Tabula Rasa

On the evening of the day the April 6 strike failed, SMS's were sent out all over Cairo informing us that Egypt's # 1 political couple, Ayman Nour and Gamila Ismael are divorcing , with Gamila being the one asking for a divorce. Rumors floated that this is due to continious infidelity on the part of Mr. Ayman Nour (He likes younger females), which prompted Gamilla to try to leave him a number of times before, and now that he is out of Jail, she believes the time to be right. Needless to say that this came as a shocker to everybody, especially given the timing (6 of april and all), and everybody all over Egypt was talking about it. And most people were sad, given that it it signaled the end of the legend of Gamila and Ayman, a love stronger than imprisonment and the entire Egytian State Security Apparatus. I suspect that the only people who were happy when they heard the news were the "6th of april youth", because everybody started talking about that, instead of what a colossal failure the national day of anger was. Those 6th of april kids were yesterday's news that same day, which probably saved them from the humiliation they were set to endure if people weren't distracted by Ayman and Gamila, and their juicy divorce story. And as I followed its details, I have to confess that I wasn't getting upset over it. One could even say that I was actually pretty freakin happy that it happened.

Don't get me wrong: I don't harbor towards either one of them any ill-will. But see, they, along with the 6th of april youth, were the two remaining empty, yet shiny, symbols left in the egyptian opposition, and it's a good thing that they both got destroyed on the same day. Now, there are no more symbols. No more made-up hyped-up lying heroes with no actual feasible plan to save us all from this mess called Egypt. No more false saviors whom we would place on high pedestals, only to see them fall from it later, alongside with all of our hopes and dreams. None of that shit anymore. All the symbols are destroyed. We now have a clean slate. A fres start. Tabula Rasa, for the lack of a better term.

So what now? Ehh, now we get real about some things: Facebook movements won't amount to anything beyond joining facebook groups. Labor movements are all about their demands, and not systemic change. All the parties are more inept than each other, and the Muslim Brotherhood is a paper-tiger at best and a bunch of whores at worst. The good news is, we don't need them. We don't need any of them if we want to improve things in this country. All that we need is one thing: Voting Cards.

You see, we have a huge parliamentary election in 2010, and a Presidential election in 2011, both are going to be quite significant for the future of this country, if one wishes to state the obvious. Now, all that we need to do, after we get over the loss of our symbols, is get that dirt off our shoulders, focus, and start getting people to register to vote and get their voting cards issued. The way you get them to do so, is not my concern. Wether via an organized online campaign, a grass-roots movement, or through threatening every friend and relative you have with physical violence if he/she doesn't get their card issued, the means are inconsequential. The End is all that matters.

Why? Because in order to affect change, you need votes. And votes require voters. The ones that do exist are not enough, so let's get more people involved and voting. If you are not doing this, and you are talking about political change, then you are pretty much wasting all of our time. Sure, voting registration is no Panacea, but it's a start. It would also help if everyone who gets their friends and relatives to register to vote also manages to get their contact info (names, addresses, e-mails and phones) and puts it in a small excel sheet. It might be helpful if someone in the opposition develops half a brain and decides to start a new-voter data-base, divided by region and electoral district, in order to make turning out the vote on election day easier for their candidates. Cause they kinda need that to have a chance at winning, you know?

Just a thought. Think about it. 


  1. Sand Ape says:

    I thought you posted numerous times on how elections in Egypt are a complete farce? What makes the upcoming elections any different? Isn’t you mom in the people assembly or something like, that wouldn’t have anything to do with it would it?

  2. I dont know SM, despite all your latin and greek, who do we vote for, who?

  3. I AGREE!

    An A-political campaign urging people to get off their gluts and vote regardless of for whom. If we get enough people to vote in 2010, more people will vote the following year. And since January is over and as far as I know the deadline to register passed, if we start the campaign now, we can get some real action by the next registration period which is barely enough time to get as much pple as possible to vote in 2010!! I tried to suggest something similar before but everyone made me feel that it’s a gay idea – you probably included SM – but anyways – I want to make the banner! The campaign may succeed, but I’m scared the MB’s would ride the wave like they do every other potential blossom of political hope and extinguish it from it’s roots. BUT LETS DO IT!


