Maybe we shouldn’t fret so much about the end.
Deep but still practical. Our democracy has gone through so much and is still here. Goes to show you the ruggedness and durability of the American fabric. 🇺🇲
Reminds me of some passages in the book 'Political Hypocrisy' by David Runciman where he discusses how all politics is based to some degree upon deception. I don't live in fear of the crumbling of democracy and its institutions but I do fear to some extent we have run out of ideas. In this sense, I take the new Fukuyama line that a lot of the 'new' innovations are simply reheated policies from decades ago. Maybe the lack of innovation can be directed to a form of 'fear' about the current state of politics in democracies... perhaps we are too nervous to upset the balance one way or another.
Hi Damaric--thoughtful article, very nice counterpoint to much of today's pessimism. I and my co-author Josiah Ober of Stanford take a similar tack in our forthcoming Princeton U Press book (Sept 2023), The Civic Bargain: How Democracy Survives--arguing from historical cases of long surviving systems that what keeps democracy going is the ongoing support and revision among citizens of an implicit bargain--on what it takes to keep their self-governance alive. Love to talk with you more about it if interested....https://www.amazon.com/Civic-Bargain-How-Democracy-Survives-ebook/dp/B0BZFXYLPW/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1R0E4GDBZIXMT&keywords=civic+bargain&qid=1682446245&sprefix=civic+bargain%2Caps%2C221&sr=8-1
Whenever Damir isnt busy playing devils advocate or questioning, but instead elaborates his own thoughts, its brilliant. You and Shadi make a wonderful Bert and Ernie
It always helps me to take the long view, which is what this idea feels like. I can read history and not get upset because I know how it plays out, but often wonder how bad large change and upheaval must have felt to anyone paying attention at the time. Now we know, as we go through these past 20 years and particularly the last 4, that it feels like societal existential threat. But it helps me to imagine the multiple ways it might play out. This doesn't need to be the end of democracy and to think that way is defeatist. We have so much more creativity than that. Short term I can predict that it will be uncomfortable, but long term I choose to be interested in what we come up with, not sure that the current ideas are failing.
Reminds me of Guy Debord’s argument in the society of the spectacle. Although, he sees these shared fictions in a more sinister and nefarious light.
It’s almost as if it’s one huge self fulfilling, prophecy. For example, American voters don’t feel like their votes actually matter which makes them a lot less likely to go out and vote. That low voter participation results in unpopular candidates winning which reinforces the original sentiment.
As much as I can appreciate Morgan, I go back-and-forth between being optimistic about it, or sympathizing more with Debord.
But after writing out this comment, maybe it would be better for everyone if we all adopted Morgan’s position here? If it really is a self fulfilling, prophecy, why not make it a good one?
“Reality is what you can get away with.” Robert Anton Wilson
The Noble Lie. The governed understand that perfect democracy and equality are mirages but they continue to head toward the mirage in hoping to attain it. It’s the voyage not the destination.