Frank Buckley at The WSJ: [A] crucial attribute of a charismatic leader is his ability to make his supporters identify with him. He presents himself to his people and asks "Are you in?" Are you part of his mystical body? Will you give me your wedding, your birthday presents? The attraction must be mutual, for he draws his magical powers from the crowd's adulation. Whatever difficulties the country might face, the answer is always a speech which reaffirms the special bond between The One and the many. Don't look for substance. The speech is the substance. In truth, the country's problems are of little interest. What matters is only the relation between the One and his people, the communion between them.
Who but a Weberian charismatic leader would have said, when a spectator collapsed at an Obama rally, "Looks like somebody might've fainted up here. . . . Don't worry about it: Folks do this all the time in my meetings."
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