Some words from the ever-lovely and talented fairy wren
A guide to what our dictators might have been like as kids, based on the quotable things they’ve said
“Death is the solution to all problems. No man, no problems.”
The untimely death of Stalin’s pet rock left him just a little cold in the face of loss. His mother would tell him that Pebbles was in a better place now, while suspiciously ducking his more specific questions about the physical location of this better place. But if Pebbles was happy, that was all that mattered, right? Carrying this idea into adulthood, young Joseph managed to solve any and all problems a Kulak might be suffering at any given time, making them the happiest dead dudes in Soviet Russia. His mother must have been so proud.
“Great liars are also great magicians.”
Some say that Hitler’s issues stemmed from his rejection by a Jewish-run school of arts, but can we all just admit he’s always been a jerk? Just go ask four-eyes over there… I mean, Timmy. Adolf both terrorised and mesmerised the playground as a boy, cultivating his mad manipulation skills from a young age. By the time he reached high school, he had developed a fairly solid code of ethics… one that deviated from the norm, and revered intelligence over decency wherever the two were mutually exclusive, but a code all the same. Hobbies included ogling the blondes in adult magazines and making smartarse remarks to his school teachers… simultaneously.
“I think that a man should not live beyond the age when he begins to deteriorate, when the flame that lighted the brightest moment of his life has weakened.”
Castro was an overacheiver from a young age. Growing up, he could never quite put his finger on what it was about people that he abhorred so much, but as he hit adolescence it occurred to him that many were quite simply far too stupid to be any kind of useful. Fidel took pride in his ability to have independent thought, and would drive his mother mad in his attempts to exercise it – particularly when it came to “revolutionising” his school uniform with a pair of sharp scissors one summer afternoon.
“We are telling the American people to have patience, courage, resolve and determination.”
Gaddafi only wished that sometimes, the other boys would invite him to join their foursquare game. But no one ever wanted to play with little Muammar. Maybe it was because he was always taking credit for other peoples’ ideas, or because his own concepts were blatantly unoriginal. Either way, he swore to take revenge on the bastards who made his formative years so lonely, and for a guy who heard “thank you Captain Obvious” growing up more times than you’ve seen the 6 o’clock Simpsons reruns, he sure made those ideas work. You’ve got to hand it to the man; he knows how to take his own advice. Determination is dangerous.
“The history of saints is mainly the history of insane people.”
As a small boy, Benito would continuously pipe up where his opinion was not wanted. Perhaps it was the brain damage from constantly having his ears boxed that prevented him from learning to shut his mouth where his thoughts were unwelcome. But Mussolini was a proud heretic and, after years of being forced to attend Sunday School, refused to shut up about it. His stubborn nature, while problematic growing up, turned out to be quite a handy trait in his chosen career path – flexible dictators have simply never been fashionable.