Right wing commentary on world politics from a man on a mission to prove that Conservatism transcends national boundaries. Thoughtful comments from people of all political persuasions are welcome and encouraged. Contact the blogger at elephantman.conservaglobe@gmail.com.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

In Memoriam: President Gerald R. Ford

The Honorable Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr.
38th President of the United States


Since I was a young boy, I have loved studying the various men who have occupied the Oval Office. Among those men, one in particular stood out to me as a good man and a role model - his name was Gerald Ford. After the scandals of the Nixon administration, Ford reminded the nation of what a president should be. So, while I may be ideologically closer to his 1976 primary opponent Ronald Reagan, I will always think of Ford as a true statesman and a great man.

It is also worth noting that several of the men who now lead the Republican party owe much of their success to Gerald Ford. Donald Rumsfeld served as White House Chief of Staff, and later as Ford's Secretary of Defense. When Rumsfeld was promoted, his position as Chief of Staff was filled by a man named Dick Cheney. Ford also made George H.W. Bush his envoy to Communist China and then appointed him as Director of the C.I.A. Both of these appointments were key stepping stones on Bush's road to the White House. So, while Reagan is now considered the ideological patriarch of the modern Republican Party, it was Ford who selected the men who would lead the party into the 21st Century.

You can say what you want about Ford's policies or the fact that he was an unelected president, but it is hard to dispute that he was a great man. He led the country through a very trying time in its history, and he single-handedly restored the people's trust in the Presidency.

America has lost a great leader, and every patriotic American should be forever thankful for the life of Gerald Ford.

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Monday, December 25, 2006

PERSON OF THE WEEK - Dec. 17-23, 2006

Meles Zenawi
President of Ethiopia

Friday, December 22, 2006

World's Craziest Dictator Dead!

Saparmurat "Turkmenbashi" Niyazov

In ranking the world's worst dictators, I placed Saparmurat Niyazov of Turkmenistan second only to Kim Jong Il. And while Kim may run the most oppressive regime on Earth, Niyazov was twice as self-obsessed and ten times as deranged. Some of his antics were almost comical: he renamed the months of the year, banned ballet and opera, and changed the Turkmen word for "bread" to his mother's name. However, many of his actions were sick, cruel, and not funny at all. He closed all hospitals and libraries outside of the capital, Ashgabat, saying that those who needed medical care could come to the capital and that ordinary Turkmen don't read books. While his people suffered, Niyazov filled his capital with a sickening number of lavish building projects. He even commissioned the construction of an ice palace in subtropical Ashgabat!

Luckily, the Turkmen people will no longer have to deal with this maniac. He died Thursday of heart failure. I hate to ever call anyone's death a good thing, but now there is some hope for Turkmenistan. The country will probably remain an Orwellian police state, but hopefully the new "Turkmenbashi" ("Leader of all ethnic Turkmen") will have just enough sense to at least allow his subjects to have some access to medical care.

If you are at all religious, please pray that the Turkmen people can finally become free of the terrible burden that this madman placed on them.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

TIME fails to name a Person of the Year

Time magazine has flubbed up Person of the Year before, but I feel very comfortable in saying that this year's selection is their worst EVER. Sure, I've had issues with their choices for several years now, but at least they named actual people most of the time. This year's choice goes beyond that, and even eclipses some of the colossal cop-outs of the past. I used to think that time's worst-ever choice was in 1988, when "Endangered Earth" was named "Planet of The Year", but this is worse.

For 2006, Time's Person of the Year is..."YOU"!

That's right, everyone in the world is "Person of the Year". Now, I agree with their premise that user-generated content is defining the new information age (which is one reason I blog). However, I find the naming of the entire population as "Person of the Year" to be one of the dumbest things I have ever seen in the media. Saying that all humanity combined impacts the world more than any one person is like saying that circles are round - it's not news.

