighs any efforts which may be made to increase its income by productive activity.

The behavioural standards of a society with this characteristic are likely to decline inexorably towards brutal levels, whatever ostensible morality is being urged on the population.

Brief analyses such as these should be being expanded into research papers. We call on those who recognise the pro-collectivist bias in current academic research to support Oxford Forum.

25 November 2011

Letter to a Polish reader

Thank you for writing, and saying

I think Celia Green is one of the great modern British writers – in the perfect world she would be a household name.

It is nice that you get something out of my books, even if I do not get much out of modern British writers.

The reason I have produced so few books, and none of recent years, is that the publication of the books did nothing to relieve the frustration of my position as an exiled academic.

Debarred as I was from any academic career to which I was suited, I needed the books not only to generate income to replace that which I should have had as an academic, but also to build up capital towards the establishment of an independent academic organisation to provide me with living conditions compatible with intellectual productivity.

Unfortunately the books did not in any way generate opportunity. Writing, publishing and distributing them remains a heavy burden on our limited manpower and resources.

We need more people to come and live nearby, to do voluntary or paid part-time or full-time work. This should seem attractive to those approaching retirement, but apparently does not in this country, as nobody of that age group comes.

This is apparently because there is such a taboo in helping anyone who complains of their bad social position and attempts to remedy it. Possibly the taboo is less strong in Poland, where everyone is less cushioned by the welfare state.

Would you be able to come for a short break in Cuddesdon? We are too overworked to spend unlimited time with you, but could meet enough to give you some information about our needs and about the advantages there might be for those working here.

Then perhaps you could tell other people in Poland who might be interested, and this could eventually help us to write more of the books we are currently prevented from writing and publishing by the constriction of our position as well as our lack of academic status.

15 November 2011


I am amazed at the antagonism to capitalism that is expressed in sympathy with the anti-capitalism protesters.

Capitalism is the only thing that has given me any advantages in life with which to repair the damage of a socialist environment, which ruined my life and the lives of my parents when I was exposed to a state-financed education.

Having been born as the offspring of two socially displaced families, I had no capital of my own and was dependent on the educational system to get into the sort of academic career which I needed to have. However, in practice my education was run by people who had no interest in my well-being or that of my parents, at the time or in the future, to put it mildly.

When I attempted to stake a claim on re-entry to a university career by doing research outside of a university, the only significant financial support was from a newspaper tycoon, Cecil Harmsworth King. Before being turned against me by those who thought that research should only be done inside universities, he provided just enough financial support for me to do the preliminary work to open up at least two new fields of research.

No further financial support from any quarter was forthcoming to enable Dr Charles McCreery and me to carry on with the development of these fields of research, which were taken over (at least nominally) by people who already had academic salaries and status.

The only further improvement in our position came from ownership of a house in which we lived for many years with no heating and scarcely any furniture.

I am certain that opportunity in life depends only upon capitalism, and is damaged by socialism, although the latter purports to provide it for those who are ‘poor’ enough.

Much sympathy is evinced for those who protest against capitalism. My protests against socialism receive no sympathy.

10 November 2011

The anti-authoritarian syndrome

Once when I was at Miss Maughfling’s (the preparatory school I attended) I got sent to write lines instead of going out to break. I was in the kitchen (a large room) with the other children, and the kettles were on to make the drinks that Miss Maughfling handed out. You could have milk, cold or warm, or hot orange juice made from concentrate, which was what the kettles were for.

The steam was coming out of the spouts of the kettles and I knew, from prior experimentation at home, that it was not actually very hot. Some other child sounded afraid of it, and I said ‘But it is not very hot really’, and passed my hand through one of the jets of steam, amused at the shock of the nearby children.

Just at this point Miss Maughfling came into the kitchen and was horrified. I was not to go out to break, she said, but must write lines – ‘I must not touch steam from boiling kettles.’

I did not think she was exactly in the right, and I did not think there had been anything wrong with what I had done. Nor did I mind about missing the break on the lawn at the back of the house, which was of little interest to me.

So I went up to the classroom and dutifully wrote out the lines, neatly and well-spaced as I wrote everything else.

It was just a thing to do, so I did it as well as possible.

By the end of the break I had covered quite a few of the pages I had been given (loose lined sheets of paper) and Miss Maughfling looked surprised as she inspected them.

‘You must have worked very hard,’ she said, nonplussed, as if she would have expected something different.

The fact was that I did not have an anti-authoritarian syndrome, as so many do. I had read too much, for one thing, to think of adults as unmotivated paragons or purveyors of wisdom.

But the important thing is that I always did things in the best possible way; if they were boring this seemed to me the way to make them least boring. In effect, this was centralised and later made it possible for me to get some intensity out of fairly dull work in the early years at the convent.

Many people have learnt a disidentification with what they are doing and this can be extremely difficult to overcome. They can’t, even if they want to, do things in an error-free way. They can only find them ‘interesting’ if done in a rush at the last moment. There are several variants of this, but they all more or less preclude any more advanced form of centralisation.

