amw (amw) wrote,

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My main political interest is American politics. I browse the Associated Press wire every day and keep up with a couple of blogs. When something big happens i jump on CNN or Fox for pictures and WTOP or PBS for live audio. But i'm also occasionally interested in political developments around the rest of the world, especially in the Middle East. Usually a combination of my usual blogs plus AP and Al Jazeera covers that, but with this Iran thing all the cable stations (including Al Jazeera) are sucking major ass.

This is the first "news event" i have been following solely in the blogosphere. Knowing how much of an echo chamber it is, it's really hard to gauge the size of the movement. Twitter is, er, atwitter with thousands of unsubstantiated reports from the front line, and YouTube has amateur video out the ass. Andrew Sullivan is proving once again to be my favorite blogger by dedicating the majority of his entries to summarizing what's going on out there, though even with him as an aggregator it's hard to get to the root of things. The AP are about a day behind trying to fact-check the tweets.

Life as a reporter over there must be extremely frustrating right now, because you can't do your job - 24 have been arrested already. Life as an opposition supporter must be even more frustrating because after 10 days there's still no obvious traction. Most of them can't see government statements of support from overseas, they can't see the green icons on Twitter, they can't even get text messages from their friends in the next city over to see if the revolution is still on. What a mess!

What's fascinating to me is that the "reformers" still appear to be very much sold on the concept of a theocracy. On the day of the election here in Canada along the "Persian strip" here there were a lot of pre-1980 flags waving from cars. I don't think those guys will be moving back any time soon, even if we do see a revolution or major government shake-up in the next few weeks. The idea of integrating church and state so completely feels really bizarre to me as a westerner, but to the guys on the streets in Iran today it's perfectly acceptable - they just see recent events as a corruption of the ideal. It really opens my mind to the alternatives out there, though i also feel very lucky to be living here where i don't need to live under the moral code of a religion that isn't my own.

That's all for today's off-topic ramble. I'll get back to anxiety, whining and narcissism tomorrow, i promise.
Tags: news, politics, protest

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