'Agree With Everything - Deny Nothing - Embellish All

Friday, October 06, 2006

Career Opportunities

To St Bees, accompanying V's elder daughter to her school's careers fair. This being West Cumbria, the careers most visibly on offer involved the nuclear industry in some shape or form. I soon found myself talking to someone who turned out to be the Nuclear Decommissioning Agency's brand manager. No, you didn't mis-read that. I'd better be careful what I say here, because the Renaissance Man's an expert in these matters, but as ever I'm having trouble relating the idiotic tropes of the free market to the monolithic relics of a planned economy. I mean, if you want to decommission a nuke (& I pause here only to remind the readership that in 1984 Lord Marshall assured us that the full costs of decommissioning the nation's nuclear reactors were 'on the books of the CEGB') - how many government agencies are going to be competing for your business? And what exactly is the value of having a decommissioning brand? I only ask . . .

8 Comments:

Anonymous Herr Docktor Professor said...

Given the terrible mess that Government-employed contractors can make of things (IT projects spring, or should I say catapult, to mind) I think a pretty strong brand image could be established using the simple strapline: "We haven't cocked up anything so far"

Those of us who work in the engineering profession would subscribe to the Dilbert view of success, which is to have reached retirement without having killed anyone.

6/10/06 11:20 pm  
Anonymous Lex said...

I don't know whether to laugh, cry or just file this one under "There'll always be an England."

7/10/06 1:06 am  
Blogger RenMan said...

Expert advice will follow .... but in the meantime another of Lord Marshall's utterances involvede the fact that the whole of the country's nuclear waste could be carried by 2 London buses. I maybe got that a bit wrong but the gist is that there wouldn't be much of it. I'm still coming to terms with why we need a Nuclear Decommissioning Agency? Why are 'they' selling BNG? Why are 'the Americans' so much better than us? Why did we sell off the Water Boards? Why is competition so good for us? .... I feel a rant coming on.

7/10/06 3:08 pm  
Blogger Nick said...

Renman: I suspect that Lord Marshall was a poltroon. That, at least, was the opinion of a former landlady of mine. (She was the widow of the man who discovered Plutonium & had been a Manhattan Project wife, hence a fairly good judge of competence in matters nuclear . . . )

8/10/06 4:20 pm  
Blogger Nick said...

Lex - it's curious, but understandable, that you regard this as evidence of endearing British dottiness. From over here it's impossible not to think of it as part & parcel of the malignant, and distinctly American, notions of corporate enterprise that we adopted in the 1980s & later. Of course, as with all these things, we did so in a half-hearted & idiotic manner, not really understanding what we were doing. When Czechslovakia was a neo-stalinist state between 1969 & 1989 it was known as 'Absurdistan' because of the lunatic antics of the state & government in trying to implement the ideology of a more powerful neighbour without really knowing what they were doing. Sometimes Britain reminds me of this, with George W Bush as Konstantin Chernenko & Tony Blair as Edward Gierek. Tragically, this means that Tony Benn is Aleksandr Dubcek & Harold Pinter is Vaclav Havel. And . . . Ermm . . Oh dear. I'll stop now.

8/10/06 4:30 pm  
Blogger Gill said...

I'd love to comment but sadly have signed the official secrets act.

9/10/06 10:13 am  
Anonymous Jeremy said...

a poltroon I don't know but Walter Marshall was a distinguished theoretical physicist not a corporate money man.

9/10/06 2:57 pm  
Blogger Nick said...

Jeremy - you are indeed correct re Walter Marshall's background. I can only defer to the views of my (now deceased) informant, who had first hand experience of him . . .

9/10/06 6:04 pm  

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