Here is the usually rather brilliant Stewart Lee on the subject of the decline of the intellectual. I'm uncomfortable with the untypically careless juxtaposition of 'cash-rich Asia' and 'giving idiots money' and I'm sure every half-wit in the land will leap upon it with glee (half-wits hate Stewart Lee with a vengeance). The decline in intelligent debate, or the role of intellectuals in public life/culture in the UK is a serious issue. Sadly, the management of UK universities (including a disproportionate number of second-rate historians) has played a very significant part in this. See this 'Thought for the Day' from 18 months ago.