Axis of Misery Elections (Venezuela, Egypt and Iran)

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Which country is most likely to change its politics?

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Post by Yuri Yukuv Sun Apr 14, 2013 7:30 pm

Three countries which its peoples seem to have lived in misery and under mob rule will undergo elections in the next few months. First will be Venezuela (Apr 14), then Egypt (22 April to 12 May) and finally Iran (14 June). This thread is to discuss those elections and changes that will come with them.

VENEZUELA'S PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION IS GETTING VIOLENT AND WEIRD

On a roundabout on one of Caracas's wealthier streets, around 40 students lie on mattresses shielded from the sun by a tarp. They haven't eaten for three days. "The second day is completely different to the first. My head hurts much more. I feel weak. My arms and legs ache," said Vanessa Eisig, a 22-year-old communications student at the local Andres Bello University.

She is one of many young opposition supporters who spent last weekend and the beginning of this week on hunger strike. Flanked by a bank headquarters, a high-end hotel, and various foreign embassies, they're protesting the "injustice" of the National Electoral Council, a supposedly independent branch of the government that oversees elections and—the hunger strikers feel—is heavily biased toward Hugo Chavez's United Socialist Party of Venezuela.

They hope that Henrique Capriles Radonski, the 40-year-old state governor who lost to Chavez in last October’s presidential election, will win this Sunday against Chavez’s chosen successor Nicolas Maduro, who has been the country's interim president since Chavez's death last month. “We're here demanding that the elections are clean, just, and free,” added Eisig. “That's why we're here. If we didn't think it would work, we wouldn't be here.”

On Monday night, Eisig's resolve was tested. She and the roughly 40 other protesters told me that they were attacked by red-clad, pro-government supporters on motorbikes who shot into the air and threw Molotov cocktails and rocks towards them.

“We're here on this peaceful hunger strike, but we were attacked by about 50 people on motorbikes belonging to the government,” said a clearly shaken Henry Linares, an 18-year-old student who was also taking part in the hunger strike. “They robbed us of our stuff. Around ten students were injured, but we're continuing the fight. I'm tired. I feel terrible. But we'll continue our fight.”

Friend and fellow hunger-striker Esteban Galup added, “It was organized,” implying the government could have been involved in the attack, or at least gave it tacit approval. Maduro, appearing on state television, has instead placed the blame on Washington, claiming the attack was carried out by a “small, violent group, financed by the US government.”

Maduro, who rose from humble roots as a bus driver in Caracas, has picked up on Chavez’s flair for the dramatic, attacking Washington with increasingly surreal public statements.

In another televized speech, Maduro said that Chavez had appeared to him as a small bird. “It sang and I responded with a song, and the bird took flight, circled around once, and then flew away,” he said, imitating the bird’s call as well as the sounds of its wings flapping. “I felt the spirit and blessings of Comandante Chavez for this battle.”

Preceding that bizarre little outburst, Maduro invoked a 16th-century curse on those who don’t vote for him in Sunday’s election and has also referred to himself as Chavez’s “son” and called his former boss the “prophet of Christ on Earth.” He even suggested that Chavez had nudged Christ into choosing a Latin American pope.

“Chavez is the government's most powerful weapon,” said Eisig. “The image of Chavez is close to many Venezuelans' hearts.” But, said Eisig, “It's clear that Maduro isn't Chavez.”

Capriles is closing the gap in polls, but Maduro appears likely to win, surfing a wave of sympathy on the late comandante's death. “Nicolas, you are not Chavez,” Capriles has repeatedly said, keen to peg the fight between himself and Maduro rather than an abstract messianic figure.

The message is slowly getting across to Chavez supporters. In Chavez’s birthplace of Barinas, 60-year-old farmer Ángel Sánchez says he is a Chavista and always will be, but “I’ll vote for Capriles,” he adds.

Chavez grew up in a mud hut in the country's wild plains, famous for their cowboys and revolutionaries. Rather than accept ridicule for his bus-driver roots, Maduro is using them to his advantage, driving to rallies in a bus, following in Chavez's working-class footsteps.

"Do you want one of the rancid bourgeois to win?" Maduro screamed at a recent rally. "Or do you want a worker, a son of Chavez, a patriot and a revolutionary?"

