The old saying goes, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” There has never been, in the whole of human history, a “leader,” who wasn’t corrupt. Socialist or Capitalist, Prince or President, Prime Minister or Premier. Generals, Senators and Popes are all the same. Why they may claim to be a leader and one of the people, this simply isn’t true. Popes don’t go hungry, Generals don’t do their own laundry, and Presidents don’t wait in line. The “privileges,” of power have always and will always existed and they are now inseparable from the offices and positions of the people who have occupied them. At the end of the day, the humanity has all but left them. Leaving behind these entitled husks that suffer through far less of life’s hardships. Why? Because they’re in charge.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt is often thought of as one of Americas greatest Presidents. He brought us through the great depression. Created social security and social welfare through the New Deal and was responsible for leading us to victory in World War II. In reality he was nothing short of a dictator who used his powers to stay in office longer than any U.S. President. All the while controlling the media, packing courts with democratic judges to push through his laws, forcing price controls and socialist policies on the economy. This is the same man who ended prohibition at the beginning of his presidency, all the while he had been drinking. Rules are not for the privileged ruling class. As we see every time we turn on the news and see that some new General, Senator, Mayor or Italian Prime minister has been engaging in sex with minor, drug use, excessive drinking and taking bribes while engaging in governing. Leaders whether elected or assigned give into the temptation sooner or later.
There have been so many, ‘golden ages,” in human history that was ushered in by a great leader who brought prosperity and happiness to their people. At what cost? We blindly attach ourselves to messiahs who want so desperately to lead us out of misery, sin or debt and into a world of milk, honey and fairness. This has never once happened and along the way of these twisting and winding paths those great saviors become so twisted in their ways. Leaders are men who lust like King David lusted after the wife of one of his devoted soldiers. Only to betray that devotion so he could marry his widow, they are gluttonous and greedy like Henry VIII who grew bloated in body and ego as he executed his wives and bankrupted his kingdom. More importantly they are selfish like Hitler, who despite being the self-proclaimed savior of Germany, sacrificed countless millions for his ambitions. In the end this didn’t work so he tried to kill Germany as the end drew near. Because his ego couldn’t let a nation live if he couldn’t. Whether anointed by God or by their own self-imposed divinity, in the end, they will do as they please because they forget their mortality and their purpose, which is to lead not dictate and bully to fulfill their desires.
Leaders are a rare breed. If we have ever seen any throughout the history of our species, they ended their lives as either the villains they claimed to fight or as debaucherously as them to say the least. Whether it was the “great leaders,” of the Socialist and Communist past or the peacemakers of the present, their words and their deeds rarely if ever matched up. Think of Stalin who purged and starved millions while he slept in a warm bed and had feasts every night. Chairman Mao who never new a hungry day nor a cold night during the great leap forward. Let us not forget the hypocrisy of moral leaders like Gandhi who openly espoused racism and sexism during his drive for Indian independence all the while trying to end the caste system that persists to this day. The only way to cultivate and maintain true and moral leaders is to not praise them as the exception but to expect them as a standard. We must not praise them nor cover them in accolades or wealth. Each person should be encouraged to be a leader and serve their time in an office. At the same time we must limit their tenure, openly punish for an abuse of power and enforce stringent term limits that’s must never be increased. Stop giving them so many servants and staffers and remind them they and work for their constituents and that they and those assigned to their staff are beholden to the former and not to the latter.
But oh, the perils of leadership in a species so anxious to be told what to do. How little they knew of what they created by their demands. Leaders made mistakes. And those mistakes, amplified by the numbers who followed without questioning, moved inevitably toward great disasters.”Frank herbert