The Cracks In Our Democracies

And so it came to pass, in the year two thousand and eleven, that many nations trembled. Others wobbled slightly, but give it time.

The response in the democratic western nations was particularly interesting. After all, they’d spent the last decade exporting democracy to various countries, such as Iraq and Afghanistan, they were experts in such matters.

And so, when thousands of peaceful protestors took to the streets in America, the UK and other beacons of civilisation, the obvious response was to:

* Pepper-spray non-resisting students in the face;

* Ban protests in advance from the 2012 London Olympics (same as Beijing!);

* Enforce a media blackout on the eviction of Occupy Wall Street;

* Discuss turning off social media during times of unrest (same as Colonel Gaddafi!);

* Fracturing the skull of a veteran of the war in Iraq;

* Closing libraries;

* Destroying libraries;

* Lobbyists pay almost a million dollars to smear their political enemies.

Do I think we’re watching a concerted conspiracy to deprive us all of our civil rights? No. The people who’d be behind such a conspiracy are too arrogant, disorganised and out of touch to successfully pull it off. However, it does feel like we’re watching democracy suffer the death of a thousand cuts. One police department reacts in a certain way to protests, tactics get shared with colleagues, politicians blunder in without understanding or caring about the greater ramifications…

And then one day, seemingly overnight, our civil rights will be hopelessly eroded, not because the next Hitler swept to power, but because a bunch of local politicians and civil servants acted out of ignorance and panic, while our national leaders staggered around struggling to summon up a coherent response.

Terrifying isn’t it?


4 thoughts on “The Cracks In Our Democracies

    1. matthewhyde Post author

      Good call on the Prison Break reference, it does feel a bit like that, only in real life it feels less organised and competent… Which in some ways makes what we’re seeing even more dangerous!


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