Monday, June 15, 2009

"A Divine Miracle"

Last Friday, Iranians went to the polls in record numbers for an election widely viewed as a test of the strength both of the hard-line clerical authorities and the relatively moderate opposition (moderation being a relative term in Iranian politics, where "Death to America!" is the campaign slogan equivalent of "I Like Ike" or "Four More Years!").

Surprisingly (if you believe the pre-election polls) or unsurprisingly (if you think the hard-liners are willing to roll over and relinquish power), incumbent president Mahmoud Ahmedinejad sailed to victory with 62% of the vote - a result described my Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as "a divine miracle."

Many Iranians, though, seem to have a different opinion, and have taken to the streets in often-violent demonstrations against the results. Pro- and anti-Ahmedinejad demonstrators are fighting with each other, second-place finisher Mir Hossein Moussavi has disputed the results and may or may not be under house arrest, and the hard-line clerics are smugly satisfied.

Isn't it a shame that the Iranians can't settle their electoral differences civilly, as we do here in America?

Consider the 2000 presidential election, which was won by Al Gore by popular vote, but by George W. Bush in the Electoral College. Did Americans take to the streets, beating each other and destroying property? Did riot police fight angry crowds? Of course not. After all, this wasn't a really significant event like a Super Bowl or something. We handled it in true, civilized American fashion.

Vast armies of lawyers descended upon the pivotal state of Florida, smelling the financial chum in the water. While Americans anxiously awaited the outcome of the legal battle in bars and nightclubs, the lawyers bravely fought it out in hushed courtrooms until the Supreme Court - America's version of the Iranian Guardian Council - stepped in to settle the issue in favor of Mr Bush.

Perhaps we can best help the Iranians by offering to provide a supply of lawyers to mediate the electoral dispute. After all, with the economy in the toilet, we've got lots of lawyers looking for work other than processing bankruptcies. We could offer to send, oh, about 50,000 of them to Teheran to help recount ballots, file court papers, and argue the issues in Iranian courts. If they could settle the recount issue in Florida, the should easily be able to sort out the social, political, and religious complexities of the Iranian election.

Of course, in a country where they don't count hanging chads, but actually hang Chad, it could be difficult. But we've got plenty of lawyers to replace any losses.

It's the least we could do. And the Iranians hate us already, so what's to lose?

Have a good day. More thoughts tomorrow.



The Mistress of the Dark said...

Lord knows we should have rioted...though Al is a wingnut of the democratic variety, I think he has a few more brain cells than what we were left with for 8 years.

John said...

Send the Lawyers! I like it. Do we get to charge Iran for this service? Or do we have to pay them for our "help" in this matter?

Debbie said...

You've opened an interesting debate...would our country be better off deporting illegal aliens, or all lawyers? Both run up medical costs, both do the "dirty" work most Americans wouldn't do...the mind reels!

Mike said...

I detected a wee bit of sarcasim in this post.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

'I'm a dinner jacket' wins a dodgy election!

anOCgirl said...

After all, this wasn't a really significant event like a Super Bowl or something

or the NBA finals won by the lakers. seriously, do people in LA have to riot for that?

Twinkie said...

oc girl you beat me to it! That's what I was gonna say! LOL