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Water Is Wet

Via ‘Noz at Rubber Hose we find David L. Stern of the New York Times reporting that Uzbekistan Re-elects Its President

OSH, Kyrgyzstan — President Islam A. Karimov of Uzbekistan won 88.1 percent of votes in the presidential election Sunday, according to preliminary results released on Monday by the country’s Central Election Commission.

The results give Mr. Karimov overwhelming support for a third term, but the contest was widely accepted as a foregone conclusion and casts doubt on the country’s long-term stability.

“Today, the most important and topical issue is to demonstrate our political maturity while holding the presidential polls by strictly observing the Constitution, laws and generally accepted international norms,” Mr. Karimov said while casting his ballot, state media reported.

See this was a valid election because everyone knows that to be declared a dictator you have to receive over 90% of the vote and Karimov only received 88.1%. OK, so his hand-picked opponents endorsed him prior to the election, but almost 1 in 8 Uzbeks voted for them. See, they held an election that strictly observed the Uzbek constitution… well, except for the part that said a President can only serve two terms, but it was an election. And they had foreign observers… OK, so they weren’t actually allowed to observe anything but they were in Uzbekistan at the time of the election.

Democracy is on the march in the former republics of the Soviet Union. It has to keep moving or it will get boiled too.

6 comments

1 Michael { 12.25.07 at 12:17 am }

They had elections in the Soviet Union too. You could vote for the Communist, or not.

2 distributorcap { 12.25.07 at 11:41 am }

i am sure the “friends” of romney, huckapoo, rudy and mcinsane were the observers, observing how to do the same here…

3 Bryan { 12.25.07 at 8:53 pm }

There were penalties for not voting in the Soviet Union, Michael, and Karimov ran the Uzbek SSR before the fall of the Soviet Union as Communist Party chief, so I doubt things have changed in the slightest. If all you did was read it, the Soviet constitution was much more democratic than the American Constitution.

Welcome to the area, DistributorCap. Based on Florida and Ohio, I think the US needs election monitors. It would be interesting to read what the Europeans would say about our processes.

4 Michael { 12.26.07 at 1:30 am }

There are penalties for not voting in Australia, so that’s hardly the point. However, the party controlled the ballot. And so, you had no real choice, as I said, you could vote for the Communist or not. It didn’t matter to the outcome, but might affect your career prospects.

5 Michael { 12.26.07 at 1:32 am }

And if the corporations continue to control elections in this country, it isn’t any better. We must end that.

6 Bryan { 12.26.07 at 4:18 pm }

Actually. non-party members ran in local elections in the Soviet Union as a way of entering the party. Membership and its benefits were restricted. Things weren’t as simple as they appeared to most of the West.

I would like to see multinational corporations receive “green card” status, Michael. They aren’t “American” anymore and should be treated accordingly.