16 June, 2005

To The Carter Center

Sarcasm meter: High (burnt umber)

With the Iranian national elections now just hours away, I have some information that I must share. I have a friend who works at The Carter Center, and he gave me a copy of the report the Center is planning on releasing after they have "observed" the Iranian election. Or, maybe, I am addressing this to the Center in hopes of landing a lucrative job. I could report on elections all over the world for them and never leave my garage. Or maybe it's just time for a dose of sarcasm.

The Carter Center
June 16, 2005

Report on the National Elections in Iran- June 17, 2005

Background and Introduction
Following a longstanding tradition in Iranian politics, the field of candidates was, for the sake of the electorate, narrowed from over 1,000 to less than 10. This process frees the Iranian voter to make a more informed decision, having only to familarize himself with a handful of candidates. This vetting, unlike America's, where money and connections decide who will run, is entirely free from influential suitcase bombs of money. Thus the world should recognize the neatness and fairness of the Iranian national election.

Voter Participation
Turn out and voter participation were, admitedly lower than hoped for, but with the uncertainty that comes with having American M1 tanks and the US Air Force next door in Iraq, along with the possibility of additional bombs exploding throughout their cities--multiple explosions were reported in the days leading up to the election; some Iranians may have been, understandably, hesitant to vote.

Ironically, however, the major factor for the low number of votes, was the incredibly high turnout. So many people jammed the streets throughout the country, all trying to get to the polls at the same time, that traveling anywhere, in almost every city, was nearly impossible. The people became angry once they realized they would never make it to the voting booth and set buses and piles of tires on fire, further blocking paths to the polls.

(The Carter Center is preparing a report to the UN on improving city planning and road widening in Iran, in an attempt to prevent infrastructural problems from hindering voting in the future. We are also moving forward in our attempts to ask Tehran to drastically increase the number of voting machines by their next major elections--"There is no reason the people of Iran must suffer through Florida-style elections" Former President Jimmy Carter said to Ali Akhbar Rafsanjani, the man declared winner after only 20% of Iranians were able to make it to the polls.)

We observed voting and vote counting throughout the country. The traffic jam of voters in the streets which prevented most Iranians from actually voting, made our job simpler and gave us the ability to watch almost every vote counted by hand. Added to this, we discovered the fact that those Iranians who did manage to naviagate the unbearable crowds and were not afraid of the American military next door, voted blank ballots. That is, they were clearly so upset at the, still too large, number of candidates, that they just placed their blank ballot "in the box", assured of the wisdom of their fellow countrymen.

Although women did not participate in this election, had they been allowed to, the crisis of the "voter jam" in the streets would have only been many times worse. Considering the resultant landslide victory for Rafsanjani, it is very likely, that even if every woman in Iran voted, the outcome would have been the same. The Carter Center looks forward to working with the rulers in Tehran on the issue of women's rights. We have been informed that women's suffrage is right around the corner. The actual quote from Supreme Leader Kahmenei was, "We look forward to the day that we are free from American meddling and at that time we can greatly increase women's suffer-age, everone's suffer-age." Clearly, the Iranians are serious about their elections. So serious, that many journalists who tried to disparage the beauty of the Iranian election were detained and given lessons in suffer-age.

The Iranian national election of 2005 resulted in the return of Ali Akhbar Rafsanjani to the Presidency. His vote total of 957,456 was lower than he had hoped for, but still more than enough to beat out his competitors, none of whom got over 500,000 votes. There are approximately 50 million of voting age population in Iran. 24 million of them male, and able to vote. Of those 24 million possible voters, only about 20% were able to find a path through the joyous crowds, which equated to 4.8 million votes actually cast. A full 60% were the "blank ballots" referenced above. That left just under 2 million votes actually cast for a candidate. Of those 600,000 were write in votes for George W. Bush--another glaring example of CIA meddling and influence in the Iranian attempt at a pristine ballot. Of the 1.3 million votes left, Rafsanjani got a 74% mandate from the Iranian people. This alone, should demonstrate to the world that Iran is a shining example of real democracy in action, and a model for nations everywhere (especially those north of Mexico and south of Canada).

Final Summary
The people of Iran have spoken loudly, and we must listen to them. They have resoundingly re-elected the muslim clerics into power and endorsed the right of Iran to develop nuclear technology for peaceful and defensive reasons. Any further instigation or meddling by America and her ultra conservative, Bible wielding, wide eyed true believers, whether through the CIA or via covert and overt funding of Iranian resistance groups, would only serve to darken America's image and increase anti-Americanism abroad.

It is clearly evident the people of Iran are truly happy and content with their rulers; and seeing Rafsanjani's 70+% mandate, must drive George W. Bush crazy, since he has not seen an approval rating above 49% in years. There are many things the US could learn from Iran, but the world's bully is always tardy for class, if he ever shows up at all.


Anonymous said...

Man! This is too hot! I hope the MSM picks up on this. I've sent a note to my address list asking them to check out your story, Kajando.

Semper Fi . . .

Robert Lindsay said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Robert Lindsay said...

What the Hell are you talking about??!! The Carter Center said "Women are Not Allowed to Vote in this election"??!!! I do not THINK so. See here, here. That's BBC, is that fucking good enough for you?! You want a fucking pic of women voting, you ignoramus? Here, try that. What more pics? Here is one. This website here you are so fond of is not going to be very popular with the vast majority of Iranians in Iran, I assure you. It's some Iranian exiles, mostly in the West I bet, who want the US to attack Iran. I am not sure who they are exactly, but most of these groups are either pro-Shah or pro-Mujahedin Kalq.