Now, other large populations have been named by time in the past, but none of them were totally all encompassing. Not everyone is an American Soldier (2004), a Middle American (1969), a U.S. Woman (1975), or Twenty-Five and Under (1966). However, no one can be excluded from the term "you", and making everyone Person of the Year is the same thing as saying that there is no Person of the Year - it's the ultimate cop-out.

So, as a member of the world population (an a generator of user-generated content), I refuse to accept the title of Time's Person of the Year and suggest that they pick one person who actually deserves the title.

Saturday, December 16, 2006


Leader of Hezbollah
President of Syria
President of Iran

In the year 2006, the world saw the emergence of a new axis of evil. The triad of Iraq, Iran, and North Korea was never a true axis - each acted independently of the others. That is not the case with Iran, Syria, and Hezbollah. These three are not pursuing separate ends, they are working together toward an ominous and sinister goal. Together, they are making the Middle East more dangerous than it has ever been by threatening Israel, dismantling Lebanon's shaky democracy, and building the world's most destructive weapons. For that, the three leaders this axis of terror share the title of "Person of the Year."

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran is an obvious choice. His open desire to annihilate Israel has sent shockwaves through the international community, and his recent conference for Holocaust deniers caused almost every sane person to turn up his nose in disgust. However, it is his nuclear program that is really frightening, even to other Islamic states.

That said, Ahmadinejad has not actually attacked anyone yet. That job was done by his allies and fellow Shi'ite, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. Hezbollah wrecked havoc in two nations this year. First, they rained Katyusha rockets into Northern Israel, forcing the Israelis to invade Southern Lebanon in order to stop them. After Israel's withdrawal, Nasrallah declared victory and set about making trouble in his own country. In Lebanon, Hezbollah is a full fledged political party, with many members elected to Parliament and allies in the cabinet. In the last month, it launched massive protests aimed at ousting the elected government of Prime Minister Fouad Seniora. An agreement was forged to form a new unity government, giving Islamofacists a major voice in the Lebanese government.

The final recipient of this award may come as a surprise to many of you. In fact, I was rather surprised when I found myself considering him. However, Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad has quietly made a huge impact on the Middle East in 2006. Unlike Ahmadinejad and Nasrallah, he is a Sunni Muslim; and he leads a Saddam-esque Baathist dictatorship, not an Islamo-Nazi theocracy. He is, however, a friend of both Hezbollah and Iran. He once wielded power over a puppet regime in Lebanon, and he wants that power back. Hence, most of Hezbollah's weapons (often of Iranian manufacture) are delivered via Syria.

So, the biggest story of 2006 went basically like this: Ahmadenijad made the guns, al-Assad then smuggled some of them into Lebanon, where Nasrallah and his people fired them at Israel. The actions of Iran, Syria, and Hezbollah are so intertwined that they sometimes seem to operate as a single unit. They seem to share everything else, so it is only fitting that Hezbollah's Hassan Nasrallah, Syria's Bashar al-Assad, and Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad share the title of Person of the Year.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Person of the Year is coming...stay tuned

I'm sorry I haven't been posting lately, but you have to cut a college student some slack during finals. I'm still here, and Person of the Week will resume this coming Sunday.

Now the big news...it's that special time of year again, and no, I don't mean not the Holidays. I mean the time of year when I renew my grudge match against TIME magazine. As a former lover of TIME's "Person of the Year" award, I have been extremely dissapointed in thier choices since 2001. They have shirked their self-imposed duty to name the person who affected the world the most, "for good or evil" by selecting politically correct, sugarcoated choices. I think I can do better (which is more a comment on their journalism than a statement of self-importance), which is why I name a rival Person of the Year every December. Therefore, I will award the title of "Person of the Year 2006" before the end of this week - and yes, I've already decided who it is.

For their part, TIME has released a list of nominees at www.cnn.com/poy, and I have to say that it is a far better list than those of the last few years. Is my choice on that list? Well, yes and no...you'll have to wait an see what that means.