Thursday 14 December 2017

Nicholas Leonard: Cameron's swearing is a classic symptom of exhaustion and he's plenty to be stressed about

Nicholas Leonard

If you want to see how the stress of being prime minister is affecting David Cameron, you only have to listen to his language. Many of his traditional supporters have been shocked by the way he uses four-letter expletives as casually as a teenager in a school playground.

His predecessor, Tony Blair, was notorious for his angry four-letter rants behind the scenes when things went wrong, but he chose his words in public far more carefully. Cameron, in contrast, is starting to scatter semi-taboo words in speeches and interviews.

This kind of mock-shock behaviour is a classic symptom of exhaustion and stress and Cameron has plenty to be stressed about. The enthusiasm with which he and the chancellor, George Osborne, have backed the frantic efforts to shore up the Irish financial system is a reflection of their fear that the UK may be badly hit by the fallout from the crisis.

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