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‘The Crisis of Democracy’

May 27,2019 - Last updated at May 27,2019

We are looking at all these fancy accolades bestowed on certain democracies in the world, and what on earth do we see? Israel, the so-called “only democracy in the Middle East”, produces leaders who stand for warmongering and apartheid and holds the worst human rights record.

The biggest democracy in the world, India, had just announced the results of the 17th Lok Sabha (house of the people) elections, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) winning 303 seats, and capturing with its allied small parties 353 seats. The Congress Party won only 52 seats, and the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance won 91. The last DMK party won only 23 seats.

According to Indian law, any opposition party should win at least 10 per cent of the 552 seats to be considered an opposition party inside the Lok Sabha, and be treated so. Not only does the BJP have the absolute smashing majority on its own, but it has no opposition.

Let us look at the oldest democracy in the world, the United Kingdom. The emotional resignation speech of Prime Minister Theresa May last Saturday makes her the fourth Tory prime minister to step down as a result of differences among the party’s approximate 124,000 members. The other three were Margaret Thatcher, John Majors and David Cameron. The same 124,000 members will determine on behalf of the most enlightened electorate who would be the next UK prime minister to sail the country out of the Brexit quagmire.

France faces a huge problem with the yellow vest protesters, who are unhappy with the reforms that President Emmanuel Macron had promised to enforce during his election campaign. Although he withdrew all the decisions, the yellow vests are still marching every week. Was not democracy supposed to settle issues through the election process?

The most ridiculously funny thing is that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accuses Iran of being a non-democracy. Well, let us apply the same standards on Israel, which, under his rule, has only produced ultra-religious, tolerance-blind governments? Amazing.

Democracy, as is hailed in the media, is a far cry from Plato’s “Republic”, Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s “The Social Contract”, John Locke’s social contract theory and Ralph Waldo Emerson’s ideas on individuality and freedom.

The clash between US President Donald Trump and Democratic Party leaders in the US Congress are good examples to question what the heck democracy as practiced is all about?

The 1975 report “The Crisis of Democracy” said then that there was too much democracy. To rectify the situation, you need to “restore the prestige and authority of central government institutions”.

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