SurrealLife saidThere has always been an underlying suspicion of "intellectuals" in the US. Good ol' boys, "real men" (especially those who were in the military) seem to be appreciated. The US used to nominate and elect effective leaders, but most people with any brains and ambition stay away from politics and go into something more lucrative like corporate law, private equity or hedge funds. The pay is a lot better and you don't have your private life splashed over the media 24 hours a day. I mean seriously would you want to run for President, then actually get the job? Have you ever noticed how much the Presidents age in just a few years? Really scary.
Funny, I thought I asked about other countries, not for another screed on the US. What about Canuckistan?
Yes I was responding to your contention that the USA always picks bumpkins, hayseeds, etc.. In Canada we have for the most part done a pretty decent job. Of course almost all of them have been lawyers, and our longest serving Prime Minister used to talk to his dead mother (or was it his dead dog I always get those confused), but overall they are intelligent, well-educated and capable. One of them (Pearson) won a Nobel peace prize, while another (Trudeau) was very progressive for his time. He had homosexuality legalized in 1968 which was ahead of most countries. I personally disagreed with some of his policies, but I would never say he was stupid or lacked charisma. Just the opposite.
Britain also seems to have done a good job overall. Tony Blair and Margaret Thatcher were capable. The "Iron Lady" though could have used some sensitivity training!
The present one is struggling a bit, but I think part of his problem is he is leading a party that has been in power too long.