TIME Magazine is on a roll. After giving last year’s Man of the Year award to You, as in “all y’all,” it’s awarding Russian President Vladimir Putin this year’s title. Yep, Putin – the guy who’s been putting that old KGB charm back into Russian politics as of late. However, TIME doesn’t want you to think they’re into that sort of thing. Here’s their disclaimer/hand-washing:
TIME’s Person of the Year is not and never has been an honor. It is not an endorsement. It is not a popularity contest. At its best, it is a clear-eyed recognition of the world as it is and of the most powerful individuals and forces shaping that world—for better or for worse. It is ultimately about leadership—bold, earth-changing leadership. Putin is not a boy scout. He is not a democrat in any way that the West would define it. He is not a paragon of free speech. He stands, above all, for stability—stability before freedom, stability before choice, stability in a country that has hardly seen it for a hundred years.
You can tell the people at TIME really get a chubby for Putin-style authority, though. In the course of the article, he is described as giving the “impression of contained power,” moving “stiffly but efficiently” and projecting “steely confidence and strength.” And let’s not forget his “chiseled facial features and those penetrating eyes.” In fact, the whole opening paragraph of the article is about Putin’s chilly stare – a stare that, according to TIME, says “I’m in charge.” Oh swoon!
Maybe Putin picked up on TIME’s adorable little crush on him, because he treats the reporters like five dollar whores; he yells at them for about an hour or two about whatever’s pissing him off and then kicks them out before dinner is finished. Or, y’know, maybe he’s just a dick to everybody. In any case, the article is actually an interesting read. Finally, here’s a Russian joke from the article:
Stalin’s ghost appears to Putin in a dream, and Putin asks for his help running the country. Stalin says, “Round up and shoot all the democrats, and then paint the inside of the Kremlin blue.” “Why blue?” Putin asks. “Ha!” says Stalin. “I knew you wouldn’t ask me about the first part.”
P.S. Japan recently voted Putin the worlds fifth most attractive politician.