Rich Galen
Welcome to another new normal: If you don't like something your government is doing, or if your government is not doing something you think it should be doing - riot.

Don't wait for one of those pesky elections. Take over the square, the roundabout or the state house and demand that the government do - or stop doing - what you want.

I understand that Hosni Mubarak was a despot in dictionary meaning: A ruler with absolute or virtually absolute power and authority.

A fair election was never going to happen in Egypt while Mubarak was in power and the only way to get rid of him was to (a) wait for him to die or (b) get the military to force him to retire.

That is not the case in Bahrain and it is certainly not the case in Wisconsin.

I know a little something about Bahrain. Back in the day when I worked for a company called EDS (which was founded by Ross Perot) I ran the Middle East and our HQ was in Bahrain.

Without getting into the 7,000 year (or so) history of Bahrain let me just say that the little clutch of islands in the Persian Gulf which make up the country have been the center of trade and commerce for centuries.

Bahrain and Israel are among the few countries in the region which have little or no oil. Both have made a living on being smarter and more open to foreigners than their neighbors.

If you look at a map you will see that across the Persian Gulf from little Bahrain is … Iran which is a Shi'ite nation.

Bahrain's ruling family is Sunni. I have no doubt that Iran is funding the Shi'ite unrest in Bahrain, but what it will come down to is this: Immigrants (who are largely Shi'ites) will end up doing battle with Bahrainis (who are also largely Shi'ites) over whether the king should be overthrown.

The indigenous Bahrainis will win. Meanwhile, back in the good ole U.S. of A. we have these union thugs in Wisconsin - along with their allies, the Democrats in the State Senate - rioting in the statehouse in Madison over Republican Gov. Scott Walker's proposal to, according to ABC News:

"strip government workers of virtually all collective bargaining rights. The bill would also require public workers to pay half the costs of their pensions and at least 12.6 percent of their health care coverage."

Democrat members of the State Senate have fled the state - much as Democrats in Texas did in 2003 - so that the GOP members could not assemble a quorum to conduct business.

Dems from Texas hid out in Oklahoma. Dems from Wisconsin are cowering in Illinois - both outside the reach of their respective State Police who could compel their attendance.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at