20 August, 2010

You don't need communism to have a cult of personality

Vladamir Putin's party will probably get most of what it wants in the next elections, but he's leaving little to chance.  In a country where almost nobody trusts the government or expects it to make things better, the only alternative is to trust in a man.  No--a superman:

Vladimir Putin is an amazing man. You may have seen him co-piloting an
recently and dumping 12 tons of water to extinguish two of the many wildfires raging across Western Russia. But did you know that in 2008 he used a tranquilizer gun to save a group of scientists and a television camera crew from a charging tiger?  In 2009, he saved
Russian shoppers
from high prices by ordering a grocery store executive to put sausages on sale, forced one of the world's richest men to restore laid off workers to their jobs by reopening a cement plant, taught judo to the Russian national judo team, and went to the bottom of the world's deepest lake in a submarine. In April, he hugged a polar bear. He swims Siberian rivers for exercise and enjoys bare-chested summer horseback rides. Without question, women
love him
. It's said that he will never have a heart attack, because his heart isn't foolish enough to attack him. Or maybe that's somebody else.   
What a guy.  Of course it's not a problem unique to Russia.  In North Korea, the "Dear Leader" is credited with the ability to control the weather.  On his first trip to a golf course. he shot 38 under par, including five holes-in-one.  And don't even get me started on his prowess at bowling.

It seems the less a government is able to deliver, the more it requires a superman at the top.  And in a totally unrelated story,

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