I'm chagrined that it's taken this long for me to take this on, but here we are:
Nicaragua is on the cusp of a new chapter filled with unspeakable evil. Time to start paying attention, world.
Maybe we all saw it coming. The Dictator's Handbook was written about Daniel Ortega; the first edition would have been dedicated to him, "without whom this book could never have been written," had my wife not intervened. But from the moment that mustachioed shithead stepped back into power, I think we must all have known that we'd eventually wind up where we find ourselves today.
It began with a nothing, sort of: botched pension reform. But that wasn't the beginning. Long before this last, hamfisted mistake came countless other power grabs, offenses, glimpses of avarice. Ortega has long known the Nicaraguan pueblo (people) are sick and tired of violence, after having weathered a bloody and endless civil insurrection. Oh yeah, that was the insurrection that put this avaricious bastard in power. The abuses of the constitution, the imposition of a vice president who had never appeared on the ticket (his wife), followed by constituional change to ensure she'd succeed his eventual death. The grooming of a son. The casting out of her daughter, his stepdaughter, who had long accused him of having repeatedly raped her through the 1980s. She was silenced, as were others.
It all seemed like ... steps straight out of the Dictator's Handbook.
Continue reading "A Tear for Nicaragua (Die Ortega, Die)"