04 November 2011

Aged one

Celia Green, aged one
copy of a letter
Thank you very much for finding and sending the scan of the photograph of me aged one. We still have not found the original (all this moving around while being so short-staffed) and I would have been sorry to lose it altogether.
I think my mother realised it showed how precocious I was and kept it hidden, so that we only found it after her death. It was in a box-file in which she had kept other mementos of my precocity, such as the first book which I was found to be able to read, and the introduction which I wrote at age 5 for my arithmetic textbook. I know that she gave the little book away when I was thrown out at the end of the ruined education, and I expect she thought she should accept that I had come to nothing after all, as she had always been told was likely. At the same time she dismantled my cupboard full of chemicals, which was symbolic of my wanting to take a degree in chemistry (externally from London, when I was 14).
We looked for the introduction to the arithmetic textbook, and Charles was disappointed not to be able to see it, but it was not in the box so she must have thrown that away as well, in acknowledgement of the ruin of my life.
Looking back, I am afraid that the tragedy of my life and of my parents’ lives was determined very early on by my father’s willingness to be influenced by educational experts.
My mother said there was one who visited me ‘to see how precocious a child could be’, and in fact I remember someone who sat in the corner of the room when I was about four and asked my father guardedly when I had learnt to read. To which my father replied ‘She could read anything by the time she was four. ’
This ‘expert’ was probably one of those who promoted the view that precocity was meaningless, just an anomaly in early development.

01 November 2011

Accommodation wanted

copy of a post to our Facebook group:

There are some people who express enthusiasm for such books and research as we have been able to produce. In fact we have produced only a very small fraction of what should have been possible if we had been less rigorously deprived of support.

If anyone’s enthusiasm for our books and research extends to wishing to see more of either produced, we would appreciate it if they would think how they could give us some financial or practical support, or encourage others to do so.

One way in which people could help would be by buying or renting properties near to us in Cuddesdon (on the outskirts of Oxford with an Oxford postcode).

We are very cramped for space and extra space would be used either for offices or for accommodating visiting voluntary workers or potential supporters.

If a house or apartment were bought outright rather than rented it could either remain in the buyer’s name or be donated to one or more of us.

Currently the following large house is on the market, which is sufficiently close to us to be very useful: The Mill, Cuddesdon, guide price £1,650,000.

There are currently two other, smaller, houses in Cuddesdon on the market for renting, at £1200 per calendar month and £800 p.c.m. respectively. The former is more spacious and would come close to significantly relieving our problems.

Another way in which people can help us is by coming as visiting workers or supporters, but in this case the problem of accommodation arises, and it would be desirable for them to be able to pay for this during their visit, also to be running a car if possible, as the accommodation might not be very near to us.

21 October 2011

Geniuses should be reclusive

‘And there are other things. I couldn’t go to discos to meet girls because my ears are very sensitive to noise and they hurt.’ (Low tolerance of noise, along with several other of Simon’s idiosyncrasies, are symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome – a mild form of autism – but he has never been diagnosed.) [Daily Mail]

There is a wish to believe – and hence, in effect, a belief – that a high IQ, and the sort of interest in reality that may go with it, are pathological and arise from some sort of personality disorder.

Simon Norton admitted to various characteristics regarded as symptomatic of this. Perhaps that is why journalists are willing to interview him and are not willing to interview me; I would not fit so well the preferred image of the genius with serious deficits in non-intellectual areas.

Perhaps the characteristics regarded as symptomatic of Asperger’s syndrome might result from the demoralising effects of a modern education on a person with a high IQ (and hence precocious).

The attempt to get by in life without thinking about basic practical essentials (rather than trying to become rich enough to have a housekeeper and other ancillary staff) is encouraged by Oxford University and, presumably, other universities as well. Academic rejects are not encouraged to attempt to remedy their position in any way, but to ‘follow their interests’ while living in a cheap bedsit.

Perhaps the inattention to hygiene etc. has something to do with the lack of a suitable identity as a socially accepted intellectual.

It has often been assumed that I must be, for example, reclusive. When I was living without an income any side effects of that were interpreted as indicating my identification with the dropout position.

Lady Hardy, wife of Professor Hardy, met two associates of mine in Oxford when all my plans to obtain finance for my independent research institute had been defeated. ‘I saw that Celia the other day,’ said Lady Hardy, with distaste, ‘she was looking very scruffy.’

Did she expect me to buy a new raincoat at the expense of such savings as I could make? In fact my raincoat then was of very good quality, a Burberry, and although showing the effects of age, perfectly functional for its intended purposes.

20 October 2011

New definitions for ‘saving’ and ‘planning’

As I have previously said on this blog, the state now appears to feel free to change legislation in ways that are effectively retrospective, in that they make a mockery of past efforts by forethoughtful taxpayers – such as myself and my colleagues – to plan for their life after normal retirement age.

Commentators whom one might expect to be critical of such retrospectiveness seem to share the basic philosophy that it is not too unacceptable, sounding mildly disapproving at best but in many cases simply taking it as read that, say, the presence of a budget deficit justifies breaking what was once thought of as a relatively sacrosanct principle.

Ruth Sunderland, for example, refers to the complaint made by many women that the rapid shifting of the age at which they will start to receive their state pensions ‘simply does not leave them enough time to plan’. But she does not appear to complain of the sudden introduction of means-testing. Those who had been paying into the state pension scheme could not have planned for that change because it was retrospective, and they had no warning it was going to happen.

Having undermined savings efforts by breaking a principle in one area, the government evidently feels justified in breaking principles in complementary areas; for example, using the idea that it is legitimate to be forced to save.

In an alarming speech, Martin Weale [a leading expert at the Bank of England] urged Britons to wake up to the fact that their level of saving is too low and that they are spending too much. ... The top economist said people were deluding themselves about the type of retirement they could expect, unless they were happy to work ‘much later’. ...