Capriles, on the other hand, comes from a rich family, the owners of a string of cinemas across the country. Unlike many opposition leaders, he has worked hard over the years to woo the country's poor, riding into slums on his motorbike and playing basketball with the locals. His governance, should he win, would likely follow the model of Brazil's former president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who mixed social policies with sound economic ones. "I'm 100 percent Lula," Capriles said last year.

Capriles's focus on the poor appears to be working, closing the gap between his policies and the left-wing ones of Chavismo. “I’d vote for Chavez if he were alive, of course,” he said. “Maduro isn’t smart enough to govern this country.” Statements like that no doubt give the protesters and Capriles hope.

As well as an unfair electoral council, Eisig says the opposition must also battle the government’s takeover of the airwaves. Chavez was famous for using forced television and radio time, known as a cadena, to push his own propaganda, and Maduro looks to be doing the same.

“Capriles has limited time on air,” she said. “We’re asking that the government not be allowed to use cadenas for political propaganda.”

“Venezuela has totally deteriorated,” added Eisig. The country’s economy is in tatters, with a severely overvalued currency and one of the region’s highest rates of inflation. “Supermarkets are too expensive,” said Eisig. “Most of the time, you can’t get what you want: toilet paper, flour... I’ve seen fights for the last products on the shelves, but that's normal for us now.”

Venezuela is also one of the most deadly countries on the planet; its capital Caracas has a murder rate comparable to war zones. “We go out and we don’t know if we’ll return or get caught in crossfire,” Eisig told me.

Lying on a mattress next to Eisig is Ángel Gutiérrez, an 18-year-old student. “In 14 years, the Revolution has achieved nothing. Capriles can win,” he said, “if the elections are just. If he doesn’t, we’ll keep fighting.”
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Post by TalkingReckless Sun Apr 14, 2013 8:13 pm

There is one is Pakistan too, it would very well decide the outcome of the war on Terrorism in Pakistan, the drone attacks, fall of Family politics
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Post by Sushi Master Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:12 pm

Maduro will win, and the misery will continue.

The elections themselves are peaceful, no incidents. It's the country that's a huge friggin' mess. I would have rather withstood another whole 6 years of Chavez, than have him die right after being reelected, knowing his condition months before to put out that clueless, meatbag, incompetent puppet of a man who will only win due to people associating him with Chavez, and a massive propaganda war proclaiming him as "Chavez' son", along with similar shit like that that the lower class eats. Nevermind half the country voting out of necessity due to wanting to keep their jobs and feed their families because the government pretty much owns everything.

Obama, we need a 2nd cancer gun strike :bow:
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Post by Mamad Sun Apr 14, 2013 10:23 pm

There is no misery in Iran :coffee: .
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Post by Yuri Yukuv Sun Apr 14, 2013 10:31 pm

Yes, cuz democracy can never end up in misery right? Maybe you should ask the Greeks or the Germans about that.

Democracy at the end doesn't matter, what matters are your personal, economic and political rights.

When you are in a country that can take away your money like its nothing, execute you for having sex with your girlfriend or not believing in an invisible god that the majority believes in or improsin you for opposing the government it doesn't matter wither there is a seal o approval by the majority of the sheeple or not.

Besides dont candidates have to be approved by a council or the supreme leader as opposed to the people? As in, the only choice people are allowed to make is the ones they are limited to.

Anyways, aside from our ideological differences. How far do you think Mashaei can go Mamad?
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Post by Yuri Yukuv Sun Apr 14, 2013 10:39 pm

To be honest my friend Legend I am well aware of the elections in Pakistan and the factions rallying to win from nawaz sharif to imran khan. However, I have extreme doubt that anything will change in Pakistan as the system itself lends to crony capitalism and group think. I feel that for Pakistan to wake up the country will have to collapse completely.

Also unlike these other countries Pakistan doesn't suffer because of extreme dictatorship and one party rule. Rather its a whole mindset.
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Post by Mamad Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:00 pm

I know you are trying to be like yeah i know a lot about Iran or other countries you named but you don't. you are not living in Iran and you don't know laws you don't know many things.

nobody can take our money. nobody has been executed for having sex with his girlfriend. nobody has been killed for not believing in god. none.

btw many laws come from religion in religious countries. you can't ask different countries to follow 1 simple direction and same rules. different countries, different cultures different religions....

Yeah there are prisoners. every damn government will do things to protect the country from chaos.

Candidates should be approved by a council. whats wrong with that? so you say everyone from street can be a candidate? there should be rules. shouldn't?

the council follows law. every country has a system for it's elections and it's not like for example in US some person can come out and say i want to be candidate. there are groups, etc. for being president you need approval from political groups or something right? i don't know how it works in US exactly.

