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aries1988 : democracy   33

Can Emmanuel Macron Stem the Populist Tide?
In an inversion of the anxieties that might have surrounded a relationship between a female student and a male teacher, Macron’s parents mourned the likelihood that their son wouldn’t have children.

At the terrifyingly prestigious Lycée Henri IV, whose alumni include Sartre, Weil, and Foucault, he was no longer the precocious boy wonder, just a distracted new kid from the provinces who wasn’t great at math. He twice fell short of the scores necessary to enter the illustrious École Normale Supérieure. Instead, he attended Sciences Po, the social-science university, and also got a master’s degree in philosophy.

With a few exceptions, its members were young, affluent white men, who were excited by Macron’s commitment to shaking up a status quo that had been established in the postwar era and hardly updated since.

Of all the lines the candidates slung at each other in the course of the election, the one that remains indelible for me is Macron saying very calmly to Le Pen, who had just confused two French companies, “One makes phones, the other makes turbines.”

Their activity has been particularly robust in France’s “empty diagonal,” a band of low-density settlement that stretches from the Massif Central, in the south, to Lorraine, in the northeast.

By the end of the tour, according to an official count, almost two million people had participated online; more than sixteen thousand grievance books were compiled, twenty-seven thousand letters and e-mails were written, and more than ten thousand meetings were held. Macron spent a total of ninety-two hours on the debate floor. By April, his popularity had rebounded to around thirty per cent, from a low of twenty-three in December—not good, but not nearly as bad as his predecessor’s at the same point in his tenure.

the strategy is to “identify the causes of the populist vote and respond methodically. If we succeed, we will dry it up.” When the input changes, so do the conclusions, but only to the precise degree that they need to.
politics  français  president  interview  2019  france  society  macron  democracy 
5 weeks ago by aries1988
专访许颖婷:“我係香港人”,纪念六四反对“送中”,但其实我比以前更温和了

许:我现在有一两个我觉得头脑还蛮清晰的中国朋友,那时候文章写出来后,她们都会支持鼓励我。我们有时候也会一起讨论中国的政情,可是我始终不能很完整地跟她们讨论香港的情况,因为她们说到底也是在中共控制的教育下成长,信息和观点会有不同。
我觉得中国内部的人也开始对外界接触变多,其中一部分人的思想比起其他人更加进步及理性,也因为如此,中国内地也出现批评中共的思潮,像是我们有时会在网络上会看到一些人摄录的剖白影片,他们很多都以“最后一次说真话”的态度去向外界揭露中共的丑恶。但是这些言论通常都会被政府迅速拿下,所以中国人距离思想开放仍然还有很长的路。

端:因为有些大陆学生在谈到新疆时会有羞愧感,这也从另一个侧面显示出国家认同的强度。

这个条例如果通过的话,无论你是香港人还是外国人,在香港境内都已经成为可以被引渡的对象。我们最担心的,是如果中国成为引渡目的地的问题。中国的法治排名是82,香港是16,他们的定罪率是99.9%,我们怎么能信任中国的司法,让香港人去受审呢?
而且这个条例一旦通过,中国会有更大权力把政治犯、商人或者记者带到中国,那我们的自由基本上就没了。不管是集会、言论还是媒体自由都是如此,因为我们自己会开始自我审查,怕被抓而不敢说话。

我看到最近一项民调显示,如果条例通过,一半香港人会考虑移民,我觉得可能这就是他们(北京)想要达到的目的,因为在香港受过自由教育的人会离开,而他们会注入来自大陆的人,那香港就要“灰飞烟灭”了。
hongkong  independence  democracy  china  opinion  freedom  expression  youth  conflict  autocracy  authoritarian  ccp  leader  manif  interview  explained  stereotype  identity 
8 weeks ago by aries1988
专访宪法学者张千帆:宪政文明的暖流会融化中国体制的坚冰|深度|端传媒 Initium Media
张千帆是中国最负盛名的宪法学者之一,研究领域包括比较宪法与行政法,司法制度,中西方政治、道德与法律思想。

