Civil Disobedience

A Bad Year for the Roses

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People power: It's a nice way to bring down a government, but it gets annoying once you've established a regime of your own. I assume that's the thought process at work in the Republic of Georgia, where the president installed by 2003's Rose Revolution has declared a state of emergency, closed down TV stations, and violently repressed demonstrations. He says the opposition is all a Russian plot, but while Russia has certainly tried to influence events within its neighbor's borders, there's a lot more at work here than that. Radio Netherlands reports:

Former defence minister Irakli Okruashvili has accused the president of corruption and of being behind a number of political killings. A number of other prominent opposition leaders previously served in government—they resigned after clashing with the president—which makes it hard to accuse them of pro-Russian sympathies. Former foreign minister Salome Zurabishvili even went to Paris to assure French President Nikolas Sarkozy that the Georgian opposition supports President Saakashvili's foreign policy platform of developing closer ties with Europe and becoming a NATO member. Moscow is certainly not in favour of its former satellite state joining the NATO alliance.

Even if they were all secretly working for the Kremlin, of course, that wouldn't justify the general restrictions on civil liberties.

Speaking of states of emergency: If you missed the Center for Public Integrity's report this past May on U.S. aid to Pakistan, now would be a good time to review it.

NEXT: Sleeping Man Tasered in His Own Home

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  1. Am I just seeing the world the way I feel or does there seem to be a whole lot of de-democratization at work in the world these days?

  2. seriously, what’s going on with the consolidation of state power all over the world? Burma, Pakistan, Georgia, what’s next?

  3. We shouldn’t be too hard on the de-democratization process. Facing longer and longer life spans, people become increasingly risk averse (dying from a heart attack at the age of 70 is a tragedy if living to a 100 is a real possibility) and inevitably use democracy to promote nanny-statism. What we need is a mini-state in which especially policing is privatized. Private security services will help reduce life spans by increasing random killings a la Blackwater. Democray is a function of the political state. Business is business.

  4. WTF? Is that the worst Edward spoof ever, or did this guy lose a few french fries from his happy meal?

  5. Randolph-

    America might be next.

  6. Not if I have anything to say about it 🙂

  7. I am hoping the title of this thread is a shoutout to the George Jones version (please).

  8. John-David,

    Geez, I thought not pointing out that Ron Paul is a pathetic joke who couldn’t win the nomination if all the other candidates were killed in a plane crash would be appreciated. You guys are hard to please.

  9. Henry: It was. See this comment in the thread immediately above this one.

  10. You guys are hard to please.
    Goodness knows, Edward, you certainly have tried.

  11. History shows that toppling the existing government is the easy part…building something to replace it is another matter altogether.

    Personally, I don’t think that Russia is doing itself any favors by sowing instability on its southern borders, but I suppose it’s really none of my business.

  12. VM

    Seriously, don’t you think the nanny-statism that libertarians rail against has something to do with increased longevity? I mean, when people can actually live longer, they want to take better care of themselves, so they support all sorts of legislation that promotes safety and health. The nanny state just reflects the actual desires of the population. That’s why–from the libertarian, anti-nanny state perspective–democracy isn’t such a good thing.

  13. Seriously, don’t you think the nanny-statism that libertarians rail against has something to do with increased longevity? I mean, when people can actually live longer, they want to take better care of themselves, so they support all sorts of legislation that promotes safety and health. The nanny state just reflects the actual desires of the population. That’s why–from the libertarian, anti-nanny state perspective–democracy isn’t such a good thing.

    Edward works for the kremlin, but unlike him i am a libertarian and support the rights of cryto fascists like ed to spread lies and fear.

    Are you going to threaten to sue me now Eddy?

  14. seriously, what’s going on with the consolidation of state power all over the world? Burma, Pakistan, Georgia, what’s next?

    Wouldn’t you like to know…

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