"But how can you live and have no story to tell?" Fyodor Dostoevsky
"A politician complaining about the media is like a sailor complaining about the sea."
Leadership 101 tells us that followers reject leaders who fail to set an example. When leaders ignore the rules they set for others, they delegitimise their words. In short, no one trusts them.
Boris Johnson, the hapless British PM, studied the Classics at Oxford. Maybe he was asleep or recovering from a night out wrecking a restaurant with the Bullingdon boys, when Aristotle's "Liars when they speak the truth are not believed" came up.
Also, Aristotle spoke at length that leadership is an interaction between the leader and the follower. But not to an entitled posh boy, who survives by deflecting with humour and then muddling through. Not for him paying for new wallpaper, wearing a mask or adhering to the rules on partying during Covid. That's for the plebs.
Before the Internet, mobile phones and CCTV, leaders could hide their activities to some extent. Not any more.
Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Police again show an unwillingness to do their job when it involves influential people. They are happy to raid the weddings of ordinary folk, fining people under the Covid rules. Yet, they are less keen on investigating possible illegal goings-on in Downing Street.
It should be easy for Commissioner Dick's crew to view the CCTV coverage of Downing Street to determine what was going on. After all, the whole area is secure, with all movements logged.
Then, again, the Met has form for standing off and not doing its job. At the height of the phone-hacking saga in 2009, Assistant Commissioner Yates asserted there was no evidence of widespread phone hacking.
In 2011, Yates resigned under a cloud of suspicion fighting hard against allegations he had a relationship with Rebecca Brookes. A later inquiry found that he had failed to investigate phone hacking properly.
Is it too much to suggest that the Metropolitan Police have never learned their lesson? Or must I notch this nonsense up to another failing of Teflon Commissioner Dick?
With each day comes a new blow to Boris. The North Shropshire by-election was a disaster, with an unprecedented swing against the Tories. Then the bloke Boris asked to investigate the alleged parties, top civil servant Simon Case, resigned because he'd had a party. That Boris needs an inquiry to discover what's happening one floor below his flat tells us a lot.
Next Boris's Brexit man, Lord Frost, seen as the only adult in the room, resigned citing policy disagreements. Frost took to The Spectator magazine to explain why he's fallen out with Boris.
The public has decided that Boris is deceitful; thus, he is a liability for Tory MP's. They now openly discuss his possible successors as momentum builds to remove him.
In a bizarre twist, Boris is getting his Covid plans through because the opposition Labour Party support his approach.
And all this comes at a critical time. The British nation looks for leadership and clear direction, as Covid surges, it has a buffoon at the helm. Meanwhile, this clown blames the media for his troubles by focussing too much on politics.
As Enoch Powell observed, "A politician complaining about the media is like a sailor complaining about the sea."
Stay tuned; more to come.
Walter De Havilland was one of the last of the colonial coppers. He served 35 years in the Royal Hong Kong Police and Hong Kong Police Force. He's long retired.