Dr Jason Hickel, lecturer at the London School of Economics, is one of those academics who believes that we can solve poverty by demanding change.
In his article, Flipping the corruption myth, Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index is nothing more than a distraction from the duplicity of the Western Superpowers. Dr Hickel blames a shadowy elite for causing poverty through tax avoidance and unscrupulous dealings by the institutions that have hijacked global governance. He points out one myth yet, ironically, concludes by perpetuating two other myths:
- that taxation is the way out of poverty;
- that democracy is an ideal worth pursuing.
Dr Hickel is an advisor to an organisation called /The Rules. Here’s what its website says:
“…for the first time, ordinary citizens like you and I have the power and ability to change the rules that are creating [poverty]. Technology and the shift of global power mean that we can now demand our say in decisions that have traditionally been made by elites behind closed doors. But the truth is, these things will only change if we demand it…If we work together, the voices of the world’s majority are too loud to be silenced. Change the rules, and we change the world.”
Let’s break down this line of thinking into simple terms: “People are poor because members of the elite aren’t playing by the rules. We will demand that powerful people make them play by the rules.”
Do you see the huge gaping flaw here?
Those powerful people are the elite who don’t play by the rules. You can ask (or ‘demand’) all you like but why the hell are they going to listen to you anyway? But the truth is, these things will not change by making demands. That’s not changing the rules. It’s playing by the rules.
I’m always surprised at the people smart enough to see the flaws in the system but whose only solution is to ask for more participation in the very same system. In fact, those with a cynical leaning may even suspect the motives behind some of these smart people and that they are, perhaps, being a little disingenuous. Of course, I have no reason to doubt Dr Hickel’s sincerity. This article was the first I’ve heard of him. But one can’t help but wonder at the coincidental associations after a little research.
By coincidence or by design?
Dr Jason Hickel, is a lecturer at the London School of Economics (LSE) which was founded by four members of The Fabian Society. The Fabian Society came about as the political break-away group of a 19th Century organisation called Fellowship of the New Life whose goal was “the cultivation of a perfect character in each and all.” By forming The Fabian Society, its members planned to bring about a new socialist world through gradualism rather than revolution. Their tactic has been to advance socialism through stealth.
Now let’s look at /The Rules. Even though there’s no mention of socialism on its website, it has clearly been founded on socialist thought. It calls itself a ‘movement’ and strangely doesn’t display information about the organisation behind it. All we have is a link to purpose.com, a society whose ‘purpose’ is to ‘move people to remake the world.’ However, a whois lookup shows the registrant to be Alnoor Ladha. It turns out that Mr Ladha is the founder of both Purpose and The Rules. It also turns out that he studied at LSE.
For those in the know (i.e. the kooks), much has been made in conspiracy theory circles about the Fabian Society’s former coat of arms being a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Below is ‘The Fabian window’ unveiled by then British prime minister Tony Blair (a Fabian) at LSE in 2006.
There you see the shield bearing a wolf wrapped in the skin of a lamb, two figures beating the world on an anvil and the words, ‘Re-mould it nearer to the Heart’s Desire.’ Does that sound familiar? ‘…move people to remake the world.’
So yes, maybe I’ve gone off the deep end. But the question remains: why would a movement advocating a change to the status quo suggest solutions that actually reinforce it?
Ah Love! could thou and I with Fate conspire
To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire,
Would not we shatter it to bits—and then
Re-mould it nearer to the Heart’s Desire!