Mashaei will not be approved.

And one thing. yep there are Iranians who want the regime to be gone. if you walk in streets or take a taxi you will see and hear it. but that's natural i think. for many countries. there are always people who are unhappy. and let me tell you the economic situation in Iran is shat because of sanctions. so that's that.

but Iran is nothing like Afghanistan ,Iraq ,Pakistan or whatever hostile country. Iran's situation is way better than what you think.
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Post by BarrileteCosmico Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:15 pm

How can you seriously call Chavez' Venezuela to be part of the "Axis of Misery"? It's clear to me that he wouldn't have been so popular or democratically elected as many times if he had not improved the situation of the lowest common denominator by a significant margin, which would be the opposite of "misery". Chavez might have no respect for private property, freedom of speech and so on, but those are not necessarily an accurate depiction of the quality of life. I don't really have any stats at hands, so I searched the web and here's what I found:

Unemployment has dropped from 14.5% of the total labour force in 1999 to 7.6% in 2009
• Population has increased from 23,867,000 in 1999 to 29,278,000 in 2011. The annual population growth was 1.5% in 2011 compared with 1.9% in 1999
• GDP per capita has risen from $4,105 to $10,801 in 2011
• As you can see in the graphic chart, Venezuela's inflation has fluctuated since 1999. Inflation now stands at 31.6% compared with 23.6% in 1999
• Venezuela has a complicated history concerning currency exchange rates. Compared with 1999 when the exchange rate was under one bolivar to the US dollar, the latest figures from Reuters place it at 4.3 Bolivars to one dollar
• Poverty has decreased - in 1999, 23.4% of the population were recorded as being in extreme poverty, this fell to 8.5% in 2011 according to official government figures
• Infant mortality is now lower than in 1999 - from a rate of 20 per 1,000 live births then to a rate of 13 per 1,000 live births in 2011
• Violence has been a key concern in Venezuela for some time - figures from the UNODC state that the murder rate has risen since 1999. In 2011 the intentional homicide rate per 100,000 population was 45.1 compared with 25.0 just twelve years earlier
• Oil exports have boomed - Venezuela has one of the top proven oil reserves in the world and in 2011 Opec put the country's net oil export revenues at $60bn. In 1999 it stood at $14.4bn
http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2012/oct/04/venezuela-hugo-chavez-election-data#_

Lower infant mortality (and birthrate, a proxy for availability of contraceptives and education level), higher GDP per capita, lower unemployment, extreme poverty decreased dramatically. While there is higher crime and inflation has led to devaluation, it seems to me that Venezuela has far less misery than a 15 years ago.

This is not to say I agree with him, and I hate that my own president is following on his footsteps, but I don't think we can accuse him of being a dictator that forced misery upon his people.
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Post by TalkingReckless Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:56 pm

@Yuri Yukuv wrote:To be honest my friend Legend I am well aware of the elections in Pakistan and the factions rallying to win from nawaz sharif to imran khan. However, I have extreme doubt that anything will change in Pakistan as the system itself lends to crony capitalism and group think. I feel that for Pakistan to wake up the country will have to collapse completely.

Also unlike these other countries Pakistan doesn't suffer because of extreme dictatorship and one party rule. Rather its a whole mindset.

Things will change but that doesn't mean corruption will go away.

Imran Khan's party (PTI) are the first and only party to have election in their party and are also the first to create a party manifesto of some kind which caused others to follow. His party won't win the election but will probably be a big part of the opposition, and he does have high ground on the youngsters in Pakistan (not me, i think he is a bit of an extremist) and 65% of Pakistan is under the age of 30.

Our country has always had it's best time when the Army is in charge, many people were hoping and some were begging the amry to coup against the current government. But the Army knows it's time for things to take care of itself.
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Post by Yuri Yukuv Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:06 am

@BarrileteCosmico wrote:How can you seriously call Chavez' Venezuela to be part of the "Axis of Misery"? It's clear to me that he wouldn't have been so popular or democratically elected as many times if he had not improved the situation of the lowest common denominator by a significant margin, which would be the opposite of "misery". Chavez might have no respect for private property, freedom of speech and so on, but those are not necessarily an accurate depiction of the quality of life. I don't really have any stats at hands, so I searched the web and here's what I found:

