The conflict between different views of democracy has threatened the Westphalian nation-state concept, and the Westphalianists are responding, with history on their side.
Analysis. By Gregory R. Copley, Editor, GIS/Defense & Foreign Affairs. Democra-cy, in many forms, became the dominant form of political legitimacy in the 20th Century. It also became, by the early 21st Century, just a word to cloak political ambition and the institutionalization of power structures.
There is now little accord as to what actually constitutes “democracy”, or how it has evolved conceptually. We have reached a point, as strategic thinker Dr Assad Homay-oun notes, where “democracy” — whatever it is — is not working, but dictatorship is un-acceptable. And yet “democracy”, as a word, has increasingly become a semi-religious touchstone to which all must pay obeisance. It is a sacred cow to be valued, because it has become the essential image to legitimate power.
But “democracy”, as Plato saw it, and as it became practiced in the early 21st Century, grows merely into the legitimization of mob rule. Little wonder that it became the catch-cry of urban élites in the 20th Century as it was in the Hellenic city-states 2,500 years before. It now stands solely for the periodic voting power just of human concentrations, and pays scant heed to the broader rôle of geography in the viability of the nation-state. And by its periodic, prescheduled granting of “mandates” of power, it became less nu-anced; less responsive to the societies which were supposedly in command of the pro-cess of democracy.1
“Democracy” became more about human desires — “rights” — than about the human imperative for sovereign control over the resources of survival in perpetuity: food, water, and other resources. These are determined by the harmonization of geography with the life it sustains...."