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Dictator Must-Haves: Nicknames

Today a real-life inspiration to all would-be tyrants joined the ranks of the departed; Giulio Andreotti died at age 94, a seven-times prime minister of Italy and the architect or enabler of the 'strategy of tension' (we'll never know for sure, but for an account of how dictators can use this technique see chapter 8 of our book) who in many obituaries is being referred to as the 'center of Italian political life for 50 years.'

Giulio gave great material for aphorists: 'Power wears out those who don't have it' and 'Never leave traces' are but two examples. But perhaps for aspiring dictators his greatest legacy is a long list of expressive nicknames. As we point out in chapter 13 of The Dictator's Handbook, a great nickname will go a long way in projecting your reputation while almost certainly capturing what the man in the street thinks about you. Here is what Signor Andreotti was called over his long lifetime:

-The Black Pope
-The Hunchback (hunchbacks are considered unreasonably lucky in Italy)
-The Prince of Darkness
-Uncle Giulio
-Il Divo Giulio (the Divine Giulio) 
-Lavazza (an Italian coffee; refers to the strange habit acquired by some of Andreotti's enemies -- dying after drinking a poisoned espresso) 

Uncle Giulio and Friends


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