我们必须理解,宪法规定的党的领导是抽象和一般的,不是指治国理政日常实践中各级领导人的具体行为。任何领导人都是会犯错误的凡人,譬如某个县委书记完全可能滥用职权。宪法规定的党的领导显然不是要神化任何领导人,否则就变成了人治,就抵触了宪法第五条规定的法治和依法治国。这些问题早在八十年代就得到清理并达成共识,现在不应该再成为问题。

因此,问题不在于党的领导,而在于如何领导。执政党需要通过宪法和法律去体现其意志,执政党的意志应该通过民主和法治程序体现出来,而不是通过各种讲话或指示。当然,执政党的行为可以通过制定党内规章加以规范,但这些法规、规章都必须符合宪法。事实上,你用宪法规定来坚持党的领导地位,这本身已表明执政党只能在宪法与合宪法律的框架内行使权力。否则,宪法没有意义的话,党的领导也就没有法律根基了。

实际上,世界上每个国家的政府都是不愿意实施宪法的,但民主国家的政府不得不实施宪法,最终是因为有选票,不实施宪法的话会得罪太多的选民,领导人当选了也会下台。但如果没有真正的选举,政府不用对公民负责,不实施宪法也没有什么后果。

如果双方都能了解对方的真实想法,共同点还是很容易找到的,因为央港博弈是一种“协调博弈”,而非零和博弈。中央的主要目标维持主权统一,香港则希望维持高度自治的空间和制度的完整性。在主权统一的基础之上,中央应该还是愿意去谈的。现在,中央可能对于香港有一些误解,好像主张港独的人越来越多;香港则觉得中央似乎越来越强硬,这样下去会对双方之间的情感和认知产生负面影响。

中国现体制可以被视为两次世界大战的国际“冰河期”形成的一块坚冰。现在冰河早已融化,世界主流文明一直处于自由民主的暖流中。记得刚打倒“四人帮”的时候,叶剑英就说过“坚冰已经打破,航道已经开通”。此言不虚,四十年改革开放其实就是暖流和坚冰的“热交换”过程。当然,摩擦还会不断发生,自由民主国家也会遇到移民、民粹、两极分化等问题的困扰,但是应该会有惊无险,社会契约即便破裂也会修复。如果今后若干年我们仍然处在一个温暖的国际大环境下,我相信世界文明暖流最终会化解每一块坚冰。
interview  opinion  constitution  china  hongkong  game  theory  democracy  today  future  leader  intelligentsia  reform  politics 
april 2019 by aries1988
British Political Chaos, Explained for Chrissy Teigen (and for Americans in General)
This is not to say that polarization is good, but the non-polarization of this issue, and the composition of party politics, has paralyzed both parties on the matter. And both parties are internally fractured on what to do, making it even harder for either to act.

When you talk to people here, whether they support Brexit or oppose it, they tend to evince a decidedly un-British optimism about what leaving the European Union will mean. Often, it seems to begin with the assumption that Britain is still a great power, that the world needs Britain more than Britain needs the world.
uk  politics  usa  democracy  crisis  2018 
december 2018 by aries1988
Yuval Noah Harari on Why Technology Favors Tyranny - The Atlantic

- In 2018 the common person feels increasingly irrelevant.
By 2050, a useless class might emerge, the result not only of a shortage of jobs or a lack of relevant education but also of insufficient mental stamina to continue learning new skills.

- whatever liberal democracy’s philosophical appeal, it has gained strength in no small part thanks to a practical advantage: The decentralized approach to decision making that is characteristic of liberalism—in both politics and economics.
In the late 20th century, democracies usually outperformed dictatorships, because they were far better at processing information.
Democracy distributes the power to process information and make decisions among many people and institutions, whereas dictatorship concentrates information and power in one place.
- If you disregard all privacy concerns and concentrate all the information relating to a billion people in one database, you’ll wind up with much better algorithms than if you respect individual privacy and have in your database only partial information on a million people.