Unemployment has dropped from 14.5% of the total labour force in 1999 to 7.6% in 2009
• Population has increased from 23,867,000 in 1999 to 29,278,000 in 2011. The annual population growth was 1.5% in 2011 compared with 1.9% in 1999
• GDP per capita has risen from $4,105 to $10,801 in 2011
• As you can see in the graphic chart, Venezuela's inflation has fluctuated since 1999. Inflation now stands at 31.6% compared with 23.6% in 1999
• Venezuela has a complicated history concerning currency exchange rates. Compared with 1999 when the exchange rate was under one bolivar to the US dollar, the latest figures from Reuters place it at 4.3 Bolivars to one dollar
• Poverty has decreased - in 1999, 23.4% of the population were recorded as being in extreme poverty, this fell to 8.5% in 2011 according to official government figures
• Infant mortality is now lower than in 1999 - from a rate of 20 per 1,000 live births then to a rate of 13 per 1,000 live births in 2011
• Violence has been a key concern in Venezuela for some time - figures from the UNODC state that the murder rate has risen since 1999. In 2011 the intentional homicide rate per 100,000 population was 45.1 compared with 25.0 just twelve years earlier
• Oil exports have boomed - Venezuela has one of the top proven oil reserves in the world and in 2011 Opec put the country's net oil export revenues at $60bn. In 1999 it stood at $14.4bn
http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2012/oct/04/venezuela-hugo-chavez-election-data#_

Lower infant mortality (and birthrate, a proxy for availability of contraceptives and education level), higher GDP per capita, lower unemployment, extreme poverty decreased dramatically. While there is higher crime and inflation has led to devaluation, it seems to me that Venezuela has far less misery than a 15 years ago.

This is not to say I agree with him, and I hate that my own president is following on his footsteps, but I don't think we can accuse him of being a dictator that forced misery upon his people.

If you notice I have mentioned that these are not the countries which the leaders are unpopular but rather the ones in which people live in misery and mob rule. Mob rule here means when there is divisive majoratarian (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Majoritarianism) infringement on minorities, which in the case of Venezuela comes in terms of economic and political rights of the more well of and people on the right of the spectrum. I am sure that hitler would have been elected time and again if he bothered with the polls, probably same for the communist party in russia bar stalin.

Regarding economic achievement by Chavez, I am sure he did better than the crony capitalists before him in some regards and alot of that cannot be solely attributable to his governance but to the global economic miracle which was a result of liberal policies being applied around most of the world during his tenure (which in turn increased oil prices an in extension government revenues six fold).

People are not cows or sheep so that their quality of life is measured by economics alone but also by rights, fair opportunity and political/intellectual freedom. In most of those regards Chavismo has failed miserably.

Anyways you might disagree with my label for those three countries, however I hope I cleared up what the methodology behind it is.
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Post by Sushi Master Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:12 am

@BarrileteCosmico wrote:It's clear to me that he wouldn't have been so popular or democratically elected as many times if he had not improved the situation of the lowest common denominator by a significant margin
Yes, while it is true he has improved the poorest class, he has done so by completely shitting on the middle and upper class. And this is mostly due to very costly social projects which has the country on its knees. Economically, because he's sucked the living life out of PDVSA (Petroleos de Venezuela, our only oil operator and basically our economy) and therefore is not operating anywhere near peak effiency. Hell, oil production has gone down from 3.5 mbpd to 2.8 mbpd from 1997. We have major accidents such as the Amuay refinery explotion a few months ago, and numerous others. It's a company, not a social spender. Nevermind the huge ammounts of subsidized oil gifted to other Carribbean countries. The massive layoffs of some very professional and educated people, replaced by incompetent but loyal to the cause puppets. PDVSA is a shadow of what it used to be and it's all down to Chavez. Our reserves are not matched by any other country, but then again the oil's been there for millions of years and not by divine grace of el Comandante. Reserves are useless when you don't actually extract the oil you find. Then there's the insane inflation, our price caps on the dollar which has only resulted in food shortages and other basic necessities. And the blackouts. Oh, God, the blackouts. Periodic blackouts for several hours on, at any frakking time, usually during afternoon and light hours as not to impact the "commerce". But really, 21st century... can you imagine going 4 hours without Internet? Crap, that sucks I feel naked. Now imagine not having electricity. Stone age here we come. But frack it, we're not capitalists pigs at least, eh?