Starting next year, new rules will force all bosses to pay into a pension for their workers for the first time, unless the worker decides to opt out. ... Pensions minister Steve Webb said ... ‘Our workplace pension reform is vital. From 2012, automatic enrolment will mean millions of people saving into a pension for the first time, with a contribution from their employer.’ (Daily Mail, 26 August)

Having one’s money confiscated is not the same as saving, even if money is also confiscated from your employer at the same time, thus surreptitiously reducing the resources which he has available to pay you directly.

If this money were not confiscated, those who wished to save in the normal sense of the word, i.e. build up their own capital, might use it to do so. Hence this legislation is reducing the possibility of savings being made.

Theoretically the money will be preserved from the irresponsible activities of those who might wish to use it for something else before reaching what the government of their day decrees to be ‘retirement age’. Possibly those who might choose to act in this way do so knowing that their family history indicates the likelihood of their dying before receiving anything in the way of retirement pay; or having decided, consciously or unconsciously, to get lost on a mountainside somewhere and die of exposure before they suffer from the drawbacks of ageing.

At a time when the national finances are under severe strain, later retirement ages for both sexes are unavoidable. ... Pension planning is a long-term undertaking that ideally should be carried out over an entire working lifetime. (Ruth Sunderland, Daily Mail, 14 October)

Later retirement ages are only ‘unavoidable’ if you rule out such possibilities as abolishing state education, child benefit at all levels of income, the NHS, etc.

And you can only plan with money that is in your own hands.

In my twenties, being deprived of the possibility of earning a living as an academic, unable to envisage earning a living in any other way, and also deprived of the possibility of income support when receiving no income from any employment, I made great efforts to ensure that I would pay the voluntary contributions into the state pension scheme. In deciding to do this, rather than to keep an equivalent amount in my own hands and invest it as best I could over the years, I was considerably influenced by the fact that the state pension was paid ‘as of right’ as a result of contributions made, and was not a ‘benefit’ supposedly related to your ‘needs’ as assessed by agents of the collective.

I paid in contributions every year over a period of about forty years, and had started to receive a disappointingly withered pension, when it was announced that state pensions would now be means-tested. Some years later it was announced that the age at which people would receive them was not what they had previously expected, but was liable to shift forward at the whim of the government.

So my attempts to ‘plan’ for my income after the age of 60 had been misguided, as I had not taken into account the possibility of retrospective legislation.

19 October 2011

Oxford Professorship in Psychology: not even shortlisted

In response to my application for the Oxford Professorship in Psychology I received a brief rejection letter from the University's Personnel Officer. Herewith the text of my response.

As it said in my letter, I hereby appeal to any senior academic to come to visit me at my impoverished independent university, to discuss ways of supporting me, so that I do not go on being prevented from contributing to the intellectual life of my time.

I continue to apply for professorships and other posts. I still need to start on my forty-year academic career with full salary and status at professorial level.

Dear ...

Thank you for your letter of 6 May. It appears I was not even shortlisted for the Professorship of Psychology being offered by the Department of Experimental Psychology in association with Magdalen, for which I made an application in March.

It is an indication of the oppressiveness of modern society that nobody considers it their business to enquire into the predicament of the victims of social outrage and support them in recovering from it.

And yet, not long ago, a teenager with an IQ said to be 130, currently in prison, was awarded damages against an education authority which had failed to provide him with enough intellectual stimulation. This was regarded as having led to his turning to crime instead of to gainful employment. I realise this provides no grounds for my entertaining any hope that I could sue for loss of my earnings from an academic career as well as my father’s loss of salary as a headmaster when he was forced to retire early on a breakdown allowance.

Normally in this situation I would ask you if you would let me come to see you to explain my position, to make it more likely that you will remember me if a suitable appointment arises. However, I realise that it would be unlikely to do me any good if you did grant me an interview with you. Nevertheless, I think that you should wish to come to see me to find out what help you could give me in returning to a normal position in society.

One form of help which you could certainly give me, even without coming to see me, would be money. Without a salary, and having to provide myself with an institutional environment as best I can, it is almost impossible for me to write books expressing my views, to publish those which have already been written and stockpiled awaiting editing, or to carry out any of the research which I have now been prevented from doing for several decades, and which I need to do to enhance my claim on restoration to the sort of career which I should have been having all along.

In your position, I would probably be happy to contribute half of my salary on a regular basis if I heard of someone in so grievously anomalous a situation as mine is.

This is a standing invitation to you or any other senior academic, to come to visit me at my impoverished independent university, to discuss ways of supporting me, morally or financially, so that I do not continue to be prevented from contributing to the intellectual life of my time, as a headmistress (who perhaps lost her job for the crime of allowing me to be too happy at her school) once said that I was certain to do.

However, I am not inviting you or anyone else to come without warning, and an appointment would have to be made well in advance, and accompanied by a donation of at least £5,000 towards the support of my institution, or to me personally. In fact, it would be better if made to me personally, as our affairs are too constricted and under-staffed to accept any additional burden in the way of processing and accounting for donations.

I do not expect you to come, although I think you should, but a donation of that size would at least prevent a visit, if it were to happen, from being an entirely fruitless drain on our time and energy.

Yours sincerely,


14 October 2011

The real reasons for a ‘failure to fulfil’

copy of a letter

I was talking with Fabian, and asked him why he thought it was that there was such a resistance to the idea of reparation being made to a person who had been placed in an unsuitable and unacceptable position as a result of their ruined ‘education’.

Fabian told me about somebody who wrote rudely in response to his blog that ‘society does not owe anyone an academic career’.

I said, ‘But I think it does, if it has taken over the running of someone’s education, so that they have no control over it, and thus end up deprived of the sort of career they need to have, which they could easily have got for themselves if left alone to get on with it.’

