A Survey of World Leader’s Hair Styles and Why I Miss Old-Fashioned Communism

Yesterday, I was reading about the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il and I couldn’t help but notice… he has the worst hair of any world leader… present or past.
hair Kim_Il_Jong_sm.jpg

The glasses are a bit more Nicholson than Bono. But the hair? It’s just bad hair. The profile is worse…
hair kim_jong_il_profile.jpg
Is it teased up to add a few inches to Kim’s dimunitive stature? I read somewhere that he’s actually shorter than Napoleon.

This guy, despite his comic appearance, makes me sad. I feel a wave of nostalgia… for good, old school Communism. I know that North Korea is one of the few remaining Communist states, but it’s not the fun kind of Communism that I grew up with. The Communism that we all loved to hate like a schoolyard bully.

The world is a mess right now. It really is. I found the secrecy and deadlock of the Cold War much more comforting. Bring back Communism of the big, bad Soviet Union kind. America needs a big, simple enemy. Like a crosstown rival. It’s healthy. The Olympics were so much more exciting, then. We knew who to root for. We knew that East German women athletes were cheating and using steroids. You can’t hide much in a swimsuit. Now, all the athletes use “performance enhancement” drugs. They don’t even have the decency to restrict themselves to simple, good, old-fashioned testosterone.

And Communism also inspired all those great 80’s movies like “Gorky Park,” “Moscow on the Hudson,” “White Nights.”

“Say you, say me…” Sing it, Lionel.

I need to know who to be a afraid of. I like the idea of the Iron Curtain. That’s so wonderfully dramatic. And the Berlin Wall. The mystery is exciting. But, not to digress. Back to hair. I know that Kim Jong Il is a really bad guy who just so happens to think he’s divine, but who wants a silly villain with effeminate hair?

Our very own G.W. has the standard issue, “regular” haircut. When I was a kid, you could walk into a barbershop and just say, “I’ll have the regular.” That’s what Jr. gets. Frankly, it’s boring.

hair Bush.jpg

He needs to be more aggressive. A little more hip. Kerry had kind of a helmet on his head. Maybe to remind us that, despite a nasty, fictional smear campaign, he really did captain a swift boat. God, those Republican PR guys are good. I wish I could hire them.

Reagan and Stalin both used a lot of hair product. The result… one is beloved as a grandfather who may forget sometimes while the other is reviled as a heartless dictator who never forgot the names of his enemies. But maybe it was just the mustache…


What about Tony Blair? He used to sport a rock and roll, Haight-Ashbury look, but then he caved and went with the Bush “regular.” If he had held firm and stuck with his own rebel look (although it’s very “Spinal Tap” and not flattering at all), then maybe he wouldn’t have followed Bush into Iraq like a little schoolboy.


Does the kid on the left look like he wants to go to war in the Middle East? Not the brawler type. However he does look a little gullible.

I like Japan’s prime minister Koizumi. I’m not a big fan of the style, but at least he doesn’tlook like every other world leader.hair koizumihari.png.

Upon further consideration… it might be a little silly. But the guy actually has a personality and a good sense of humor and perhaps he’s just having some fun…

hair Japan.jpg

Mary Robinson, president of Ireland, sports the female equivalent of “the regular.”

hair Mary Robinson match w Koizumi.JPG

It’s not very exciting, but it got her elected. Maybe someday our progressive nation will elect a woman as president… Nahhh. Even Ireland, not known to travel in the fast lane of social progress…

Okay, this blog is getting boring. You can talk about hair for only so long. But we should at least feature Gaddafi. I like that he stays with the same cut, but just a added a hat to disguise any thinning and re-invent himself as a benign world leader.

hair muammar Khadafi.jpg

Oh, and then there’s this guy… former dictator in desperate need of a Queer Eye makeover.

hair Hussein.jpg

So much potential there, just wasted. What a shame. Although, wait. Maybe the Hussein look is becoming vogue. Hollywood is so fickle. It’s like the WWE wrestling. Good guys become bad guys, become good guys again. It’ as confusing as world politics.

And then there’s Bashir, president of Sudan. Most Americans couldn’t point to Sudan on a map. It’s not really a place of interest. Just a little run-of-the-mill genocide, “ethnic cleansing” and civil war. An Islamist government supporting militias that torture, murder and rape. 1.5 million people dead from Civil War. 400,000 displaced in Darfur. But China already has their oil… so, fuck it.
hair el-bashir.jpg

Ah, there’s the problem. We’re not interested in Darfur, genocide or Sudan because we can’t see President Bashir’s hair. And not only that, he has the sloppiest turban I’ve ever seen. Unacceptable.

If only we could go back to the black and white of the Cold War. Religious zealots (even in our country), war lords, ancient sectarian disputes… it’s all so very confusing. It’s nothing like pro wrestling. It doesn’t make for good movies. And I can’t imagine Lionel Richie or Phil Collins writing the theme song.

Hair is far more cut and dry than world politics.

That’s a pun, isn’t it? I hate puns.


2 responses to “A Survey of World Leader’s Hair Styles and Why I Miss Old-Fashioned Communism

  1. Maybe it’s coincidence, but Japan’s Koizumi cut reminds me of Chairman Kaga on Iron Chef. Or maybe I should be asleep right now.

  2. Thanks I really needed a something to make me smile this morning…!

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