  4. As far as I understand, voting in Egypt is like choosing between cholera and the plague…?

    Here’s an idea: why don’t some of you bright young people take up the challenge, and create a new political party? Preferrably one that promotes democracy and a change of pace from what is seen today… If what you say is true and the people are fed up with both the corrupted government and the fundamentalist opposition, wouldn’t it be a sure-fire succes with an honest alternative to these two extremes?

  5. Holy fuck Adam, why? oh why didn’t that occur to any one before? You Allah damned genius….. The society is fucked, the elites are thoroughly corrupt. Report after report depicts a country, teetering on the edge of Revolution, not your good old fashion political Revo, like the British, American, or even the bloody Russian. No, in Egypt, we will witness a sunni islamic socio-revolution more on par with that beacon of light , iran. Start a new uncorrupted political party, let me guess, it should also be secular, dedicated to equal treatment and opportunity for all the peoples of Egypt. Tell me, Does unicorn jizz’um cure cancer in that Utopian fantasyland you seem to inhabit?. Here’s some more, petty thieves get to keep their limbs, a woman’s testimony and that a non-muzzie are equal to that of a muzzie male in a sharia court. If only the world were that simple, simple simplton, and if you were attempting irony…. it’s so hard tell considering some of the other drivel you’ve posted before.

  6. More hysterics, Cameron?

    To be honest, the tone was more in the half-ironic/half-serious league. Ironic, because I realize most people spending as much time debating aimlessly on the net as us guys haven’t got the drive to start something as comprehensive as a political party; serious, because that really is what it’ll take – someone with the guts and the determination to offer an alternative to the sad realities of today. Without someone to kick up the ball, the game’s never going to go anywhere.

    But that’s probably just a bit too much for you to comprehend… :)

  7. Passion, is different by degree and intent than the state you describe, In My case, We find Passion. Analogy, A Man or Woman, Who spoke out against the murder of Tutsi Rwandans by hutu Rwandans. Or a Turk who fought against the exterminations of Armenians, both members of the ottomon empire, Turk dominated, officially mohamedean. Muslim Kurds had quite a hand in it, Germans who fought nazi rule, blames circle. I don’t want to a Typically, An… What tha fuck? Do you call it genocide… A holocaust, words can not really describe the the disgusting’ evil of such an event. Nothing, no such thing conceivable, can properly describe it.The genocidial propaganda coming out of the islamic word, shit happens, comes close but heap on the Sorrow. Sincereity, or sentimentality, I don’t give a fuck,, dec… no, I don’t think, so lick me red and hairy nutsack, or is it pussy. The Gelded are part of us Guys(genderneutral usage),

  8. SM, I came across your blog by complete coincidence on the nytimes’ Egypt page and I must admit I’ve spent a considerable part of my day cruising around your website.

    I do support some of your publications but, I beg to differ with this whole everybody needs to Vote plan. You want people in Egypt to go voting when the only entity with anything that resembles a plan is the Muslim Brotherhood. You want people to go vote when the majority of the population is financially distressed and emotionally driven and believe that god will help our GDP per capita.

    I have been trying to the best of my ability to follow as much of the news back home through bloggers and any source of information I could find and the tragedy of the matter is, nobody is actually trying to get politically involved. We all want someone else to do it. When was the last time you heard someone put their money where their mouth is and go join a party or run as an independent in some form of election or at least try. There are no parties? Start one. If 10,000 people are willing to join all these “activist” groups on facebook why not sign your name to start a party. We need strong opposition parties and strong leaders and alternatives before people can vote.

    I’ll keep reading your blog and I hope to see some solutions from the sand monkey