Charismatic Politicians

Tony Blair is doing very well in handling the Chilcott inquiry and getting his point across. It has to be said that he is a masterful performer and of course an extremely charismatic politician.

Over time there have been many Blair-like leaders who stand out from the pages of history. Some were for good. But most, in the end, were for evil.

The constant trend through all of them is how the leader's charisma ensured they gained more and more personal power. The throngs of adoring, unquestioning fans have always pumped up the already substantial ego and launched the leader into quest after quest for power and glory.

Blair's foray into Iraq was such an example. No doubt, he legitimately thought that this was the best course of action. His forceful character and charisma ensured everyone else in a position to query his judgement went along with him.

He had the big idea, then all the adoring fans and yes men surrounding him agreed.

Tony Blair is not Hitler or Trotsky, but like them he easily commands loyalty and support. Like other charismatic leaders from the past he totally outshone his peer group. The net result was that the yes men (including Gordon Brown and the cabinet) not only buckled to his will but actively sought to support and justify anything he did.

Blair is not a political monster. But his intelligence, strength of character and charisma show that he could have become one.

Both he and we are lucky he left office when he did

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