These quoted words, from US author of the Dune saga Frank Herbert, have been charging around my head since the infamous ‘fiscal event’ of 23rd September.

That was the day when our prime minister and her chancellor conspired to crash the UK economy. Regardless of political hue, this gloomy assessment has dominated subsequent reviews. Unfunded tax cuts for the unneedy. Unimpressed financial markets. Unhelpful impact upon borrowing costs, pension funds and mortgages. Unedifying bond-buying intervention from the Bank of England. U-turns from the dynamic duo as the painful consequences unfolded. Unforced policy errors. Underwhelming.

Most depressing of all is the sense that this government’s praiseworthy, if overdue, initiative, helping households with spiralling energy bills, has now been completely negated by fresh inflation elsewhere.

And yet, centre stage there are two trailblazing politicians. A comprehensive schoolgirl rising to become only our third female prime minister, via Merton College, Oxford. And a King’s Scholar at Eton with a double first from Trinity College, Cambridge.

On an educational Monopoly board, we’re talking Mayfair and Park Lane.

But what makes two 47-year-olds, with qualifications to burn, present their inaugural economic blueprint, a “new approach for a new era” no less, so incompetently? Were they poorly advised, ideologically inflexible, uncaring, not yet risen to their promotions, plain arrogant?

Or maybe, given they were clearly not intending to mess up, they are just not as intelligent as we would expect from a glance at their CVs.

If education is a body of knowledge, gained from the process of receiving instruction, intelligence reflects the ability to apply that knowledge. The latter comes from within, the former from without.

There is no doubt that education can fuel intelligence, but this is less clear cut than the power of intelligence to improve learning potential. In short, intelligence wins.

The advertising business has always offered a home both to university graduates and to smart people following a less conventional path. In my agency days, I worked for successful leaders who would happily have believed that Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau were footballers but whose creativity, mental agility, and gift for meeting the demands of a range of audiences in an ever-changing environment made them wonders to behold.

Sadly, this description does not apply to the PM and her number 3. Indeed, if rumours are to be believed, their careers are damaged beyond repair. They may live on, however. A Kwasi Kwarteng has the potential to enter common usage, describing the abuse of recently acquired authority to instigate an entirely avoidable clusterfuck.

As for Liz Truss, she will hopefully soon take her place among the footnotes of British politics, but her name may occasionally be invoked as shorthand for ‘just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse’. As in the statement, ‘well, this has turned into a right Liz Truss’.

In the meantime, celebrate intelligence where you find it and please can we have an intelligent government.