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Normalizing Dictatorships

Mark Steyn:

In his previous submission to the people seven years earlier, Saddam got 99.89 per cent of the vote. And, given that the 0.11 per cent foolish enough to write in Ralph Nader were no doubt subsequently shoved into the industrial shredder, it seemed a safe bet that the old butcher would do even better this time round. Nonetheless, throughout the day, CNN kept up the Election Special excitement to the point where you half-expected a Gallup exit poll showing Saddam plummeting to 99.82 per cent, or Frank Luntz live with a focus group of Tikrit soccer moms who want more spending on health care and less on anthrax. Saddam "sought" re-election and happily found it, and, after the removal of his regime, survived in his spider-hole long enough to enjoy an increasing number of approving pieces in the Western press bemoaning the way the blundering neo-cons and their incompetent stooges among Iraq's democratic parties had destroyed a smoothly functioning dictatorship. From the London Spectator: "Things Were Better Under Saddam." Once Cuba begins the inevitably messy birth pangs of democracy, expect similar Castro nostalgia to the nth degree: Havana not as quaint as it used to be, full of ghastly American banks and fast-food outlets.

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on February 28, 2008 6:53 PM.

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