Cuban President Raul Castro gestures during an event marking the 57th anniversary of the start of the Cuban revolution in Santa Clara July 26, 2010. On July 26, Cubans celebrate the 57th anniversary of the July 26, 1953 rebel assault which former Cuban leader Fidel Castro led on the Moncada army barracks. The attack, held during the annual carnival festivities, was a military disaster with many rebels killed, but started the revolution that led Castro to topple dictator Fulgencio Batista. REUTERS/Desmond Boylan (CUBA - Tags: POLITICS ANNIVERSARY)
There's that d-word.
Funny that Reuters uses it so easily when referring to déclassé historical figures, but has such a hard time using it to describe modern times. Sure, I understand that they don't want to upset the nice little applecart that provides them such luxurious official access to Havana—but calling a spade a potato isn't exactly hard-hitting news. Or honest, for that matter.
So in an effort to help our clueless team at Reuters, I've assembled a handy-dandy checklist that they can use to correctly identify "dictators" in the modern world. Hopefully, with the assistance of this little guide, our enterprising sycophants will spend a little bit less time embarrassing their corporate peers from here on out.
The Snapped Shot Guide to Definite Dictator Identification
In describing any given leader in the world today, ask yourself the following questions:
* Was The Leader elected by virtue of a military overthrow? (Y/N)
* Has The Leader run uncontested in national elections for his entire tenure in office? (Y/N)
* Have political opponents been imprisoned, exiled, or otherwise molested? (Y/N)
* Are there pictures of The Leader plastered all over the country? (Y/N)
* Has obedience to The Leader been equated with obedience to country? (Y/N)
* Is criticism of The Leader equated to treason against state? (Y/N)
If you answered "Yes" six times, the leader in question is most definitely a dictator. You may now freely use that word to describe them in news stories and captions from here on out.
Including our erstwhile member of The Losers Club pictured above.