Next, as already stated, is the insane crime rate. Frack war, we already have homicide rates that match war during peace :bow:. I don't see how this is "improving" the lower class, when death affects us all. It's a severe problem. I do not enjoy going out of my house with my butt cheeks clenched because some assholes may come out of nowhere and kill me for my shoes. The police is useless, bunch of corrupt, coke selling, powermongers. We're in the top 10 in the world when it comes to corruption. F, yeah, top 10 in something, guys. Worth it.

Unemployment has dropped from 14.5% of the total labour force in 1999 to 7.6% in 2009
Labor force participation has dropped from 52% to 46%. I can smear my ass with those numbers. I know at least 5 engineers who are taxi drivers, 2 lawyers who are pretty much secretaries and a whole bunch of educated work force sitting on their asses with literaly no job available. And some of these guys support the government!

Population has increased from 23,867,000 in 1999 to 29,278,000 in 2011. The annual population growth was 1.5% in 2011 compared with 1.9% in 1999
What's the point of this? Yeah, people have babies. Hell, even stupid ammounts of babies only made possible by government support. Then those babies grow up and there are no jobs, no future, and maybe 2 of them fall into crime. It's not the time to be having lots of babies here. (although frakking is OK, but use a condom).

GDP per capita has risen from $4,105 to $10,801 in 2011
Made irrelevant by the insane inflation and fixed prices. That's $10k in official transfer rate, but since dollars are limited, all you will find are black market prices which are easily 3 to 10 times as much. Want a car? Well it's cheaper to buy an apartment than to find some cars Sad

Venezuela has a complicated history concerning currency exchange rates. Compared with 1999 when the exchange rate was under one bolivar to the US dollar, the latest figures from Reuters place it at 4.3 Bolivars to one dollar
That was a few months ago. It's now at 6.3 Bs. per $. So guess what? Everything is 20% more expensive overnight.

Poverty has decreased - in 1999, 23.4% of the population were recorded as being in extreme poverty, this fell to 8.5% in 2011 according to official government figures
This I cannot argue. One of the good things the government has done. It's not all been shitty, it has done some good things, my rant here obviously not painting the whole picture. But the crap drowns out the fresh water.

Infant mortality is now lower than in 1999 - from a rate of 20 per 1,000 live births then to a rate of 13 per 1,000 live births in 2011
Technology advances and our medical education is top class. This is not due to the thousands of Cuban doctors Chavez brought it, frack them.

Violence has been a key concern in Venezuela for some time - figures from the UNODC state that the murder rate has risen since 1999. In 2011 the intentional homicide rate per 100,000 population was 45.1 compared with 25.0 just twelve years earlier
Already mentioned. Don't ever dare take out your cell phone in a public place or on the street. Don't wallow around with your car. Do not look for fights, anywhere. You have to be paranoid or you get frackked.

This also does not mention all the guerrilla and narcos that have crossed the border from Colombia. I live on the border state with Colombia, and we're having kidnappings every week, as happens in Colombia. Again, it does not pay to have any sort of money.

Oil exports have boomed - Venezuela has one of the top proven oil reserves in the world and in 2011 Opec put the country's net oil export revenues at $60bn. In 1999 it stood at $14.4bn
Oil stands at about $100 a barrel. 1999? $40 a barrel. I wonder why we're having bigger earnings nowadays with lower production?

The whole frakking reason Chavez' whole "revolution" worked is because he had the massive luck of finding $100 per barrel oil in his term. Else he would in no way have funded all his social projects. Instead of diversifying the economy, he blew it on his populist shit and now we're screwed from here to Cuba.

This is not to say I agree with him, and I hate that my own president is following on his footsteps, but I don't think we can accuse him of being a dictator that forced misery upon his people.
So illegally modifying our constitution, extending his terms even after a failed referendum is all fine and dandy as long as you vote for him? Yes, there are actual Chavistas, but most of them sell out, babble the same shit, go to the concentrations and all that crap out of necessity. When the government controls pretty much everything you don't have a choice.

Chavez is not the lower class hero a lot of people portray him to be, far from it. He's extremely popular, charismatic and a very good polititian, but then again so are many assholes. He can get fracked in the ass by Stalin, Mao and his friends for all I care.

To sum it up, Chavez is an asshole and Venezuela his bitch. The scary thing is that he was the most sane of all his cronies. I fear for what will happen if one of his monkeys is elected. Well, we find out in a few hours.

