I stayed behind and watched "Dr Strangelove". I hadn't seen it before, the video quality was bad and Dr S was difficult to understand. It was rather eerie. Of course I thought of what would happen if the mullahs got nukes. What would a regime whose ideology is centered around death and martyrdom understand of the notion of a nuclear deterrent?
This morning I read Jon's report and I was glad I wasn't with him! The New York Times report wasn't so good, because they equated basij and ansar-e-hezbollah. Ansar are more extremist and there are many more basiji than ansars. Basij are morality police who set up checkpoints to see if unrelated men and women are together and look for Western music or alcohol. I haven't seen checkpoints for a while now. Ansar don't do anything except beat people up, as they go around on their 1000cc motorcycles (more than 250cc is illegal here, unless you have connections, as they obviously do). But they are both mindlessly obedient to the Leader.
I had a discussion recently about the Iranian price of a Nissan Maxima (~$US50-60000) whereas the actual cost is about half that. The same is true for Kia Prides; the Economist reported that in Syria better quality Kia Prides are sold for less than half of the $US8000 they cost in Iran. The difference goes to the government here, who are thieves. I also talked to a professor about the car accident death rate Hooman commented on below. We agreed that I was wrong because it should be deaths per passenger mile, which means that the Iranian death rate is more than 10 times as bad, because passenger miles are much higher in the US than in Iran. Certainly, there are severe social as well as political problems here.