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A Tale of Two Cities

On the 12 June 2009 a presidential election was held that would mark the beginning of an unravelling of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Just sixteen days later events were unfolding that would trigger a constitutional crisis in Honduras. As events unfolded in Iran, the world discovered a nation of people, educated, smart, brave, scared, and perhaps most of all – human. Across an ocean a South American head of state was removed from office in what has been cited as a democratic coup involving a supreme court, a congress, and a standing army.

Tehran and Tegucigalpa are the two cities in question. In Tehran we witnessed a popular uprising against an election result that announced a landslide victory to the incumbent president, a brutal suppression, and the beginning of a political power struggle that will possibly continue for a number of years. Tegucigalpa in contrast was much more a political/industrial action to maintain a status quo, a pre-emptive action to circumvent what was perceived as a move by a rogue president to move the country to the far left.

Rahm Emanuel said [1] …

You never want a serious crisis to go to waste.

[1] YouTube: Rahm Emanuel on a serious crisis.

What he meant by that was that in crisis there is opportunity to do things you could not have done before. In Iran this principal translates into an opportunity for structural changes to the Islamic Republic of Iran, it’s relationships with the outside world, it’s position on human and moral rights, and the potential for the change to the ultimate power structure. But to be clear, the role of popular unrest in this scenario is just the trigger enabling a political opportunity. Over in Honduras the events unfolded with a pre-emptive political move, a reactive but unsuccessful counter-strike, the emergence of a mediation process, and a probably conclusion within which the exiled president will be returned to his position but stripped of any effective power, and the ultimate arbitrators will be the people of Honduras in a new election in November.

In the Honduras case, chances are that the people will get to vote in free and fair elections in just a few months from now. For Iran the situation is much less clear and projection much more uncertain.

What is common between Tehran and Tegucigalpa is that …

Crisis is the mother of political opportunity.

452 Responses to “A Tale of Two Cities”

  1. 401
    Chris B says:

    Thanks for your thoughts everybody.

  2. 402
    Chris B says:

    DNC Goes All In: Takes On Birthers, Conservative “Mob” In New Web Ad. The Huffington Post

  3. 403
    Chris B says:

    Pssst! Hey guys this is for your eyes only.
    Women Take Revenge On Philanderer By Gluing His Penis To His Stomach.
    The Huffington Post.

  4. 404
    HarryH says:

    Looks like the Libs read my post at #368 lol.

    According to the OO, the charismatic Andrew Robb is DA MAN.

    Buckle up you marginal seat Libs lol.

    Wannabee’s like Plod Dutton and co must be aghast at the recent events haha.

  5. 405
    Catrina says:

    Obama speaking on a bunch of stuff to do with the US economy, job creation, competitiveness, recovery, etc.

    Worth watching all of the 23 mins.


  6. 406
    Catrina says:


    Adelaide man linked to the forged Obama Kenya birth certificate.

    A growing online community who are against the Birthers quickly picked apart the bogus birth certificate and traced it back to about as far from Kenya as you can get – Thebarton Community Hospital at Mile End in South Australia and David Jeffrey Bomford.

    In a post on the Politjab.com Web site, Steve Eddy of California said he discovered through an online search that the document released by “birther” Orly Taitz was a doctored version of the birth certificate for David Jeffrey Bomford, born in South Australia in April 1959, Salon.com reported Tuesday.

    Apparently, David Jeffrey Bomford birth certificate is the original upon which the fake certificate was based.

    Democratic Underground
    MSNBC: Keith Olbermann
    National Review
    Washington Independent
    ABC, Audio Radio


  7. 407
    Enemy Combatant says:

    Catrina, the real tragedy here is that Orly Brownshirts is giving Swiftboating a bad name. If only Orly could comprehend the irreparable damage she is doing to this most valued of Rovian/Atwaterian/Goebbelsian/Machiavellian tactics. Perhaps GOPper lust for power is so great that it provides them with total mental immunity against the lessons of History.

    “A dingo ate my birth certificate”, not a bad line from K.O’s writers.

    G.I’s Progress: IED to IUD (Improvised Unemployment Device) .

    “there’s nothing so precious as a hole in the ground”


    Katielou, paddy and gaffy, no doubt about it, “Q&A Live” is where it’s at on telly tonight. Petit Mal can’t control any of the territory here; audience selection, questions, moderator, lighting, camera angles, editing.

