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Democracy is backsliding across the world with US added to the list

 
 
Reply Mon 22 Nov, 2021 05:48 am
Democracy is deteriorating across the world, with countries notably taking undemocratic and unnecessary actions to contain the coronavirus pandemic, an intergovernmental body said in its new report Monday.

The US has been added to an annual list of “backsliding” democracies for the first time, the International IDEA thinktank has said, pointing to a “visible deterioration” it said began in 2019.

Globally, more than one in four people live in a backsliding democracy, a proportion that rises to more than two in three with the addition of authoritarian or “hybrid” regimes, according to the Stockholm-based International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance.

Democracy faces perfect storm as the world becomes more authoritarian
Quote:
STOCKHOLM—The world is becoming more authoritarian as autocratic regimes become even more brazen in their repression. Many democratic governments are backsliding and are adopting authoritarian tactics by restricting free speech and weakening the rule of law, a trend exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

These are the key findings of the “The Global State of Democracy Report 2021 - Building Resilience in a Pandemic Era”, published on 22 November 2021 by the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA), an intergovernmental organization based in Stockholm. The global Report will be presented on 22 November 2021, 15:00-17:00 CET during a live-streamed global launch event, including a keynote message from Jutta Urpilainen, the European Commissioner for International Partnerships.

The report comes at a timely moment—ahead of US President Joe Biden’s Summit for Democracy on 9-10 December, when around 100 countries will gather to discuss the challenges facing democracy.

“The Global State of Democracy report is not a wakeup call, it’s an alarm bell. Authoritarianism advances in every corner of the earth. Universal values – the pillars of civilization that protect the most vulnerable – are under threat. The EU shares many of the challenges. But we do have a unique and diverse experience of democracy. Our Team Europe Democracy (TED) Initiative, that we are launching today, brings EU and member states’ democracy support together for the first time. We will not weather this storm divided, and we will learn as well as teach. We need Global Action for Democracy and the EU will play its part including at the upcoming Summit for Democracy”, said Jutta Urpilainen.

The number of backsliding democracies has doubled in the past decade, now accounting for a quarter of the world’s population. This includes established democracies such as the United States, but also EU Member States such as Hungary, Poland and Slovenia. More than two-thirds of the world’s population now live in backsliding democracies or autocratic regimes.

Overall, the number of countries moving in an authoritarian direction in 2020 outnumbered those going in a democratic direction.

The world has lost at least four democracies in the last two years, either through flawed elections or military coups. The Global State of Democracy (GSoD) indices show that authoritarian regimes have increased their repression, with 2020 being the worst year on record.

The Covid-19 pandemic has deepened the trend of democratic deterioration—As of August 2021, 64 percent of countries have taken an action deemed to be disproportionate, unnecessary or illegal to curb the pandemic.

But democratic erosion is not a one-way street. Many democracies have proved resilient, including during the Covid-19 pandemic, by introducing or expanding democratic innovations and adapting their practices and institutions in record time.

“The political flaws and social fault lines revealed by the pandemic will drive more people towards populist and authoritarian leaders that seldom deliver durable solutions for the concerns of citizens”, said International IDEA Secretary-General Kevin Casas-Zamora. “If there is one key message in this Report, it is that this is the time for democracies to be bold, to innovate and revitalize themselves.”

The Report finds that many countries held credible elections in exceedingly difficult conditions created by the pandemic, often by expanding the modalities to exercise suffrage. Nonetheless, International IDEA warns against the grave and looming threat of disinformation and baseless accusations of electoral fraud, as seen in Myanmar, Peru and the United States.

One of the key findings of this research is the remarkable strength of civic activism all over the world. Pro-democracy movements have braved repression in places such as Belarus, Cuba, Eswatini, Myanmar, and Sudan, and global social movements for tackling climate change and fighting racial injustice have thrived. More than 80 countries have experienced protests and civic action of different kinds during the pandemic despite often harsh government restrictions.

To conclude, the Report recommends a series of policy actions to bolster global democratic renewal by embracing more equitable and sustainable social contracts, reforming existing political institutions, and shoring up defenses against democratic backsliding and authoritarianism.


