335 posts tagged with democracy.
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"Many-Rule" is kind of vague.

ResetDOC asks: "What is democracy?" [more inside]
posted by anotherpanacea on Jan 16, 2008 - 8 comments

The Rise of China

The Rise of China and the Future of the West: Can the Liberal System Survive? "China's rise will inevitably bring the United States' unipolar moment to an end. But that does not necessarily mean a violent power struggle or the overthrow of the Western system. The U.S.-led international order can remain dominant even while integrating a more powerful China -- but only if Washington sets about strengthening that liberal order now." [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Dec 29, 2007 - 29 comments

The Imperial Presidency

Candidates on executive power: a full spectrum. Boston Globe reporter Charlie Savage, who won a Pulitzer Prize for his work on presidential signing statements, surveyed the major 2008 presidential candidates about their views on the limits of executive power. [BugMeNot, via Huffington Post.] [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Dec 26, 2007 - 18 comments

Privatize profit. Socialize risk.

Push Capitalism. Bill Moyers' interview with Dr. Benjamin Barber about the state of our modern capitalist society and how he believes capitalism threatens American democracy. PBS.org streaming video. [more inside]
posted by orelius on Dec 23, 2007 - 74 comments


The dangers of living in a zero-sum world economy - naked capitalism reprints (with added commentary) an FT article by Martin Wolf on why it's vital for (civilised) society to sustain a 'positive-sum' world, otherwise: "A zero-sum economy leads, inevitably, to repression at home and plunder abroad." Wolf's solution? "The condition for success is successful investment in human ingenuity." Of course! Some are calling for more socialism, while others would press on to build more megaprojects. For me, at least part of the solution lies in environmental accounting and natural capitalism :P
posted by kliuless on Dec 19, 2007 - 42 comments

Repression in Burma

Crackdown: Repression of the 2007 Popular Protests in Burma.
posted by homunculus on Dec 9, 2007 - 32 comments

A Big Cheese for a Big Cheese

The Mammoth Cheese of Cheshire was the most unusual gift ever given to a President of the United States. In the aftermath of the "Revolution of 1800", the eccentric Baptist preacher John Leland decided to celebrate the presidency of Thomas Jefferson by convincing the predominantly Baptist farmers of Cheshire, Massachusetts to create a giant 1,235-pound block of cheese as a monument to small-"r" republicanism and religious freedom. [more inside]
posted by jonp72 on Dec 3, 2007 - 29 comments

Senator On-Line

Senator On-Line (‘SOL’) is a truly democratic party which will allow everyone on the Australian Electoral roll who has access to the internet to vote on every Bill put to Parliament and have its Senators vote in accordance with a clear majority view. They will be running candidates for the upcoming federal Upper House (Senate) elections.
posted by finite on Nov 15, 2007 - 28 comments


“I will not let my country commit suicide,” says General Pervez Musharraf in an address to the nation, after declaring Martial Law, in Pakistan, yesterday night. Benazir Bhutto, who had earlier returned to the country to a large reception (and whose convoy was later attacked) along with former Prime Minister Nawaz Shariff, have condemned the act.
posted by hadjiboy on Nov 3, 2007 - 61 comments

Nader sues Democratic Party for conspiring against democracy

Yesterday, Ralph Nader sued the Democratic Party for conspiring to prevent him from running for president in 2004. The lawsuit alleges that defendants used “groundless and abusive litigation” to bankrupt Ralph Nader’s campaign and force him off the ballot in 18 states, and names as co-defendants the Kerry-Edwards campaign, the Service Employees International Union, private law firms, and organizations like the Ballot Project and America Coming Together that were created to promote voter turnout on behalf of the Democratic ticket. According to attorney Carl Mayer from the team that filed the suit, interviewed this morning by Democracy Now!'s Amy Goodman, "what this lawsuit will do, and the importance of it is, is to set a precedent so that the two-party monopoly system that shuts out minor parties in a way that other Western democracies never do, that this will set a precedent to prevent this type of intimidation and harassment."
posted by finite on Oct 31, 2007 - 236 comments

The Unqualified Reservations of Mencius Moldbug

Unqualified Reservations is a fascinating ongoing commentary on society and governance in postmodernity. He's currently on about the pwning of Richard Dawkins, after writing about Mediocracy and Official Journalism. It might be best to first read his earlier posts in which he defines the self-invented terminology he's fond of using, like: Formalism, The Iron Polygon, Universalism, Neocameralism, and The Rotary System. [more inside]
posted by blasdelf on Oct 29, 2007 - 44 comments

Benazir's Homecoming.