    Be interesting to observe how Julia Prole plays it tonight (9:25 P.M. EST, Auntie 1) as a toreador(needler) or matador (sword sinker). Either way, Julia Prole-Pravda (Minister’s in transition here, looks like Double Bay, talks like Rooty Hill) will do the job with a smile on her face. :)

  8. 408
    gaffhook says:

    Must say EC there were quite a few stunners there when i was a moonlightin drunks labourer pickin up emptys at the Golden Sheaf at Double Bay.
    Mind you they didnt talk like Rooty Hill but some of them were looking for a …………….ah well those were the days.

  9. 409
    gaffhook says:

    That has been on the nooz this AM.
    senior Libtards are looking to replace mr Wentworth who is now mr Noworth.

  10. 410
    paddy says:

    looks like Double Bay, talks like Rooty Hill

    :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
    Meanwhile, in further developments, the fabulous furry one has been checking out the Libs latest plan.
    Andrew Robb, the Google Assassin!!! :lol: :lol:

  11. 411
    Enemy Combatant says:

    Salad days they were indeed, gaffy. Very organic.
    T’ank ya, paddy.


    So…….. you want to get a handle on your Typical American Nut Job, eh?

    Try this quick compendium!

    What IS of interest: who is geeing these wood-ducks up and who benefits from so doing?
    Rhetorical, all of us know already. Exept David. :)

  12. 412
    paddy says:

    While Maureen Dowd wastes a few bytes with the trivia/bitchy gossip shtick. She manages to nail Bill’s big adventure pretty well in the last few paras.

    Conservatives were screeching, naturally, that the Clinton trip would provide propaganda cover to the North Koreans to continue their nuclear shell game.

    “Despite decades of bipartisan U.S. rhetoric about not negotiating with terrorists for the release of hostages,” John Bolton wrote for The Washington Post’s Web site, “it seems that the Obama administration not only chose to negotiate, but to send a former president to do so.”

    But the former Bush bullies have no credibility on diplomacy. They spent eight years wrecking it, and the score for them on North Korea is 0-6; zero meetings with Kim and enough plutonium for six nuclear bombs.

    Bill Clinton will bring back valuable information about Kim’s mental and physical health. If we’d had that sort of information about the snubbed Saddam, we would have known that he was in his own spiral of doom, trying to bluff his neighbors, with no need for our shock and awe.


  13. 413
    Katielou says:

    I just love the story about the journalists freed from North Korea. It’s just so heartwarming. Bubba et al done real good.

    And obviously I jumped the gun on Q&A. I was sure in my mind that yesterday was actually Thursday. Imagine my disappointment! It’s been a long week. Anyhoo, tonight’s the night to watch Turnbull squirm.

  14. 414
    Chris B says:

    Got to go. But I must post this.
    Jon Stewart’s Salute To South Carolina: Bestiality, Adultery, Racism, And Lindsey Graham (VIDEO) Very funny. Probably not advisable to play at work.
    The Huffington Post

  15. 415
  16. 416
    gaffhook says:

    Gold Chris. LOL

  17. 417
    gaffhook says:

    Good old Roo has just blown a cool $203M.
    Probably a days interest on his fortune, but i feel god everytime he takes some kind of hit.


  18. 418
    paddy says:

    Firstdog lists the contenders.
    Let’s hope Mrs Slocum survives her date with Julia on Q&A tonight.
    The rest of this Liberal rabble look downright scary. :-)

  19. 419
    Enemy Combatant says:

    The fact that “punters” are not buying his newspapers is not the only problem for Citizen Rupert. Dwindling ‘paper sales mean that besides loss of advertising revenue, Murdoch loses some of his clout in the business of manufacturing consent. Ain’t that just too bad for a proud Delawarian like Rupert? Gotta admit, I’m cuttin’ up pretty bad over it myself.

    How many folk are gonna fork-out hard-earned on being able to get behind News Ltd paywalls for a rag like The Oz? My hunch is they’d drop half their online readership maybe more, in a trice. Niche markets like WSJ will continue to turn a buck for Rupe , but people accustomed to getting news for “free” on quality sites that carry relatively circumspect advertising that’s not “in your face”….no way will they pay no steenkin site toll!

    Yeah, go root yer boot, Rupe! When the NYT, eg., put Maureen Dowd’s column (go along with your assessment, paddy) behind a paywall, one could google Dowd’s latest (all you needed according to reliable sources, was the title, which the NYT thoughtfully provided on its toll-free homepage) and find it on Joe Blow’s blogsite almost instsantly.

    There are plenty of OTHER sources in the cyber seas for free-ranging dolphins who can shapeshift at will through the ‘net’s mesh.
    So thanks for all the fish, Mr. Murdoch, but we’re stayin’ …….and we ain’t payin’.