>The Global State of Democracy Report 2021<

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Type: Discussion • Score: 10 • Views: 339 • Replies: 14

 
coluber2001
 
  3  
Reply Mon 22 Nov, 2021 09:51 am
You've also got Turkey, India, the Philippines, Russia, Brazil, and the United States. Plato said that's democracy will immediately lead to tyranny.

Jason Stanley (from a lecture)

"Fascism is an ideology that is centered on power, loyalty, and fear of the other."

"Plato's Republic is the response to a figure, Thrasymachus, and Thrasymachus argued that all is power, virtue is weakness, and justice is weakness, and the most powerful person should rule, and morality is for the weak, and all value goes with winning.

All of Plato's Republic is responding to Thrasymachus and Plato in book 8 discusses how democracy will always lead to tyranny. He talks about how a leader will rise and sow fear of one group and represent himself as the protector of the people. And democracy because it allows freedom of speech will allow a demagogue to rise to power, will allow a demagogue to use this kind of rhetoric, and we will always fall prey to this type of figure. And democracy will immediately lead to tyranny."

"How fascism works."
https://youtu.be/agX5v7h4_1g

Mame
 
  3  
Reply Mon 22 Nov, 2021 08:28 pm
@coluber2001,
Scary. I'm glad I'm the age I am instead of 5, 15 or 25. What an appalling future.
maxdancona
 
  -3  
Reply Mon 22 Nov, 2021 08:53 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Quote:

The Covid-19 pandemic has deepened the trend of democratic deterioration—As of August 2021, 64 percent of countries have taken an action deemed to be disproportionate, unnecessary or illegal to curb the pandemic.


Are they saying that mask mandates and vaccine mandates are undemocratic?

This report is frustratingly vague, but it appears that is the argument they are making.
roger
 
  3  
Reply Mon 22 Nov, 2021 10:00 pm
@Mame,
Me too
glitterbag
 
  5  
Reply Mon 22 Nov, 2021 10:38 pm
@roger,
It's a sad time in the US, this is worse than the Watergate issue and the conflict over social norms.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 12:27 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Quote:

The Covid-19 pandemic has deepened the trend of democratic deterioration—As of August 2021, 64 percent of countries have taken an action deemed to be disproportionate, unnecessary or illegal to curb the pandemic.


Are they saying that mask mandates and vaccine mandates are undemocratic?

This report is frustratingly vague, but it appears that is the argument they are making.


Oh.... This is from Sweden. I just made the connection. They are talking about covid mask mandates.

Sweden chose to stay open during the Covid pandemic when most other countries shut down. They kept schools and businesses open and instituted limited protections only for nursing homes.

The results of the Sweden experiment is open to interpretation (because if you don't know by now, these things are complicated). There are fewer deaths from Covid then in some countries that locked down... and Sweden didn't interrupt their children's education. Of course, there is evidence that Sweden had more covid deaths than neighboring countries, but then they have more tourism than neighboring countries and as I said this is complicated.

I think this group at least is arguing that Sweden did the right thing by avoiding the harsh social distancing mandates of other democracies.
Walter Hinteler
 
  4  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 02:11 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
Oh.... This is from Sweden. I just made the connection. They are talking about covid mask mandates.
Not really. Perhaps you read the report.
maxdancona
 
  -3  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 07:22 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Yes, Walter, I did read the report.

If is saying that countries, including the US, are taking "disproportionate" actions to deal with the Covid pandemic and characterizing the covid response as 'authoritarian'.

What do you think this means?
hightor
 
  4  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 07:29 am
HCR wrote:
Today, the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance, based in Stockholm, Sweden, released its 2021 report on “The Global State of Democracy.”

“Democracy is at risk,” the report’s introduction begins. “Its survival is endangered by a perfect storm of threats, both from within and from a rising tide of authoritarianism.” “The world is becoming more authoritarian as nondemocratic regimes become even more brazen in their repression and many democratic governments suffer from backsliding by adopting their tactics of restricting free speech and weakening the rule of law.”

The report identifies the United States as one of the democracies that is “backsliding,” meaning that it has “experienced gradual but significant weakening of Checks on Government and Civil Liberties, such as Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Association and Assembly, over time.”​​

“The United States, the bastion of global democracy, fell victim to authoritarian tendencies itself, and was knocked down a significant number of steps on the democratic scale,” the report says.

