Monday, December 27, 2010

Thugs Win Elections in Kosovo And Belarus, Guantanamo To Remain Open For Business

Ross Douthat
Howard Kurtz
"Over the past three years, American politics has been dominated by a liberal fantasy and a conservative freakout." - Ross Douthat
"America is exceptional - utterly and absolutely exceptional - because the rest of the world depends on American guns, American money and American mediation in a way that no other country or combination of countries possibly might replace." - Spengler

Oh, shades of conspiracy theories and Florida hanging chads, has there been an election within the last few years where there have been no claims of election fraud? Is there some shadowy international consulting company that was once run by Dick Cheney that now advises governments on how to stage a false election so their chosen boy would retain power? If so, Mr Laurent Gbagbo of the Ivory Coast should get his money back... The blatant, in-your-face abuses that have taken place in the Ivory Coast, Belarus, and even the ever-contentious government of Kosovo show that talk of democracy may come and go, but dictatorship will be with us forever...

The Council of Europe just released a report accusing Kosovo's Prime Minister, Hashim Thaci, of having murdered Serbs for their kidneys for organ transplants, and being the drug kingpin for heroin distribution. Pundits think that this might give him difficulty in forming a new government after the election.

It gets worse in Belarus, making the fraud in Iran and Afghanistan look like the amateurish tinkerings that they were, as reported by the Economist: "IT WOULD be more honest if Alyaksandr Lukashenka, Belarus's thuggish and dictatorial president, did away with elections altogether. Instead, yesterday's charade of a poll resulted in false expectations and cracked skulls. As the country's slavish electoral committee declared Mr Lukashenka the winner, with 80% of votes on an improbable turnout of more than 90%, the true outcome of this election began to emerge.

Last night a massive demonstration of some 30,000 people was brutally dispersed by the Belarusian KGB and riot police. Six hundred people have been arrested. Many more have been beaten up. Seven of the nine candidates standing against Mr Lukashenka are in prison, some of them badly hurt. Their supporters are being hunted by the local KGB. Vladimir Neklyayev, a poet and one of the main candidates, was knocked unconscious as he tried to make his way to a demonstration. Later security services removed him from hospital—as his wife, reportedly, screamed from a locked room—and placed him in detention."

Asian times columnist Spengler notes that other powers such as China and Russia is hoping that our Naked Emperor Obama's foreign policy will become more enigmatic and less cerebral, because they certainly don't want to tackle the problems of North Korea, Iran, Lebanon, the looming wars in Africa and the Middle East: "America's competitors have seen the erosion of American power as if through a time-lapse camera, and they don't like it at all. Obama's self-shrinkage of American influence may give us a civil war in Iraq, a new Israeli-Hezbollah war in Lebanon, a nuclear-armed Iran, a replay of the Cuban missile crisis in Venezuela, an unshackled rogue state in North Korea, an ungovernable Pakistan, and - worst of all - another American recession as the US Treasury struggles to fund a government deficit in excess of 12 percentage points of gross domestic product. Confronted with the consequences of a naked emperor in Washington, the other powers of the world can only avert their eyes and hope he will get some clothes before it is too late..." We'll see how many rabbits are left in his hat, after the recent show before Congress.

The GOP freakout should continue, with the Republican control of the House. In order to get any legislation passed in their favor, the Repubs will have to get at least 4 Senators to cross the aisle in voting. Then, there's no guarantee that the President will sign it... TPM also reports on another way that the Repubs will use to obstruct: "What they found is an obscure authority provided by a 1996 law called the Congressional Review Act. It provides Congress with an expedited process by which to evaluate executive branch regulations, and then give the President a chance to agree or disagree.

House Republicans will have carte blanche next year, and will be able to pass as many of these "resolutions of disapproval" as they want. The key is that a small minority in the Senate can force votes on them as well, and they require only simple-majority support to pass." It's not much, but it might be enough to make those afternoons watching CSPAN turn into real snoozers.

Finally, it looks like Guantanamo prison will remain open for business and rendition indefinitely. It was once thought that the land could be returned to the Cuban government and they could turn it into some kind of Club Med resort to celebrate the thaw in American - Cuban relations. Obama had hoped to send what prisoners remained to prisons in his home state of Illinois, but those plans were shot down. No other state really wants them, but Sharron Angle did volunteer to set up tents in her own backyard, and tom Tancredo promised to slander them on his new anti-immigration radio show.

We'd have taken them here in Colorado, after all, the Supermax facility has every other major criminal under its lock and key. But the local residents were too busy getting ready to open up all of the old uranium mines, now that our nuclear industry is coming back. All that talk about reactors being built in Iran and the Middle East, why look at all of the new permits that have been issued here in the US... that's right, none... It seems that the same people responsible for Denver's real estate bubble are behind the mining operations, so we know that we can trust them... It was only two years ago that tailings from an old mine north of Denver was threatening to leach into the aquifer, which was caught in time, and fixed so that the next couple of generations would not be mutating in the near future... ahh well, the locals see working at a mine as better than driving to Telluride and cleaning motel rooms...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hi! Thanks for commenting. I always try to respond...