Fabian seemed to agree but said, ‘I suppose there is an idea that it is somehow morally wrong to sue public institutions for reparation, although perfectly acceptable to sue private ones.’

As I have said before, I am sure that suing would be a waste of time and energy because judges would be on the side of the ideology of the public institutions.

But individuals might (and should) realise that victims of the system who are regarded as beyond the pale for reparation by the collective, could and should be recognised as needing help from individuals to get back into a social and financial position approximating to that in which they should have been if not subjected to social interference.

An article in the Daily Mail (10 September 2011) about Simon Norton, the subject of the previous post, refers to a study of gifted children by researchers at Middlesex University.

Simon is, of course, far from the only brilliant child who has failed to live up to the enormous expectations placed upon him.

A study published last year found that out of 210 gifted children whose progress was followed into later life, only 3 per cent went on to fulfil their early potential.

Researchers from Middlesex University found that many failed to excel because of the way they were treated — often put under too much pressure and separated from their peer group so they found it difficult to make friends.

Researchers at Middlesex University are, of course, not academic exiles, and the interpretations they give of what went wrong with the lives of gifted children are the accepted and mostly fictitious ones.

Among the people with high IQs I know or have met who live in exile from society, I cannot think of any who would have ascribed their problems to ‘pressure’ or ‘high expectations’, even if none of them would have been so unequivocal as I would myself in ascribing the problems to the hostility of modern society towards exceptional ability.

If adequately funded, as it should be, the appropriate department of my suppressed and unrecognised independent university could publish, not only criticisms of such research as that done in Middlesex University, but also make studies of its own, taking other, more realistic, factors into account.

13 October 2011

An uncomplaining, unfrustrated genius

Simon Norton is a former child prodigy, whose story superficially resembles mine. A book about him, The Genius in the Basement by Alexander Masters, was recently publicised in the Daily Mail.

Very precocious, very high IQ, but now exiled from academia and living as a recluse. What went wrong? He is quoted as saying vaguely that perhaps he did not apply himself enough. No suggestion that it was hostility that threw him out, or that he is suffering agonies of frustration now.

But then in some respects his story is very different from mine.

His family were wealthy, with a long-standing business. He went to Eton and became a lecturer at Cambridge.

He was, apparently, only interested in maths, and that probably makes him a sort of person by whom people feel less threatened than they do by me.

Even now that he has been thrown out, he does not complain of suffering. He is supported by an income from his family and by rents from tenants in a house which he owns. He makes no attempt to provide himself with a hotel environment but tries to avoid the problems of material living by subsisting below the respectable level, rather than by working up to an above-average lifestyle. Allegedly, his clothes are dirty and his diet restricted. He hates shopping and does it in a perfunctory rush. He does not try to employ a housekeeper to do it for him.

Perhaps this is supposed to demonstrate that the most precocious and initially successful can be thrown out of a university environment without it leading to them complaining about how much they are being prevented from doing.

09 October 2011

Notes on my CV

Herewith the ‘Notes on my CV’ referred to in the previous post.

In interpreting a CV it is normal to consider only what a person has been permitted by society to do as evidence of what they are able to do. However, in my case I have to ask for the realities of the situation to be considered, as my life has consisted of being artificially prevented from doing what I could have been doing very well and wanted to be doing.

Given my extreme precocity, it was both cruel and unreasonable to expect my education to consist of taking about the normal number of exams at about the usual age. The post-war legislation which prohibited the taking of any exams at all until after the 16th birthday had a particularly terrible effect on my life. I therefore took many fewer exams and at much later ages than I could and should have done.

My life was one of agonised frustration and deprivation. I did not get to university until far too late an age, by which time I was too old and had been suffering for too long to take any interest in the process of taking a first degree. My college continued to apply the policy of refusing to accept that any problems which arose from a retarded education needed to be taken into account.

Recently people have been suing the educational system for providing them with inadequate skills and qualifications. I should have been able to sue for being left with no paper qualification with which to enter the academic career which, in view of my ability and aptitudes, I needed to have.

I did not accept that I could have any other sort of career or that life would be tolerable without a career.

In spite of my lack of paper qualifications I was perfectly well able to teach or do research in several subjects, so that the lack of a paper qualification and of support from my college was the only reason for my not applying for appointments teaching e.g. maths or physics.

My only motive in everything I did was to effect return to a full-time academic career as quickly as possible. The research I did was not determined by considerations of interest to myself but by what I could get funding for.

It may be considered that I was ill-advised to attempt to do research in what would be, even if accepted, a new area of academic work, as a means of returning to an academic career. In fact I was not advised at all, as my college refused to give any consideration to my need to work my way back to a university career. Whatever advice I had been given I would, in my desperate situation, have been forced to work on anything for which I could get funding.

There appears to be a social convention that a person is not subjected to suffering and hardship by being deprived of a career, however high their IQ and however great their temperamental need to put their drive and effort into a progressive situation. Anything they do in exile is supposed to have been done because of a particular interest in it. Neither of these things has been true in my case. My life without a career has been one of severe hardship and deprivation and the increasing desperation of my urgent need to return to a university career has caused me agonising frustration for many years past.

It is the social difficulties that have prevented me from applying to return to an academic career at an earlier age (any applications I did make being turned down) so I must ask that my age be not held against me since I have made the best progress I could. So far as I am concerned I am just in the position of someone in their early twenties attempting to start on a full-time, full-length academic career.

