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Western democracy “not good” for long-term interests of people: analyst

Western democracy “not good” for long-term interests of people: analyst

SOUNDBITE: (ENGLISH)DANIEL BELL, Tsinghua University professor
“I mean the problem with the western democracy is that even if they work well – which they don’t always. In the American system, obviously the power of capital and money influencing the outcome is very very strong. Other countries are not so bad in that sense. But even when they work well — the political leaders do a good job of representing the interest of voters. The problem is that it’ s not just the voters who are affected by the policies of government. It’s also future generations and its people living outside the country. Look at a big country like the U.S. . Whatever they do affects the rest of the world, but people outside the U.S don’t have a say in the political system. So it’s good to have – at least at the higher levels of government – political leaders who are not so bound by the short-term interest of the electorate and potentially they could represent the interest of future generations and people living outside the country “Tianxia” – to use the language of Confucianism. If you think of issues like climate change, this isn’t just a theoretical problem obviously. It could be that we’re facing a huge disaster and democracies not coming to terms with that. The reason is that democracies aren’t good at representing the long-term interests of people. I think political meritocracy – if not in an actual but in a potential way- can do a better job.”

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