There have been a few reports recently that American millennials are souring on democracy. Apparently it's happening across the Western world.
If you’re old enough to remember the Cold War, maybe you think of democracy as sacrosanct, an often-endangered ideal worth fighting for. But if the Berlin Wall was before your time, you might not take the value of democracy as given. That’s one conclusion that can be drawn from recent studies that suggest young people are not as sold as their parents and grandparents were on this most basic of American ideals.
According to a study published in October 2017 by Pew Research, there’s a division of opinion in many countries today on whether states are more effectively governed by “experts” or elected officials. In advanced economies, young adults are more likely than older people to prefer technocracy to democracy. The study found that in the U.S., 46 percent of those aged 18 to 29 would prefer to be governed by experts compared with 36 percent of respondents aged 50 and older.
Their attitude is entirely understandable given the degraded iteration of democracy, this Potemkin democracy on offer today. The neoliberal order is simply not, in the long run, compatible with liberal democracy. It thrives even better in command economies such as China's. Something has to give and it has, even in Canada and far more so in the United States.
Democracy hasn't existed in the U.S. for years. The Gilens and Page study, published by Princeton in 2014, vividly demonstrated that the corruption of the American government with its "bought and paid for" Congress has displaced democracy with oligarchy, plutocracy directed by America's elites.
This is what happens when progressivism is expunged from practical politics. The progressive branch of the Liberal Party was sidelined, marginalized pretty thoroughly since at least Ignatieff's reign and remains an atrophied artifact of the former Liberal party that hasn't drawn breath since Pierre Trudeau stepped down. List the major progressive achievements of every Liberal leader since Trudeau. It's a damned short list. Oddly enough the only one who showed progressive leanings was Martin with such things as R2P, the Kelowna Accords, and such.
The kids know this business about democracy is a scam. Let's not blame them for realizing the truth, their predicament. We created it. It happened on our watch and we were just fine with it.