The demagogues can’t win the debate with intellectuals, so instead, they’re trying every trick in the book to shut it down.
The western world is some way from being a technocracy. But there is no doubt in my mind that those sectors that are run on the basis of expertise – the judiciary, the civil service, academia, the creative sector – are under ferocious attack.
Intellectuals, however, are no pushovers, because – well, they’re bright, and they usually hold influence and power. When ideologues face experts on a level playing field, they tend to have their arses handed to them – see the epic owning of alt-right bilemonger Paul Joseph Watson by teacher Mike Stuchbery over the question of racial diversity in Roman Britain. So if a fair fight is out, how is this war being prosecuted?