Monday, August 29, 2011

And today's Prime Minister is...

Yoshihiko Noda, Japan's Finance Minister, will tomorrow become the new Prime Minister of Japan.  He will be the sixth Prime Minister Japan has had in the five years since I arrived in the land of the indecisive, politically corrupt, financially stagnant, rising sun.

Koizumi was in power when I arrived in Japan in 2006.  
This is a hat he was given by George Bush shortly before singing Elvis at Karaoke while on a diplomatic tour of the states.

This got me looking into past Prime ministers and Presidents and, as always, made me think where did all the hats go?

Presidents Lincoln, Kennedy, Truman and Coolidge
We all know that Lincoln was famous for his stove pipe hat (whether he really liked the hat or was merely trying to gain a little extra height, which at 5ft 2" was badly needed) and JFK is often blamed by milliners for causing the death of the hat by being the first President to rarely be seen with a topper preferring his flowing coiffed locks though it was actually Lyndon B. Johnson, in 1965, who became the first man to be sworn in as President of the United States bare-headed.

George Bush took the "call me Tony" casualness of head office to the next level by donning his 50 gallon hat more often than a tie.  Obama in a tactical move to distance himself from all things Bush encouraged all his top staff to adopt a more British approach to dress.

With David Cameron at the helm however even the Brits have started to throw their hats aside with both Cameron and his wife shunning tradition and etiquette by arriving at the Royal wedding bare headed (Gasp).

Prime Ministers Chamberlain,  Churchill, Cameron, Thatcher and Baldwin 

However the hat is not dead and I look to Prime Ministers and Presidents further afield for Millinery inspiration and peace of mind.

Jung Bahadur Rana - Nepal, Susilo Bambang - Indonesia, Sheikh Hasina - Bangladesh, Putin - Russia, Mandela - South Africa, Liauat Ali Khan - Pakistan, Manmohan Singh - India

So my advice to the new Prime Minister Noda is distinguish yourself from the many who have failed in quick succession before you and don a hat.  The pope wears one and look how long they hang around for!

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