The election of Donald Trump has triggered as much wonderment abroad as it has in the United States.
It would seem that would be most needed is a strong Democratic Party yet that party is being undermined from the left. The Democrats have gotten the most votes in six out of the last seven presidential elections. It is almost a permanent majority party. Yet because of the purity tests by the people furthest on the left, including Bernie Sanders, the party is in trouble. The main purity test is whether a candidate accepts corporate money for political campaigns. If the candidate does accept money then that candidate is labeled corrupt. And the claim is made that the candidate is controlled by a corporate elite. Almost all Democratic politicians fail this purity test so the party itself is considered corrupt. But what is left to hold back the Republicans who actually seem to be the party of Big Business as well as the party of a coalitions of angry white people ranging from white supremacists to the religious right. The country is becoming more multicultural and more secular and whole lot of people do not like that one bit.
No, the democratic party isn't being undermined by the left, it is undermining itself. Sure perfection shouldn't be the enemy of the good but the Democratic Party in its current state can hardly even be considered good. Our democracy isn't suddenly dying due to the election of Donald Trump, it is dying after years of erosion helped by the democrats.
The USA ≠ The World. That headline should have read: "Maybe This Is How American Democracy Ends".
Some democracies are more so than others.
I'm know that many (most?) people who voted for Trump or expressly didn't vote for Clinton (same result, eh) feel that the American political system, which has not served them since at least the Reagan era, want/need the present system to crash and burn. Enough people felt this and acted on it to get Trump elected - I've seen them interviewed on non-US television.
Trump isn't the problem. Trump is the result of the problem(s). I'm sure that most CD readers can list them: Citizens United, lack of Medicare, gerrymandering, votes closed to non-whites, government for the rich not for the people, etc, etc, etc.
The sooner that the people near the top of power in the USA understand this: that the USA is not the shining beacon on the hill, that is is not chosen by the Almighty, that it is not the ultimate touchstone of which all other nations yearn to copy, then the sooner that American democracy can be fixed.
If you can't acknowledge that you have a problem, then...
Mind you, what with the sad, sad example that is the American corporate-mainstream media/news, this is not going to happen in my lifetime.
Edited to add: All that said, I usually find Mr Lofgren's essays here insightful, helpful, and interesting. Usually.
No, the Democratic Party has been undermined by the Crooked Politicians who Sold Out the Democratic Party Base so that they could receive money from their Corporate Owners.
"...How Democracy Ends" implies that we've got a "democracy".
Some (like former President Jimmy Carter) might suggest "oligarchy" (or (?)) would be more accurate.
As for the Democratic Party... the party of Jim Crow and lynch mobs, the party of Wall Street and the same folks who own the Republican Party, the party of stolen primaries and "spirit cooking"... who knows what they'll do next. Fold up their tent?
Indeed. Maybe this presidency will end the illusion that we have a democracy. Which honestly is a little bit of a silver lining. You can only address a problem when you admit that it exists.
Then they can have their own gubmit in the South.
What is spirit cooking?
Years of erosion by the demos? I guess you're a trumpette. You did not even mention the rethugs. The trouble is the elitism manifested by both sides.
Oh I know that both sides have contributed to the erosion. They are both to blame.
Time to move forward and do not forget that members of congress are up for reelection in 18.
"The frightening rise of authoritarian populism in the West is a very real, clear and present danger."
Authoritarian populism? Is that something like a right wing commie? It amazes me that everyday people don't understand what a political spectrum is but for a politically organised media outlet not to understand this simple concept is inexcusable. How are we to learn if our media passes on ignorance?
And, helped by us - you and me and my neighbor and your neighbor - when we saw "bad" "wrong" and said and did nothing....like now, right-to-work movements - ie shaft the worker movement - gaining footing in New Hampshire, Missouri, and other states. Is this what you and I and our neighbors really want? If we don't - what's being asked of us?
What's being asked of us? How about organizing and being visable. Good question though. We knew we were in trouble when Wall Street crashed the economy and only the OWS people protested. If people did not even protest when millions lost everything including their lives then I don't know what to think. Stand up for what you believe in, and help others in your own community!
Also, since when do they think they have a mandate to take away people's rights when people who voted for him wanted jobs?
Plus, today he talked about the next EIGHT years not four. ( without even being re elected). New Hampshire - right to work- a basic blue state- now that's scary.
When people cow and vote ( or don't even do that) against their own interests like lemmings it is psychotic.
Another thing: This is all being done in the name of "religion" and " for our own good"- yes that was how Nazi Germany started.
They??? How about all of us? Don't you reside on this planet?
What is most needed is neither of the duopoly who failed the test of honoring people, planet before profits. The Democratic and Republicans both forgot that We the People stand in front of the American flag not the corporations.
Really, what planet are you from? You're obviously not from earth.