Episodes
Up to today, since the Mexican government deployed the military in 2006 up to the present, Mexico has experienced close to 200,000 battle deaths. That's roughly the number of battle deaths that took place in the civil war in Guatemala. So, the 36 year old civil war in Guatemala that produced approximately 200,000 battle deaths. That's where Mexico is right now. Guillermo Trejo A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a brief primer on Mexican politics here. Guillermo...
Published 09/21/21
Chinese participation in the human rights regime probably was never really intended to alter human rights so much in China that it would jeopardize the Chinese Communist Party’s hold on power. I think China, even if it may have been open to some areas of human rights, I think that we have to keep in mind that the full implementation of human rights including all of the elements of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights would mean that political competition is allowed. And that's just not...
Published 09/14/21
Putin in the past could claim to have won at least an honest plurality, if not an honest majority of votes given his approval. However, in the upcoming election this fall, in September, it looks like the Kremlin has so restricted political competition that it's going to be a difficult sell to the Russian public to show that these elections are even as legitimate as the elections held in 2016 or in 2011. Timothy Frye A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a brief primer...
Published 09/07/21
Biden's current policy is, you know, we want Putin to calm down, be stable for awhile and turn our focus to restraining China. I don't think that's going to happen. That's not in his interest to do that. So, I think taking our eye off Russia, underestimating it, is the biggest concern for the U.S. currently. Kathryn Stoner A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a brief primer on Russia here. Kathryn Stoner is a professor of political science at Stanford University....
Published 08/31/21
It was an era in which lawmakers and office holders learned that imprecision could actually work to their benefit to allow them to do what they wanted to because there was unclear codification in the law. And so yes, everybody talks about, we have to revise this law or get rid of this law or replace this law. But I want to say, it's not about that. It's about what constitutes a legitimately written, voted upon law. And I think that's something we still haven't countered since 9/11. Karen...
Published 08/24/21
Beginning in the 1990s, and then really picking up after 9/11, the United States overreached ideologically by thinking it could turn Iraq and Afghanistan into Ohio. It overreached economically by throwing open the nation's doors and saying the more trade, the better. And suddenly, I think, Americans said to themselves and to their leaders, ‘Wait a minute. Too much world, not enough America.' Charles Kupchan A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com or a brief primer on...
Published 08/17/21
It's not just inequality of wealth. It is not just inequality of income, which is big. It's also inequality in terms of the geographical clustering of different strata of the population, of different people. It's inequality in life experiences. It's inequality in treatment. People felt mistreated by those in the upper echelons of society. So, it's not just money. It's also access to public goods, to certain spaces in the city, to education, unemployment benefits, and all sorts of things. But...
Published 08/10/21
I think this actually reflects why we've seen a coup now. Clearly, the coup has really brought serious economic devastation for the entire country and the military itself will also not benefit from this. And that to me is the key, because they're not primarily motivated just by economic incentives and spoils. As a systematic military institution, it is driven by their own identity. Their own perception of what the Myanmar mother nation state should look like. Roger Lee Huang A full...
Published 08/03/21
Americans are expected to take on debt, because that's how we're expected to finance everything from basic needs to a college education. And that's a function of economic policy making. That doesn't happen by accident. Mallory SoRelle A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com. Mallory SoRelle is an assistant professor of public policy at Duke University and the author of Democracy Declined: The Failed Politics of Consumer Financial Protection. Key Highlights Include How...
Published 07/27/21
This was not a phenomenon to one specific region. This was nothing that got invented in one place and at one time. It seems to have emerged independently in a wide, wide variety of human societies at different points in time. And to me, that sounds like something that occurs naturally. David Stasavage A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com. David Stasavage is the Dean of Social Sciences and a Professor of Politics at New York University. His latest book is called The...
Published 07/20/21
The police is even acting directly against the minorities and the Delhi riots of 2020 showed that the police could be on their side in the street in their rioting activities. This is exactly the same in other BGP ruled states like Uttar Pradesh. Now you have indeed a kind of new shift, if you want. It's not only with the blessing of the state. It’s also with the active participation of the state. Christophe Jaffrelot A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com. Christophe...
Published 07/13/21
It really matters how you set up conflict and how you talk about the issue and above all how you talk about your adversary. That's where I see the decisive difference between those who tend to invoke the people, the common good and et cetera, in a way that is compatible with democracy and then those who talk in a way that, ultimately, is bound to be dangerous for democracy. Jan-Werner Müller A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com. Jan is a professor of Social Sciences at...