- What will happen to this view of life as we rely on AI to make ever more decisions for us?
once we begin to count on AI to decide what to study, where to work, and whom to date or even marry, human life will cease to be a drama of decision making, and our conception of life will need to change. Democratic elections and free markets might cease to make sense. So might most religions and works of art.
If we are not careful, we will end up with downgraded humans misusing upgraded computers to wreak havoc on themselves and on the world.

- For starters, we need to place a much higher priority on understanding how the human mind works—particularly how our own wisdom and compassion can be cultivated.
- More practically, and more immediately, if we want to prevent the concentration of all wealth and power in the hands of a small elite, we must regulate the ownership of data.
advice  future  crisis  ai  society  politics  people  life  work  mentality  human  democracy  dictatorship  competition  liberalism 
september 2018 by aries1988
When Americans Say ‘Democracy,’ We Really Mean Something Else
We tend to see democracy as truly democratic only when it grants equal participation regardless of a person’s sex, race or religion. Even if it does, we consider strict majoritarian rule as not really democratic if it abuses or sidelines minorities. American founders talked a lot about resisting “the tyranny of the majority” for a reason. We also think of freedoms — of speech, of the press, of religion, and so on — as essential elements of democracy.
But those things are not democracy, per se. They are components of liberalism. (The term here refers to the political philosophy, rather than “liberal” in the sense of center-left party politics.)
definition  democracy  comparison  today  liberalism 
july 2018 by aries1988
A critique of Eric X. Li’s “A tale of two political systems” | TED Blog
Apart from the political pressures that tend to channel answers in a particular direction, another problem is that Chinese respondents sometimes view taking a survey as similar to taking an exam.

Li has not provided a coherent and logical argument for his positions on democracy. I suspect, although I do not have any direct evidence, that there is a simple modus operandi — endorsing reforms the CCP has endorsed and opposing reforms that CCP has opposed. This is fine as far as posturing goes but it is not a principled argument of anything.
debate  politics  china  party  democracy  autocracy 
july 2018 by aries1988
Hardliners Learn That Democracy Can Pay Off - Bloomberg
The big innovation in authoritarian governance has been this: subsequent autocratic leaders, most of all in China, have found ways of both liberalizing and staying in power.

A second development was when authoritarian leaders realized that absolute prohibitions on free speech were counterproductive, and they learned how to manage an intermediate solution.

These days, the Communist Party monitors public opinion closely, to learn what people are unhappy about (e.g., forced resettlements, pollution), so those problems can be ameliorated, or at least the government can position its failings appropriately.
opinion  autocracy  china  history  soviet  communism  democracy  howto 
july 2018 by aries1988
The Myth of a Kinder, Gentler Xi Jinping - The Atlantic
In 2004, the day before the 15th anniversary of the Tiananmen Massacre, Kristof wrote that Chinese leaders “knew that after the Chinese could watch Eddie Murphy, wear tight pink dresses and struggle over what to order at Starbucks, the revolution was finished. No middle class is content with more choices of coffees than of candidates on a ballot.” Mann called this idea the “Starbucks Fallacy.” Indeed, in December, Starbucks opened its largest store in the world in Shanghai – a 29,000 feet emporium with 400 staff. The company’s CEO said he expects China to be the company’s biggest market. Chinese political polling data is terrible, and it’s impossible to say if China’s middle class is “content” with their choice of coffee over candidates. But for Xi, it’s certainly working.   
thinking  west  china  future  democracy 
march 2018 by aries1988
West grows wary of China’s influence game

“The party under Xi [Jinping] believes it is engaged in a ‘huayu zhanzheng’ — a ‘discourse war’ — with the west, which it thinks enjoys media hegemony and must be challenged,” says David Shambaugh, director of the China policy programme at George Washington University.

He estimates China spends between $10bn and $12bn a year on a wide range of “soft power” efforts — from traditional lobbying and public relations campaigns to more clandestine forms of influence-building.