My CV shows that I have held a (usually unpaid) position at the Institute of Psychophysical Research for many years. Since the death of Professor Hans Eysenck, who had been Director, I have resumed the position of Director. This is not, and has never been, an alternative to an academic career. The organisation was founded by me, not as an expression of interest in any particular field of research, but as a vehicle to facilitate my return to a university career by providing an environment within which publishable research could be done. In this objective it has failed, as funding has been rigorously withheld since a seven-year covenant thirty years ago. It could be argued that, without any financial support at all, it has provided me with added liabilities to increase my sufferings rather than alleviate them.

Being deprived of a career is very like being condemned to indefinite imprisonment. One is deprived of every normal social function or interaction, of everything that could make life worth living. The horror of the situation is only marginally modified by whether or not one was actually innocent when first condemned. As it happened, I was ‘innocent’, since I was perfectly well able to fulfil the functions of an academic career.

I advocate the abolition of the state controlled educational system since, if it could ruin my education and my life, it could ruin anybody’s.

05 October 2011

Oxford’s Professorship in Psychology

There follows the text of a letter of application which I made for a Psychology Professorship at Oxford University last year.

The ‘notes on my CV’ referred to will be posted separately.

I would draw attention in particular to the last paragraph, which for these purposes I have put in bold.

I hereby appeal to anyone in a position to provide finance for it, to consider this as an application for funding to set up a department of psychology under my direction.

I am applying for the Professorship of Psychology being offered by the Department of Experimental Psychology in association with Magdalen College, as advertised in the University Gazette, and attach my CV, which includes the contact details of three referees, together with notes on my CV and a testimonial from the late Professor H J Eysenck.

As my position is an anomalous one, I would be grateful if you could read the notes on my CV, as they give information about how I came to be in this position. As you will see, my CV is one that was prepared to go with an application for an appointment in philosophy, rather than psychology. I cannot in fact comply with all the ‘essential’ criteria listed on the website. However, I can comply with some of them. You will note on my CV that I have carried out research in psychology. It was pioneering research which broke new ground in various areas, but for which I received little recognition (more overseas than in this country) and no funding after the initial (very minimal) funding had lapsed. I also have decades of administrative and fund-raising experience.

I am in fact capable of carrying out research, teaching, and administration in areas in which I do not have paper qualifications, owing to my own ability to learn new topics very fast and very thoroughly in any situation in which I need to learn them.

For realistic information about my life, abilities, and situation, please see the Preface ‘How this Book came to be Written’ to my book The Lost Cause, a copy of which I am sending to you under separate cover. (This is the book version of my Oxford D.Phil thesis on causation entitled Causation and the Mind-Body Problem.)

I apologise for the anomalies in my application: these arise from the extreme social misplacement which has resulted from my ruined education. There is no recognition of the predicament of the exiled academic. I am making this application in spite of being above the normal age for a Professorship because the process of recovering from a ruined education is extremely slow, in fact there is no provision for it to be possible at all. There was a time lag of decades before the work which I had done in exile from an academic career led to my being offered testimonials from senior academics who were willing to act as my referees, and this still did not lead to my reinstatement in a normal academic career.

After still further delay, one of the areas of work which I had initiated (lucid dreaming) came to be recognised as a suitable topic for doctorates in both philosophy and experimental psychology. I still did not have funding for the expenses of research including a research assistant, without which I could not have done a DPhil in experimental psychology, so I applied instead to do one in philosophy.

The enclosed notes can give little impression of what I would have achieved by now if I had had a normal life, i.e. one that was normal for a person like me. As it is, they are a statement of how efficiently the expression of my abilities has been prevented by the society in which I have been living. Academics advising me have often said, ‘Don’t say anything about your ability, only about what you have done’, and ‘Don’t mention your unofficial teaching and research.’ But society can prevent one from doing anything officially, i.e. within a normal academic position. Is what one does outside its auspices, in an attempt to regain reinstatement, automatically to be regarded as disqualified from consideration?

Since I have had to work outside of a normal university context in attempting to establish a claim to reinstatement, it is difficult for me to give any academic referees at all. Nevertheless I give such as I can, and it should be considered remarkable that I have managed to acquire any at all. At one time I was sent a portfolio of testimonials from North American academics, who had worked on lucid dreams in some of the ways suggested in my book Lucid Dreams, similar to the testimonial from Professor Harry Hunt which appears on page xxxviii of my book The Lost Cause. However, these never did me any good and I have mislaid them, so it would be a lot of work to find out the present addresses of those concerned.

I give the referees I do, as best I can, because it should be regarded as amazing, and highly creditable, that I am able to give any at all. However I expect that my referees will observe the usual conventions that (a) one’s case is not to be considered highly anomalous and in need of redress, that (b) only work done by the holders of official academic positions counts as academic, and that (c) there is supposed to be no such thing as ability which is transferable from one field of intellectual activity to another. Therefore they can do no more than damn me with faint praise for the few pieces of work which I have been able to do within the restrictive parameters of what is regarded as ‘relevant’.

Finally, I should like to make a statement. It may be that you reject this application out of hand, on the basis that it does not meet the ‘essential requirements’, or that I otherwise fail to fit the University’s idea of what a psychology professor ought to be like. However, it is my belief that if the University really wanted to contribute to the advancement of psychology, rather than merely occupy a prestigious role in what has developed under the label of ‘academic psychology’, it would take this application very seriously indeed.

