UK government seeks ‘weirdos and misfits’ to bolster civil service

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Dominic Cummings, the U.K. prime minister’s chief adviser | Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images

Boris Johnson’s chief adviser says government needs ‘true wild cards.’

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The U.K. government is looking to hire “weirdos,” “misfits” and scientists to revitalize the civil service, according to the prime minister’s chief adviser Dominic Cummings.

“We need some true wild cards, artists, people who never went to university and fought their way out of an appalling hell hole, weirdos from William Gibson novels like that girl hired by Bigend as a brand ‘diviner’ who feels sick at the sight of Tommy Hilfiger or that Chinese-Cuban free runner from a crime family hired by the KGB,” Cummings said in a blog post today. “If you want to figure out what characters around Putin might do, or how international criminal gangs might exploit holes in our border security, you don’t want more Oxbridge English graduates who chat about Lacan at dinner parties with TV producers and spread fake news about fake news.”

He said No. 10 is specifically looking to hire data scientists, economists, policy experts, project managers, communication experts, and junior researchers, one of whom would become his personal assistant. This assistant, he said, “will not have weekday date nights, you will sacrifice many weekends — frankly it will hard having a boy/girlfriend at all. It will be exhausting but interesting and if you cut it you will be involved in things at the age of ~21 that most people never see.”

Cummings’ post comes as he seeks to shake up the way government works and ensure the United Kingdom thrives once the country leaves the EU at the end of the month.

Cummings, the architect of the Vote Leave campaign in 2016 and one of the key figures behind Boris Johnson’s electoral win last month, has long used his personal blog to detail his political motivations, obsessions and observations about how government works.

The blog post calls for applicants to email their one-page cover letters and CVs, and warns they must be able to commit to at least two years.

“I’ll bin you within weeks if you don’t fit — don’t complain later because I made it clear now,” he wrote.

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