/end rant
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Post by Sushi Master Mon Apr 15, 2013 4:59 am

Chavez' puppet "won" as predicted:

Nicolás Maduro: 50,66%, Henrique Capriles: 49,07%

Like... 200k votes of a difference, FFS.
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Post by BarrileteCosmico Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:27 am

Regarding economic achievement by Chavez, I am sure he did better than the crony capitalists before him in some regards and alot of that cannot be solely attributable to his governance but to the global economic miracle which was a result of liberal policies being applied around most of the world during his tenure (which in turn increased oil prices an in extension government revenues six fold).

People are not cows or sheep so that their quality of life is measured by economics alone but also by rights, fair opportunity and political/intellectual freedom. In most of those regards Chavismo has failed miserably.
While I don't necessarily disagree with any of that, in my opinion a "misery index" would follow those in the most miserable condition, ie those with the least. And while I don't agree with the way Chavez solves this, I don't think anyone can deny that Chavez succeeded in improving the lot of those that were living in misery.

@Sushi that's unfortunate, I was hoping Capriles would win.
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Post by Yuri Yukuv Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:34 pm

@Mamad wrote:
xx

I hope you and your family are safe my friend
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Post by Mamad Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:14 pm

@Yuri Yukuv wrote:
@Mamad wrote:
xx

I hope you and your family are safe my friend

Why? you talking about earthquake?
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Post by Yuri Yukuv Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:07 pm

@Mamad wrote:
@Yuri Yukuv wrote:
@Mamad wrote:
xx

I hope you and your family are safe my friend

Why? you talking about earthquake?

Yes I heard it was very rough, do you live in tehran?
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Post by Mamad Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:33 pm

No I'm from Ahwaz, Khoozestan. but i have family in tehran.

Earthquake was strong ( happened in Zahedan ) but fortunately it was in middle of the day and there are not many casualties like the previous earthquake few days ago.

anyway, thank you.

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Post by Yuri Yukuv Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:40 am

According to CNN there is tension in VZ

Tensions mount after tight Venezuelan vote; government says 7 killed in post-election violence

Caracas, Venezuela (CNN) -- The sounds of clanking pots and pans and bursting fireworks rang out in Caracas on Tuesday night as tensions mounted over Venezuela's tight election results.

It was a clear sign that days after Sunday's presidential vote, fierce political battles are far from over in the deeply divided country.

Supporters of opposition candidate Henrique Capriles Radonski banged pots and pans to protest the government's refusal to recount the votes, while supporters of President-elect Nicolas Maduro set off fireworks to celebrate his victory and drown out the noise.

Maduro, former President Hugo Chavez's handpicked successor, is scheduled to be sworn in on Friday. Election authorities proclaimed him president-elect on Monday despite Capriles' demand for a recount.

On Tuesday, Venezuela's top prosecutor said at least seven people had been killed and 61 had been injured in post-election violence across the country.

And the state-run AVN news agency reported that authorities had arrested 135 people in connection with political violence.

The government news agency tied the deaths to opposition protests and said the victims were all followers of Maduro. Government health clinics, food distribution centers, a bank and a preschool program were the targets of violence, officials said.

CNN could not independently confirm the government reports of violence, and it was unknown whether there were any opposition injuries or fatalities.

Maduro secured 50.8% of votes in Sunday's election, while opposition candidate Capriles won 49%, Venezuela's National Electoral Council said.

Since the tally was announced, both Capriles and Maduro have publicly urged supporters to remain peaceful while also accusing each other of inciting violence.

The issue of post-election clashes swiftly became a flashpoint for a new round of political sparring Tuesday, as Capriles repeated his calls for a recount and Maduro vowed to use an iron fist to crack down on any attempts to unseat him from the presidency.

Speaking to reporters Tuesday, Capriles presented a list of alleged election violations that he said impacted hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans, including problems with voting machines, inconsistencies in tallies reported by voting centers and reports that opposition witnesses were forced out of hundreds of polls.

"The right to demand the counting of votes in a country where there is democracy....cannot be a crime," he told CNN en Español in an exclusive interview Tuesday night.

Capriles called off plans to protest at the central office of Venezuela's election authority in Caracas on Wednesday, saying the government had planned to infiltrate their ranks and provoke violence. Anyone who takes to the streets Wednesday, he said, is not affiliated with his campaign.

"The government wants there to be deaths in the country," he said, accusing authorities of using violence to distract from his push for a recount.

"We are not going to step into that trap," Capriles told CNN en Español.

