Democracy’s Wane

The world is in a ‘freedom recession.

After the West won the Cold War, democracy flourished in the world as never before. No more. The tide of political and human freedom hasn’t merely slowed but in recent years has turned in the other direction. Seeing that the U.S. midwifed the post-1989 world, these trends are of more than passing interest.

Democracy’s troubles are summed up in “Freedom in the World 2010,” the yearly report card published today by Freedom House. We’re in a “freedom recession,” the advocacy group says. For the fourth consecutive year, more countries saw declines in political and civic rights than advances, the longest such period of deterioration in the 40 year history of this widely cited report.

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