29 September 2011

No better way of saying it

Someone recently wrote the following to me:

I guess the fact that you insist that you should have a different social position than the one you actually have makes people more negative towards you. As you have written many times, insisting on this is taboo since it is supposed that society is fair and puts everyone in their appropriate place. Perhaps you could do better if you communicated the issue differently. Of course, this is a tricky question, since it might involve some degree of dishonesty, which is inherently undesirable.

This was my reply:

How to express the discrepancy between my actual and my natural social position is not merely a tricky question but has always been an unavoidable and insoluble one. It is omnipresent so I may as well write more about it, not that this will lead to any acceptance of the realities of my position.

I am afraid that whether or not I make it explicit, hostility is automatically aroused by the discrepancy between my outcast position and the position I need to be in and should be in.

At least, one supposes that it is the violation of the taboo by my being as I am (whether or not I mention it explicitly) that arouses the hostility, since the hostility takes the form – among other things – of actively imposing misinterpretations upon me according to which I am in a suitable and tolerable position and do not need any help in working my way back towards one which is more appropriate and less intolerable.

It may be supposed that my alienated position in society arose in the first place as a result of the more fundamental hostility to my being precocious and likely to break new ground in any area in which I got the opportunity to do anything.

In fact, I was seen as a threat, but I was not aware of it. I did not at that stage have a view of myself as being more likely than other people to question the unexamined assumptions which usually dominate the way everyone thinks.

However, for whatever reason, my education was mismanaged – or from other people’s point of view, very well managed – so as to drive me inexorably to the disaster of exile. Confronting the horrors of life outside of a high-flying university career, I found that no one would even consider letting me remedy my position by taking degrees in other subjects as rapidly as possible and at my own expense so as to have a qualification that might be usable for entering a suitable career. If I had been permitted to do this I would not have been totally ineligible for income support when deprived of an income. If I had had a First in physics or chemistry, or even in a language, I could have been eligible for support as someone applying for university lectureships.

But having achieved their objective of throwing me out with a second-class degree in maths (a subject which I would never myself have considered, although there were many in which I would have considered taking degrees and making university careers) the powers that be were not going to allow me to escape from disaster at one bound.

And no doubt they were horrified that I did find a way of getting a postgraduate grant from Trinity College, Cambridge, although that did not, in itself, make me eligible for university appointments in any subject.

When my way was again blocked at the end of the Trinity College studentship, I was back in the position of ineligibility for support of the most minimal kind from the Welfare State, since I was not (without support from my college or supervisor) qualified for the kinds of jobs I would have been able to do.

I could only have been eligible for unemployment benefit by being dishonest enough to pretend I was applying for jobs as a schoolteacher, as my college wished me to do. No doubt there are many drawing the dole who have no intention of taking up the jobs for which they apply, but I was sure that, however many people do this without comment, I would be likely to be found out and persecuted, and anyway I set too much store by keeping my mind clear of social dishonesties.

You suggest that communicating the difficulties of my position differently might be better. But actually there could be nothing to communicate if I suppressed my need for a university career, since I have no interest in any field of research except for its potentialities for career advancement.

There is no point in saying that there are great potentialities for the advancement of science in a certain area if one cannot actually do anything in that area on account of poverty and social degradation.

There are a few people around who claim to find some aspect of parapsychology ‘interesting’ without doing anything about it, and maybe come up with vague ‘theories’, such as that ESP has been influential in evolution, but I do not understand people who think like that.

16 September 2011

Tunnelling out of prison with a spoon

What was unacceptable to people in my attitude to my situation when I was thrown out at the end of the ruined education is still unacceptable today. So here is how it arose.

When I was thrown out without a paper qualification to enter any suitable academic career, I accepted that my life was ruined and that I had certainly, but for the existential uncertainty, lost my destiny. And that might be expected to lead to the dropout position; you are excluded from the sort of career which you need to have, society offers no ways, so (perhaps) you will give up on trying to get anything out of life and drift around until you are dead. But while on the face of it I had lost my destiny, at the same time I knew that I would pursue it however hopelessly, recognising that I still needed academic status and a hotel environment, and that, unless and until I got them from a university appointment as a Professor or at least a Research Fellow with a high salary, I would aim to make the money with which to buy for myself an institutional environment with ancillary staff.

The fact that I saw myself as working towards what I needed to re-start my life does not, and never did, arouse any sympathy.

I saved half my pay at the Society for Psychical Research (reduced as it was by taxation), which was something like £8 a week. Doing so, I aimed at an independent research establishment with ancillary staff. Eighteen months later I would have grants to support my studentship at Trinity College, Cambridge, and save half of those as well, but for the first 18 months I was saving half of only my salary.

This aroused no sympathy; no one that I had known in the past came to enquire how I had got into so terrible a position or to offer help of any kind. Even former teachers such as Miss Bookey and the Reverend Mother, who had once supported me in a meaningful way, stayed away and kept silent, implicitly reinforcing the idea that my rejection by the University of Oxford was realistic and not anomalous.

I remember the horror with which I viewed my position; at least, I remember that I did view it with horror, although as my position now is somewhat alleviated I cannot entirely reproduce the feeling at that time. I had never intended to become an outcast without hope of return, but it had happened, and existentially that was what I now was. All I could do to help myself was to save what I could from my permitted cash at the end of each day to add to my capital. Another few shillings towards the cost of at least one residential college and at least one research department. Hopelessly disproportionate, of course, but that was what I was aiming at.

I have never met anyone who reacted in this way towards being thrown out: starting to build up the necessary capital to buy what one might otherwise have got by having the right sort of career in a university. Other people ‘get used’ to the sort of life they can have as dropouts, adopting compensatory ‘interests’ or social life, and expressing philosophical acceptance of their situation. Or else they become drugged zombies, in which case they, too, express philosophical attitudes towards their position.

