Generally, personality cults are most common in regimes with totalitarian systems of government, that seek to radically alter or transform society according to (supposedly) revolutionary new ideas. Often, a single leader becomes associated with this revolutionary transformation, and comes to be treated as a benevolent "guide" for the nation, without whom the transformation to a better future cannot occur. This has been generally the justification for personality cults that arose in totalitarian societies of the 20th century, such as those of Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin.
Not all dictatorships foster personality cults, and some leaders may actively seek to minimize their own public adulation. For example, in the regime of Pol Pot in Cambodia, the image of Pol Pot himself was rarely seen. On the other hand, in North Korea there exists a very successful cult of personality, which includes actual semi-worship of both the father (Kim Il-sung) and son (Kim Jong-il).
Comment: What Joe Wilson shouted is mild in comparison to what the Founding Fathers endured. But what is going on with this latest "non-story" is the furthering of the Presidential Cult of Personality. And while this all started with Roosevelt, Republicans have been right there doing the same thing building up their guy like he's some sort of god.
We need to wake up, the president is only a man. In actually and in all reality he isn't really the kind of person we simple folks would want to be friends with...and that goes for Reagan too in my humble opinion. We need to remember the Executive Branch is and should always be subservient to the Legislative Branch. That's what the Founders intended by God! This might be tough for the neo-cons and leftist to understand, but it's all true.
Unless we turn back the train that keeps building up steam and bringing power to DC, we are going to see a whole new wave of flack directed at those who criticize the power elites. And I would be willing to bet some jail time is on the way for those in the near future if we aren't watchful.
I'm not going to say one way or the other what I think about Mr. Wilson's remark. Right now I am glad he did, because that lets me know there is still some freedom remaining. Rather than attacking Wilson, let's relish this for one moment.
And let's remember that the person he ridiculed broke throw a barrier, a huge barrier. I may not agree with the President's politics and I won't vote him, but I proud to know he could become President of these United States. We have come along way, this I am proud of my fellow citizens.
You might say I have one oar in the water, but for me this whole "non-story" lets me know I still live in a free country...at least this week.
Comment 2: And you know how to turn back that train...repeal the 17th Amendment!