Following a long and difficult week Prime Minister Cameron has decreed that all ministerial announcements are checked for gaffes, and any escape is controlled quickly.
Cabinet Minister Francis Maude is to head up a team of gaffe inspectors. Maude was selected using the 'takes one who has done one to know who is about to do one' principle. The Prime Minister believes Maude has the nose for the job. Whitehall is already referring to Maude's team as the Government Gaffe Tank, a droll allusion to the American way of saying petrol tank. Maude's team will be three strong at first but will be topped before it needs to be.
Maude is charged with ensuring that no gaffe is released by the government or, if the gaffe gets out, it gets out in the most controlled silent manner possible and is only detected if the press gets a whiff of it. Other gaffe related strategies are believed to be under consideration. Sometimes it makes sense to release advance information about the gaffe to the media so that when the gaffe occurs the public is already bored with it. This is known as creating a gaffe leak but has the danger of explosive consequences if not properly controlled.
Cameron does realise that not all gaffes come from Government ministers. Some gaffes occur spontaneously and this is known as a natural gaffe explosion.