Having mad leaders has been par for the course for longer than you think. In fact its been a fashion accessory for any truly civilized nation ever since Nebuchadnezzar went bonkers and spent seven years in the desert eating grass.
Emperor Justin liked to bite people, and sometimes quite large chunks, an arm or a leg a habit that could only be tempered by him being driven about on a mobile throne..
you mean a pram..
“Having placed him on it, his chamberlains drew him about, and ran with him backwards and forwards for a long time, while he, in delight and admiration at their speed, desisted from many of his absurdities.”John of Ephesus
Across the other side of the world but about the same time, Emperor Quinfei of China kept order by forcing random attendants to have sex with each other in front of him. Anyone who refused had their family killed..
along with anyone that cleared their throat in protest at the time.
Madness ran in the family. Mostly because the family ran in the family. Special people, utterly confused by their parentage, its illustriousness and nine yards of tree diagrams not withstanding, were raised in an atmosphere of continuous terror and emotional neglect, but then suddenly given weapons and armies.
Its not going to turn out well.
But it seems from our foray into alternative forms of government that one need not be born to power to abuse it and in equally colourful ways.
John Quincy Adams thought the Earth was hollow. He attempted to prove it at the taxpayer’s expense.
It all started with John Cleve Symmes Jr, a U.S. Army officer who spent his life advocating his hollow-Earth theory on the literary circuit and gained quite a few followers. What he proposed was the 1800s equivalent to sending people to the moon to find cheese. He wanted to mount an expedition to silence his critics and also to trade with the Mole people…
As luck would have it, Adam’s successor, Andrew Jackson, was a man who thought the world was flat. Naturally, Jackson promptly canceled the expedition and along with it, dashing all hope of contacting the wily Mole people.
We seem to have developed a way of ensuring that whoever holds the reigns of power in any Single System system you care to name, if not already mad, is soon to become so with the absolute corruption of absolute power. What’s so funny is that we continue to promote ideals that create would be Emperors, as though at some point it is bound to work, like the magical novel written by the hundredth monkey.
One thing that most mad leaders have in common irrespective of their path to greatness is a preoccupation with their Nobs. Christian VII of Denmark wanked so much it interfered with his stately duties. Eventually his physician, Johann Streunsee, usurped power..
“as well as boning the queen behind Christian’s back. Presumably he was too busy jerking off to notice.” Kyle Stevens.
It seems that being given permission to live above the rules gives us some much needed perspective, as though something were trying desperately to impress upon us how unsophisticated and uncultured we really are.
“In a mercifully off-the-record moment at the height of America’s entanglement in Vietnam, reporters asked Lyndon B. Johnson to explain, simply, “Why?” Unable to conjure a suitable answer, LBJ instead produced his veiny avatar.
“This is why!” Johnson declared, presenting his penis to the press pool like Excalibur.” M. Judson
Apparently, Johnson’s passion for his Johnson went so far as to name it, Jumbo, apparently a sizeable trunk that he would regularly take out for everyone to admire….
as it pointed the way to death for 3.3 million people.
who didn’t share his pre-occupation.
The tragedy of LBJ’s madness was not just the numbers killed but the symbolic equation between his penis and his foreign policy, or perhaps between the Vietcong and his wife.
This equating one thing with another is the preserve of infancy. Mother’s milk is her love. Her arms are the world. Unfortunately it is also the preserve of the Gods. Our amusing list of mad leaders with their dicks out makes it easy to forget that they feel divinely inspired to show us into the bargain.
But, by what pray?
and we have to go further back than National Socialism to find the answer.
Supremacist ideals are lodged in European antiquity like currants in a bun. They are expressed in epics later condensed into Wagner’s Ring Cycle way before Christianity brought in its own brand of First and Only.
At the back of an already malevolent and warlike Yahweh, is his big brother, Wotan, whose deal it is to renounce Love for the sake of Power. The film ‘Lord of the Rings’ re-crafts much of the ancient story including a cursed Ring of Power.
The original specifies this curse in detail..
“The Ring itself as described by Wagner is a Rune-magic taufr (“tine”, or “talisman”) intended to rule the feminine multiplicative power by a fearful magical act termed ‘denial of love’ (“Liebesverzicht”). wiki
some form of sexual/emotional witholding.
The love of power costs the power of love. You get to be all powerful but also incomplete..
which is frustrating..
because in a world where you can have and do whatever you want, happiness is not something you can do for yourself or have room service send up.
So Wotan is a grumpy bastard and any man identified with such power isn’t really going to feel in the pink unless he is coming his load over an entire nation.
So, the Las Vegas shooter, was it gambling debts? Or could it be that a man placing daily wagers of $30,000 simply has more than he knows what do with and has devised a cunning plan to throw it all away…
except its supposed to be fun and its not. And you’ve achieved all the goals Life has set but the glittering prize…
crumbles as it is bestowed.
You are living the Dream but actually its a cruel and empty hoax, which might unhinge you just a bit and make you feel that if the attainment of earthly things is not enough then becoming a god and raining death from above will do the trick.
“Imagining that we have left all these Gods far behind, we are still as much possessed today by autonomous psychic contents as if they were Olympians which disorders the brains of politicians and journalists who unwittingly let loose psychic epidemics on the world. ” CG Jung.
When they are perpertrated by Jo Citizen they are act of pure evil, when atrocities against civilians one thousand fold are perpertrated or contemplated by Presidents, all nicely sandwiched in a neat dossier with a fancy seal it magically becomes the foreign policy of having no choice.