374. Merkel's apology

The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, has apologised for suggesting a full Easter coronavirus lockdown in Germany, and U-turned, relaxing the initially overly draconian plans. This is not news because a politician made a mistake, which is, in fact, a regular occurrence afflicting not only politicians, but other humans. Except you, of course. It’s not news because of the U-turn either. Politicians u-turn all the time, mostly surreptitiously. What is news is the apology. Apologies, admissions of error, have become a capital sin in politics. Erring is indeed extremely fashionable, done regularly and with gusto, as we have seen during the pandemic. But the usual reaction to errors is to pretend they did not happen and double down. Merkel’s apology will be targeted as a sign of weakness by her rivals but, alas, admitting mistakes, learning from them and apologising is a sign of strength and intelligence, both qualities which are being hounded out of our political class. Chapeau, Angela

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