Two-time Former Pakistani PM, Benazir Bhutto Returns After 8 years. The leader of a Pakistan's most progressive and liberal political party, but tarnished by serious corruption and money laundering charges, Benazir Bhutto landed in Karachi today welcomed by thousands, reminiscent of her return to take on a previous military dictator in 1986. Bhutto has recently lost popularity because she has sought a deal with General Musharraf and tried to obtain an amnesty from corruption charges. Can she use her thunderous return to overcome such setbacks and lead the second largest Muslim country again?
posted by Azaadistani on Oct 18, 2007 - 40 comments


Risking all: the Burmese jokers who laugh in the face of danger. In Burma (Myanmar), comedians are targets in the junta's war on words. [Via BB.] [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Oct 17, 2007 - 23 comments

The Common Good

Government is good. An unapologetic defense of a vital institution. [more inside]
posted by edverb on Oct 9, 2007 - 25 comments

Why Democracy?

Why Democracy? "In October 2007, ten one-hour films focused on contemporary democracy will be broadcast in the world's largest ever factual media event. More than 40 broadcasters on all continents are participating, with an estimated audience of 300 million viewers. Each of the broadcasters - an A-Z which includes everyone from Al Arabiya to ZDF - will be producing a locally-based seasons of film, radio, debate and discussion to tie in with the global broadcast of the Why Democracy? films."
posted by St Urbain's Horseman on Oct 5, 2007 - 21 comments

Bush the Dissident

Bush the Dissident. (WaPo) Background (and previously) here here here here and here.
posted by Avenger on Aug 19, 2007 - 45 comments

We know what's best for you.

An excellent example of the consequences of the Supreme Court's Gonzales v. Raich decision: today the United States House of Representatives voted down a bill which would have prohibited the DEA from targeting State-authorized medical marijuana dispensaries. Almost simultaneously, the DEA raided 10 medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles.
posted by mullingitover on Jul 26, 2007 - 68 comments

Turkey votes today

Secular or islamic society? Kemal Atatürk - the Father of modern day Turkey - is watching closely and so is it's secular minded military. Is the country inching closer to Islam or Democracy? A 90% (!) turnout of the 42 million voters is to be expected for this important decision. Al Jazeera has a insightful special covering the event.
posted by homodigitalis on Jul 22, 2007 - 44 comments


MMORPG maker to create oversight committee of elected players -- The makers of Eve Online, are taking a bold step in combating charges (previously discussed here) of favoritism towards one of the dominant in-game groups: holding elections for player ombudsman who will be flown to Iceland to audit the company's practices and report back to the game's subscribers.
posted by uri on Jun 12, 2007 - 21 comments

The Myth of the Rational Voter

Why are American voters reluctant to support free market policies when professional economists have achieved near-consensus? Bryan Caplan of the Cato Institute investigates. (pdf)
posted by stammer on Jun 1, 2007 - 71 comments

Investigating Russia's NGO Crackdown

Russia's attack on independent voices. In 2005, Alexandra Poolos interviewed Russian journalist and human rights activist Anna Politkovskaya. Two years later, Politkovskaya is one of fourteen journalists murdered since Vladimir Putin came to power, and Frontline sent Poolos to Russia to investigate the Kremlin's crackdown on independent voices. She reports on voices struggling to survive -- the last independent newspaper, a persecuted Chechen activist -- amidst a booming economy and resurgent authoritarianism.
posted by Coherence Panda on May 18, 2007 - 5 comments


40 lie dead, as General Pervez Musharraf tries to quash the judiciary of Pakistan, before the elections (pdf) to be held this year.
posted by hadjiboy on May 13, 2007 - 66 comments

Date with a Transvestite Spirit Medium

Burmese Daze: In which the author submits to the pleasures of a transgender spirit possession festival in Burma. [Via Disinformation.]
posted by homunculus on Apr 25, 2007 - 11 comments

Make Internet TV

MITV: A how to for internet video production, from the friendly people at the Participatory Culture Foundation (makers of the Democracy Player).
posted by signal on Apr 16, 2007 - 6 comments

