The Editors’ introduction to “High Anxiety in the Andes.”
Volume 12, Issue 2
High Anxiety in the Andes
One key source of the weakness of democracy in the Andean region is the isolation of the “political class” from the rest of society. There are growing signs that this problem is becoming more serious in Bolivia.
The conventional wisdom about Venezuela’s plight is largely mistaken. Only when Venezuelans recognize the real causes of their woes will they be able to make progress in overcoming them.
Despite recent progress in the government’s negotiations with rebel groups, Colombia’s problems remain acute: continued violence, growing human rights abuses, severe income inequality, and a depressed economy.
The sudden and surprising downfall of President Alberto Fujimori has opened the way for a return to democracy in Peru, but the country’s new leaders will face major challenges in the coming years.
Massive protest by indigenous groups in both 2000 and 2001 have overthrown one president and weakened another. Though such conflict poses a short-term threat, it may ultimately contribute to democratic development.
In postindustrial societies, class is less important as a source of party cleavage. With the European left embracing a market-friendly “third way,” political divisions in Europe are increasingly resembling those in the United States.
The mass demonstrations that ousted President Joseph Estrada recalled those that had brought down dictator Ferdinand Marcos 15 years earlier. Yet the return of “People Power” raises some concerns about the health of Filipino democracy.
With longtime ruler Jerry Rawlings obeying constitutional term limits, the opposition won a narrow electoral victory, bringing Ghana its first peaceful transfer of power since independence.
The November 2000 parliamentary elections, expected to be a step forward for democracy, instead turned into a major setback, casting doubt on the country’s future stability.
Revisiting Florida 2000
The Editors’ introduction to “Revisiting Florida 2000.”
Although friendly to business, Singapore’s government represses dissent and is far from transparent in its management of public funds. A leading dissident chronicles his struggle for greater openness.
A review of Culture Matters: How Values Shape Human Progress, edited by Lawrence E. Harrison and Samuel P. Huntington.
Reports on elections in Benin, Cape Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Moldova, Samoa, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, and Yugoslavia (Serbia).
Excerpts from: South Korean president Kim Dae Jung’s speech accepting the 2000 Nobel Prize for Peace; the inaugural address of Ghanian president John Kufor; Philippine president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s inaugural address; the “National Action Charter for the State of Bahrain”; the “Appeal for Democracy” issued on behalf of the Unified Buddhist Church of Vietnam.