There are strong circumstantial evidence (e.g., here and here) that Rex Tillerson called Donald Trump "a fucking moron".

Has a minister, or someone at a similar position, in a western style mature democracy in a normal administration or government, called "the most important person" for something similar to that?


  • Limit it to post 1945, possibly later (see below).
  • Mature western style democracy = EU15, the Nordic countries, Canada, USA, Australia, New Zeeland, Japan etc. Other countries like Spain fits the definition a couple of elections after the dictatorship was abandoned. Russia, although it was a democracy in the 90s, wasn't mature back then (and isn't a democracy today). The Baltic states become mature when they joined EU. Romania and Bulgaria still aren't mature (due to corruption etc). It is obviously impossible to define "mature" in a universal way, use your common sense
  • Normal administration/government = not some emergency solution due to war, sovereign default or similar (where people who disagree on fundamental issues are forced to work together in way they otherwise never would do due to external circumstances).
  • The most important - obviously it is the president in the US, the PM in the UK (the queen is an oddity in this context) but in e.g., Germany the president is much less important than the bundeskanzler.

The purpose with the question is to understand how unique Tillerson's outburst was. I'm sure there are plenty of examples where people have thought their "boss" is an idiot or even said it to their wife/husband or similar but such cases are not comparable because they aren't "public" (well, Tillerson didn't do it in public but clearly said it when he was in company with a group of people, or directed some assistant to leak it or similar).

  • 5
    Please note that we don't allow offensive titles. I will remove the edit lock, but remember that titles should not contain profanity. See also this meta post.
    – JJJ
    Jan 9 at 1:34
  • Strictly speaking, it is an obscenity.
    – Obie 2.0
    Jan 9 at 5:22
  • 1
    In 1986 Michael Heseltine the British Defence Secretary described the then Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, as intransigent. This was at the moment of his resignation from the Cabinet over the Westland Affair. That's not quite the same thing as saying she was incompetent - but it must come close. Equally some of the things that PM Theresa May was called by her right-wing MPs, in the Brexit debates, must be similar, but they were not ministers.
    – WS2
    Jan 9 at 9:35
  • 3
    There is the (in Germany) quite well known quote of Joschka Fischer (at the time a member of parliament, later a foreign minister) in 1984 during a parliamenty session of "If I may say so, Mr. President, you are an asshole" (German: "Mit Verlaub, Herr Präsident, Sie sind ein Arschloch."). That was a pretty big deal back then and is still well known today.
    – quarague
    Jan 9 at 18:20
  • 1
    What general interest about politics is served by knowing the answer to this question? Even if limited cases could be cited, consider how difficult it will be to search the record of pre-internet news reports. It certainly is uncommon for a member of government to call the boss a .... but it surely has happened before and has limited bearing either way on the pros and cons of Trump's presidency. Jan 10 at 19:23

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