Uncle Wayne

Farewell Uncle Wayne. It’s been good knowing you.

What’s your legacy my friend, because the looneyversity certainly staked you, didn’t it? A cowboy capitalist with a platinum corporate card. A law unto yourself playing the intellectual stock market for all it was worth. You sent HR out into the world to hunt down the best researchers, flew them from all corners of the western world, fed and watered them at the best of our city’s hostelries. Charmed them away from the sandstones and onto the payroll. And then, having found your stars, you mollycoddled them, indulged their whims. Sitting there like some kind of feudal baron, dispensing largesse to those who beat a path to your door, hand-feeding the minions from your sack of public money.

But how were these follies funded? By stacking the classrooms with more and more undergrad paying customers each year and paying a pittance to casuals to do most of the teaching. The university of princes and paupers. The below-world-standard looneyversity where those you leave behind will be forced to work harder and harder as the whole ponzi scheme house of cards comes tumbling down around us.

It all went wrong somewhere, didn’t it? The vision curdled in front of you. One by one the fawning favorites deserted you. The happy optimism of the early noughties gave way to bitterness and bile.  And in the end, locked in the Werrington bunker, you were forced to see out your last days as the organ grinder’s monkey.

But no longer. Now you’re off to greener pastures with the Vatican. Cardinal Wayne, may you go with God. Or is it the devil? The mirror and the razor lay crossed. The black smoke from the chimney.

Cardinal Wayne