    (sponsored by the Socialist Cyber-Alliance)
    Rachel Maddow doing Ed Murrow. Class act.


  20. 420
    Chris B says:

    Iraq Women Wrestlers Spark Controversy. Wrestling causes promiscuity. Hot Sexy Prom Dresses Revealing I would have thought football!

  21. 421
    Chris B says:

    Iraq Women Wrestlers Spark Controversy. Wrestling causes promiscuity. The Huffington Post I would have thought football!

  22. 422
    Chris B says:

    Whoops! :oops:

  23. 423
  24. 424
    paddy says:

    Stop it Ecky!
    That caused a perfectly good glass of wine, to be wasted on yet another keyboard. ;-)

  25. 425
    Chris B says:

    CollegeHumor Originals / Hand – Vagina
    Ask your mummy if you can watch it first. :twisted:


  26. 426
  27. 427
    gaffhook says:

    I must admit EC that i do visit his sites as well as SMH and AGE but it is basically to look at the Toons. They are the only coherent and realistic items in all of it.
    If Roo puts up his pay wall then i will not get to see the Toons but i won’t lose any sleep over that.
    So i guess it is fuck him.

  28. 428
    Chris B says:

    417 gaffhook Rupert’s announced he is going to charge for content. He does have a monopoly on some things he owns. So it will be interesting to see how it works.

  29. 429
    Chris B says:

    gaffy Snap! Didn’t see yours!

  30. 430
    paddy says:

    Given Bernard Keane’s role as a public servant in a previous life,
    today’s Crikey podcast is interesting for his observations on Godwin Gretch.
    Definitely worth a squiz.

  31. 431
    Chris B says:

    Senate Race Rankings 2010
    The NRSC has had a good summer so far in terms of recruitment and candidate fundraising, and Republicans in general seem optimistic about their chances in the 2009 and 2010 elections. Nevertheless, the inescapable math is that Republicans now have six open Senate seats, five of which are likely to be competitive, whereas Democrats have only two, only one of which is certain to be contested. And that’s not even counting the May 2010 special election in Texas for Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, who will resign from the Senate later this year.

    Republicans are most heartened by: Sen. Christopher Dodd’s (D) continued weakness in polls; the new Senate candidacies of Rep. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., and former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte (R); and the announced retirement of Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky. They are also encouraged by the strong second quarter fundraising numbers by their preferred candidates in Missouri, Ohio and Florida, as well as the lack of announced challengers to Sen. Richard Burr in North Carolina and the looming primary between Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa., and Rep. Joe Sestak (D).

    Democrats can point to some good news of their own, such as the lack of a top-tier challenger to Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and the continued financial strength of appointed Sens. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., as they head into their first statewide bids. And if Rep. Charlie Melancon, D-La., chooses to challenge Republican Sen. David Vitter, Democrats would also get a top-tier candidate in a race they might otherwise have punted on.

    But at the end of the day, the best news for Democrats is that they don’t even need to beat any Republican incumbents next year to have a great 2010, provided they are able to pick off a couple open GOP seats.
    Ten listed for battle. Democrats looking at eight possibles.
    Not including Texas, if Hutchinson resigns.
    The National Journal Online

  32. 432
    Chris B says:

    Just to remind you how CQ politics sees it.
    The senate race 2010 on CQ politics

  33. 433
    Catrina says:

    Earlier this evening I finished an upgrade to the latest revision of WordPress (version 2.8.3). If you notice anything different chances are it’s due to the upgrade and the fact that I’ve had to shuffle a bunch of plugins to get things working properly. Let me know if you spot any issues.

  34. 434
    Chris B says:

    Sotomayor confirmed. 68 to 31. Just another nail in the Republicans coffin The Huffington Post

  35. 435
    Catrina says:

    Chris B at 434
    Just added it to our calendar/history.

  36. 436
    paddy says:

    Look out, ye scum-sucking land lubbers, Captain Jasper has just sailed into port and come to our rescue.


  37. 437
    gaffhook says:

    Jon stewart sticking it up CNN and john Bolton over Bill meets Il


  38. 438
    gaffhook says:

    Just realised i am sitting here taking everything for granted.
    Thankyou for tidying up our house.

  39. 439
    Chris B says:

    Sick for profit. Pass it on, give it a rating, do something!

