DEMOCRACY, IDEALS AND POPULISM
Keywords:democracy, equality, liberty, populism, trust
AbstractMany citizens consider, on the one side, as being unsatisfactory the way the institutions of democratic political system is functioning, and, on the other side, the same voices are expressing themselves in favor of searching for, maintaining or studying thoroughly democracy, which is appreciated as the most desirable political regime. Citizens don't want to abandon democracy, but on the contrary. The political expectations of many of them are bound up of increasing democratization. This finding may be used as a possible explanation for the ascension of populist political movements, observable in the last years in the entire democratic world. Populism promises to give back and to respect the sovereignty of the people, to defence the liberty, the rights and the welfare of the simple citizens, against the enemies which are vitiating the democratic political system. Consequently, populist political movements tend to be considered a solution for getting more democracy. However, despite of willing more democracy, citizens, through populism, may be in the case of receiving less democracy, or even absolutely nothing. A proper knowledge of the political reality, of the limits that democratic political systems have, and of the illusions spread by the populist political programs could protect us from dangerous political experiments.
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