“The Chinese Communist party is seeking to suppress dissent among its diaspora in countries around the world,” says Rory Medcalf, head of the national security college at Australian National University. “It uses a tapestry of methods to achieve its goals: political donations, control of Chinese language media, mobilising community and student groups; and engaging in coercive activities that involve CCP proxies and even consular officials.”

Defenders of these initiatives say Beijing merely wants to “tell China’s story well” and is acting no differently from western countries. The US government supports organisations that fund pro-democracy groups around the world, while Washington-based think-tanks have international affiliates that promote an American world view.

“The Communist party’s United Front work is very different from western efforts to exert influence — there is a degree of long-term planning and central co-ordination between public and nominally private enterprises that democracies can’t even imagine,”
china  today  politics  debate  strategy  world  competition  democracy 
december 2017 by aries1988
The Interpreter Friday, December 1, 2017: The Problem With Political Quarantines
In some countries, including France and Germany, mainstream political parties practice so-called “cordon sanitaire” politics, in which they agree to work together to keep far-right politicians in a sort of political quarantine. They won’t allow the far right into political coalitions, or work with it on joint legislation.
opinion  idea  politics  election  democracy  deutschland  france  europe  2017 
december 2017 by aries1988
Interview with Emmanuel Macron: 'We Need to Develop Political Heroism' - SPIEGEL ONLINE - International

Nothing here should become habitual, because routine lends one a deceptive feeling of security. You begin not noticing certain things and lose your focus on what's important. Uncertainty and change keep you attentive.

It is a place laden with history. The emperors spent time here, Napoleon I and Napoleon III. In the Fourth Republic, it was the palace of a president without powers. Only in the Fifth Republic did Charles de Gaulle move back in.

Germany is different from France. You are more Protestant, which results in a significant difference. Through the church, through Catholicism, French society was structured vertically, from top to bottom. I am convinced that it has remained so until today.

France is a country of regicidal monarchists. It is a paradox: The French want to elect a king, but they would like to be able to overthrow him whenever they want.

I am a strong believer that modern political life must rediscover a sense for symbolism. We need to develop a kind of political heroism. I don't mean that I want to play the hero. But we need to be amenable once again to creating grand narratives. If you like, post-modernism was the worst thing that could have happened to our democracy. The idea that you have to deconstruct and destroy all grand narratives is not a good one. Since then, trust has evaporated in everything and everyone.

I am putting an end to the cronyism between politics and the media. For a president, constantly speaking to journalists, constantly being surrounded by journalists, has nothing to do with closeness to the people. A president should keep the media at arm's length.
interview  français  deutschland  newspaper  2017  macron  democracy  europe  politics  france  state  president  opinion  comparison  protestant  society  hierarchy  narrative  post  modernity  trust  media  idea  reform  heroism 
october 2017 by aries1988
The Interpreter Thursday, October 5, 2017
And conversely, how much attention should we pay to the fact that today’s nascent democracies are held to a much higher moral standard than more established ones were in their earliest days? The early United States, for instance, relied on slave labor and waged brutal ethnic cleansing campaigns against Native Americans. European nations used slavery, torture and political oppression to maintain control over their colonies.

We now recognize, rightly, that those atrocities were abhorrent and shameful. But it is easier to do that from today’s comfortable vantage point of wealth and stability. We rarely reckon with how much of what we have today was derived from the oppression of others. So should we take a cold, hard look at the difficulties of establishing democracy, freedom and equality all at the same time?
question  debate  democracy  nation  state  2017  history  future  government 
october 2017 by aries1988
What Happened to Myanmar’s Human-Rights Icon? | The New Yorker
Havel and Suu Kyi were among the many dissidents around the world who, from the mid-eighties to the early nineties, emerged as icons of freedom, often toppling the regimes that had oppressed them. In South Africa, after nearly thirty years in prison, Nelson Mandela negotiated an end to apartheid and then assumed his country’s Presidency. In Warsaw, a shipyard worker named Lech Walesa and a movement called Solidarity swept the Communist government from power. In the Philippines, the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos fell after Corazon Aquino, the widow of an assassinated critic of the regime, took up her husband’s struggle. Democratic movements did not always triumph—the Chinese government’s massacre of student protesters near Tiananmen Square is the grimmest example—but, in the last three decades of the century, the number of democracies in the world increased from thirty-one to eighty-one.

