Mystery must be a constant feature of the life of a politician. Mystery generates fear and respect. It causes people to fantasise, since power is usually associated with rooms furnished with precious antiques and the velvet walls of secret corridors within inaccessible palaces. People dream of elegant politicians, sipping a Martini in the shadows whilst weaving sordid alliances whilst seated on a white baroc sofa in front of a fireplace adorned by a Thomas Birch painting of a battle between two ancient frigates. People consider politicians akin to priests administering the incomprehensible pagan ritual which is public life. Imagination is good for the people's hearts. Why not buy into this?
An essential part of the sacred vestments of politicians lies in their external appearance.
Politicians must never lose their calm or self-control, the perfect politician extricates himself from compromising situations by stinging his adversaries to... _OMISSIS_
...orous gusto at the same time both venomous and detached.
People love the image of duplicity and refinement that politicians portray, who, like the bull fighter await the charging bull with impassiveness, cool detachment and elegant cruelty.
Scurrilous language and disorderly, chaotic rapid and erratic delivery are to be avoided at all costs, as are muttering and shrill tones: everything that might indicate weakness, insecurity and vagueness.
Politicians need to be self-assured, fearless, calm, precise, they must talk slowly, almost in a whisper, always looking left and right in their public addresses, as if they were speaking directly and personally to the crowd.
When they want to make themselves understood, they need to express themselves by use of clear and concise statements in logical succession, starting with a premise and reaching a conclusion in a few sentences without missing anything. And it is in this... _OMISSIS_
...tion of ideas which sits between premises and conclusions where the deception and the politician's skill can be seen, the very essence of their talent is all here, in the ability to weave a convincing case which is on its face unassailable, which by building on a few objective statements, enables the politician to lead their audience in the direction they choose.
When politicians don't wish to be understood, they use short evocative, engaging sentences which don't lead anywhere.
It is the politicians calm, precision and elegance which command respect. During debates and at conferences they ought possibly not to take to the stand first, rather have the final word.
Politicians must avoid eccentric clothing to ensure their message is not forgotten and be remembered only for what they are wearing.
However, politicians must also avoid dressing too conservatively, drably, using trivial gestures and attitudes which ... _OMISSIS_
...ake them appear dangerously similar to the everyday image that the people have of themselves, otherwise the people will lose the belief that they have elected a special person up to the task of keeping under control the busy nerve centre of command, and deal with fearsome adversaries, and in an instant the politician will have lost all their appeal and authority.
This is not to mean that from time to time politicians can't display the common touch for example by being seen holding a basketball or eating together with troops stationed abroad. But it must be stressed that this is an unusual display for them, both bold and exceptional: a mechanical chore, a mere egregious gesture aimed at making them appear to be more like the common man. In fact this renders them even more majestic.
The moment people can't fantasise about politicians any more or curse them, the moment the people lose their fear of the politician and can't find any more topic... _OMISSIS_
...on to criticise them at the pub, at that point that politician is finished.
In matters of religion however something new has taken place recently. The catholic Church has elected a Pope who is breaking with traditional tenets.
One has to ask one's self whether this could turn out to be counterproductive in a world where symbolism and formality have been the basic norm for two thousand years, where until a few dozen years ago the liturgy was spoken in latin, and where the Pope-King is carried on a sedan followed by a retinue of purple-clad clergy their hands clasped, something which is forever impressed in the imagination of the many faithful. It might not be counterproductive if the sanctity of the spiritual guide, (even before the initial honeymoon effect will have vanished), is replaced by the formidable charisma demonstrated by the Pope. We shall have to wait and see.
What is important to note at this juncture is that the... _OMISSIS_
...the formal structure is both a habit and a luxury which only a few rare individuals, possessing unusual charisma, individuals who stand out in history from time to time. Since politicians rarely fall into this category, it would be a good thing for them to not abandon the safety of the above described sacred vestments in order to reinforce their positions.
However, the objective is not so much the vestments in themselves, but the authority that derives from their use.
It could also be the case that in certain situations sacred vestments are unnecessary: for example in the case of certain northern European people, politicians often travel by bicycle, they have no escort and no particular privileges. They would quite possibly be forcibly evicted from office by the people should they come across as arrogant. Yet even this lack of sacred vestments is a kind of sacred vestment. Olof Palme the Swedish Prime Minister was assassinated whilst ret... _OMISSIS_
...h his wife from a trip to the cinema. This goes to show that there are no havens on this earth where the powerful are completely safe and that whereas it is of vital importance to every country that at the very least the security of the prime minister and ministers by means of armed escorts is both necessary and inevitable. If this is not provided for, the mere absence of security becomes itself a symbol, a formal affectation.
Anyway, apart from a few exceptions, the driver must wear his uniform.
In order to show who makes the decisions.