Hours before the protest was canceled, Maduro had said the planned opposition protest in Caracas was illegal and accused opposition leaders of a plot to massacre their own people and later blame the government.

Maduro has not responded to CNN's interview requests.

In nationally televised remarks Tuesday, he accused the U.S. Embassy of fueling opposition violence.

"The U.S. Embassy is the one who has financed and directed all the acts of violence in this country. It has financed these neo-Nazi groups," he said.

The U.S. State Department did not immediately respond to Maduro's accusation, but last month a spokeswoman said "the United States categorically rejects allegations of any U.S. government involvement in any plots to destabilize the Venezuelan government or to harm anyone in Venezuela."

If violence surges, Maduro said he would not hold back from taking action.

"If they continue with the violence," he said, "what we can do is radicalize this revolution."

As heated public comments from Maduro and Capriles filled the airwaves, sharp accusations surged in social media.

In a series of Twitter posts Tuesday, a top official in Maduro's United Socialist Party of Venezuela blamed Capriles for the violence and called for a criminal investigation of the opposition candidate.

"Fascist Capriles, I will personally see that you pay for all of the damage that you're doing to our homeland and our people," said Diosdado Cabello, president of Venezuela's National Assembly. "They chased after doctors, burned dwellings, you caused all of this, Capriles, you irresponsible one."

Another congressman, Pedro Carreno, said in a Twitter post that authorities should arrest Capriles. A spokesman for Carreno's office told CNN that the congressman planned to call for a debate on the issue in the National Assembly Tuesday.

Andres Izarra, a top official for Maduro's campaign, said in a Twitter post that Capriles should be imprisoned.

As the National Assembly met Tuesday, Cabello told lawmakers that he would only recognize those who recognize Maduro as president.

"If you do not recognize the president, I do not recognize you as congressmen," he said, "because you were elected by the same (system)."
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Post by DeletedUser#1 Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:28 pm

Regarding Iran. It's actually a very strange situation in that country.

In terms of modernity, and how people are on the streets, it's miles above other Muslim regions in the middle east. You see girls with massive make up, their hair is half-our, wearing super tight dresses, working in shops, etc.

In big cities (e.g. Tehran) some neighbourhoods are even more modern than the most Western thing you could imagine. Unbelievably expensive cars, and some real fancy and luxurious life styles. But that doesn't reflect the whole of country of course.

Iran wasn't a muslim nation to begin with when Mohammed died. One of the guys who took over Islam's torch after Mohammed's passing, attacked Iran, and forced Islam to them. That's why NEVER in Iran, the muslims will be as keen on their religion and as committed (talking about majority) than those in Saudi, or other countries surrounding the Persian Gulf.

Yes, the women wear make up, tight dresses, etc...but social freedom is still massively restricted. You get questioned for holding hands with a girl in public, if you're Jewish or Bahaii, your education may be cut short. Alcohol is of course not permitted (though it is served in almost all underground parties, same with other drugs). It's not LEGAL, but people who want to use it, find a way to find it, even though it may be risky.

Voicing your political opinion, if against the Islamic regime, won't go well of course, as we all saw in the post-election protests in 2009. About 25 years ago, and after the end of Iraq war, an astonishing number of political prisoners were executed. If you're a blogger against the regime, there is a high chance you'll get arrested.

The sanctions has crippled the country's economy. Inflation is massively on the rise, and the dollar/Iranian currency value has gone up significantly over the past few months. Medicine is a lot more expensive, due to sanctions, they can't purchase the newest of planes, and hence there are quite substantial number of internal plane crashes in the country, using Russian planes form the post WWII era.

The gap between the rich and the poor has been ever growing because corruption rate is high, and the country's passport is the second worthless passport in the world after Afghanistan's. You only have permission to go to 14 countries without a visa with an Iranian passport.

They have a "great Leader", which is exactly the same shit as a "Shah" or a dictator. He won't change until he ***** off to hell. Some old religious queers living in its most religious city basically rule the world. They prevented women from attending soccer stadiums, and they intervene when any kind of progressive law and rule is passed.

It's definitely a dictatorship....but then so is the situation in Saudi Arabia. so I understand where people from Mamad come from. the West doesn't give 2 shits about the lack of human rights, or women's freedom in Saudi (which is a lot worse than Iran), because Saudi are their mates.

ps. Elections in Iran won't change a thing....president is NOT the most powerful person in the country. it's the great leader, which is the Iranian version of Kim Jung-Il.