Myanmar is a patchwork of a hundred and thirty-five officially recognized ethnicities, dominated by the Bamar, from the country’s heartland, who make up sixty-eight per cent of the population and most of the ruling élite. Armed conflicts have simmered for decades between numerous ethnic groups and Bamar-led governments. In 1947, Suu Kyi’s father, Aung San, a Bamar general now regarded as the founder of the modern nation, persuaded several groups to put aside their differences in the interest of ending colonial British rule. But he was assassinated shortly before independence, which went into effect in January, 1948, and tribal conflicts soon consumed the young nation.

In 1999, Suu Kyi was faced with an agonizing decision. Her husband had received a diagnosis of terminal cancer and asked the regime to let him visit her. Repeated requests were denied, but the generals offered to release Suu Kyi, so that she could visit him, in Oxford. She and Aris knew that, if she left the country, she would never be allowed back. She chose to stay in Myanmar and never saw him again.

The euphoria that surrounded her ascent obscured how extensive the military’s power remains. The Army controls the ministries for defense, home affairs, and border affairs, and a quarter of the seats in parliament are reserved for men in uniform. Even ministries that are in civilian hands, such as finance, are full of holdovers from the previous regime, and much of the country’s budget is reserved for military use.

The armed forces of today have their origin in the Burmese Independence Army, which her father founded, in 1941, in order to rid the country of the British. In her Shwedagon Pagoda speech, Suu Kyi reminded her listeners of this history. “Let me speak frankly,” she said. “I feel strong attachment for the armed forces. Not only were they built up by my father—as a child I was cared for by his soldiers.” She retains many of the military’s values, frequently stressing the importance of discipline and unity.

For her entire life, Suu Kyi has been faithful to the memory of a father she never knew and to a country that she’d seen little of between the ages of fifteen and sixty-five. The intransigence and the certitude that may now cause her to be remembered as an enemy of freedom are the same qualities that served her well in captivity. In the years alone in her house, her distance from active politics made her a perfect vessel for the hopes of her countrymen and for the idealistic projections of the wider world.
reportage  history  democracy  2017  banyan 
september 2017 by aries1988
梁文道:結局之後的劇情

這種宣傳,這個版本的劉曉波故事,對於香港、台灣和其他地方的人而言,應該沒有多大作用,因為我們有另一套截然不同的劉曉波故事。但是對於言路閉塞,信息封鎖,浸泡在主旋律正能量大浴缸下的大陸居民,乃至於到了海外仍然不離這種心理環境的大陸居民來講,這可能就是他們所知的劉曉波生平了。
2017  narrative  democracy  leader  death  china  today  politics  state 
july 2017 by aries1988
梁文道:唔關我事
在特朗普身上,在香港一些年輕學生身上,我看到一種很不可思議的共通點,那就是切割。和本該不可割捨的過去切割,往昔世界工業發展的歷史和我沒有關係,二十多年前香港發生過的事情也和我沒有關係。和不可能不與之相互影響的「外部」切割,全球其餘兩百多個國家和我沒有關係,中國再怎麼樣也和我沒有關係。和我們「內部」其他人切割,凡是與我看法不一致的大企業都不能代表「真正美國人」的利益,凡是與我觀點不相通的社運組織也都不能算是站在「真正香港人」這一邊。於是那最純粹、最本真的「美國人」或「香港人」,就是經過一連串的切割之後,既沒有過去,也顧不到將來;既不與遠親為伍,復不認近鄰為友的,蒼白的、懸峙的、原子化的我了。在我看來,這就是今日右翼民粹論述的一個邏輯特點。

