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Third World Countries Might Be Better Off With “Bad” Dictators


The recent Arab spring revolution has caused quite a stir, and today it was announced that Kim Jong Il passed away. I’d first like to congratulate the Arab countries for successfully overthrowing their oppressive leaders. However, I’d also like to send a warning.

“For men change their rulers willingly, hoping to better themselves and this hope induces them to take up arms against him who rules; wherein they are deceived, because they afterwards find by experience they have gone from bad to worse.” – Machiavelli in The Prince

Overthrowing one government in the hopes that another will fix the conditions is wishful thinking. The United States wasn’t founded on hopes and dreams, it took hundreds of years and thousands of legistlative adjustments to reach this point still far from perfection. As far as dictatorship is concerned, you will probably end up with a worse leader, cheers North Korea.

Kim Jong Il’s passing has likely put his inexperienced son in his place. According to wikipedia, Kim Jong-un is roughly 28 years old (pictured above). I’m no expert on North Korean government, but young dictators have never had me thinking, “excellent now we’re saved!” Also given the assumed state of North Korean education, I can only assume he is as irrational and ignorant as the average American teenager.

Leadership has and always will be an issue. Dictators rule with an iron fist, and it works because fear is an excellent motivator. Democratic countries have bought into this idea of freedom, but realize that it carries many burdens (OWS, anti-trust, corruption). So the real question is which is scarier, the 1% or Muammar Gaddafi?

Nothing is perfect, and this is especially true when we consider people as part of a society. It’s impossible for an entire country to agree, let alone a “Super Committee” of 8 politicians (‘Super committee’ fails to reach agreement – CNN). For this reason, dictatorship may often be the best option for these countries. Often, people wander aimlessly without a leader. Dictators, though possibly harsh and uncontrollable, can provide direction and leadership.

Sorry, but rules are not meant to be broken. The implementation of the correct laws can fix/boost a country’s economy, growth, education, etc. But I agree that the ruthless slaughter of a country’s citizens warrants that dictator’s death.

Image is from Earth (reddit). Yes, it’s a science book, the kind they don’t have in North Korea. Zing!

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  1. September 14, 2012 at 16:49

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