Overhead in public earlier today: two concerned citizens discussing the upcoming strong winds. The conversation itself meandered but came to a most definite conclusion. One of the two was going to complain to the council about the weather. Not any resulting damage from the weather, contingency plans, or even global warming. No, just weather itself.
Quite right too. And Canute for Prime Minister while you’re at it.
Who would be a politician, though? If it’s not the weather, then its the bins, and if its not the bins, its the roads and if its not the roads its because Jonny fell over on the rugby pitched after being tackled and now has a bruise and, dammit, this may come under the jurisdiction of several other authorities but WON’T SOMEBODY TAKE THE BLAME .
Excuses? What do you mean excuses? Of course it has to be the politicians fault. If they deny it, it must be true, and if theysay its true then they must resign . It’s a simple law of politics that we understand and insist our leaders adhere to.
Of course it wasn’t always this was. Athenians used to frown upon men who weren’t involved in public life, but those who were allowed to participate in democracy  . Everything was debated, arguments were had and votes from the people were counted.
Granted, they tended to vote for an awful lot of wars, and didn’t view women or slaves as citizens, but when you think about it today, other than the female vote which has been gained, and wars, which will always stay the same, have we actually come any further?
What we have gained, though, is blame . The Greeks would probably use it as an excuse to have a good old punch up against Sparta. We’re now more civilised, and use it to sell newspapers instead, which in turn causes for somebody to be blamed NOW for
a) the warm winter we’ve had so far
b) the windy weather we’re having at the moment
c). The cold weather we’re about to have.
And if the cabinet don’t resign now, nobody, least of all the Daily Express, will be happy. Never mind years of abuse of the planet and scientific theories surrounding climate change, no, what we need now is action, and by action I mean writing a letter to the council, and by that what I really mean is blame.
 And, for that matter, think of the children.
 Unless they happen to be one of those rather rum fellows like Boris Johnson. They will grudgingly be tolerated.
 From the Greek demos, meaning people, and kratos, meaning rule. So a rather rough translation is rule by the people. A rather strange concept by today’s standards. No wonder the Ancient Greeks became just that.
 And, by default, lost the use of the word happenstance.