PETER HITCHENS: Have you ever needed an arts degree fast? So why so many universities?

Have you ever seen, in the old Yellow Pages or on the web, someone presenting himself as an emergency journalist?

No, me neither. Have you ever thought, on a wasted weekend, that you would pay almost anything to bring in a journalist? No, not me.

So when people ask me how they can get into journalism, as they sometimes do, I urge them to become plumbers instead.

First, they can absolutely guarantee that they will always have work and income because plumbers will never cease to be needed. This is not the case with journalists.

So, if you want to get into the old craft of doodling articles, it would be better to have a spare. And a few months of unclogging sinks and rescuing people from flooded kitchens and broken boilers will give you an education in life and what really matters to people, which will make you a much better journalist.

Have you ever seen, in the old Yellow Pages or on the web, someone presenting himself as an emergency journalist? no, not me

This illustrates better than anything else why Sir Anthony Blair’s call for 70% of young people to go to university, instead of learning to do real jobs, is sheer frothing and actively wicked madness to boot.

Because for most of them, the experience will involve low tuition fees and huge debts resulting in increasingly vicious interest rates. And what will they have at the end? Certificates to frame, but no particular advantage in seeking the rather limited number of jobs for which a diploma is really necessary.

As far as I know, the wild expansion of universities, which began under John Major and exploded under Blair’s Creature, had three real goals. By raising the school-leaving age to 21, he kept official unemployment figures low and forced those involved to pay their own allowance by borrowing money for fees, rent and food.

It completed the insane shift to an American-style school policy, which began with the dismantling of selective public high schools in the 1960s and 1970s. This created a secondary education system in which 11-18 year olds are primarily used to socialize children into citizens of an egalitarian state, with a little more education. Education of a kind then begins in college, which costs a fortune. But the real university tuition only starts when young people stay in university, even longer and at an even higher cost, to do a second “Masters”.

Third, and perhaps most importantly, the transformation of universities from serious places of learning into dynamic companies, hoarding the numbers, joining the real estate rental industry and paying huge salaries to their bosses. I suspect many UK towns and cities are now heavily dependent on these flimsy places, built almost entirely on debt. How they will cope in the new world where prices and taxes are rising wildly, I cannot say.

But there are few things worse than making false promises to young people. Starting wars is one of them, but Sir Anthony did that too. How does he have the nerve to stay in public life? Probably because he ensured that hardly anyone these days is educated enough to see right through him.

Only Home Secretary Priti Patel now stands between journalist Julian Assange and the malevolent fury of the US government, which hates him for embarrassing them. The courts have accepted Assange’s extradition. This is completely false, as it is a political offense, and unfair as the United States would never hand over one of its citizens to us in a mirror case. I repeat here that I do not like Mr. Assange and do not share his views, but I would consider myself a coward if I did not oppose this state-sponsored kidnapping.

May I ask anyone else who loves freedom and wishes to safeguard our independence to write, courteously and briefly, to Ms Patel, asking her not to send Mr Assange to the United States, as he has not committed any crime. Moreover, Britain is proud to have given refuge to political dissidents, and that is what it is. The address is: The Rt Hon Priti Patel, Home Secretary, The Home Office, 2 Marsham Street, London, SW1P 4DF.

Political ambitions that hide real scandals

The new Netflix drama Anatomy Of A Scandal (starring Sienna Miller and Rupert Friend, above) is quite fun and enjoyable to watch. But the biggest scandal in British politics is certainly not that some politicians lead racketeering lives at university. It is that they are dishonest about what they plan to do to the country. They hide their true motives and lie about who and what they are.

We need a drama about how revolutionary young Marxists gathered in Oxbridge 50 years ago to change the world, infiltrated political parties, the police, charities, the BBC, the courts and schools, and finally achieved the revolution they had long dreamed of. from.

That would be much truer than that stuff.

The only war we need

Last Wednesday was the annual holy day for marijuana users. A sickly cloud of cannabis smoke billowed in the hot air over Hyde Park as they gathered to praise and consume this mind-destroying poison.

Despite its “sweet” image, its users often go crazy and commit hideous acts of violence.

Possession of marijuana is punishable by up to five years in prison and an unlimited fine. It is a harsh and dangerous drug that ruins thousands of lives every year.

But you wouldn’t have known that from the relaxed reaction of the police, who have long since given up on any serious attempt to enforce the drug laws they are pretty well paid to enforce.

Despite this, you can be sure that Parliament’s Home Affairs Committee will soon be told, in its final inquiry into the matter, that there is a ‘war on drugs’ in this country which has ‘failed’ and must therefore be abandoned.

There’s a long queue of braggarts to tell them that. They say we must “treat” willful drug criminals as if they were suffering from an obligatory disease. Much of the evidence presented to the committee is of this type.

But a few others and I presented evidence calling for law enforcement, as is done successfully in Japan and South Korea. We hope to impress on the chair of the committee, Yvette Cooper, that many people do not want legalization.

Where is the peace effort?

I have already pointed out here the shocking fact that the war in Ukraine is actually between the United States and Russia. Ukraine and its suffering people are being used as a battering ram by both sides. Some people think I imagined this.

Let me give you two good reasons to believe that I am right. The first is a recent statement by Leon Panetta. Mr. Panetta served as the US government’s secretary of defense from 2011 to 2013. He was director of the Central Intelligence Agency from 2009 to 2011. He served as White House chief of staff from 1994 to 1997. He knows what he speaks. And on March 17, he said in an interview with Bloomberg Politics, “It’s a proxy war with Russia, whether we say it or not.” This is indeed what is happening.

The second is that there is no serious effort to make peace, from any direction. Why is it?

It’s a disgusting war, and we’ve only seen a small part of its horrors. What objective can possibly justify it continuing a second longer than necessary? Shouldn’t serious statesmen try to put an end to it? But I don’t see any sign of that.

I’m sorry to tell you that there are people in Moscow and Washington who want this war to last and hope to win by keeping it going. Why is the British government so involved in combat supplies? Our last intervention in Ukraine, the Crimean War, ended in 1856 and proved to be a complete waste of life, money and time.

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