MSNBC subsequently received information from a British viewer, Kevin, that there was more to the phrase “#RomneyShambles” than the obvious.
Like much of the US Press, you noted the widespread usage of the hashtag “Romneyshambles”. (Earlier today the top trending non-sponsored topic in the UK!) This is actually a little more than just the obvious meaning of “Shambles/mess involving Romney” though.
The term comes from another one which was used earlier this year to describe the terribly-designed UK government budget which then completely fell apart, caused the government to plunge 6 points in the polls, was mostly reversed on and was shredded by Left and Right alike and all major media as a total mess. That term, originating in a comedy program called ‘The Thick Of It’, was ‘Omni-Shambles’ as in, all-consuming disaster.
Omni-shambles thus gained huge popularity in the UK as “Horrible event in which everything that could possibly go wrong does so in a spectacular way.”
For those familiar with Yes, Minster, the comparison is obvious, though The Thick of It is quite a bit more intense. There may be nuances that are strange to an American audience as the parliamentary system of government is different than the U.S. system, but politics is still politics.
If you can get access to this incredible show, it’s worth a look.
Here’s a clip from The Thick of It that actually makes use of the term “Omni-Shambles.”
(Cross-posted at Lippmann’s Ghost.)