Nobody loves us - and we don't care!

December 2, 2010

Our thrusting Director of Corporate Affairs, Jamie Targett, has warmly welcomed the recent declaration by Tim Marshall, chief executive of the UK's Janet IT network, that managers who sought to "drive change" must not be afraid of being hated, nor "mind people sticking pins in little plastic models (of them)".

Targett claimed that in this respect Poppleton was already "ahead of the field". He pointed to a recent survey of academic attitudes to managers at the institution that reveals "considerably more animosity to managers" than that envisaged by Mr Marshall.

He told our reporter Keith Ponting (30) that the survey findings show that a significant proportion of Poppleton managers are not merely hated but "actively despised".

He was also reassured by the additional survey finding that while pin-sticking is a common device for displaying this degree of disapproval towards managers, there is also comforting evidence of at least two dozen death threats and three failed murder attempts.

However, Targett declined "on security grounds" to follow our reporter's suggestion that he might have further strengthened his case by referring to the recent distribution of bulletproof vests to members of our ever-expanding HR team.

How much more proof do you want?

Suggestions by a growing number of leading academics and vice-chancellors that Universities UK has displayed a supine, pusillanimous and accommodating attitude to the Browne Review have been firmly laid to rest by a recent letter to Times Higher Education from Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of UUK. In it she reveals: "UUK has used every opportunity and every method available to oppose the cuts."

In the face of this evidence, one of UUK's fiercest critics, Ted Odgers of our Department of Media and Cultural Studies, has agreed to reassess his view that UUK has failed to use every opportunity and every method available to oppose the cuts.

Mr Odgers told The Poppletonian that he "deeply regretted" his former stance and recognised that his critical view had been based upon nothing more substantial than studying every pronouncement made by UUK spokespeople since the publication of the Browne Review.

He also acknowledged that his "use of evidence-based methods" was at odds with the emphasis that vice-chancellors now placed upon the tried and trusted methodology of pursuing enlightened self-interest.

Thought for the Week

(contributed by Jennifer Doubleday, Head of Personal Development)

All of us have our little grumbles from time to time - I know I do - but here's some advice for those who have made moaning into a way of life.

"The language of complaint starts with 'they'. The language of solutions starts with 'I'."

Because we're worth it - almost

After extended deliberation by the newly formed Tuition Fees Committee, it now looks likely that our university will charge £9,000 a year in fees under the post-Browne settlement.

In a leaked memorandum, it emerges that this figure was decided upon after the committee had accepted that while no intelligent applicant to Poppleton could possibly believe that it was worth £9,000 a year when compared with many other universities charging £9,000 a year, a lower fee would suggest to such students that Poppleton itself accepted this valuation. This would confirm their view that Poppleton was worse than all those other more worthy universities charging £9,000 a year.

One dissenting member of the committee who claimed that this decision flew in the face of everything known about market forces was rebuked for "the wholly inappropriate use of logic".

lolsoc@dircon.co.uk.

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