Iran: the hidden power

The war in Iran has already begun. "Iran's leadership proclaims its confidence and ambition but it draws power from a western threat that enables it to target and crush grassroots protest." Opinion and analysis from the authors of Iran on the Brink.
posted by Abiezer on Apr 14, 2007 - 26 comments

Parties of God: The Bush Doctrine and the rise of Islamic Democracy

"While the West debates whether the Islamic world is ready for democracy, an equally appropriate question is whether the West is ready for Islamic democracy." Parties of God, by Ken Silverstein, is an interesting read on democracy in the Middle East.
posted by chunking express on Apr 11, 2007 - 50 comments


When the fascists embargo, when the boss pollutes, when the economy collapses, when the club plans to close, heck, when you're too high-tech for hierarchy, perhaps it's time you considered launching a worker-owned cooperative (pdfs). Or at least getting to know one near you.
posted by ioesf on Mar 26, 2007 - 20 comments

The Must-Do List

The Must-Do List. The NY Times lists the administration policies that congress must reverse if it intends to undo the damage done to America by the Bush Administration.
posted by empath on Mar 4, 2007 - 17 comments

It appears...that the people of the United States prefer the Roman approach

Chalmers Johnson whose Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic is out today, provides something the CIA won't: a National Intelligence Estimate for the United States.
posted by inoculatedcities on Feb 6, 2007 - 44 comments

Madisonian Democracy without Madison Avenue

Deliberative Polling®, developed by Professor James S. Fishkin, is a technique which combines deliberation in small group discussions with scientific random sampling to provide public consultation for public policy and for electoral issues. Since deliberation is good for civic health, this model has also been floated as a fourth branch of government: Deliberation Day. This proposal has met with some criticism. (Many links are pdf.)
posted by anotherpanacea on Jan 22, 2007 - 13 comments

The Economist: The World in 2007

In 2007 there will be lots of anniversaries, the web will keep killing the television star, the popcorn will taste familiar, humankind will come closer still to achieving immortality, and text messaging will conquer Africa. And although the spread of democracy is stalling (don't worry however - the Swedes still win (pdf)), it's still down to George Bush.

The Economist: The World in 2007.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Dec 2, 2006 - 38 comments

beirut dispatch

Murder Update: "Syria's Lebanese allies are trying to undermine the Hariri investigation from within, and are expected to escalate their efforts very soon, maybe even this week."
posted by kliuless on Nov 21, 2006 - 8 comments

Hacking Democracy

Hacking Democracy. A frightening and well-made full-length HBO documentary.
posted by Espoo2 on Nov 5, 2006 - 40 comments

We're coming to your town, we'll drag your budget down

On November 7th, Americans have much to decide. While the two major parties joust for control of the Senate and House, many a ballot initiative does not recieve the scutiny required. Consider Oregon's Rainy Day Amendment, Arizona's HOPE Amendment, California's Protect Our Homes Initiative or Idaho's Proposition 2. Examine the Taxpayer Bill of Rights in Maine and Proposal 6 in Michigan - weigh them against three bills in Montana. [more inside]
posted by EatTheWeak on Nov 5, 2006 - 20 comments

Polling Place Photo Project

The Polling Place Photo Project is an experiment in citizen journalism that intends to collect photographs of every polling place in America next Tuesday.
posted by coudal on Nov 2, 2006 - 19 comments

Anna Politkovskaya 1958 - 7 October 2006

Newsfilter: Chechen war reporter found dead - Anna Politkovskaya. Courageous reporting from the "forgotten" conflicts in Caucasus. I guess she found out the truth too often.
posted by hoskala on Oct 7, 2006 - 26 comments

"Nonparticipation in the election process is more of a problem in this country than noncitizens trying to vote."

Some people call it a poll-tax: "The House yesterday passed legislation that would require voters to show a valid photo identification in federal elections over the overwhelming objections of Democrats who compared the bill to segregation-era measures aimed at disenfranchising Southern blacks." [previously]
posted by chunking express on Sep 21, 2006 - 192 comments

The Euston Manifesto.

The Euston Manifesto. We are democrats and progressives. We propose here a fresh political alignment. Many of us belong to the Left, but the principles that we set out are not exclusive. We reach out, rather, beyond the socialist Left towards egalitarian liberals and others of unambiguous democratic commitment. Indeed, the reconfiguration of progressive opinion that we aim for involves drawing a line between the forces of the Left that remain true to its authentic values, and currents that have lately shown themselves rather too flexible about these values. It involves making common cause with genuine democrats, whether socialist or not. via
posted by semmi on Sep 1, 2006 - 28 comments

At least the Cold War made sense.

