scheherazade, interrupted


Of course, it’s totally awesome that the State Department asked Twitter to delay a service-upgrade outage today so that Iranians could use the service to marshal the anti-Ahmadinejad crowds to full effect. Man, something like Twitter must have hit those crusty old-guard Iranian clerics upside the head. I used to think air-dropping Playstation consoles and “Simpsons” episodes onto Tehran would have fomented a revolution, but it turned out to be a social-networking website where my friends talk about how many waffles they’ve burned.


In some ways, I get the feeling that Iran is a lot like the old Soviet Union – we spend years thinking they’re evil geniuses, but get a sizable crowd together, and suddenly the entire government is made of chicken wire and paper- mâché. Any governing body run by theocracy is by definition a backwards, rigid, cruel, moron factory that slowly dies on the vine each year it is permitted to exist, but even so, you’d think these guys could defraud an election with a little more aplomb.

If you’re going to rig an election, you do it the way the Republicans did: keep it close, to maintain the appearance of plausibility. If the rule is that one candidate needs more than 50% of the vote, give him 51.3%. That way the opposition feels “heard” and since it’s a binary outcome anyway, the losers go home and rend their garments in quiet fury (like progressives did in this country for 8 years).

Instead, these chowderheads had Ahmadinejad winning by a 2-to-1 margin, ostensibly to demoralize the pro-reform movement, or perhaps even to say “you don’t get it… we pull the strings around here, so fuck off.” Indeed, most of the ballot-counting offices were run by Ahmadinejad’s people, and the person in charge of the election was not only Ahmadinejad’s friend, but actually openly endorsed the fucker during the election.

The returns had Mousavi losing to Ahmadinejad by fifty percentage points in his hometown region, which is like David Duke winning Harlem in a landslide. In a way, the world press (and certainly Obama) are exercising an incredible amount of restraint in the face of such a sickening sham.

I’d love to have heard the debate inside the clerical circles about just how lopsided they were going to make the victory. It showed a laughably inept understanding of the modern mind, and certainly the mind of anyone under 30 (which staggeringly accounts for 60% of Iran’s population). But that’s what happens when you’ve got toxic stupidity from the top down – Ahmadinejad is a racist buffoon, and his theocratic overlords are, well, a theocracy. Nothing good can come of that mixture.

The current stalemate is fascinating – it makes you wonder how long before the tanks rumble in and crush the populace. Worked in Czechoslovakia, worked in Hungary, worked in Tiananmen Square, and even worked in Iran in 1999. No matter what, though, the Powers That Be are screwed, even if they don’t know it yet. How artfully poetic if the country most guilty of sponsoring terrorists finally figured out how to make one from scratch: deny them their vote.

0 thoughts on “scheherazade, interrupted

  1. Jody

    I’ve never been one for “spreading freedom and democracy around the world.” I don’t particularly get why that’s seen as a mission of our Republic. When things like this happen or say, Hamas wins, then it looks pretty awkward-

  2. Bud

    After spending a month in India recently, I had become used to seeing women very modestly dressed, with most of their bodies covered, and I expected more of the same in Dubai. More of the same was mostly what I got.
    But I was shocked to see a few women wearing thong bikinis on the beach and then to see groups of teenage and twenty-something girls wearing short shorts and halter tops when we went to a desert camp (the sort of place where you go “dune bashing” in SUVs or 4-wheelers and then eat your dinner while watching a belly dancing show.
    Baps watched and listened and determined the skimpily-clad women were all from Iran! This was no surprise to anyone else at the table. Apparently, a lot of young Iranians take the short flight to Dubai to be themselves for awhile (and, apparently, work on their tans).
    Iran is a very different place from the rest of the Middle East and Iranians are fascinating people. They’re not Arabs (Iran actually means “Land of the Aryans”) and most young Iranians are not particularly religious. They pride themselves on cultural, artistic and scientific sophistication.
    Keep in mind that the median age in Iran today is 26 (in the US, it’s 37). I think we we see a very different Iran in a few years, one way or another.

  3. Bud

    I don’t want to be a comment hog, but I completely agree with Jody’s comment.
    Iran is a great example. The Islamic Republic would almost certainly never have happened but for our participation in Operation Ajax in 1953, when we and the UK helped to overthrow the democratic government of Iran and install a bloody tyrant.
    Personally, I’d like to see us establish something like a new Monroe Doctrine….

  4. tregen

    it appears that Obama doesn’t want to undermine the legitimacy of the current regime, rather than showing restraint. Perhaps, he was busy reviewing and approving the Justice Department’s report equating gay marriage with incest or making sure that the guest list at the Whitehouse is not released to the public. He is way better than Bush but he is getting an awful lot of “passes”

  5. Rebecca

    I just spoke to my Persian friend Pauneez and she said that she’s been trying to call her family in Iran for 3 days and the Iranian government is not letting in calls from the US. She says it’s outrageous that the gov’t called the election about an hour after the polls closed. Apparently they are expecting a big announcement tomorrow, and she is hoping they will re-do the election. She is concerned about violence and the safety of her family.
    I have been told that the city I live in (Irvine) is 20% Persian, but I could not find proof of that on the web. However, this article was interesting:,_Los_Angeles,_California


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