Skip to content

The Age of Democratic Capitalism is Over

Washington Post reviews three new books arguing this. Very convincing, except for the “over” part.

This entry was posted in Academic research, In the news. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.


  1. Nelson Villoria wrote:

    I believed that Venezuelans did not care about democracy, that for the middle class, as long as their consumerism was untouched, politics was unimportant. Yet, 10 years later, Chavez is still far from totally dominating the Venezuelan society — he got oil, he got charisma, he got money, he got the guns, but he can’t govern the country. True, he dispossessed the former middle class as part of his plan of empowering minorities. But opposition is always there, from the former middle class, the minorities supposed to be saved by socialism, army men and women that value institutions, middle class students, poor students… it seems, after all, that a genuine democratic spirit lives on, making every single year of Chavismo a struggle… thus, here you have, a small country always closer to socialism than to anything else, puts a huge fight against a Messiah… and, so it seems, this is hard to classify as a societal choice that drifts away from the west, as long as the west material perks are untouched. Or at least, I’d like to believe so.

    Posted May 29, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Permalink
  2. China is about as capitalist as the USA and Europe. Most of what socialism remains is merely pro forma – old bottles with old labels into which new wine has been poured, for example firms are still theoretically state owned but that are now subject to market discipline, and have to obtain private capital with private profits by selling shares to private investors.

    The lesson of China is not that western capitalism failed, but western democracy is failing, while western capitalism is doing very well. Similarly, the collapse of the western financial system was not a collapse of the whole financial system, but the collapse of that part of it that had government guarantees against collapse and government regulation to prevent businesses from making risky bets.

    Posted May 29, 2010 at 11:12 pm | Permalink
  3. Rebecca Burlingame wrote:

    To be perfectly honest I do not believe that we have even really tried democracy yet. What’s more, possibilities exist for a balance of direct democracy with the representational democracy that money will continue to provide. Direct democracy is possible through human skill.

    Posted June 2, 2010 at 5:39 pm | Permalink
  4. Tord Steiro wrote:
    Posted June 4, 2010 at 6:08 am | Permalink

One Trackback

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by William Easterly and Philip Auerswald, Rhodia Colomes. Rhodia Colomes said: RT @bill_easterly: Age of Democratic Capitalism is Over. Not. […]

  • About Aid Watch

    The Aid Watch blog is a project of New York University's Development Research Institute (DRI). This blog is principally written by William Easterly, author of "The Elusive Quest for Growth: Economists' Adventures and Misadventures in the Tropics" and "The White Man's Burden: Why the West's Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good," and Professor of Economics at NYU. It is co-written by Laura Freschi and by occasional guest bloggers. Our work is based on the idea that more aid will reach the poor the more people are watching aid.

    "Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking." - H.L. Mencken

  • Archives