That fall continues to be pushed by malign foreign actors. An investigation by Jordan Liles of Snopes.com shows that foreign social media accounts are magnifying right-wing voices. In the wake of the Rittenhouse acquittal, for example, foreign accounts posing as Americans appeared to celebrate the jury’s decision.

Frank Figliuzzi, the former assistant director for counterintelligence at the FBI, tweeted that of 32,315 pro-Rittenhouse hashtag tweets from November 19–20, 29,609 had disabled geolocation. Of them, 17,701 were listed as “foreign,” and most of those were in Russia, China, and the EU.

Plenty of Americans are along for the authoritarian ride, too. A story by David A. Fahrenthold, Josh Dawsey, Isaac Stanley-Becker, and Shayna Jacobs in the Washington Post today reveals that the Republican National Committee (RNC) is using party funds to pay some of former president Donald Trump’s legal bills. Allies of RNC chair Ronna McDaniel note that since Trump is the biggest draw the party has for fundraising, it is important to cultivate his goodwill.

This dumps the RNC into the January 6 insurrection mess by aligning the party’s central organization with Trump.

That mess is deepening. Today the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol issued five new subpoenas to people involved in planning the rallies in Washington, D.C., on January 6 and the subsequent march to the Capitol.

The subpoenas went to Dustin Stockton and Jennifer Lawrence, who organized the “Women for America First” rally, and Trump spokesperson Taylor Budowich, who called for a social media blitz. Another subpoena went to Roger Stone, who pushed the rally and raised money for it, and who hired members of the right-wing Oath Keepers, several of whom were at the riot, as personal bodyguards. Right-wing newscaster Alex Jones got one, too; he helped to organize the rallies, spoke at the one held January 5, and claimed to have provided 80% of the funding for the January 6 rally.

Committee chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) said: “We need to know who organized, planned, paid for, and received funds related to those events, as well as what communications organizers had with officials in the White House and Congress.”

Two days ago, Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), who sits on the committee, told CNN that many of the people they’ve interviewed so far—more than 200—have been Trump officials who testified voluntarily and wanted to be subpoenaed for “cover.”

In Washington, D.C., today, at a hearing for one of those charged in the riot at the Capitol that day, U.S. District Court Judge Carl Nichols, a Trump appointee, sought to define what it means to interfere with an official federal government proceeding. About a third of those charged in the attack on the Capitol have been charged with this crime, which carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison. Nichols asked a prosecutor today whether calling “Vice President Pence to seek to have him adjudge the certification in a particular way” would be obstruction.

That’s a key question.

Trump’s influence took some hits today. Sean Parnell, the Trump-backed candidate for Pennsylvania senator, suspended his campaign after losing a custody battle with his ex-wife. She accused him of physical and emotional abuse of her and their children.

Today, conservative columnist Max Boot called out Republican lawmakers for “fomenting violent extremism” and noted that “they have also become hostage to the extremists in their ranks” because they fear for their safety should they stand up to the Trump loyalists. Right-wing extremists have threatened the lives of the 13 Republicans who voted for the bipartisan infrastructure bill.

Two long-standing Fox News Channel contributors, Steve Hayes and Jonah Goldberg, quit the enterprise today over Tucker Carlson’s three-part series Patriot Purge. That series, they wrote, “is presented in the style of an exposé, a hard-hitting piece of investigative journalism. In reality, it is a collection of incoherent conspiracy-mongering, riddled with factual inaccuracies, half-truths, deceptive imagery, and damning omissions.”

They say they could no longer work at the Fox News Channel because “we sincerely believe that all people of good will and good judgment—regardless of their ideological or partisan commitments—can agree that a cavalier and even contemptuous attitude toward facts, truth-seeking, and truth-telling, lies at the heart of so much that plagues our country.”

And Kyle Rittenhouse, whom a jury acquitted Friday of all charges connected with the shooting deaths of Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber and the wounding of Gaige Grosskreutz, is fighting with the “Fightback Foundation” organized by “Stop the Steal” lawyer Lin Wood over the $2 million bail posted for Rittenhouse. Rittenhouse’s lawyers say the money was raised for their client and thus should be his; Wood contends that he raised the money (although apparently not all of it) and thus it should go to his organization.

