After a lot of thought, but not a great deal of research, I express my views on government leadership. What has become evident is that it doesn’t matter how weak or strong the head of the government is, either the Prime Minister or a President, if those behind him are not cohesive and strong, then the government is weak. By this token, the head of the government must be strong enough and wise enough to hold his own and hence will not make a fool of himself. I think that George Bush had a problem with this, he had a poor memory, and was constantly making gaffes which undermined his authority. A lot of his decisions have been suspect with hindsight. This disruption in Westminster prompted me to start thinking about the role of Prime Ministers and Presidents. There was no shadow of doubt that Churchill during the war, was not only a very strong person with a wide experience, but he had the best team who could possibly be had behind him and one that trusted him. I think the problem in Westminster is that Blair, who himself was strong, persuasive, and egocentric, got rid of a large number of the better and experienced politicians, because they disagreed with him, and replaced them with people more loyal to him in all circumstances but were less experienced. Brown inherited some of these people, and I suspect that some of their loyalties were perhaps then divided.
By all accounts President Bush avoided making decisions where possible, and at times made the wrong ones that caused him to be mistrusted by the public. When he went on world tours of state, one got the impression that it was merely a figurehead doing as he was told. Obama, on the other hand has set off at an alarming pace to introduce himself throughout the world hotspots, and is making elaborate promises clearly intended to change the American outlook in the eyes of the world. The question that immediately comes to mind is how he can keep this up, the amount of boning up that he has to do on a daily basis to fulfil the different circumstances that he will meet as he goes from country to country, or makes speeches in his own country on a variety of subjects. In his case I believe that there are others behind him who are making his agenda, keeping him up to date, because I don’t believe in the short time that he has been in office he could have had the depth of knowledge, and the time in which to absorb all the groundwork that was necessary for him to conduct himself as he does. It will be interesting to see where he is in 12 to 18 months time
I don’t believe the promised change in the whole of our government system will materialise because it is too momentous a task, and at a time when our whole future is going to have to change on practically every level to accommodate the changes created by the credit crunch, there wouldn’t be enough days in the month, budget enough and the people to do it. However if they were ever to do so in the future I think all the parties should ensure that their proposed leader is a man or woman of integrity, strong and determined, and above all experienced in both politics and the world in general. It is not enough to have advisers that are the current commodity, because they inevitably, by their very nature and purpose, will lead.