I was 40 when I took my second degree, and by then the rot had already set into the English universities. Only one member of the research & teaching staff had an adequate command of English and he was an American. The VC and senior admin staff were concerned solely with cramming their own mouths with as much public gold as they could hold, and in pursuing every crooked, academically dishonest scam and scheme to this end. The staff - at best academically mediocre - were under enormous pressure to publish. Anything. The consequence was academic journals full of unreadable rubbish; prolix, poorly literate, loaded with jargon and cliches. Worthless dross in the main that did not advance scholarship one iota. The point, of course, was the publishing credit - for both the academic and the institution.
And so our universities became magnets for third-rate European academics who rightly were unable to find employment in their own countries. The only qualification it seemed was their ability to churn out 20,000 words of meaningless drivel like clockwork every quarter.
This spew of garbage encouraged a new wave of academic publishing - The Journal of Otiose Sinology, 4 issues a year, subscription $1,400 - journals bought only with tax-money by university libraries and that exist solely to put into print the worthless drivel from these fourth-rate minds.
The cap of course is that these dreary failures call themselves 'intellectuals' in spite of the fact that we don't have intellectuals in England. We have scholars. Intellectuals are for nations such as Hungary, or cities such as Paris, where they tolerate young men with no change of underpants, little money and with poor social skills.
And now, offended by Brexit, some want to leave, to go back to Europe. That's fine. As 'intellectuals' they will appreciate that their departure will marginally increase the average level of scholarship in both England and Europe. It's a win-win.