Saturday, February 16, 2008

Future Human Goverment (5) - Emerging Beast

The Roman Empire lasted for about five centuries. It was succeeded by a motley assortment of kings and fiefdoms. Democracy first emerged in England in the thirteenth century when some of the nobles began to resist the power of the king. However, real democracy only began in the nineteenth century when the vote was extended to the common people. It emerged in the United States about the same time. The First World War ended the reign of kings throughout Europe. Democracy became the normal form of government. Following the Second World War, democracy spread throughout the world as the colonial power withdrew from their empires. Democracy is now accepted throughout the world as the best form of Government.

Francis Fukuyama wrote a famous article called “The End of History”. He was not talking about the end of the world. He was saying that with the collapse of communism, liberal democracy had triumphed over all alternative forms of government.

What we are witnessing is not just the end of the Cold War, or a passing of a particular period of post-war history, but the end of history as such: that is, the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government.
Fukuyama claims that liberal democracy has proven to be superior to all other forms of human government. Democracy started off the twentieth century as one amongst many possible systems of government. Now all contenders, including monarchy, communism, fascism have failed, so he cannot envisage a future where liberal democracy is not the dominant form of government. Fukuyama believes that liberal democracy is the best form of government so it cannot be superseded by a better or “higher” form of government. I guess he was really saying “Who is like the Beast?”

1 comment:

Steve Scott said...


For a few years now I've associated the beast with the State, but never specifically with a particular form of State, a democracy. Interesting points that I'll have to consider further.