The LOTR Movie Site
September 14, 2000

Directors and Demigods: Who Thinks of These Things?
Stacy B.

Before I start, let me say this: Thank God the for the polls or we'd have nothing to talk about between teasers. Anyhow...

The latest poll asks us to choose the dictator, political or economic, who most closely ressembles Sauron. Humorously, we might note that none of the dictators could claim direct divine origin, despite delusions along those lines. Secondly, Sauron had awesome destructive powers not dreamt of by the most nuke-happy dictator. Thirdly, I notice that economic dominion wasn't a huge concern in Middle Earth. Collecting rare and powerful artifacts to lock in a vault under mountains was.

But seriously, folks, even Adolf Hitler doesn't compare with Sauron. Hitler set out to exterminate his enemies, perceived or real, in order to raise up another empire in which at least some people whom we might call relatively normal (as normal as one can be when one knows one's happiness is founded on mass murder) lead contented suburban lives. Malice in and for itself wasn't the be all and end all of Hitler's ambitions, although cruelty played a conspicuous role. Sauron was out to cause pain and suffering to all and sundry simply because he could. He wanted dominion, and he fed on the suffering of his subjects, even those who were most cowed, and therefore the most loyal and terrifying (the Wraiths). No one was too good to feel a taste of Sauron's wrath. Dictators might derive a certain sense of power, but on a mass scale, they have to maintain an economy. And no dictator has ever been so absolutely inhuman as to be unloved by ANY other human being. None of Sauron's servants!
, on the other hand, loved him, they loved only the power they exercised in his name.

And why Al Gore, Bill Clinton, and Bill Gates are on that list, I haven't a clue. The Lewinsky affair was embarrassing, Gore may be as bland as tapioca, and Gates may be the anti-Mac to we select few, but they don't hold a candle to Hitler and Stalin, let alone Sauron.
Sauron, if one must choose a comparative villain, is first cousin to the Devil himself.