为民主竖起手指

丹佛—二十一世纪最具标志性——也许也最具误导性——的新形象是2005年1月竖起染着紫色墨水的食指、面带笑容地表示自己投了票的伊拉克人。对很多人来说,这是他们这辈子第一次投票。

这些形象所要表达的故事是民主终于来到了伊拉克。没有选举的制度不可称之为民主。因此,对许多人来说,看到运转良好的投票过程(墨水手印防止选民一票多投)足以证明情况起了变化。

但是民主制度过于复杂,自由选举只是其中一个特征。无选举当然意味着不民主。但反之未必就是民主。选举是民主的必要而不充分条件,民主还需要秉持民主价值观的经久的机构(institutions)。

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