Fri 17th February 2012, 4:07am
QUOTE(Mister Die @ Thu 16th February 2012, 9:22pm)
Articles like this tend to suck because the term is becoming more of a pop-culture thing to insult people and there are thus a lot of stupid inputs.
I mean the bit about Sun Yat-sen and his successor is true, both had personality cults. Of course Mao's was far more "involving" and clearly much more zealous, but again, just about every famous leader has a personality cult of some sort amongst some groups of people. Atatürk, Salvador Allende, De Gaulle, Churchill, etc. The question is one of degrees.
The article seems to solve this by pointing to the practice of government-sponsored political cults, but even here the practice varies wildly. The personality cult of Chiang Kai-shek was clearly sponsored by the state (then again so were those of Washington, etc. after their deaths), to give just one modern example. You can't really draw a line if you don't stop at three of the most famous examples: Stalin, Hitler, and Mao. If you absolutely need a contemporary example then the DPRK will do just fine.
Any attempt to move beyond those three and the article is going to suck. "Why don't we include Chiang Kai-shek? Why not that guy from Turkmenistan? Why not Brezhnev's half-assed attempts? Why not Lenin? Why not Che? Why not the American Founding Fathers? Why not Reagan? Why not Obama?" It'd never end, you'd need to list basically every notable world leader from ancient times to the present. I mean in earlier versions of the article there were random mentions of Siad Barre and Enver Hoxha, and Hoxha is still there with an uninformative "oh this guy had a personality cult as well" mention. Why were/are they in there? Because they're evil and bad diktaturz and we need to pad out a lame article, fin.
This is the point at which otherwise intelligible people like Fifelfoo start making sense - for these articles, given that they're going to exist, it should be only academic, scholarly sources and that's it. This is a round about way of saying that Wikipedia is nowhere near close to being able to handle complicated subject such as these - but that doesn't mean the subject itself isn't encyclopedic (with a better encyclopedia, you could do it).