There seems to be no sign of Boris Johnson resigning after the latest evidence emerged about his No 10 party whilst the whole of the UK was stuck in lockdown. People could not go out to meet their elderly parents, some lost loved ones who they could not see or pay last respects to, and through all of this, Boris and his tribe of brainless, heartless pygmies, decided it was a good idea to have a ‘bring your own booze’ party as invited by the Prime Minister’s chief of staff, who the PM amazingly said post the revelations, he has ‘complete faith in’.
It is another sign of Johnson just trying to ride out any storm of scandal that seems to affect his Premiership. There have been plenty, perhaps none as emotive as this given what people have gone through, but never the less, there is this feeling that nothing seems to stick to BoJo and hence the idea he is like a ‘teflon politician’. However, I feel this is not a unique trend. I think there are alot of ‘teflon politicians’ emerging and the reasons for these politicians who seemingly can not be tagged by any political scandal is us as people and a short-termism that allows us to focus on our own self-need rather than any ethical issue or impropriety by a leader who promises to satisfy that self-need.
India has PM Modi who is another example of a ‘teflon politician’, where seemingly any scandal, issue or wrong-doing committed by his party, government or people associated with him is quickly written off as people acting out of turn or then drowned out in a cacophony of social media bots and trolls working to enhance the image of their ‘fearless leader’. The web and partisanship is a huge factor in this ‘teflon’ effect growing on leaders across the globe. Trump was another example, though admittedly only in his own set of crazed worshippers, but in the first few years of his Presidency, this extended to normal, middle class Americans as well, who just seemed to look the other way when faced with his bizarre behaviour or ill-thought-through decisions. They clearly believed he was the man for the job to sort out their important needs and they weren’t going to let his distain for political ethics or reasonable discourse affect that.
How long does this ‘teflon’ last? Well, it didn’t last for Trump. The last straw for many was the January 6th Capitol riot, which finally opened people’s eyes to how dangerous the man was the American democracy. There is a hint that Boris Johnson is finally losing some ground after these ‘party’ revelations as people count the cost and frustration of a third calendar year in a pandemic. Modi though, after over seven years in office, seems to be more secure than ever with a managed media and a floundering opposition around him propping up his propaganda and failing to take any advantage of his government’s failings respectively.
There is little doubt that politics has forever changed. There isn’t the same code of ethics or behavioural standards. Social media and a fervent nationalism has changed the game. That has led to teflon politics beginning to dominant the landscape and it will stick for years to come.