Democracy Painted on a Rusted Boat Filippo Minelli/Flickr

Repensar la democracia

PRINCETON – Según muchos indicadores, el mundo nunca fue tan democrático como ahora. Casi todos los gobiernos se ocupan de la democracia y los derechos humanos, como mínimo, de la boca para afuera. Si bien las elecciones pueden no ser libres y justas, la manipulación electoral masiva es infrecuente y hace ya mucho han pasado aquellos días en que solo los hombres, los blancos o los ricos podían votar. Las encuestas mundiales de Freedom House muestran un continuo aumento de la proporción de países «libres» desde la década de 1970 –una tendencia que el difunto politólogo de Harvard, Samuel Huntington apodó la «tercera ola» de democratización.

La difusión de las normas democráticas de los países avanzados occidentales al resto del mundo tal vez haya constituido el beneficio más significativo de la globalización. Sin embargo, no todo marcha sobre ruedas para la democracia. Los actuales gobiernos democráticos muestran un mal desempeño y su futuro enfrenta serias dudas.

En los países avanzados, la insatisfacción con el gobierno surge de su incapacidad para producir políticas económicas eficaces para el crecimiento y la inclusión. En las nuevas democracias del mundo en desarrollo, la falta de salvaguarda de las libertades civiles y de la libertad política es una fuente adicional de descontento.

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