Auntie Fatcat's

Sit down, have a cookie, and chat for a spell.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Fundamentalist Wins Election

I read an article in today's Seattle Times about the election of conservative Islamic fundamentalist Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the presidency of Iran. The article clearly shook its head in worry that the election of such an extremist hard-line religious leader would spell doom for democratic reform in Iran (code for improvement in relations with the United States).

Funny, I seem to recall another country that elected a religious extremist president who cares little for improving relationships with other countries. Let's explore the parallels, shall we?

The new president uses "support from the country's ruling clerical hierarchy and its vast military [or military-industrial complex] to restore total control of the government to Islamic [or Christian] fundamentalists and end an eight-year experiment in reform." Check.

"Voters divided by class and ideology had gone to the polls" with the uneducated poor favoring the fundamentalist and the affluent liberals a centrist in reformer's clothing. Check.

". . . Conservatives regained control by painting the reformist camp . . . as corrupt, ineffectual and out of touch with ordinary people." Check.

Some candidates who tried to run were kept off the ballots and "there were complaints of irregularities at some Tehran [Ohio, Florida] polling stations." Check.

The new president "talks tough toward Iran's [the United States'] enemies and promises to reverse what he views as the watering down of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's [former President Ronald Reagan's] militancy. He has a strong following in the military and the bazaars [stock market] and among the clergy." Check.

The president's foes fear he will "take the country backward," increase regulation of sexual issues, "and bring on isolation, economic decline and a heightened risk of confrontation . . . over human rights and nuclear weapons." Check.

Many voters were unhappy with both candidates. Oh, definitely a check.

Voters who supported the new president said things like "He's good, because he is a fundamentalist. He's pious." Check.

Guess we have more than one religious fundamentalist president to shake our heads about.


Blogger Linda M.R. Yaw said...

Once again, great analysis. You are just so smart.

Hey, why don't you post your letters to the editor here too?


11:08 PM  
Blogger Beverly Marshall Saling said...

I do post the unpublished ones; that's what my "Rant o' the Day" posts are. I figure the published ones get more readership in the paper, but I'm willing to post links here if people like.

You can find my latest (June 8) here. The Seattle Times website will probably make you set up an account to view their archives, but it's free, and so far they haven't spammed me.

9:49 PM  

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