BEIJING – Google the height of Kevin Rudd, the former Prime minister of Australia, and you’ll find massive SEO (search engine optimization) by his PR team that has you staring at his “official” yet clearly exaggerated tallness: 1.79 m.
That can’t be right. I am about that height and shorter; yet when I stood next to him in Beijing, Mr. Rudd was nowhere near the mark. He was more like 1.75 m, in his shoes.
Height seems to be an ongoing ego-issues not only for French politicians. Many measured on the morning of their best days and added the roll of a dice on top of that. Obviously, many men lie about being taller than they really are (the ideal height for Western men is 1.8 m [roughly 6-feet] or taller), and you can’t blame them for it. Women prefer taller men. The media constantly bombards men with ‘research‘ that shows that “tall people tend to get promoted more often and earn more money.”
Male politicians and CEOs often have their shoes layered and clothes tailored to appear taller and larger, and stretch their frame in group photos. Mr. Rudd seems oddly troubled about his shortcomings and keeps mentioning, even in a TED talk, his tiny hands.
FURTHER READING: Why Men Lie About Their Height (The Wall Street Journal)
See how Kevin Rudd’s “official” height (1.79 m) compares to that of some of his peers (Disclaimer: I do not own the copyright of those pictures; they are used for critical commentary only):
Politics is all about power and deceptions. It just irks me indefatigably that I clearly remembered this Kevin Rudd as a much shorter man when suddenly his PR team set out and declared him 1.79 m to the entire world. It just ain’t the truth.