A number of Republican governors are facing primary challengers backed by Trump, and according to the Wall Street Journal, former vice president Mike Pence told the Republican Governors’ Association this week that he would be supporting incumbent Republican governors rather than Trump-backed challengers. Trump spokesperson Budowich—now under subpoena—responded, “Just like in cycles previous, successful Republican candidates must earn the support of President Donald J. Trump.”

As the Republican Party falls to autocracy, President Joe Biden is focused on making Americans believe in democracy again by making the economy work for regular people. His policies are working.

Today the CEO of Walmart, Doug McMillon, explicitly praised the Biden administration for its actions to reduce pandemic-related supply chain shortages, which are easing. “I would like to give the administration credit for helping do things like help get the ports open 24 hours a day, to open up some of the trucking lines…—there’s been a lot of work to do that—and then all the way through the supply chain there’s been a lot of innovation, and…week after week, in the third quarter in particular, sequentially, each month of the quarter got stronger, the number of containers that we were moving through the ports has grown significantly….”

substack
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  3  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 09:23 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
Yes, Walter, I did read the report.

If is saying that countries, including the US, are taking "disproportionate" actions to deal with the Covid pandemic and characterizing the covid response as 'authoritarian'.

What do you think this means?
You must have got a different copy.

Foreward to IDEA's 'The Global State of Democracy Report 2021' wrote:
The world is becoming more authoritarian as non-democratic regimes become even more brazen in their repression and many democratic governments suffer from backsliding by adopting their tactics of restricting free speech and weakening the rule of law, exacerbated by what threatens to become a "new normal" of Covid-19 restrictions. For the fifth consecutive year, the number of countries moving in an authoritarian direction exceeds the number of countries moving in a democratic direction. In fact, the number moving in the direction of authoritarianism is three times the number moving towards democracy.

Foreword of the summary of IDEA's report wrote:
The number of countries moving in an authoritarian
direction in 2020 outnumbered those going in a
democratic direction. The pandemic has prolonged
this existing negative trend into a five-year stretch,
the longest such period since the start of the third
wave of democratization in the 1970s.

But I might have missed what you quoted.
maxdancona
 
  -4  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 10:21 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Quote:
But I might have missed what you quoted.


What I quoted is the 8th paragraph of the article you quoted in your initial post.

At least one of us read it.
Walter Hinteler
 
  4  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 10:56 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
What I quoted is the 8th paragraph of the article you quoted in your initial post.
In my initial post I gave the link to press release.

I'd ask you to read the report - to which you responded that you did so.

Besides that: the 8th paragraph of the linked press release is different to what you wrote.
Quote:
The world has lost at least four democracies in the last two years, either through flawed elections or military coups. The Global State of Democracy (GSoD) indices show that authoritarian regimes have increased their repression, with 2020 being the worst year on record.

The Covid-19 pandemic has deepened the trend of democratic deterioration—As of August 2021, 64 percent of countries have taken an action deemed to be disproportionate, unnecessary or illegal to curb the pandemic.

But democratic erosion is not a one-way street. Many democracies have proved resilient, including during the Covid-19 pandemic, by introducing or expanding democratic innovations and adapting their practices and institutions in record time.


0 Replies
 
coluber2001
 
  3  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 12:48 pm
Jason Stanley in his lecture, How Fascism Works, quotes from Plato:

"... And democracy because it allows freedom of speech will allow a demagogue to rise to power...."

"All of Plato's Republic is responding to Thrasymachus and Plato in book 8 discusses how democracy will always lead to tyranny. He talks about how a leader will rise and sow fear of one group and represent himself as the protector of the people. And democracy because it allows freedom of speech will allow a demagogue to rise to power, will allow a demagogue to use this kind of rhetoric, and we will always fall prey to this type of figure. And democracy will immediately lead to tyranny."

https://youtu.be/agX5v7h4_1g
maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 23 Nov, 2021 01:01 pm
@coluber2001,
Plato was arguing in favor of aristocracy, where the educated elite would hold the political power headed by a philosopher king.

Is that what you are suggesting Coluber? (I would be fine with that).
0 Replies
 
 

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