Personality cult have existed from time immemorial.It generally started with hero worshipping a person which later can transform to personality cult when the person attained political power.This deification can eventually lead to dictatorship or absolute tyranny.
History has given us cult of personality in the regimes of Stalin,Hitler,Mao,Sadam Hussein,Kim II Sung,Pol Pot and others.It's more common in a totalitarian system but have also been known to exist in some democracies.Eva Peron and her husband Juan Peron are examples of personality cult in a democracy.
These type of leaders were presented as god-like and seen as infallible by those with blind loyalty.The degree of blind loyalty can extend from giving simple moral support to committing atrocities,murders and genocide to keep such leaders in power.
Since gaining independence Malaysia has not had such leader and even the longest serving Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad would not fall into that category.
The support for Anwar Ibrahim is dangerously turning into a personality cult.Some of his supporters wouldn't give second thought to resort to violence to deliver their message.
If Anwar's support on the ground is strong his support online is phenomenal.The huge support from political blogs and blog readers have made it unbearably painful for the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and an impossible task to turn the table against Anwar .It wouldn't be far off the mark to say that close to 90% of blogs and blog commentators were supporting him to be the next prime minister and Pakatan as their choice of government.
Any unceremonious story, past or present, on Anwar or his party members published by the mainstream media, true or false, would irk his supporters to no end.Some would counter such incidents with their own version of government conspiracy.Such was the case when 3 PKR Exco members from Perak were arrested for corruption.A pro-Pakatan blog has his story of conspiracy here
In the Permatang Pauh by-election Anwar would have an unassailable lead over BN's candidate Arif Shah Omar Shah.With a week to go to the poll not much change is expected to tip the balance in favour of the BN.
The BN, particularly UMNO screwed up the Anwar's issue big time.They have made a monster they are unable to control, a man seen by many a victim of government conspiracy.Its campaign against Anwar has gone completely gaga creating a bigger and angrier backlash instead of the desired outcome of bringing the voters back to the fold.
Sodomy II, named by his supporters, should not have been brought against Anwar even if there was a speck of truth in Saiful's claim.With the government's credibility at its lowest any attempt to demonise Anwar further would only bring more support to his side
Anything negative said of Anwar is incoherent to his supporters and majority would have no qualms using expletives and profanities to admonish anyone who dares to do so.A walk through Malaysia Today and Susan Loone's blog showed what a cause celebre Anwar is in blogosphere.
Harping on his sodomy issue and showing video of Saiful's swearing on the Quran is only going to add salt to the BN's wound and send charity knocking on Anwar's door.The BN campaign should have concentrated more on the 'whys' the people should vote for the BN candidate and the bigger benefits of doing so and less of the intrusion of Saiful's arsehole, which many Malay elders in the kampongs would find embarrassingly inappropriate subject to talk about over a cup of coffee.
Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, his cabinet and the government as a whole have to face the fact that the entry of Anwar to Parliament is imminent and face the fact that he is going to be a thorn in the flesh and a pain in the arse.