A day is not a day unless I check Iranian.com, and please excuse my vile language: it is just who I am, rude to the point of exhilaration. I was delighted tonight to find the roll-call of dictators — marvellous — gratified and bemused, I say. Gratified because most of them are black, as they should be, and I could not see President Bush there. There are so many nasty black dictators one wonders if there was ever a good black ruler — alright Yoweri Musenewi and PDiddy or BigFat Daddy or one of those — and therefore they can happily share one slot, the collective African slot, right on top, say? What were readers' selection criteria here?
I agree Sudan's ruler is a valid candidate for big-time son-of-a-bitch this year: but just this year? Is he worse than Kim Jong-Il, in whose country millions have starved to death while the dictator and his whores went shopping for bombs, bazookas and bazonkers in Russia and other shabby-chic places? Blame the father I guess, the fat-fuck now sleeping in his Bolshevik casket. Say what you will however, but nobody, not even the lower classes of Delaware or a mid-ranking MacDonalds manager can supplant Kim for sartorial bad taste — perhaps his true contribution to horror?
I also dispute the positions, if not the inclusion, of a clerical ruler and monarch, Mr. Khamenei and King Fahd. The former says he acts according to his conscience and following the dictates of religion as he sees it. The point is not whether we like religion, believe in the separation of church and state, or disapprove of Iranian state agents bludgeoning critics to death in their homes or beating to them to death in interrogations, but whether Khamenei individually is being tyrannical. If he were, his removal would resolve so many problems, surely, but would it, when Iran's is an oligarchy, with shifting power cliques and a sprawling bureaucracy that makes tyranny unnecessary?
King Fahd is also in a system. His family founded the state, and I say, after two years of viewing Iraq news: I am hard-pushed to attribute peaceable ways and a love of democracy as outstanding traits of the Arabs. So is his majesty, objectively, the fifth worst dictator in the world, or just one the media have brought to the attention of American readers this year? Americans are of course a most discerning, learned people (SHOUT, SHOUT, SHOUT.. I'M OFF TO THE GYM DON.. YEAH.. CATCHYA LATER BUDDY etc..).
Why is Vladimir Putin bottom? He is as disgusting as any Russian in government since 1917. He presides over a police state that tolerates and connives with the mafia. A man has just written a novel, based on extensive factual research, which shows the inhumanity of the Russian state forged by Putin. The Russian government intentionally did nothing, allegedly, to save its sailors suffocating in the Kursk submarine: apparently finding the prospect of their survival and subsequent complaints about incompetence in the navy too inconvenient. I like to believe such allegations, as I view the new Russians to be a large collection of garbage.
And the Chinese: today I went into an Internet place whose every surface was inexplicably greasy. The owner gave me a vacant stare: as if the purpose of my entry into his dirty Internet den was a perfect mystery. All the screens and hotmail and software were in Chinese — I nearly ordered a stir-fry rice. Why is there no Chinaman on the dirty-dictators list?
The saddest thing that happened to me recently was: I went to some printing shop to have my carefully cut-out obituary of General Pinochet plastified: they ruined it, on purpose? That was my immediate suspicion.