Published 07/06/21
They wanted the full array of rights. Political rights, yes, they were active in the suffrage movement, but they also wanted economic rights and social rights. They wanted to lessen inequalities. They also wanted the rights of mothers and of children advanced. Dorothy Sue Cobble A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com. Dorothy Sue Cobble is the Distinguished Professor of History and Labor Studies Emerita at Rutgers University and the author of For the Many: American...
Published 06/29/21
Democracy is about more than elections. Election day is very important, but what is happening in the country every other day is an integral part to what a democracy is and if you think about the fundamental freedoms that we think of in our own democracy: free speech, freedom of religion, freedom of association and assembly, also things like the independence of the judiciary, these are all things that are on the civil liberties side. Sarah Repucci A full transcript is available at...
Published 06/22/21
So many cases of democratization start with these episodes and this period of elite political violence where the initial stages of it have nothing to do with democratization. People are not aiming for that. People are barely even thinking about it. It's all about this elite political struggle and out of that chaos a bit later you get democracy. Michael Miller A full transcript is available at www.democracyparadox.com. Michael Miller is a professor of political science and international...
Published 06/15/21
The idea of a political system is not simply to be efficient. It's to have justice. It's to have the idea that anybody can come to the seat of power and say, 'Here are my grievances,' and that doesn't mean that by making that claim, they will get exactly what they want. But it does mean that they will get a hearing and in that notion, I think, lies again, a certain part of democracy that is not reduceable just to elections. Daniel Carpenter A full transcript is available at...
Published 06/08/21
The experience of Western colonization has imprinted all of these nations in profound ways and it's tended to inculcate a sort of skepticism about Western invocations of democracy and the rule of law. China, of course, shares a similar skepticism. China was also not formerly colonized, or not fully colonized by Western powers, but it experienced what the Chinese communist party likes to term a century of humiliation.  And so, both regions share an abiding ambivalence about the current...
Published 06/01/21
Racism and racial conflict are always there, always a powerful and important part of American politics. But when they combine with polarization, with this kind of partisan antagonism, and when that becomes the dividing line between the parties, that's really dangerous. That's what happened in the 1850s. It led to civil war. That's what happened in the 1890s. It led to violent conflict and mass disenfranchisement. And it's happening again today. Robert C. Lieberman A full transcript is...
Published 05/25/21
In the 19th century Europe had thought that they had moved towards liberalism, enlightenment, rationality, progress, that stuff like mass warfare was over and it wouldn't come back. And then you have four years of senseless, mass slaughter, they just totally destroyed or challenged those ideas of humankind getting better off, progress of humankind getting more civilized. In retrospect, it's hard to imagine the coincidence of deep challenges and crises that wrecked the interwar years. Kurt...
Published 05/18/21
They really view their history as one of victimization, one of struggle and even martyrdom. ARENA had multiple leaders assassinated. Again, that version of history that I just told you, that's not necessarily my view. But I do actually believe that that is their sincere belief and it makes for a really compelling founding myth if you will. And I think that founding myth has helped to hold both parties together right up until the present day. James Loxton A full transcript is available at...
Published 05/11/21
I find it hard to believe, without a lot more justification than they're offering that somehow that there's this new secret sauce to opportunity and equality and democracy that does not involve public education as the fundamental pillar. So you have people arguing that it's not. They're not saying we want to destroy democracy, but I'm saying, you as reader, you as listeners, need to think about the long-term consequences of shrinking the public education footprint and moving back into a...
Published 05/04/21
That's why all Americans should care. Because the cost of poverty is not just the cost to that person who is in poverty. It's a cost to all of society. We're all paying for people being jailed. We're all paying for extra costs in the legal system, in...
Published 04/27/21
Doctrine is actually often a lot looser and more subject to interpretation than we tend to assume and the way that the doctrine gets interpreted is often partially a function of group interests themselves. If you have a religious group in a given...
Published 04/20/21
Participatory budgeting is actually about connecting folks with the skills and resources to navigate and shape government. And so, for me, that is the most optimistic and the most important outcome of any participatory budgeting process.Shari DavisA...
Published 04/13/21
That tension between the politics of the whole and the politics of the part, that tension between the politics of generality and the politics of particularity, is really at the heart of party democracy. What we are sort of trying to capture, I suppose,...
Published 04/06/21