New America Foundation: Daniel Deudney- Liberal Democracy vs. Autocracy

We The People
I love the word liberalization as a Liberal, because it means opening things up and freeing people to live their lives. Which is what happened to Eastern Europe in the late 1980s and early 90s, as well as some of the former Slavic Russian republics that were part of the Soviet Union of Russia. And to the Southeastern Slavic states in the Balkans as well in the 1990s. And that is exactly what liberalism is.

Liberalization, freeing people up and allowing them to live in freedom, which seriously goes against the liberal stereotypes that liberalism is about big government. “And the state that the state knows best and that freedom is essentially dangerous because it just gives people freedom to make mistakes. So you need a superstate to take care of people and limit freedom to only things that do not harm society.” But that is not liberalism, but some Far-Left or Far-Right statist ideology whatever you want to call it other than liberalism. Because liberalism is not statist and not about a superstate.

But of course there are multiple forms of democracies just like there are multiple forms of autocracies. There are Democrats small d as well as what I would call big D and there are Autocrats. Liberal democracy is what America is about and that makes us different from Europe which tends to be more of a direct social democracy. With more of a majoritarian philosophy, where America is a constitutional federal republic in the form of a liberal democracy.

The majority cannot rule over the minority at will and there are certain limits to what the majority can do. And they do not always get what they want and our Constitution is a perfect example of that. Where we are never in danger of losing any of our constitutional amendments even if at some point fifty-one percent of the country thinks free speech, or self-defense is dangerous and those amendments must be repealed. In Europe in many cases laws and policies are put in place simply because that is what the people want at the time.

And like I said there are small d Democrats and there are Democrats. There are Liberal Democrats such as myself which is really how I define my political philosophy. And there are Conservative Democrats, people who tend to be Republicans and both essentially believe in liberal democracy. But differ when it comes to the role of government, but then there are also Social Democrats.

Social Democrats, or Democratic Socialists, tend to be more in favor of social democracy. More of a direct form of democracy as well as a bigger role for government in society. Especially as it relates to the economy to insure that more people have what they need to live well in life. More of a socialist type of Democrat that is more common in Europe. But we have Social Democrats in America as well.

About Erik Schneider

Full-time blogger on a multiple ray of topics and subjects, because of multiple interests.
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