May 192012

The WSJ suggests that President Obama put in a word with the perps who are attempting to criminalize political opponents in Mongolia and Ukraine.

All this strongly suggests an effort by Mr. Elbegdorj to use raw government coercion to head off a legitimate political challenger—in other words, to criminalize democratic differences. A similar drama is also unfolding in the Ukraine, where former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko has been jailed on dubious corruption charges by the government of Viktor Yanukovych, who will also be showing up in Chicago this weekend.

(via Review & Outlook: Genghis Democracies –

President Obama is an unlikely ambassador for a healthy two-party system with minority rights and a loyal opposition, though.   His own use of power to bully political opponents has kept Kimberly Strassel busy writing about little else lately:

On the other hand, maybe President Obama would be just the person to explain things to Elbegdorj and Yanukovych, given that the three could easily see themselves as brothers engaged in a common struggle to consolidate power and oppress the people.  Maybe Elbegdorj and Yaukovych would be more likely to listen to one of their own who hasn’t gone quite as far as they have, than to a person such as Václav Havel (if  such a person could even be found anymore).

May 192012

I hadn’t realized there have been allegations that the government likes to raid Gibson Guitars because it has given aid and comfort to Republicans, and is leaving Martin guitars alone because its Democrat contributions are in good order.  The Wikipedia explanation of the controversy that is quoted in a article ( “Gibson Guitar Corp. Investigated Again On Legality Of Rainforest Wood Imports“) is no longer on Wikipedia.  On the principle that the government is guilty until proven innocent, this is not a topic on which we should withhold judgment.