不過若是繼續追問下去,想要發掘更多課本所不傳的史實的話,那就會犯上「歷史虛無主義」的罪了,是妄圖以歷史否定中國共產黨領導地位合法性的重大錯誤。但只要你不問不說,假裝發生過的事沒有發生過,假裝仍然活着的兇手與受害者皆不存在,歷史就不虛無了。你的歷史觀不虛無,你就安全了,你就可以好好地活着了。所以每當香港媒體問到在港內地學生關於「六四」的事,都一定有人會答:「那是歷史上的事,和我今天的生活沒有多大關係」。
china  hongkong  chinese  identity  government  democracy  cause  local  youth  opinion  comparison  conflict  today  crisis  history  killing  communism  64  idealism  politics 
june 2017 by aries1988
« Que la première dame soit notre Marianne ! »

Les jeunes gens qui voulaient casser le « système », « essayer » l’extrême droite ou l’extrême gauche, n’ont visiblement pas conscience de ce que cela impliquerait. Vivre dans un pays où on peut dire ce que l’on pense, s’opposer sans craindre d’être réveillé à l’aube par des hommes en armes, écrire, penser, aimer qui l’on veut, est un privilège qui leur semble acquis.

C’est aussi par ignorance que certains, au second tour, ont pu renvoyer dos à dos le social-libéralisme du nouveau président et le populisme hérité du fascisme de Marine Le Pen.

A l’évidence, la France souffre d’un grave déficit de culture démocratique. D’urgence, il faut mieux enseigner, mieux raconter, mieux expliquer l’histoire de nos libertés, les débats d’idées qui l’ont jalonnée et qui sont toujours d’actualité, toutes les batailles livrées au nom de nos valeurs… Il faut alerter sans complaisance sur ce que furent les régimes totalitaires, les camps de la mort, le goulag stalinien, le Grand Bond en avant et la Révolution culturelle en Chine, les crimes des Khmers rouges et de tant d’autres, toujours perpétrés au nom de l’intérêt du « peuple ».
politics  france  youth  democracy  president  2017  hope  female  civil 
may 2017 by aries1988
The new political divide | The Economist
Farewell, left versus right. The contest that matters now is open against closed

Too many friends of globalisation are retreating, mumbling about “responsible nationalism”. Only a handful of politicians—Justin Trudeau in Canada, Emmanuel Macron in France—are brave enough to stand up for openness. Those who believe in it must fight for it.
world  leader  globalization  2016  conflict  politics  democracy 
july 2016 by aries1988
Why the Remain Campaign Lost the Brexit Vote - The New Yorker
To get people to turn out and vote in your favor, you also have to give them something positive to rally behind. The Leave campaign, for all its lies and disinformation, provided just such a lure. It claimed that liberating Britain from the shackles of the E.U. would enable it to reclaim its former glory. The Remain side argued, in effect, that while the E.U. isn’t great, Britain would be even worse off without it. That turned out to be a losing story.
politics  referendum  people  democracy  campaign  opinion  fail  uk  Brexit  2016 
june 2016 by aries1988
Drones and the Democracy Disconnect

There are few philosophers more clear-eyed, frank, even cynical when it comes to war than Niccolò Machiavelli.

Never have the American people been more removed from their wars, even while we are the most martial nation on earth, and drones are symptoms, and drivers, of this troubling alienation.
usa  american  war  ethic  drone  opinion  democracy  politics  state 
october 2014 by aries1988
Joshua Wong, le lycéen qui défie Pékin
Coupe au bol, frange qui se pose en désordre sur le cadre rectangulaire de ses lunettes, le corps en pleine croissance, Joshua Wong a toutes les apparences des lycéens hongkongais âgés comme lui de 15 ans. Mais son discours le sort du rang : pressé, inquiet, concis et allant droit au but, surtout quand il explique à un mur de micros tendus vers lui pourquoi il faut à tout prix s'opposer aux cours d'"éducation morale et nationale", une nouvelle matière scolaire qu'il affirme être du lavage de cerveau et que le gouvernement de Hongkong avait l'intention d'imposer aux quelque 1 300 écoles, primaires et secondaires, d'ici à 2016.

