Book challenge consolidating democracy democracy journal regional third wave
Many people in these countries -- especially the poor -- are thus citizens only in name and have few meaningful channels of political participation.There are elections, but they are contests between corrupt, clientelistic parties.There are parliaments and local governments, but they do not represent broad constituencies.There are constitutions, but not constitutionalism. As a result, disillusioned and disenfranchised voters have embraced authoritarian strongmen (such as Vladimir Putin in Russia) or demagogic populists (such as Chávez in Venezuela).Western policymakers can assist in this process by demanding more than superficial electoral democracy.By holding governments accountable and making foreign aid contingent on good governance, donors can help reverse the democratic recession.And aspirations for democratic progress have been thwarted everywhere in the Arab world (except Morocco), whether by terrorism and political and religious violence (as in Iraq), externally manipulated societal divisions (as in Lebanon), or authoritarian regimes themselves (as in Egypt, Jordan, and some of the Persian Gulf monarchies, such as Bahrain).
At the same time, most newcomers to the democratic club (and some long-standing members) have performed poorly.By Larry Diamond Since 1974, more than 90 countries have made transitions to democracy, and by the turn of the century approximately 60 percent of the world's independent states were democratic.The democratization of Mexico and Indonesia in the late 1990s and the more recent "color revolutions" in Georgia and Ukraine formed the crest of a tidal wave of democratic transitions.With some prominent exceptions (such as Indonesia, Mexico, and Ukraine), the democratic gains of the past decade have come primarily in smaller and weaker states.In large, strategically important countries, such as Nigeria and Russia, the expansion of executive power, the intimidation of the opposition, and the rigging of the electoral process have extinguished even the most basic form of electoral democracy.
Many observers fear that Evo Morales in Bolivia and Rafael Correa in Ecuador may be headed down the same road as Chávez .