08 September 2011

Michael Gove and the bear pits

The right every child deserves, to be taught properly, is currently undermined by the twisting of rights by a minority who need to be taught an unambiguous lesson in who’s boss. (Michael Gove, Education Secretary, quoted in Daily Mail, 2 September 2011)

‘Rights’ and ‘duties’ are both fictitious, socially determined concepts, and actually are both forms of oppression. They do not arise from an individual’s own drives, or from the real threats of his physical environment. They arise from a social belief system about the drives an individual should have and how he should react to the threats of both the real physical and the real social environment.

Actually ‘rights’ are typically oppressive because they deprive individuals of the freedom not to take up their supposed rights, as well as depriving other people of freedom (by taxation) in order to pay people to enforce the rights of the individual: doctors to make decisions for him against his will, teachers to supervise the incarcerated multitudes, social workers and psychiatrists to induce the individual to find his ‘rights’ tolerable.

Complying with the rights imposed upon him without complaint is a ‘duty’, and of course a person can be blamed by the society around him for not fulfilling his ‘duties’. This is an artificial moral evaluation.

[Michael Gove] insisted it was clear that Britain’s social malaise had its roots in the breakdown of discipline in the home and the classroom.

No, the social malaise is the malaise of the Oppressive State, it is the inevitable consequence of socialist ideology, in which those who impose ‘rights’, such as teachers, become ‘the boss’.

The right of a child to go to school is now the duty of a parent to send their child to school, possibly against his will, and both the parent and the child are to be punished if this does not happen. This illustrates the absurdity of ‘rights’ in modern society.

A victim of the state education system comments:

‘The state of the education system in this country is rotten. Schools have become bear pits, where the bright and conscientious are held in contempt at best, and more likely to be attacked in numerous ways.

Celia Green’s brief analysis is a minute example of the material that we could publish on this and other subjects, and can be taken as an appeal for funding to allow Oxford Forum to expand as an independent university and challenge the disintegration of standards in this country.

We should be supported by every parent who has the least interest in seeing their children not come to harm, psychological and/or physical, by being in contact with the state education system.’

02 September 2011

Abortion policy: other motives

Women considering a termination could be offered independent counselling as part of the biggest shake-up of abortion laws for 20 years.

The move is designed to give women a breathing space before going ahead, and pro-life campaigners claim it could cut the abortion rate by a third, or 60,000 terminations a year. At present counselling is offered by abortion providers, but there are concerns that the advice may be biased because they are run as businesses.

Under the proposed changes, abortion clinics would be told to offer free access to independent counselling run on separate premises by a group which does not carry out abortions. (Daily Mail, 29th August 2011)
Allegedly, there is a fear that a financial motive might enter into the counselling given by abortion clinics; consequently, women should be given counselling which is ‘free’ (to them, but not to the taxpayer) and which cannot be influenced by any financial motive (of profit to the abortion clinic, or reduction of cost to the taxpayer in the form of child benefit, education etc.).
But, without going into the rights and wrongs of abortion per se, is anyone considering the possible motivation of MPs to increase the rate of growth of the population?
- We may guess that the IQ of the population of women seeking crisis abortions is below that of the population as a whole. Those with above average IQs are more likely to be sufficiently forethoughtful and efficient to avoid unwanted pregnancies.
- We know that MPs are motivated to ensure that legislation achieves a transfer of financial resources (freedom of action) from a population with higher average IQs to one with lower average IQs. This motive is in no way diminished by the fact that the policy has been applied so successfully since the onset of the Welfare State in 1945 that the country is already bankrupt.
- In the eyes of MPs, that is no reason at all for putting a brake on the increasing rate of decline, which can all be conveniently blamed on populations with above-average IQs, such as pensioners and bankers.
- After all, their salaries as MPs depend on their having appealed to the electorate as likely to advocate redistributive policies of this kind, and will depend on it again at the next election.

There are many similar examples of ideology on which critical analyses could be being published by Oxford Forum if it were provided with adequate funding to do so.
While it is true that Western civilisation is in general beginning to crumble, the decades of Welfare State culture and its redistributive policies in this country in particular have finally brought it to its knees, with children unable to speak by school age, old people being abused and killed in care homes and hospitals, riots in major cities, and one of the fastest rising national debts in the world.
This state of affairs has been allowed to run free of any criticism or reform from either the academic community or former aristocracy, both of which are by now fully complicit in the wholesale destruction.
This is a plea for funding for our independent university, or at least one active and fully financed research department. We appeal to all universities, corporations or individuals who consider themselves to be in a position to give support, either financial or by working here.
We represent the only possible chance to halt, or at least soften, the impact of the impending crash.

25 August 2011

“I could do you a lot of harm”

extract from Letters from Exile

In some sort of television drama, a wealthy man was represented as saying: ‘I write the rules, I deal out the hands, I decide who wins’.

What is this but Freudian projection? Is this not what goes on in the mind of every socialist agent of the collective, every principal of a college, tutor, educational expert, etc? Never explicitly stated by these persons, but ascribed explicitly to wealthy individuals, who are their most serious threat of opposition.

As cuddly, avuncular, socialist Professor Hardy* put it, ‘I am a very influential man and I could trample your tin-pot organisation underfoot’. Well, he did, pretty well, he and everyone who thought like him. With absolutely no money we were frozen into inactivity. But although we could do nothing, because I had sunk all my savings in a house, they could not force us to leave the house or to leave Oxford.