"We have been informed that women's suffrage is right around the corner." You are a LIAR. This letter is a forgery, the Carter Center never wrote this. This Iran-Focus group is apparently run by the MKO! They have very little support in Iran, and most Iranians think they are a bizarre cult like the Khmer Rogue. "We look forward to the day that we are free from American meddling and at that time we can greatly increase women's suffer-age, everone's suffer-age." Khameini never said this! All women can vote. "There are approximately 50 million of voting age population in Iran. 24 million of them male, and able to vote. Of those 24 million possible voters, only about 20% were able to find a path through the joyous crowds, which equated to 4.8 million votes actually cast."
All women can vote you clown!

Is this supposed to be funny? Why are you saying women can't vote in Iran when they surely can? What's the point? You are going to mislead people.

kajando said...

Hey, you're right, the Carter Center didn't write this, and it is supposed to be funny. Sorry if it failed. I can't expect to make everybody laugh, but what I can, and should, expect of myself is to be accurate even in satire. You are right, women can vote in Iran, and to say otherwise was very misleading, and went beyond the spirit of satire. That was a mistake, I apologize for that; and for the lead-in being cloudy. I thought it was clear that sarcasm was to follow, but I'll be more careful in the future.

Regarding the Iranian resistance groups:
Yes, several of the groups are pro shah, but there are countless others. None of these groups has ever called for the US to invade Iran. They all say, which you and I can probably agree on, that a US invasion of Iran would be a terrible mistake with dire consequences. The PMOI and MEK have a huge international public relations and lobbying effort, one the Iraqi National Congress could only have dreamt about.

The internal support of these groups is varied, but no one can dispute that the people of Iran are subject to human rights abuses at the hands of the mullahs. Freedom of speach is continually threatened, any one who speaks against the regime, risks life and limb. Women, although allowed to vote, are "less than a man" under the Islamic law that rules Iran.

Thanks for the criticism. I'll try not to be an ingnoramus from now on; but I can't promise anything about not being a clown.

For the record, I've also stated that Khamenei and Khatami, the Supreme Leader and the outgoing President, play lead guitars in the rock bank "Axis of Evil". Also that their fans call the two mullahs the "Axes of Evil", because their guitar skills are so incredible. In fact, I do not know if either the Supreme Leader or the soon to be former President of Iran play guitar, or any other musical instruments for that matter.

Robert Lindsay said...

Wow, Kajando, thx for your humble response. Most ppl coming from your POV have no humility at all. You are correct, satire is difficult, but you should make it clear. Maybe put THE FOLLOWING IS SATIRE; NOT REAL, before the post. It's true, you are going to mislead people, not cuz you are evil or stupid, but because your average American on the Net doesn't know a damn thing about Iran. The part about the Axes of Evil is pretty obviously satire.

Using the Carter Center letter as a satirical device is difficult and may even get you in trouble (though I doubt it). I actually went to the Carter Center website to look for the letter! And I am not exactly ignorant. Most of the "major" Iranian exile groups that are so frenetically active on the Net are pro-Shah. Those are the ones with the big money and hyperactive posters. There may be others - but those seem more the blogger types.

The major website you posted to is apparently run by the MEK, though they are being coy about it. You say that the MEK say that a US invasion of Iran would be a mistake, but if you go to that site you gave me, the objective is obvious - to rile up the US public to attack Iran. If the MEK can't figure out that that is the purpose of their propaganda, then they ought to look closer. It's clear that the Monarchists and, now, thx to your link, the MEK, somehow have access to huge piles of money.

As far as "anyone who speaks out risks life and limb" that is probably an exxageration. Like in Cuba, there is probably some line that needs to be crossed. Those not crossing the line are basically safe. But where is the line? From reading the Iran oppos, it's clear that there are demonstrations, often violent demos, going on all the time in Iran, at least in Tehran.

That would not happen in a totalitarian state. Or even in a death squad democracy, without many more bodies. Iran seems to be like one of the Latin American "democracies" that kill a few people a year, and beat up and harass more. Compared to Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, Haiti, Colombia, Ecuador, Brazil, and Bolivia, Iran is probably more democratic, at least in terms of ppl killed by the state.

I support getting rid of the mullahcracy, but my position is more in line with the typical Iranian nationalists, who represent a very large # of the Iranian opposition.

My blog has a recent in-depth entry on the bombings in Iran, called "US and Britain At War With Iran".

kajando said...

so do the nationalists have a plan? Because they are running out of time. Bush gave them until late summer to change things themselves. Hopefully they can roust the mullahs by then, otherwise, Lord only knows what the PNAC crowd has in store.

I'll take your advice and have a sarcasm meter on future posts. As far as my POV, it may not be as far to the right as it sounds. I'm just a fearful servant to our lizard overlords, not unlike the poor people of Iran, in that regard. I'm afraid if I stray too far, Coulter might smack me around; and I'm really afraid I might like it.

Ok, that's enough sarcasm for awhile. I'm just a common man who somehow manages to make uncommon mistakes. Thanks.

to read some more obvious satire see Rock Band Seeks New Front Man

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