The Aged P

…just toasting and ruminating….

26 April
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Whenever The Media Quotes An “Expert” I Reach For My Revolver….

Of course I am paraphrasing Goering’s famous quote about “culture” – and I also recognise that in a personal capacity I am usually willing to trust the doctor who repairs my hernia or the plumber who fixes my boiler because the chances are they know more about hernias and boilers than I do for they are dealing with them every day.

No, the “experts” I would love to threaten are the ones beloved of the media because they need a gap filled in the programme or on the page. Moreover the “expert” is usually produced to push an agenda favoured by the editorial team – to pimp a company or a political viewpoint or a questionable scientific “theory”.

The “experts” usually dress up their presentation with an impressive display of certainty buttressed with “facts” which on the surface appear ultra convincing. These “facts” are then often machine gunned out with a degree of rapidity that discourages in depth analysis. Certainly the host or editor rarely has the time or inclination to find someone who could present a contrary view.

The result? An initially rather shaky position is offered a framework of reinforcement by inertia and becomes an accepted wisdom. Very often the purpose is to agitate to change something that has worked efficiently and effectively, often for centuries with a view to provide opportunities for a whole tribe of leeches who cannot find gainful employment in the normal world.

Fortunately the “experts” are frequently proved wrong by subsequent events. Unfortunately so often a large amount of time and money has already been wasted in a fruitless search for each specific unicorn.

So – bring on the “experts”……

Less than two weeks ago our UK “experts” were saying this

contingency plans are being drawn up as the Environment Agency confirmed the drought is likely to last until Christmas.

Today they were saying this

The Environment Agency issued flood warnings in the South West and South East as drivers battled torrential rain on the motorways.

Why do we even listen to them. Switch on any TV news programme and there will almost certainly be an “expert” droning on about some topic and usually blaming us, the ordinary everyday folk, for being ignorant.

Remember which company was being singled out for praise by financial guru Gary Hamel in 2000?

extraordinaryaspirations, a willingness to listen to new points of view, flexible organizational boundaries. The managers of —- concentrated on the growth of new markets and industries, andindividual entrepreneurship is highly encouraged

You guessed it…Enron…yes that Enron….and he wasn’t alone in pimping it…

At roughly the same time a certain UK banker was being lauded as a business superman but a few years later the media changed their tune

Remember all the great and the good who really did think money grew on trees….until the recession? I wonder why they got it wrong?

And those brilliant minds who were telling us that those who opposed the Euro were Neanderthal doomsayers totally out of step with the times?

Well now James Lovelock, who as a “scientist”was always treated with due reverence as a top level “expert”, says he got it wrong about global warming when he issued dire warnings in 2006.

There’s nothing much really happening yet. We were supposed to be halfway toward a frying world now … The world has not warmed up very much since the millennium. Twelve years is a reasonable time

Thanks a bunch, you silly old fool – can I have my taxes back, please?

Don’t get me wrong. Every man and woman is entitled to express an opinion and, being human, will sometimes be mistaken. But for self proclaimed “experts” it is never sufficient to “express”…..they must PRONOUNCE as if they have descended from Mount Sinai with tablets of stone. They exude authority and turn a fierce and disapproving eye on any who dare question the validity of their utterances…and we fall for it every time. Even when they are proved wrong “experts” shamelessly slough off their mistakes as a snake sheds it’s skin. Like whores they are forever turning new tricks.

So next time you are watching TV and an “expert” is wheeled in to pontificate on some burning issue remember

1. He/she is getting paid for it and traffic will expand earning potential…everyone will want to go Al Gore

2. So many “experts” have got things wrong every future pronouncement should be accompanied with a large dose of salt

Somebody once defined the etymology of the word “expert”

In mathematics X is an unknown and in plumbing a spurt is a drip under pressure

Sounds good to me…..now, where is my Smith & Wesson?

h/t for violin cartoon

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