The Populist Authoritarian – Hollowing Out Democracy From Within

Through the rise of populism, those who feel they lost out in the culture wars that have been fought democratically across Europe and the United States in recent decades are fighting back, and this time they do not feel the need to be restrained by the rules of democracy.

Democracy has been in a global recession for most of the last decade, and the recession is deepening. For three decades, from the mid-1970 to the mid-2000s, the world witnessed a spread of democracy never before seen in history. During this time, the proportion of democratic states doubled, from around 30 percent of the world’s independent states in 1974 to about 60 percent in 2006. [1] Since 2006, however, the spread of democracy has ceased, and many existing democracies have reverted to authoritarianism. This authoritarian resurgence is also happening in long-established Western democracies which are experiencing a threat not seen since the 1930s – the choice by large swathes of their electorates to vote for less democracy. [2]     Continue reading

Advertisements

American Narcissism, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Vietnam War

During the 1960s three of the most narcissistic Presidents in US history came to power – John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon. During this period the myth of American exceptionalism became a dominant theme in U.S. politics. America now viewed itself as the world’s policeman and as the defender of global freedom. As a consequence, the U.S. became embroiled in a series of catastrophes including the Cuban missile crisis, the Vietnam War, and the bombing and invasion of Cambodia. In a world full of psychopaths, the US increasingly acted like them.     Continue reading