If Kim Jong-il were to ever pass on a dictator’s self-help guide to his succeeding son Kim Jong-un, it could very easily be titled Don’t Sweat the Nuclear Stuff. Think of it as the Juche version of Richard Carlson, author of perennial best-seller Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff, who passed away in 2006 at the early age of 46.
Whereas Carlson promulgated good humor, positive thinking and perspective, the Dear Leader’s collection of DPRK snippets would necessarily have to be all about questionable humor, negative thinking and a deeply abiding lack of perspective. All communicated, of course, in a cheerful, boastful manner.
In fact, I can almost envision the first chapter of this imaginary dictator-how-to. It’s titled “Just Say Yes to Dr. No.”:
Although each one of us would like to be able to play the part of the hero, more often than not life requires us to be the bad guy. So it’s essential to properly identify and connect with an Evil Twin persona.
Ironically, one of the best ways to do this is to sample movies made by our sworn Imperialist enemies. These artifacts provide a veritable treasure trove of role modeling for day-to-day life on the Peninsula.
Perhaps you answer to the call of Lee Marvin in a Western, or maybe you’re more of a Rutger Hauer science-fiction adventure type. Either way, it’s all about picking your poison, learning the evil master’s tricks and keeping them at the ready.
I will never forget the first time I watched Dr. No with my father. The 1962 James Bond film is now a centerpiece of my personal movie collection, but at the time I was just a boy in my late teens, searching for inspiration. Dr. No was a true megalomaniac visionary. Even though his island was small, he chose to challenge the United States’ space program with hard-scrabble ingenuity. He also knew when to throw his enemies to the sharks and when to serve them a gourmet dinner. And never once did he complain about his personal handicaps.
The beauty of movie modeling is that the name of the character upon which you hang your Evil Twin can double as your personal mantra. Even to this day, before I step on the international stage, I prepare for the moment by mentally whispering, “Dr. No.”
So, don’t be a suck-up who crows about having an Evil Twin modeled on Yours Truly. That’s been done before and, quite frankly, when it’s not done well, the results can be lethal. Instead, catch the 3:10 to Yuma, make a date with The Terminator or step into the shoes of the clown who took on The Dark Knight.