Democracy Road wins award at prestigious film festival

What if America is wrong about democracy?  With all that America and its allies do to support the spread of democracy, what if the advice we generally give–that countries hold elections as soon as possible–is actually not the right advice?  Regime change in Iraq and Afghanistan didn’t produce democracy.  Neither did the Arab Spring.  The fact is that the spread of democracy isn’t going well at all.  This film asks why democracy is so difficult and explores an issue that deserves much more attention—culture and its role in the development of democracy around the world.

 

(SCROLL OVER THE IMAGES BELOW TO READ THE CAPTIONS)

America and its allies have done much to support democracy.
Yet democracy has not spread far, even with regime change.
The truth is that democracy is in decline around the world.
Poor countries have weak democracies.
Elections are not enough. Need rule of law.
Russia moved toward the free market quickly. China moved slowly yet grew much faster. Why did the tortoise beat the hare? Culture? Rule of law? Maybe both.
India tried democracy first and then capitalism. Neither took root.
Taiwan tried capitalism first and then democracy. Both flourished.
Since China has outgrown India by almost 500%...
...is it possible China will be a better democracy than India?
85% of the world is poor and not free.
Democracy is more difficult than we think.
Culture and cultural change are key. Without the right cultural foundation, democracy cannot stand.
Below and on our blog page is more material relative to the topic of culture and its relationship to development and democratization.  

Why America is wrong about democracy

Americans are passionate about democracy.  We practice it.  We stand for it.  We have invested immeasurable blood, sweat, tears, and treasure into supporting it around the world.  Which makes the following question even more compelling:  What if America is wrong about…
Elections Aren’t Enough: The Reality of Toxic Democracy

Elections Aren’t Enough: The Reality of Toxic Democracy

Do you remember the purple thumbs?  They came with the initial elections in Iraq and Afghanistan.    We were treated to photos of voters holding up their purple thumbs showing they had voted.    The voters were generally smiling and I think we were supposed to smile…

Why China is closer to being a real democracy than India

India is widely heralded as being the “world’s largest democracy.”  China is regularly castigated for being the opposite—an authoritarian country that oppresses its people.  What if I were tell you the opposite is true?  What if I were to tell you that China is actually closer to democracy than India?

Rich vs. Poor Countries: The Great Cultural Divide

What if nothing in your life ever changed?  What if your life was just like your parent’s life and their parent’s and their parent’s as far back as time goes?  Everyone works on the farm, using their hands, no tractors, no reapers.  No one goes to college.  No one…

Why Capitalism Comes Before Democracy

You only vote once every two years.  You serve on a jury less than that.  On the other hand, you go to work and the market every day.  For most people, who they work for and what they do is more important than who wins an election.  In a nutshell, this is why capitalism comes before democracy.
How I became a culture wonk

How I became a culture wonk

I’ve been mugged, robbed, and hustled in China.  I’ve survived sandstorms, hotel fires, coal mines, and state-sponsored industrial espionage.  I spent most of my time in places most foreigners have never even heard of, including three years in a town where I was the only foreigner among 500,000 Chinese.  I’ve eaten scorpions, ants, beetles, live fish, dried blood, and animal parts I wouldn’t feed to my neighbor’s cat (and I hate that cat)…

Upcoming Showings

August 2017

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31