Let's be honest about this. Democracy is dying, because democratic societies have become deeply dysfunctional. I was recently having a conversation with a friend. I described the USA as a 'can not do' country. She just laughed (because it is so true). For example, New York City and DC have deeply dysfunctional public schools. Does anyone care? Of course, not. Is anything being done about it? Of course, not.

The reality is that liberal democracy in the West is in deep decline and authoritarian states are on the rise. China passed the US in GDP years ago and hasn’t looked back. For better or worse, authoritarian China is a rising power and ‘woke’ America is a declining power. I have a single line that summarizes the decline of the USA and the rise of China.

“China is very good at building dams, the US is very good at enforcing PC. Which system will prevail in the 21st century?”.

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How can America be a beacon for democracy when we have an entire generation groomed to want authoritarian rule? If I recall a majority of the younger generation believes socialism or communism is the way to go. By the time they realize their error...it’ll be to late...then it’ll be more of a question if they are willing to fight for what they freely handed over

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Before the US develops a Marshall Plan for encouraging democracy in the rest of the world, we must teach our own citizens of what it means to live in a constitutional democratic republic. There is a sizable minority of people on both the left and the right whose actions tell me and the rest of the world that their commitment to a representative democracy is about 6 inches deep. The best bulwark against autocracy is an educated and informed electorate starting here in the US.

Somebody first said, possibly Mark Twain, that “History may not repeat itself, but it rhymes.” In the 1930s, there were folks who were astounded by how much could be accomplished in Germany, the Soviet Union, Italy and Japan and how little could be accomplished in the "decadent" western democracies. Looking back almost 90 years, what have we learned?

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Some number of years ago, the New York Times published an article about the high cost of building subways in NYC. Roughly, the title was "3.5 billion dollars a mile". Has anything been done about this? Of course, not. California tried to build a HSR. Runaway costs killed the project. Has anything been done about this? Of course, not. In the USA, 2+2 = 'white racism'. In China, the answer is 4.

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Apr 7, 2023·edited Apr 7, 2023

Good thoughts and in addition to development we should include trade for which the OECD countries dominate in imports.

With both trade and development this should be done in conjunction with the OECDs to increase leverage. What I favor is a baseline tariff level for all countries but rescind that automatically for a country that is above a specific metric of human rights and electoral democracy, like the Freedom in the World Index. Perhaps allow some partly free countries if they are progressing and take off the list those that are regressing.

This is more of a carrot approach than the stick we have used in the past against Cuba, Venezuela, Iran etc. that rarely seems to work.

Another thought is for the democracies to pull out a lot of their support for the UN in favor of a world organization of democracies. We will need a UN as a place where all governments in power can negotiate but a lot of the UN functions could be moved to the Organization of Democracies where the resources could be leveraged to reward countries moving towards greater democracy.

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