Democracy Articles


High Intelligence, Low Information

A chat with a ‘Real American.’
3:45 PM, Aug 12, 2015

I live out in Real Virginia, which is to say the part of Virginia that is technically a D.C. exurb, but is populated almost entirely by normal people. My neighbors are teachers and plumbers and soldiers and engineers. Plenty of the folks out here work for the federal government, but none of them work in politics.

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Obama Criticizes the Democratic Process in Undemocratic Ethiopia

2:35 PM, Jul 27, 2015

On Monday, President Obama arrived on a presidential visit to Ethiopia. The trip to the east African state raised eyebrows, even among President Obama’s allies on the American left.

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China Grows Ever More Repressive

10:29 AM, Jul 17, 2015

Even in the context of China’s steadily deteriorating human rights situation, the developments of the last few weeks have been remarkable. 

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Beijing to Try Another Smoking Ban

8:06 AM, Jun 03, 2015

In at least one respect, visiting China is a little bit like traveling back in time to America in, say, 1957. (Or so I gather.) That is, people routinely smoke cigarettes in shopping malls, elevators, lines, apartment building hallways, schools, and yes, even hospitals. (Oh, and of course bars and restaurants.) Thus, the news that Beijing has just imposed a strict smoking ban in indoor public spaces in the city is a little bit surprising.

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White House: Bibi's Election Undermines 'Democratic Ideals'

7:05 PM, Mar 18, 2015

In a comment unprompted by any question from the media, White House press secretary lashed into some of the rhetoric Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu used in his reelection campaign. The White House even suggested it had hurt Israel's democracy and America's relationship with its greatest ally in the Middle East.

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The Israeli Referendum

11:02 AM, Feb 21, 2015

Everyone knows that the coming Israel election, to be held March 17, is a referendum on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

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What’s So Bad About Old Hickory?

Quite a bit, actually.
9:03 AM, Feb 18, 2015

Michael Brendan Doughtery had an interesting piece at The Week, in which he calls Andrew Jackson “

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Rubio Uses Crowdsourcing to Reach Dissidents in Iran, Cuba

7:06 AM, Feb 12, 2015

Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, a possible Republican presidential candidate, is using a crowdsourcing platform to try to reach dissidents and human rights activists in autocratic regimes. In particular, Rubio is trying to help those oppressed by the governments of Iran and Cuba.

"I'm a member of the U.S. Congress looking for Iran and Cuba human rights cases to highlight," the headline for Rubio's post on the platform Movements.org reads.

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Beyond the Barricades

Xi lowers the boom on Hong Kong.
Dec 15, 2014

With the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Beijing safely over and regional leaders departed, China’s new strongman Xi Jinping decided to lower the boom on Hong Kong. Police there began clearing the barricades last week from the city’s main thoroughfare with the students in apparent retreat. Hong Kong’s chief executive, Leung Chun-ying, widely perceived as Beijing’s puppet, was quoted by Reuters as promising “resolute action” and warning students not to return to occupation sites.

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In China, President Obama Quotes Deng Xiaoping: 'Seek Truth From Facts'

11:44 AM, Nov 13, 2014

In the "Great Hall of the People" in Beijing, China, President Obama appeared with China's current president Xi Jinping at a joint press conference Wednesday. During his remarks as he noted the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and China, President Obama recalled a saying of one of Jinping's most well-known predecessors, Deng Xiaoping: "Seek truth from facts."

This year marks the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our two nations.  I’m told that Deng Xiaoping said that we must “seek truth from facts. Read more

Hong Kong Protest Shifts, but World Democracies Ignore

9:31 AM, Oct 28, 2014

On Sunday, the leaders of Hong Kong’s democracy protests abruptly scrapped a poll of protester sentiment they had announced just days earlier. The idea of the poll had been to get protesters’ reactions to two bones thrown to them by the Hong Kong government in televised talks held on October 21.   

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Hong Kong Democracy Protesters to Meet With Government Officials

10:44 AM, Oct 20, 2014

Representatives of the student led democracy protests in Hong Kong are due to enter into a dialogue with the Hong Kong government on Tuesday.  The prospects for success are not good.  The two sides are far apart, with the government saying it will not even discuss the protesters’ chief demand – the democratic election of the chief execut

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Israel and the West

6:14 AM, Jul 17, 2014

Douglas Murray has a terrific post at the London Spectator's website, a reply to Hugo Rifkind's claim in his column in the magazine that Israel is "drifting away" from the West.

