“Disappointed” Political & Business Leaders
“Vikram Pandit, Citi‘s chief executive, calls the latest earnings ‘disappointing.'”
–Floyd Norris, “Living Blogging Bank Losses“; The New York Times (1/16/09)
I remember, in another era, when business or political leaders were cornered and had to acknowledge that they screwed up, they’d grudgingly allow that “mistakes were made” (exactly which ones, who committed them and how, were never identified).
For some reason, that vernacular has fallen out of favor and a new one has taken its place: the politics of “disappointment.”
Wrong intelligence on Iraq? “Disappointing.” Economic crash? “Disappointing.” Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo Bay, Katrina and New Orleans, Valerie Plame’s outing, SEC non-feasance (Barry Ritholtz’s term), trillions in banking bailouts, spiking unemployment — it’s a VERY long list — all, you guessed it . . “disappointing.”
As Wall Street’s leaders now divulge the latest round of horrific financial results, gird yourself for lots more use of a certain adjective.
Personally, what I find most disappointing of all is political and business leaders who don’t see — and won’t acknowledge — their own culpability.