Now we're faced with a supposedly democratic Russia where the opposition parties are established, crushed, united, their leadership changed, all at the behest of the president. China, now clearly a capitalist state, albeit one without the democratic trimmings, still calls itself communist. Vietnam has gone much the same way.

Some things remain the same, though. America's still meddling in Latin America, just like it did during the Cold War. The US Army is also fighting a guerilla resistance in Iraq, its leaders apparently ignorant of the lessons of history, yet accusing others of exactly that. It's just like the 60s, when it was just as obvious who had learnt lessons and who hadn't.
posted by imperium on Aug 30, 2006 - 48 comments

Pirates' Rule

The Golden Age of Piracy [video/audio] in the Atlantic peaked as the War of Spanish Succession ended. Piracy was a natural progression for the privateers [2] and buccaneers who had lost their sanctioned prey, and faced little resistance due to a lack of strong government in the majority of the American Colonies. Meanwhile captured naval seamen and slaves often willingly joined with pirates, or fled brutal treatment for the egalitarianism of piracy. This motley crew of motives were united in pirate democracy, laid down in a pirate code, preparing the way for democracy in the United States. But as the popularity of pirate life and pirate utopias grew strong, they became a pest to be mercilessly crushed by colonial opposition and the British navy.
posted by MetaMonkey on Aug 6, 2006 - 11 comments

From Dictatorship to Democracy

From Dictatorship to Democracy. This guide to non-violent revolution by Gene Sharp was the handbook for turning over dictatorial regimes in Serbia, Georgia and the Ukraine. you know... just for future reference.
posted by empath on May 16, 2006 - 19 comments

The Bolivarian Revolution just got interesting

Newsfilter: Chavez announces he may call a referendum asking voters to allow him to rule without further elections until 2031, well past the 2012 limit currently imposed by the Venezuelan constitution. Bluff? Naked power grab? Fatal mistake? Either way, watch what you say about it if you're in Caracas.
posted by loquax on May 8, 2006 - 248 comments

Click here to edit this law.

Wikocracy. Don't like the law? Write it yourself.
posted by monju_bosatsu on May 5, 2006 - 29 comments

Think things better before Bush?

Forty men and one woman went to prison for sedition in Montana Seems that we make faulty assumptions about how we have protection and rights in our democracy, and that things used to be much better than they now are...not so. A big difference, though, is that now our Big Brothers have technology to help snare misbehaving citizens.
posted by Postroad on May 3, 2006 - 38 comments

Breathing room...

For those following the situation in Nepal (previously mentioned here, here, and here), the King has relented and reinstated parliament, though it's not clear whether the new Prime Minister has long for this world. The Maoists have declared a ceasefire, though they aren't happy about the development. Everything is still awaiting a constituent assembly...
posted by graymouser on Apr 27, 2006 - 3 comments

Chaos in Nepal

Nepal is known as the birthplace Buddha, however, it's also a place in which the ruling government has decided a "shoot to kill" policy is the best way to deal with anti-monarchy protesters.
posted by Guerilla on Apr 19, 2006 - 20 comments

The Tank Man

The Tank Man (via Frontline). An iconic image of the Tiananmen Square Massacre.
posted by bardic on Apr 14, 2006 - 45 comments

The city is ours!

Город наш! The city is ours! Belarussians are using weblogs, online communities, and text messaging to organize, share news and numerous photos, and oppose their corrupt government's fraudulent election. Patriotism, flags, and dark blue is in fashion, whether the government likes it or not.
posted by insomnia_lj on Mar 23, 2006 - 32 comments

Law and Order

Shari'a law vs. the US Constitution. In the matter of the establishing in the US Muslim enclaves practicing, imposing, and enforcing Islamic law, Shari'a.
posted by semmi on Mar 22, 2006 - 47 comments


Despotism. In 1946, Encyclopedia Britannica and Harold Lasswell produced an educational film about the nature of Despotism. Calls to mind contemporary examples of despotism, and (in view of Lasswell's own views on the subject) raises some interesting questions about the uses and misuses of persuasion and propaganda. Film link via the Prelinger Archive, previously discussed here).
posted by washburn on Mar 16, 2006 - 8 comments

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