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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Henry Ford 'democrats' strike again

I have long argued that when neo-conservatives talk of 'democracy', what they really mean is Henry Ford democracy- ie the right of a country to elect whatever government it likes so long as it's one that
Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz et al approve of. If the people do have the temerity to vote the 'wrong way', then the neo-con response is simple. Either call the country 'undemocratic"- like they do Belarus, or did to Yugoslavia in the 1990s, or else put enormous pressure on the country in question to hold 'fresh elections', so the result they didn't like can be reversed. The latter is what's happened this week in Palestine, as the U.S. backed Mahmoud Abbas has called new elections, even though, as President he has no constitutional right to do so. What's at issue here is not whether on not one supports the policies of Hamas, the elected governing party in Palestine, but whether we accept the right of the people in Palestine to elect a Hamas government. True democrats, and I count myself among their number, do. False democrats- ie neo cons, clearly do not.


Peter Nolan said...

'undemocratic"- like they do Belarus, or did to Yugoslavia in the 1990s...

So, these little dictatorships had something more democratic than democracy?

Neil Clark said...

Re: Belarus- here's the report on this year's presidential election from Mark Almond of the British Helsinki Human Rights Group.
Lukashenko has overwhelming public support, due in no small part to eschewing the the 'shock therapy' economic policies so disastrously applied elsewhere in the region.

Re: Yugoslavia- how on earth can a country in which 21 political parties freely operated and where there was a vibrant, opposition supporting media be called a 'dictatorship'. Even Adam Lebor, (no friend of Slobo he), concedes in his biography of Milosevic that it is factually incorrect to label the late Yugoslav President a 'dictator'.