When something goes wrong somewhere, someone is often to blame.
Let’s not include in this post the fact that inanimate objects screw with us just for the fun of it.
Like your laptop that waits until you have written the best text ever, but not saved it and THEN gives you the Blue Screen of Death.
Or the water pipes in your home that are silent and obliging for years until you are in the process of dying your hair while washing the dog and cleaning the gutter – THEN they brake and you’re left with no water.
So no, let’s not talk about those damn deliberate mishaps.
Let’s talk about things that happen when someone says/doesn’t say something, gives/takes/sends/throws/utters/stomps/winks/does something s/he shouldn’t have.
The world is filled with mistakes; a thousand of them are probably made every second. Small ones, big ones. So someone is doing something wrong and should take responsibility for it.
And no, we’re not talking about taking responsibility either this time.
What we’re talking about is a very weird concept: political responsibility.
I know, I know, delving into politics is the last thing one should do. No heads or tails to it, opinions as many as ass… erhm.. mouths, everyone knows everything and no one and everyone is right or wrong. Or both.
But I am slightly talking about politicians. Just can’t help it, sorry.
So someone (a politician) does or says something s/he shouldn’t have.
“Oops. Accidentally slipped into this prostitute several times”.
“Oh, didn’t mean to call our closest ally mindless blabbering idiots to their face”.
HATE when that happens!
Anyhoo. The deed is done. Now it’s time to face the music.
So what does a politician do?
S/he says s/hell assume full political responsibility. Sure, they probably apologize as well, maybe blame the media or say the Thing That Happened was completely taken out of context.
Ahem. And? What does taking political responsibility really mean?
It means absolutely nothing will happen. Sure, in the next elections the voters might punish for what happened, but if the elections are far away, no one will actually remember anything by that time. Voters do have the memory of a .. yeah.. what does have a short memory? Not goldfish, they have actually a good memory.
Aaand back to the issue.
So we have this stand-up politician promising political responsibility will be taken. But really, that means nothing will happen. Since there’s no political responsibility. Not really. It’s just empty words, but sure sounds good on TV. Add to that some remorse, throw some ashes on your head and you’re covered. By taking political responsibility the person doesn’t actually own up to anything, nor does s/he commit to anything.
The best thing a politician can do after a screw-up is take full political responsibility. And then walk smirking all the way to the next political accident…
I take full political responsibility for this post.