Turkey, Islam, ACORN, and the Death of Democracy 2

Election fraud leads to violence.

Historians in the future will reflect on an extraordinary, undeniable fact: Over time, free nations grow stronger and dictatorships grow weaker.

- President George W. Bush, "Freedom in Iraq and Middle East ", 6/11/2003

President Bush's optimistic assessment of the inevitable eventual victory of freedom defined his presidency in many ways.  The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were motivated by a desire to protect America from the threat of Islamic fundamentalist terrorism; but rather than simply defeat our enemies by force of arms, President Bush's desire was to prevent their future return by planting the root of freedom and democracy in the fetid swamps of medievalism.

Considering the garbage heaped upon him by his political opponents and the mainstream media - but I repeat myself - one can hardly blame President Bush for clinging to the ray of hope expressed in his speech: that regardless of how dark the clouds might be at any given moment, freedom always wins eventually, and tyranny always loses.

Except that, unfortunately, this isn't necessarily true.  As we saw in the first half of this article, Turkey has been a fairly free country and also almost entirely Muslim, for the vast majority of the 20th century.

It was free, however, precisely because it was intentionally not a pure democracy: its Founding Father, Kemal Ataturk, purposefully gave the military the mandate of protecting the purity of the constitution and the secular, impartial nature of the state even against democratic victories by religious opponents.  This worked for many years until the well-intentioned but totally misguided European Union leadership demanded that the military give up its special responsibilities and submit entirely to civilian control.

With each passing day, we see the consequences: little by little, the secular protections of Turkey are being removed.  Turkey is slowly becoming not just Muslim (it's always been that), but in fact an Islamist state.

Like all Islamist states, it opposes freedom both at home and abroad, as demonstrated by its vengeful pressure in the halls of NATO against the Danish prime minister who permitted the publication of cartoons "offensive to Islam."  In this case, it's painful to watch a once-free nation become less free, and the other once-free nations of Europe being pressured to become less free too.

Turkey has always had a Muslim majority who were permitted to worship Allah in their own way as long as they didn't excessively restrict anyone else's religious faith or lack thereof.  The secular minority was protected in their right not to worship Allah.

Obviously, the handful of Christians were well advised not to be too ostentatious about their beliefs just as secular Turks knew that it was or was not wise to flaunt their modernity.  For eighty years, the balance worked relatively decently.  Not anymore.

With the progressive removal of the rights of freedom of speech, press, and conscience, the social compact begins to break down.  A political party or individual can accept defeat at the polls if they are confident that they'll be allowed to freely contest the next election and maybe do better.  The peaceful exchange of power is a hallmark of a truly free and stable nation.

If, however, the electorally defeated party cannot expect another chance, and instead anticipates "truth commissions," prosecution, even exile - what incentive have they to respect the polls?  Quite the contrary - they have every reason and requirement to cheat and steal to stay in power, by force if necessary.

The secular Turks have not - quite - reached that point, but the handwriting seems to be on the wall.

Here in the United States, we have two hundred years of peaceful transfers of power.  Never has a president remained in office past his time; never has there even been a serious call for military dispute over an election.

Even Abe Lincoln's victory wasn't disputed; the South refused to remain in the Union under his administration, but they didn't debate his legitimacy in office.  They didn't like the election results and couldn't live with them, but they accepted their accuracy and validity.

That's why the mostly unstopped shenanigans of ACORN are so desperately dangerous.  ACORN has been proven to routinely commit election fraud in dozens of states; many Republicans now believe that Democratic election officials will put a heavy thumb on the scale whenever the opportunity arises.

In the past few years, there have been an increasing number of close elections where the Republican won by a handful of votes - then, after recounts, and more recounts, and still more recounts, somehow magically "missing" votes were found that - surprise! - happened to favor the Democrat.  In Washington state, Minnesota, and New York, initially Republican squeakers mysteriously have transmogrified into the opposite.

