Testing direct democracy
The notion of direct democracy is being challengednot in the name of liberalism, but of technocratic efficiency
There is an inherent tension between the twin principles that define the modern nation-state: democracy and liberty. Democracies can unleash xenophobic majoritarian sentiment and repress the liberties of minorities. The classic 20th-century example is the Nazi government of Germany, which was democratically elected (although it suspended democracy soon thereafter). Likewise, sacrosanct individual liberties—as enshrined in constitutions the world over, beginning with the US at the end of the 18th century and as exemplified in the Indian Constitution of 1950—constrain the illiberal impulses of democratically elected legislatures.
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