In times of political and social turmoil they can inspire people and change the course of history.
They can also have a negative impact and be used to rabble-rouse and create circumstances of tension and fear.
Nigel Farage, while he fancies himself as a latter day Churchill, falls into the latter category.
He has been sidelined since the EU referendum vote but is always lurking just off stage.
As a result of the ongoing Brexit chaos, people are understandably concerned about their future.
Nigel Farage launched his new Brexit Party on Friday, promising “a revolution in British politics” and pledging that there will be “no more Mr. Nice Guy.”
Speaking in Coventry in the West Midlands, Farage accused Britain’s politicians of “managed decline,” adding “I genuinely believe this nation, right now, we are lions led by donkeys.”
“I do believe that we can win these European elections and that we can again start to put the fear of God into our members of parliament in Westminster — they deserve nothing less than that after the way they have treated us.”