Dude? Are you, like, sure you know what you’re doing with that?
It’s not easy being a global superpower these days, y’know. Populations are just so ruddy demanding. Not only do they want unlimited power for their electronic devices, cars, houses, planes etc, they also insist that it is cheap and ecologically sustainable.
If that wasn’t bad enough, when God (the white, middle class version we refer to when swearing in traffic jams) created the world, he failed to place all of the raw materials needed to produce this energy in convenient locations, instead choosing to place massive oil reserves in sandy countries run by mad people. Clearly, the dude* had a sense of humour.
What’s a western government to do? Clearly they must provide for their people, because removal of the right to Twitter may result in people paying attention to what their political representatives have to do in order to maintain the status quo. And these despots have an unfortunate habit of killing large quantities of their own populations in all manner of unpleasant and ingenious ways.
This isn’t a problem in itself, but apparently, people aren’t so stupid that they don’t feel a bit tense when they see former elected representatives shaking hands with these guys on TV and trying to resist the urge to wipe the blood off their hand while photographers snap away.
Fortunately, several years of experimentation have resulted in a reasonably workable method of overthrowing said evil dictators without causing too much consternation to the masses, with the added bonus of securing the assets needed to keep daily life ticking over. Simply get your media outlets to push the notion that we can no longer tolerate the human rights abuses in a particular regime, discredit the guy we’ve been grooming for twenty-odd years, then, instead of sending in troops (which tends to get a bit complicated), film the natives doing the job for us. If they spearhead the uprising themselves, it’s even more credible.
This is why we’re seeing cheery Libyans driving golf carts around Tripoli, shooting weapons they definately didn’t get from us (ahem) into the sky and stamping on golden statues of Colonel Gaddafi. Like they did when Saddam got the boot. They lost him for a bit too, remember?
It’s not completely watertight, admittedly. Some of us still get peeved when eight hundred thousand people are horribly murdered in Rwanda, say, and these same governments suddenly claim they can’t interfere ‘because it’s not about us’, but what can you do about that? It’s not like anyone really cares as long as they have electricity to run their MacBooks so they can blog about it.
Anyway. It’ll be over soon. Then we can move on to the next one without giving a crap . How are things in Egypt, by the way?
*Taking into consideration the mess we’ve made of the world, it is my duty as a feminist to assume God is a man.