Tuesday, September 25, 2007

From The Cubicle

The entirety of todays quick hits on the news will be devoted to one issue. Due to a scheduling issue (I work this saturday so I took corresponding time off from today) I was able to catch Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's speech to the U.N. The entire news establishment is all atwitter about his use of the term "arrogant powers" in an obvious reference to the United States. I think the focus on this particular term shows just how egocentric we Americans are collectively. As I watched the speech the part that grabbed my attention was Ahmadinejad's declaration that Iran would lead a coalition of free nations in a drive to establish peace and harmony upon the earth. Ahmadinejad was also very explicit that the only way to reach this nirvana among nations was via monotheism, and one can hardly imagine that he was preaching that we all should be worshiping Hare Krishna. To me Ahmadinejad sounded like he was forming a league of Muslim nations intent on spreading Islam around the world in order to enlighten all of mankind and bring us a new age of peace and prosperity. All I can say to that is no thanks.

The next part of the speech that caught my attention was Ahmadinejad's absolute faith in God. I mean he makes George Bush look like the Marquis De Sade on the scales of personal piety. Not only is Ahmadinejad holy, but he is convinced that the rest of us would be much better off if we were just as holy as he is. To be honest I think President Bush goes over the line when it comes to mixing religion and politics... so I for one will hardly welcome enlightened and Godly world leadership by Mahmoud.

Another part of the speech that I noticed were the several times that Mahmoud made "official" pronouncements. He officially pronounced the formation of the league of free nations and then started on a riff about how the United Nations would form an integral part of that league. He officially pronounced that the question regarding Irans nuclear ambitions was now a closed issue. Maybe Ahmadinedjad should reconsider the efficacy of making such official pronouncements because one must assume that if he is able to make them stick merely by dint of saying they are "official", then so is any other world leader under similar circumstances. On the other hand if the official pronouncements are just so much hot air, that would tend to lessen the influence of future statements from the leader in question.

Finally I noted Ahmadinedjad's pointed references to the failings of America in upholding the standards which we insist other nations hold regarding human rights and freedoms. In particular he mentioned secret prisons, secret detentions, and wiretapping of conversations... all issues which are very near and dear to my side of the political divide in America. Let me officially pronounce (guffaw) that such rhetoric from the spokestoady of a nation which hangs and flogs people for being gay, is widely known for the horrendous conditions of it's own prisons and the injustice of their judicial system, to make an appearance on the world scene in the name of human rights and dignity is hardly helpful to the cause which he purports to support. Pull the mote from thine own eye before pointing to the mote in ours please Mr. President. It would be similar to the Republican party suddenly discovering that wasteful spending is a horrible thing for the budget, but only after years of setting a standard which drunken sailors can only admire and having the Democratic party take power. Oh right... thats exactly what is happening!

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