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Who do you think is the worst tyrant in history?
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notageek
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:02 pm    Post subject: Who do you think is the worst tyrant in history? Reply with quote

Not a trick question. Would like to know.

Edit: s/biggest/worst/
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My money is on Pol Pot. By his policies, he's responsible for roughly 1-3 million deaths by starvation, exposure, or exhaustion.

*edited to fix broken link
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notageek
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

+1 Pol Pot.

I had forgotten about him.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The supporters of Manifest Destiny.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, Mao during the culture revolution is certainly up there, but I think Pol Pot takes the cake.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 8:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hitler?
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mao Zedong, without a doubt.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We have to be careful with the word "tyrant" here, though. A "tyrant" (originally Greek) was originally not necessarily a bad thing, being simply a leading citizen of an oligarchy or democracy who had consolidated a lot of power. Pericles of Athens, considered a father of Democracy, was literally a "tyrant".

Like the Roman "dictator", which might have been a benevolent leader, the word "tyrant" has had its meaning altered by centuries of democratic propaganda to the point where we now equate them both with 'despotic tyrant' or 'despotic dictator', and our minds are programmed to balk at the very idea that any single man with such power could be other than a despot.

But I digress. :P

Pol Pot was quite the motherfucker, but Mao is credited with 20-62 million deaths of his own people (not war deaths, but deaths due to policies intended to exterminate them). I don't think anybody can top that. Stalin would be next up with about 20 million of his own people.

However, number killed is not the sole measure of a man's evil. Mao and Stalin were in control of large populations. Pol Pot might be judged more evil in that he eradicated a much higher percentage of his own society.

So I'd say either Mao or Pol Pot, depending on what "biggest" means.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dictators are bad, but at least they're honest about it. I'd argue that current western 'democracies' are the worst tyranny in history, they purport to represent the people but are only ever interested in listening to the will of plutocrats, and if the people ever exercise their right to express their will they're beaten into submission. As a result, the richest societies ever developed in history are also the most grossly disproportionate in wealth and power, and getting worse per the intentional boom and bust cycles, through credit saturation and loan freezes. It's the tyranny everyone's afraid to call a tyranny.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Barack Hussein Obama.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

energyman76b
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BoneKracker wrote:
our minds are programmed to balk at the very idea that any single man with such power could be other than a despot.
History is not on your side.

BoneKracker wrote:
However, number killed is not the sole measure of a man's evil. Mao and Stalin were in control of large populations. Pol Pot might be judged more evil in that he eradicated a much higher percentage of his own society.

So I'd say either Mao or Pol Pot, depending on what "biggest" means.
What about what they did, even if in smaller numbers of deaths? Such as experimentation? I'm less familiar with the others, so maybe they did similar things.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 3:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

stalin, hitler, pol pot, mao. probably in that order.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 3:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Abraham Lincoln was very tall.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 3:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

wswartzendruber wrote:
Hitler?
Pol Pot makes Hitler looks like a schoolboy amateur. Hitler was brutal, yes. He killed lot's of people, yes. But not like this guy.

As far a Mau is concerned, his revolution was responsible for reshaping of a country, which is quite powerful today. Pol Pot was mindless killer.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 3:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would argue that Mao's revolution delayed the economic power that China is becoming.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tyrannosaurus Rex
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just read something off the Internet, under Mao's rule, the population of China nearly doubled from 550m to 900m.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

notageek wrote:
I just read something off the Internet, under Mao's rule, the population of China nearly doubled from 550m to 900m.

Yeah, and if he hadn't killed 50 million, it probably would have grown to 1.3 billion in the same span of time.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, seriously. If you think Maoist propaganda is keeping his legacy alive, as a reformer and leader, what stops Khmer Rouge from doing so? Could it be that there is no Khmer Rouge today?

This is how I see them:

1. Pol Pot : Mindless psychopath who took control of a country and killed arbitrarily his *own* people.
2. Stalin : A fraud who preached not what he followed. He killed his *own* people.
3. Hitler : A madman, who killed jews. Not his own people (in his mind).
4. Mao: He killed to, but his legacy, his country still stands. Intact. Unified his country.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

notageek wrote:
wswartzendruber wrote:
Hitler?
Pol Pot makes Hitler looks like a schoolboy amateur. Hitler was brutal, yes. He killed lot's of people, yes. But not like this guy.

As far a Mau is concerned, his revolution was responsible for reshaping of a country, which is quite powerful today. Pol Pot was mindless killer.

Mau's country sucked moose cock economically and socially and wasn't much more than a giant version of what North Korea is today. China is only powerful today because people undid what he had done. If you want to go by sheer brutality, as opposed to total harm, then I'd say one must also consider people like Vlad III (the Impaler), Ivan the Terrible, Maximilien Robespierre, etc.

Mau did the same thing Pol Pot did, but on a scale an order of magnitude greater and for a longer period of time. Pol Pot just didn't manage to retain power long enough to cover up his crimes. Mau killed tens of millions of his own people, some say as many as 80 million. That may be a smaller percentage of his own people than Pol Pot, but it's still 80 million people.
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notageek
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 4:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'd say one must also consider people like Vlad III (the Impaler), Ivan the Terrible, Maximilien Robespierre, etc.

In modern times please. :)

You're discrediting some of Mao's ideals, like cultural homogeneity in nation building. Sure, his country sucked moose balls then, but I don't think they'd be where they're now if they remained a feudalistic society they were before Mao.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 6:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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notageek
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

:lol:
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 8:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

what about god?
:evil:
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