But they thought that they, as influential agents of the collective, should be able to. When I got my miserable pittance of money from the great and influential socialist Cecil King, Mary Adams of the BBC thought I should be more frightened than I was at receiving even such minimal support from so great a man, and said, ‘He’s very powerful. He could do you a lot of harm if he turns against you. He could get the local council to drive a road through your house.’

* the late Professor Sir Alister Hardy, an eminent zoologist who took to parapsychology in his retirement

12 August 2011

Hopping mad

copy of a letter

You said I was ‘hopping mad’ about the item in the paper about rubbishy ‘research’ on out-of-the-body experiences (OBEs) being done by the British Psychological Society and others.

Yes, but you should stop to think why I am infuriated by such things. People would like to think it was because such topics ‘interest’ me in some way that is independent of my financial position. Actually I react strongly to those things and to any reports of money being spent to set up university departments, research centres of various kinds, etc. because money is so important. I know it, and unfortunately the enemy knows it, in the negative sense.

People like to talk as though ‘doing research’ or ‘being interested in some particular subject’ was independent of the circumstances of life, e.g. a hotel environment with caretakers, housekeepers and so forth.

But it certainly is not so in my case and I can’t hope to achieve the energy level that makes life worth living until I have a residential college environment with residential staff. Until I have it, what matters most to me is working towards it, i.e. increasing my capital.

So what infuriates me about people doing rubbishy research on OBEs etc. is that they have at least salaries, and that all my efforts to demonstrate the existence of fields of research in which I might work has resulted only in providing nominal topics for people already provided with salary and status (perhaps not all magnificently, but at any rate more than me).

As I was thrown out of the university system, I know that I need a lot of money to provide myself with an equivalent institutional environment. Perhaps I would not know this if I had not accidentally had a good time at one point in my life which gave me an awareness of what life could and should be. But I only know how good it could be for me, not for anybody else.

Egalitarianism means that a person has no socially recognised right to live in a way determined by his individual characteristics. If I say anything explicit to the effect that my life, and perhaps that of other people with high IQs, was easily ruined because teachers and other social agents could easily override, or be genuinely unaware of, unusual requirements which arose from, or were associated with, unusual ability, I have observed that my interlocutor is moved to noises of active rejection. Usually when I say things implicitly critical of the ideology, people let it wash over them without reply, and one knows the implications will be lost on them. But in this case they seem to have to assert their definite belief that no exceptional requirements could possibly be associated with exceptional ability.

As the headmistress of the terrible state school I briefly attended said, it would be good for me not to be treated as an exception. But, as I thought at the time, how could that be, since I was exceptional?

I am not actually hopping mad about not being able to do research in any particular field; I am hopping mad all the time about not being able to get money.

It is really a terrible waste of my ability that I have to apply it to making enough money merely to keep physically alive without, as yet, having been able to buy for myself the minimal circumstances of a liveable life.

07 August 2011

Standards have declined ... a lot

Standards have declined a lot and in particular there is much less scope for autonomy. I thought of the best sort of university career as absolutely necessary to provide me with living circumstances which would enable me to get something out of any independent research or writing which I would have enough freedom to do in addition to what was required by the salaried university appointment.

Professor Eysenck had the same sort of approach, but in spite of his top position and status he was able to do very little of what he would have done if he had been free to do it.

The concept of research studentships and supervised research have come in increasingly over the last century. It is now exceedingly difficult for the very restricted supervised ‘research’ to lead to any opportunity of anything better, salaried appointment or research grant.

So I think everyone now should seriously question the value of degree-taking; the fact is that the modern ideology is against the able, and there are not really any suitable openings in modern society.

I think people with families who have any recognition of their disadvantaged position should move to be near us, and it might well be the case that their offspring could do better for themselves by making a career in association with us; there are many possibilities and cooperation could be advantageous, but we cannot make specific proposals except in relation to specific individuals whom we know well enough.

Of course many nowadays go to university for the sake of the social life and ‘spending a few years not doing much work’ as a public school leaver said to me. This, of course, implies an attitude of indifference to the debts acquired in those few years, which, if they knew us, they would find was not compatible with our outlook.

Although most of what goes on in universities is now rubbishy, I do still need a top academic position, because without it, especially in the modern world, one has no hope of support for research, or anything but censorship and suppression for one’s books.

I need an academic position because I did (and still do) need to do certain kinds of things, regarded as academic, within an institutional (hotel) environment for myself in the first instance.

I imagined at first that my continuing to work towards such things, in such exceedingly grim circumstances, might be taken as proof of my extreme deprivation in being unable to progress within a normal (high-flying) academic career, and that my doing anything at all in such circumstances might be taken as justification for rewarding my pathetic efforts with a salary or funding for my independent research institute. But (as I found out) not on your life!

My struggling in such painful circumstances was taken as evidence of my enthusiasm for lucid dreams and such; I was regarded as ‘free to follow my interests’, and hence, of course, not needing help of any kind. A university appointment, people wished me to believe, would make me less ‘free’.

My original objective, when I found myself cast out, was to set up an independent university surrounded by a business empire. That still has to be the case, as we appear to be no closer to funding on an adequate scale or even a minuscule scale from any outside source, institutional or individual.

I do not think that most of the able people who find themselves adrift and increasingly squeezed in the modern world realise what they have been deprived of or how to work towards it, and most of them do not have the same highly determined need as I do for academic status. Mine is quite specific to an expansive and multi-channel person, with a lot of drive and a strong sense of purpose.