The New Rushdiesque!

First posted on my short-lived blog Tharwalizations. 

Indeed, it is happening again: protests and condemnations giving way to riots, arson and pandemonium. Just as Khomeini needed to use the Rushdie Affair to stoke the dying fires of his revolution, so now are the myriad Arab dictatorships, most notably the Syrian one, using an, at worst, unwise decision by a Danish publisher to rally the masses to the cause and divert their people’s attention, no matter how momentarily, from their corrupt authoritarian and inept rule. Indeed, a new Rushdiesque is unfolding, albeit a rather mediocre one. For Arab rulers cannot produce but mediocrity. The scenes in Damascus and Beirut are but a simple testament to this little macabre truth. See in this regard as well the blogposts by TabsirLlano EstacadoMental Mayhem and Religious policeman.

Renovating Syria – Part Deux!

Last year, we had an opportunity to vote for a new Residents Committee. Since I hardly could recognize any of my neighbors, not to mention sympathize with or care about them, I just voted for the same old Committee to stay in place. For what was the point of replacing one set of inefficient morons with another? What was the point of compounding inefficiencies?  Continue reading “Renovating Syria – Part Deux!”

Renovating Syria – Part One!

It’s been three weeks now, but the people who are currently renovating our apartment block say that it will take them three more months before finishing their work. This means three more months of dust in our air and lungs, and dirt and paint on our sidewalks. Still, the whole situation is shaping up to be very much like the process of reform said to be taking place in the country. More importantly, the mentalities involved seem to be very much the same. 

Continue reading “Renovating Syria – Part One!”