In the mid-1970s, I spent a couple of years working in the British government as a kind of exchange civil servant. Yes, the meeting rooms looked exactly like the ones in the BBC/Alec Guiness version of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, and tea and sweet biscuits were served promptly at four. At the time, the civil service was still drawn from the top ranks of “Oxbridge” graduates, with...
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