Lambrecht video: Politicians rely on self-portrayal
MMinisters are only human too – but, as one now has to add: people who are ministers. Increasingly disturbing is the tendency among politicians to prioritize public presentation of themselves over office. Sure, both belong together, but not in equal parts. It becomes grotesque when the ego comes into the picture so big that the ministry behind it is hardly recognizable. Just like in the New Year’s video by the SPD defense minister Christina Lambrecht.
The politician’s embarrassing appearance in front of her followers on Instagram stands for itself, but also for the overflowing enthusiasm in the self. This can be observed in politics as well as in society, but is more important where the big picture is at stake. When Lambrecht babbles in front of everyone, not at his home fondue pot, that the war in Ukraine gave her “many special impressions, encounters with interesting and great people”, this shows a self-centeredness that boils down world events to Lambrecht events. That is cynical, but above all frightening because the method has a system. The attention that the office deserves should benefit the incumbent.
Sparkler-type debate posts
It still seems involuntarily funny when the spokesman for the Ministry of Defense declares his Twitter account to be “purely private”, while Twitter himself identifies him as a government employee: “Germany government official”, but just for fun? However, it becomes really problematic when a politician draws attention to himself by virtue of his office, only to then follow up with a sparkler-type statement – briefly spraying, then fading away. For example, Minister of Health used it Karl Lauterbach his reach on Twitter to demand there on New Year’s Day that those who attacked rescue workers on New Year’s Eve should have their homes evicted. The SPD politician soon deleted this tweet, but that didn’t make it any better. Once again, a political leader had chosen personal comment over reticence on a matter that was not his.
Of course, politicians don’t communicate in a vacuum, and some journalists are only too happy to process the most stupid comment on a piece of news. Politicians who have left Twitter report that the number of calls from editorial offices has decreased significantly: those who don’t constantly make noise are sometimes simply forgotten. However, this does not apply to politicians who either really have something to say – because journalists know that too – or who are really important, such as ministers. Nobody forgets them, as shown by the presence of the Green Economics Minister Robert Habeck. He left Twitter years ago. It didn’t do him any harm.
In the Lambrecht case, there is also the fact that the unworthy video does not represent a sad climax, but almost an everyday occurrence in the minister’s work. Especially a Federal Chancellor who promised “respect” during the election campaign should know that not only the citizens deserve it, but also state offices.