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China Targets Moderate Democracy Activist

7:15 AM, Jul 02, 2014

In a 2007 article in THE WEEKLY STANDARD, “Let a Hundred Flowers Be Crushed,” the Chinese lawyer Pu Zhiqiang, told of being followed by security agents every year around the anniversary of the June 4, 1989 massacre of democracy protesters. Pu responded by ushering the agents to a conference room at his law firm and screening The Lives of Others, the 2006 Oscar winning film about an East German Stasi agent who protects the playwright he is spyin

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State Dept: Egypt's Jailing of Journalists a 'Detour on the Path to Democracy'

9:11 AM, Jun 28, 2014

In spite of a string of worrisome human rights and freedom of expression violations, the Obama administration is holding out hope that Egypt's government lead by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is still headed for democracy.

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Obama at the U.N.: Still Absent on Freedom and Democracy

11:15 AM, Sep 24, 2013

In his speech today at the United Nations, President Obama continued his administration’s odd and somewhat schizophrenic policy with respect to freedom, human rights, and democracy.

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Special Report Panel on Voter ID Laws

8:17 AM, Aug 27, 2013

Steve Hayes, with Mara Liasson and Charles Krauthammer, last night on Fox News:

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White House: 'We Call On All Egyptians to Come Together'

3:59 PM, Jul 06, 2013

The White House just emailed to reporters this "Readout of the President’s Meeting with the National Security Council Regarding the Situation in Egypt":

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WH Respects Vote, Congratulates Iranian People

6:22 PM, Jun 15, 2013

In a statement, press secretary Jay Carney says the U.S. respects the Iranian election and congratulates the Iranian people.

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Chinese Nobel Laureate's Brother In-Law Sentenced to 11 Years

10:18 AM, Jun 14, 2013

Earlier this week, the brother in-law of Chinese Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo was sentenced to 11 years in prison.

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Kagan's 'Farewell Lecture'

7:50 AM, Apr 28, 2013

Matthew Kaminski on Donald Kagan, in the Wall Street Journal:

Donald Kagan is engaging in one last argument. For his "farewell lecture" here at Yale on Thursday afternoon, the 80-year-old scholar of ancient Greece—whose four-volume history of the Peloponnesian War inspired comparisons to Edward Gibbon's Roman history—uncorked a biting critique of American higher education.

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Kerry Praises Egypt's 'Version of the Democracy'

1:34 PM, Mar 04, 2013

Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Sunday the release of a quarter of a billion dollars in aid to Egypt. The Associated Press reports:

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Egypt Against Itself

A society on the edge of chaos.
Feb 18, 2013

This week marks the second anniversary of the fall of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak. Two years after the refrain “the people want to topple the regime” filled Tahrir Square, it is now Egypt itself that is toppling. Street violence has pitted various groups against each other—anarchists against Islamists, policemen against protesters, men against women—and has left scores dead throughout the country.

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Al Gore: 'Our Democracy Has Been Hacked'

2:06 PM, Jan 29, 2013

This morning on the Today show, former vice president Al Gore claimed that "our democracy has been hacked."

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Iranian Regime Exerts Pressure on Green Movement

Advance work before the election.
5:45 PM, Jan 09, 2013

As the June 2013 presidential election in Iran draws near, it appears there is an effort underway to rekindle a national debate about the regime’s legitimacy.

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The West Fights Back

ADVANCE COPY from the December 3, 2012 issue.
12:00 AM, Nov 22, 2012

There are some facts so obvious that only a liberal could deny them. One of them is that, from Benghazi to Be’er Sheva, the West is under attack.

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Reading Tocqueville in Beijing

The old regime fears a revolution.
Nov 19, 2012

Does Alexis de Tocqueville have anything to say to the current generation of Chinese leaders?

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No Vote in China

A billion people disenfranchised.
Nov 12, 2012

China and the United States both launch leadership transitions this week. Earnest persons, in fear or hope, turn a raindrop of coincidence into a storm of meaning. In fact, November 6 here and November 8 in Beijing, when the Chinese Communist party (CCP) opens its 18th congress, have nothing in common except dual fascination to a jumpy world.

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Back in the USSR?

Georgia elects an oligarch.
Oct 22, 2012

Tbilisi

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