  40. 440
    Catrina says:

    Some ugly scenes down in Tampa Florida earlier today…

  41. 441
    Chris B says:

    According to the ’08 exit polls, Hispanics made up 9% of the nat’l electorate. In states represented by GOPers whose ’08 electorate was more than 9% Hispanic — AZ (16%), FL (14%), NV (15%) and TX (20%) — only one out of six sens. (the retiring Martínez) voted for Sotomayor. Sen. John Ensign (R-NV), Senate Min. Whip Jon Kyl, NRSC Chair John Cornyn, Hutchison and McCain all voted against.


  42. 442
    Chris B says:

    I hope Hutchinson retires. 20% Latino vote in Texas.

  43. 443
    Catrina says:

    Obama Aide John Brennan Declares End to War on Terrorism

    John Brennan picked a deeply symbolic day to end the “war on terrorism.”

    On August 6, 2001, Brennan, then a senior CIA official and now President Obama’s assistant for counterterrorism and homeland security, “read warnings that Osama bin Laden was determined to strike inside the U.S., but our government was unable to prevent the worst terrorist attack in American history,” he recalled to an audience Thursday at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank. It was a reference to a CIA analysis, called a President’s Daily Brief, that the 9/11 Commission uncovered as a key warning that an attack by al-Qaeda was likely.

    Eight years later, in his first speech since joining the Obama administration, Brennan annulled several key aspects of the so-called war on terrorism — starting with both the name and the idea that the United States was involved in any sort of “global war.” Brennan said Obama will subordinate counterterrorism to “its right and proper place” as a “vital part” of the administration’s national security and foreign policies, but not the lion’s share of them. Saying he was careful not to elevate al-Qaeda to a greater position of importance than it deserved, Brennan linked the rise in support for extremists to problems of global governance, economic crisis and social stratification and said the administration would make a concerted effort to address what he considers those extremist root causes.


  44. 444
    Chris B says:

    Palin: Obama Might Euthanize My Baby.
    Can they get any loonier? Words fail me!
    Talking Points Memo

  45. 445
    gaffhook says:

    There is no video but it sure is a hilarious read.
    Bill Maher is really sockin it to em.

    Sarah Palin says she would never apologize for America. Even though a Gallup poll says 18% of Americans think the sun revolves around the earth. No, they’re not stupid. They’re interplanetary mavericks. A third of Republicans believe Obama is not a citizen, and a third of Democrats believe that George Bush had prior knowledge of the 9/11 attacks, which is an absurd sentence because it contains the words “Bush” and “knowledge.”


  46. 446
    paddy says:

    Ooh what a classic Gaffy.

    Nearly half of Americans don’t know that states have two senators and more than half can’t name their congressman. And among Republican governors, only 30% got their wife’s name right on the first try.


  47. 447
    gaffhook says:


    Yeah so what’s your wifes name?
    Errrrr……C street! I get my wives on C street.

  48. 448
    Chris B says:

    Have a look at the art work in this game. Be sure to watch it in HD!
    Machinarium Trailer

  49. 449
    gaffhook says:

    Ten Telltale Signs of Republican Disease

    There may be a medical explanation. Perhaps the Republican daily diet of whoppers has caused organic brain rot, a variant of mad cow disease. On the other hand, their failure to accept reality might be psychological, early onset dementia resulting from excessive exposure to Fox News and hate radio.


  50. 450
    gaffhook says:

    I googled some of the items and i think it would be fair to say that the size of the company and where it is situated it would be hard for them not to do business with either party as well their partners and workers have donated to both parties for elections.
    Holder was a partner for the firm for the period of the imbeciles rule.
    It could follow that there could quite easily be a conflict.
    Gouldie for Help?

    For months, we have been trying to get to the bottom of why Eric Holder would not really investigate the cases of Mr. Siegelman and Mr. Scrushy, Mr. Minor, the two other judges in Mississippi and Charles Walker. Well, I finally have the answer . I got it from writing my Greg Craig article that was located on the Jason Leopold website Public record.

    I got a tip and I researched it. And boy, was I shocked at what I learned. Seems Mr. Holder, before being selected Attorney General of the United States of America, worked for a firm called Covington and Burling. The tip I got was that the firm had a very important client whose name was George W. Bush and they represented a very important organization I am sure ya’ll all have heard of – the Republican National Committee.


  51. 451
    Catrina says:

    gaffhook at 450
    I’m no authority on the ‘conflict of interest thing’ in the case of X worked at law firm Y which represented organisation Z. However, I can confirm that Covington and Burling have a *really* nice office down on Pennsylvania Avenue just down from the White House and there is a very good coffee shop just a couple of doors away.

  52. 452