I'm loathe to perpetuate such an ugly phrase as "Axis of Evil," but someone on the Expo 2010 planning committee must have had it in mind when it was decided that Iran and North Korea would be pavilion neighbors.
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I hate to use the term because it's terribly, destructively generalizing. Iran and North Korea are, first of all, vastly different countries in almost every conceivable way. And both are filled mostly with regular people who are more like you and me than than either party realizes. They just happen to live in countries with political leaders who are crazy.
After touring the two pavilions, I must say that the North Korean governments's uniquely oblivious brand of crazy comes across very well. Iran's pavilion, however, is filled with very friendly people and is, on the whole, not that weird at all.
Regardless, these two countries don't get many chances to openly tout what makes them great here in the west, and it's interesting to see how they represent themselves. Only at the World's Fair!
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It seems to me that we all should visit Paradise on Earth....I never knew it was NK.
Perhaps Axis Of The Pretty Bad. Or Axis of some murderous loons, that not all the people want to be murderous loons. Or Axis of people just like you and me who sometimes like to kill any opposing views but not everyone. Or a P.t. barnum'esque Axis of the you can't kill all of the people all of the time, but you can kill some of the people some of the time.
The thing is is that a crazy leadership, builds a crazy population. Sure just like we might have crazy leadership but most of us are just regular people. BUT have you noticed how much hatred is flowing to opposing viewpoints now. That's defined at the top. People are hardwired for the accepted leaders to push the curve one direction or the other.
If many of those crazy leaders are all working in the same direction, it gets a sizeable percentage of the population all marching that way too. So sympathy for the devil makes an ok song, but a dangerous world view.
Axis of starving my own population to death? Axis of shiria government and keeping women as chattel? Naa, too long.
I like science and i like pop sci but some of the left wing, 20-something morons you keep on staff makes me wonder. You guys do realize the NYT is pretty much out of business and Newsweek is up for sale right?
Just stick to science reporting..
FYI, "Axis of Evil" was a description of the governments and leaders of Iraq, Iran, and North Korea, not the citizens of those countries. It would be generous to call Kim Jong-il and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad barking lunatics, but a direct result of their lunacy is oppression, murder and terrorism, which I think most people would agree is evil, so "Axis of Evil" is accurate. Every decade has it tyrants, some worse than others. As the "shining light on a hill" for democracy, it is our responsibility to stand with all free people against the tyrants.
Iran has a rich history and its people and Persian culture are fascinating. Too bad its recent government has become the most prolific state sponsor of terrorism around the world. It seems Iranians dislike their government as much or more than we do. If our leaders understood how to project "soft power" in Iran with unequivocal denunciations of the regime and concrete actions to support the rhetoric, instead of missing priceless opportunities like last year's electoral uprising, we could inspire Iranians to take courage and rise up against their own leaders. But they have to believe that we aren't going to just stand around wringing our hands and mumbling "gosh, I hope they work it out by themselves" like our president did.
Hey John Mahoney,
Did you like Iran's and North Korea's pavilions more than ours? Their pavilions were not corporate funded.
Iran's shiria pavilion was funded by oil money from the west and Korea's pavilion was funded by their starving population and counterfeit American dollars. All this inside a tyrannical country like China should make you quite happy.
There are no lines to get inside the Axis of Evil, but there is a line at the USA pavilion. Looks like you are out of line.
So what if there's a line to see the US pavilion? Everyone wants to be the popular kid's friend, doesn't mean he's not a jerk.
And honestly, I like Iran's pavilion more than the US's. NK's, not so much.