Several readers have asked what is my "real" take on Iran. Being satirical about it is all very amusing, but surely I have deeper, more serious thoughts.
Who but jaded observers sniff at people struggling for political breathing space? States are violent, coercive entities, and I'm sympathetic to those who have the guts to directly confront their rulers, though as repressive tools and mechanisms are refined, rebellion from below seems less and less possible, primarily in larger countries. Anything can conceivably happen, of course, but I just don't see these Iranian dissidents making much of a lasting dent.
But that's my opinion, formed countless miles from the front lines. It has no bearing on what's occurring in Iran. Doesn't affect events one fucking inch. Yet there are numerous Western commentators and bloggers who believe that their opinions are important and vital, that shaking their fists in the direction of Tehran holds some serious meaning. When you see snarky Gawker blubbering about "revolution," you know that the spectacle enjoys mystical status. A feature of American narcissism that gains currency while everything else is devalued.
Wanna show solidarity with Iranian protesters? Take to American streets, clog the system at every opening, demand genuine political power through direct action.
What's that? You can't this week 'cause your plate is full? Understandable. We're all busy. Maybe in August. That's a slow month.