Scholarism a également attiré l'attention du public sur des voyages scolaires culturels en Chine, fortement subventionnés par le ministère hongkongais de l'éducation et qui ressembleraient un peu trop à des pèlerinages maoïstes.
democracy  leader  reportage  today 
october 2014 by aries1988
‘Hi! I’m Fang!’ The Man Who Changed China by Perry Link | NYRblog | The New York Review of Books
But Fang observed that demands for liberalization had risen in the 1956 Hundred Flowers movement, in the 1979 Democracy Wall movement, and again in 1989—and each time the protesters began anew. No group knew the history of protest in its own country or about the progress that predecessors had made. This was, Fang argued, because the Communist Party of China has a program for erasing the memory of protest, and it works. They were now applying it again, and it would likely work again. Indeed, many young Chinese today have only vague notions that something happened in 1989, and what they do “know” is a highly distorted government-sponsored version of events. Fang was right.
story  democracy  scientist  china  1989/6/4 
september 2014 by aries1988
Cairo in Chinese
When Shen Yitong left her home in China to study French at Cairo University in 2008, she didn’t know that she would come to think of Egypt as a second home, or…
egypt  gaijin  democracy  food  comparison  china  debate  idea  youth  female 
june 2014 by aries1988
The Key to Bringing Democracy to China
The reason is a deep gulf of values. The Chinese have a utilitarian concept of "rights" -- that they should advance the greatest good for the greatest number of people -- in contrast to the Western view of rights as protections against encroachments on the disenfranchised few. Even the most critical of Beijing intellectuals would acknowledge that Chen's and other dissidents' ideas resonate only with a tiny percentage of China's 1.3 billion people. It's time for the United States to pivot to a new approach toward influencing China's political future: explaining that democracy produces concrete benefits such as balanced growth, stability, and personal security -- even for top Communist Party officials. This performance-based argument will resonate with many of China's economic and intellectual elites and may have a chance to influence the thinking of Xi Jinping and his fellow top officials.
http://www.instapaper.com/read/339382793
china  democracy  80s  comparison 
november 2012 by aries1988
Putin is Already Dead
The sweeping protests that have riled Moscow signal the end of Russia's strongman, but the real gains will require millions to adopt the project of democracy and dignity.
http://www.instapaper.com/read/249497461
russia  democracy 
august 2012 by aries1988
自由,就是对何谓正确不那么确定的精神_柴静_新浪博客
顾准说过:“什么是专制?专制就是认为自己绝不会错的想法”, 这话警示政府官员,新闻界,和每个普通公民。
http://www.instapaper.com/read/214511739
freedom  media  government  democracy  book 
august 2012 by aries1988
政治史没有终结
只有当一个社会进入富裕的社会结构,即中产阶级占人口大多数时,比较稳定的民主才有可能实现。如韩国、台湾这些虽然有大毛病但可算作较为成功的民主,其民主实现的前提是两蒋与军官独裁。没有居民的普遍富裕,把从政当做政治家们的游戏;没有社会宽容的生活方式,不再党同伐异、把不同党派、意见看做敌人,就不可能实现真正的民主。
如果提前实施民主,对于中国这样的超大型国家来说,多半是区域自决、民族自决,利益集团自决,大家疯抢那并不充裕的各种资源,结果就是内战和动乱。要知道,通向地狱的道路差不多都是所谓的善意铺就的。
democracy  china  future  opinion 
april 2011 by aries1988
小贩之死
蝴蝶在热带轻轻扇动一下翅膀,就可能给遥远的国家带来一场飓风。一位名叫布阿齐兹的突尼斯小贩的轰然倒下,如同蝴蝶那扇动的翅膀,引发了世界新的一波民主化浪潮,这波浪潮直到现在仍然方兴未艾,其影响已经开始波及更广的范围。小贩之死,成为一曲临终哀乐,奏响的不仅仅是中东国家强人政权的末路之音。
middle-east  democracy  people 
april 2011 by aries1988

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