The Crisis of Democracy

“Democracy is in crisis,” warns a new report from Freedom House, a human rights watchdog. “Political rights and civil liberties around the world deteriorated to their lowest point in more than a decade in 2017, extending a period characterized by emboldened autocrats, beleaguered democracies, and the United States’ withdrawal from its leadership role in the global struggle for human freedom,” according to the report. (See “Hard Numbers” below for some specifics.)


The report is a sobering read, and its conclusions make clear that we must look beyond the individual abuses of power of today’s strongmen toward longer-term political, economic, cultural and technological trends to understand why rights and freedoms are increasingly under threat.
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