221. The nouns of our (political) time

Egotism, narcissism, aggression, cheating, self-righteousness, pride, dishonesty, corruption. The list goes on. For those who invented, developed and spread democracy, in ancient times and in the Europe of the Enlightment and the America of Independence, association with one of those nouns was sufficient disqualification from public office or leadership. Today, in modern democracies, it seems that even association with all of them simultaneously, which requires dedication and seems like pretty hard box ticking work, is condoned or justified by large sections of the electorate, taken as secondary to perceived economic management skill or self-professed toughness in international commercial relationships or on imagined immigration crises. Does this reflect the fact that electors are permissive of these traits in themselves and feel represented by them? Or the fact that the undermining of institutions has succeeded to the point that all in political life are tarnished with the same brush? 

Length: 1,000 characters


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