A break from Chinese issues:
I'm from Virginia and some of the stuff coming out of the Republican election campaign there is disgusting. Think Progress reports:
"The head of the Virginia Board of Elections, Jean Jensen, tells MSNBC that 'the FBI is now investigating allegations of voter intimidation and voter suppression.' State officials have documented 'dozens of phone calls that were made to heavily Democratic precincts in which the people who were receiving the calls were either given incorrect information about polling sites [or] misdirected about election laws.'"
Not mentioned here is that the calls were directed at heavily Latino and African-American neighborhoods.
This follows the not-so-subtly-race-baiting ad by Republicans in Tennessee directed at candidate Ford. Misleading flyers that try to link Republican candidate Steele in Maryland to African American leaders who have NOT endorsed him. Flyers to Orange County Latino voters warning them of the crime of voting illegally. And the minority voter intimidation of 2004---in Ohio, Wisconsin, etc.
The same is true abroad. Republicans who were part of the religious-media-government machine in support Contra terrorism in the 1980s seem unable to let go of Nicaragua, where they cut their political teeth. Numerous 80s ideologues have traveled south of the border to campaign against Daniel Ortega's election bid, a blatant interference in that country's democracy (which was established, it should be re-emphasized under Sandinista control, not under Samoza).
So, these are the people we have waving the flag of democracy? These are the people who are making the whole issue one of whether or not Bush has "gone too far" in spreading democracy in the world?