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Post by TalkingReckless Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:57 pm

Harry Redknapp wrote:
Iran wasn't a muslim nation to begin with when Mohammed died. One of the guys who took over Islam's torch after Mohammed's passing, attacked Iran, and forced Islam to them. That's why NEVER in Iran, the muslims will be as keen on their religion and as committed (talking about majority) than those in Saudi, or other countries surrounding the Persian Gulf.

I would say it's the opposite, i have seen more Religious people outside of the ME, Saudi's think they have "god given rights", they do everything over there from drinking, sex, strip clubs etc.

And Alcohol is only banned for Muslims in Iran, Christians, Jews and others are allowed to make them and bring them into the country.


btw people need to just look at HONY's trip to Iran to see it's not as Islamic as people make it seem

http://www.humansofnewyork.com/tagged/iran

just some of the images

Axis of Misery Elections (Venezuela, Egypt and Iran)   Tumblr_mf2z04wGNG1qggwnvo1_400

Axis of Misery Elections (Venezuela, Egypt and Iran)   Tumblr_mf3cof5jY31qggwnvo1_400

Axis of Misery Elections (Venezuela, Egypt and Iran)   Tumblr_meruvjnLEY1qggwnvo1_1280
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Post by Mamad Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:09 pm

Regarding Iran. It's actually a very strange situation in that country.

ُSome valid points. but some not.

about Leader being a dictator like Saudi arabia. no. there is difference. big difference.

In saudi and other countries the king is son of pervious one. in Iran leader is elected by a council that people choose. big big big difference. they can change leader anytime.

President is the second most powerful yes. but leader gives it all to president. for example Ahmadinejad is shitting in countries economy and nobody can stop him even leader is against him in some ways but leader never forces opinion to president. he can in theory but he won't.

he is more like a pop. in Saudi or other arab countries oil's money is all in hands of the king and his sons or family. but in Iran president is the one who decides what to do with countries money. leader has nothing to do with it. it's why there is big big difference between Hashemi, khatami and ahmadinejad's era. you have to live in Iran.

About other things there is some few corrections :

you can hold a womens hand in Iran. it's happening every day everywhere.
Hijab in Iran is just a word for many women. yep they cover their head but as some tourist said the way Iranian girls dress make you horny more than seeing a hot girl in bikini. lol.

about passport. yes it's worthless. but what you expect? we are US's number 1 enemy. we are against most powerful countries. and just take a look at Ahmadinejad's speeches at UN.

about other things i agree. but about prisoners and stuff it's not like that. media bs. there is, but nowhere near like what they say. you can be against regime but what make you prisoner is trying to change it.
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Post by Pedram Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:45 pm

@Mamad wrote:
Regarding Iran. It's actually a very strange situation in that country.

ُSome valid points. but some not.

about Leader being a dictator like Saudi arabia. no. there is difference. big difference.

In saudi and other countries the king is son of pervious one. in Iran leader is elected by a council that people choose. big big big difference. they can change leader anytime.

President is the second most powerful yes. but leader gives it all to president. for example Ahmadinejad is shitting in countries economy and nobody can stop him even leader is against him in some ways but leader never forces opinion to president. he can in theory but he won't.

he is more like a pop. in Saudi or other arab countries oil's money is all in hands of the king and his sons or family. but in Iran president is the one who decides what to do with countries money. leader has nothing to do with it. it's why there is big big difference between Hashemi, khatami and ahmadinejad's era. you have to live in Iran.

About other things there is some few corrections :

you can hold a womens hand in Iran. it's happening every day everywhere.
Hijab in Iran is just a word for many women. yep they cover their head but as some tourist said the way Iranian girls dress make you horny more than seeing a hot girl in bikini. lol.

about passport. yes it's worthless. but what you expect? we are US's number 1 enemy. we are against most powerful countries. and just take a look at Ahmadinejad's speeches at UN.

about other things i agree. but about prisoners and stuff it's not like that. media bs. there is, but nowhere near like what they say. you can be against regime but what make you prisoner is trying to change it.

This.
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Post by Raptorgunner Thu Apr 18, 2013 5:13 pm

A good documentary if you guys interested.
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Post by Mamad Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:06 pm

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Post by Yuri Yukuv Sat May 11, 2013 3:36 pm

Looking incredibly good for Imran Khan, if he wins its a game changer. Especially for young pakistanis
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