The famous "Indecision 2000" in Florida could easily have gone the same way, as Al Gore's lawyers intended it should, save for the timely intervention of the Supreme Court.  Increasingly, the motto of the Democratic party is "Count every vote until you get the right (that is, the left) result.  Then declare victory and stop."

On the other side, many on the left believe big business concerns use modern computerized polling equipment to rob progressives of their rightful victories.  No evidence of actual election fraud has ever been produced, but there's no doubt that many on the far left believe it's true, particularly relating to Bush's victories in Ohio.

Finally, it is long since abundantly clear that the mainstream media organizations no longer even pretend to treat both sides fairly, but shill for the furthest left available candidate.  The American people are well aware of this problem, but unsure how to effectively fix it.

The integrity of the system is being questioned for good cause, and no satisfactory answer is being provided.  It comes as no surprise that, according to Rasmussen, full 50% of voters believe that election rules are "rigged to benefit members of Congress" - in other words, they want to vote the bums out, and they think most people do as well, but that they cannot because the rules are rigged to prevent it.

This places America in a totally unaccustomed but extremely dangerous position: The more people believe that the system cheats, the more likely they are to give up on peaceful politics and use other means.

The left harbored such feelings in the 1960s and turned to terrorist violence.  Conservatives, generally more stable family types, are less prone to such reactions; but Texas Governor Perry's implied threat of secession struck a chord with his base.

Is it possible?  The obvious response is a snort of derision, but the respected Russian political analyst Professor Igor Panarin has publicly expressed his belief that the US will, in fact, break up in the near future.

The demise of America has been predicted many times over the years and always been wrong so far.  Should we therefore always be sanguine?  We've had some close calls; with a little more luck and international support, the South could have won the Civil War.

America has held together because Americans have always believed that the underlying systems of the country were fair.  The same is true of differing political parties all over the world.  Most people would much rather work out differences peacefully through debate, discussion, and voting - but only if they believe they are being given a fair chance to make their case, persuade people, and win.

We don't want to compare America to third-world pestholes like Kenya and Zimbabwe where discredited and defeated rulers cling violently to power against the wishes of their people, and their opponents are willing to turn to violence because they have no other effective means of dethroning the Big Man.  Vote or no vote, the people of Kenya, Zimbabwe, and too many other "democracies" don't believe their votes will actually count - and once enough people believe voting is pointless, violence is only a matter of time.

But with Mr. Obama's threats to criminalize political disagreements; his desire to "pack the vote" by converting illegal aliens into Democratic voters; his proposals to cheat on the Census in the guise of "statistical sampling;" Democratic threats to enforce a "Fairness" Doctrine to destroy talk radio, the one mass-media outlet where conservatives have a voice... well, it's worrying.  Cornered enemies lash out; it's human nature seen throughout history.

The ACORN election fraud is not merely criminal, not merely fraudulent, not merely an attempt to wrongfully put their allies in power.  It is an assault on the very integrity of American democracy and on America itself.

If it goes unchallenged - if enough people come to believe that their votes will never lead to true change, that both parties are equally corrupt and incapable of reform - well, the final result can't be foreseen, but it won't be good.

Petrarch is a contributing editor for Scragged.  Read other Scragged.com articles by Petrarch or other articles on Foreign Affairs.
Reader Comments
I recently went to Minnesota to visit my extended family. My uncle proudly proclaimed to me that he was now considered a terrorist, because of his attendance of a local tea party. He also told me at the next election he was going to give republicans, and only republicans, free rides to the polls. He told me that if ACORN can lie and cheat to win elections for democrats, he can do the same for republicans.

Many people I know here in Kansas are excited about the 10th amendment movement, but doubt that the states have the political will to follow through on demanding their 10th amendment rights.

People have lost their faith in American democracy. What that means for Americas future I do not know, but I fear for the future and so does everyone else that I know.
May 16, 2009 9:11 AM
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