Lessons in meritocracy from Gadaffi’s son

At a very stimulating dinner the other day, somebody told me an anecdote that happened to him “at Davos a few years ago”, when he was chatting (as one does) with one of the sons of then-dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

(I should say that the topic of conversation at the table was “meritocracy”, and whether the Chinese Communist Party might, surprisingly, be better¬†at fostering it in its internal ranks than America’s allegedly transparent and hyper-democratic electoral systems.)

In any case, Gaddafi junior (I don’t know which one), said something like:

Do you want to know why Israel wins all the wars against Arabs? Because the Israeli army is meritocratic: they pick the generals that will win wars. In our armies, we pick the generals that will be the smallest threat to the boss.

Explains a lot, doesn’t it? And is applicable to a lot else, isn’t it?