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Oh dear, Labour has contracted Hubris Syndrome


In a recent appearance on The AM Show, Chris Trotter, a leading political commentator and very much left leaning mentioned that he thought Labour was suffering from hubris.

On his Bowalley Road blog in a post from 12 September – Labour’s Fatal Flaw he explored this further

What Labour is suffering from is a disease that is easy to diagnose but hard to explain. The Ancient Greeks called it hubris – roughly defined as: “excessive pride and/or over-confidence”. That’s fine, as far as it goes, but a better sense of the word’s meaning is gleaned by listing its synonyms: arrogance, conceitedness, haughtiness, pride, vanity, self-importance, pomposity, superciliousness, hauteur. Those afflicted by the fatal flaw of hubris harbour unfaltering feelings of superiority over all those lesser breeds with whom they are forced to have dealings. It is usually fatal.

The post is well worth reading

This reminded me of one of my early posts ( from April 2008)  where I wrote about Hubris Syndrome, which is a term coined by British politician and doctor Lord David Owen – as I noted then in an extract from this Telegraph article

Political psychology took hold of him when he was a young medic helping to treat MPs for alcoholism and depression.

He saw the pressures they were under and began to consider how illness affects the decision-making powers of leaders. And he noticed that some leaders who weren’t actually ill in the conventional sense became so intoxicated with power that it warped their judgment.

There were warning signs: unshakeable self-confidence, contempt for advice and inattention to detail. Gradually, they would lose their grip on reality.

There was no name for such a condition, so Lord Owen invented one: Hubris Syndrome (HS).

Now it seems to me that we see examples of this throughout the Ardern ‘government’ just look at the identified indicators:

  • unshakeable self confidence
  • contempt for advice
  • inattention to detail
  • lack of reality

I would suggest that there are several in Ardern’s ‘government’ who show signs of HS



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