Omnishambles

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'Omnishambles' is a newly coined phrase which is entering common use in the U.K. In essence it describes a situation which is perceived as shambolic from all possible perspectives.

Contents

Etymology

The term originated in the British satirical comedy show The Thick of It and is derived by the combination of the Latin prefix 'omni'-, meaning "all" and the word 'shambles' which means disorder. In the show, the character Malcolm Tucker uses the term when rebuking a junior cabinet minister.

Usage

Ed Miliband, the leader of the British Labour Party used the term during Prime Ministers Question time on April 18th 2012 when responding to the Budget statement:

'On charities, the reality is that the Prime Minister is not making the rich worse off. He is making charities worse off. Over the past month we have seen the charity tax shambles, the churches tax shambles, the caravan tax shambles and the pasty tax shambles, so we are all keen to hear the Prime Minister’s view on why he thinks, four weeks on from the Budget, even people within Downing street are calling it an omnishambles Budget.[1]

'Romnishambles'

The term received international attention during Mitt Romney's visit to the U.K. in July 2012. A day before the opening ceremony he questioned whether London was ready for the Olympics and was subsequently lampooned by the popular conservative London Mayor, Boris Johnson.

"There's a guy called Mitt Romney who wants to know whether we're ready. Are we ready?"[2]

Romney then backtracked after meeting UK PM David Cameron and predicted a "very successful" Olympics.

He also referred to the leader of the opposition as 'Mister Leader' and publicly mentioned a meeting with MI6. [3]


References

  1. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201212/cmhansrd/cm120418/debtext/120418-0001.htm
  2. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-19007127
  3. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/27/romneyshambles-twitter-mitt-romney-london-olympics_n_1710034.html
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