OPINION

System failure?

The next World Economic Forum at Davos will focus on the lack of trust in democratic institutions highlighted in a major international study, which was conducted in 47 countries and which condenses the opinions of 1.4 billion citizens. According to the study, the key focus of peoples’ mistrust is their own national parliaments, which inspire even more suspicion than multinational enterprises, the International Monetary Fund and the legal system. Governments, the press and trade unions attract almost zero faith. So whom do people trust then? The army… This is especially true in countries such as the USA, Israel and Pakistan, where the armed forces act as an antidote to fear of terrorism, and where democratic bodies are even more widely rejected. In two-thirds of countries, the overriding conviction is that governments are ruled by vested interests, and not by the will of the people. Under such circumstances, political aberrations are almost inevitable – they have always happened and will continue to happen. The restoration of order, the imposition of «good» always starts as a promise and is consolidated in bloody dictatorships. The imposition of virtue always ends in terror, and terror creates two irreconcilable classes: the executioner and the victim. Of course, such aberrations don’t often occur in liberal democratic regimes, where civilized coexistence is the norm and freedom has been built on individual conscience – though progress has rested on inequality and the degradation of souls…