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Thread: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

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    How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    From Russia to Venezuela, the strongmen who have destroyed democratic institutions won high office at the ballot box.



    5/9/19
    When Recep Erdoğan was first elected prime minister of Turkey, in 2003, he vowed to respect the country’s democratic institutions, and to vacate office if he ever lost the public’s trust. The reality of Erdoğan’s rule has been rather more bleak. Although international newspapers and magazines initially portrayed him as a democratic reformer, he systematically expanded his powers and purged opponents from top positions in the army, the civil service, and the country’s educational institutions. When former allies tried to oust him in a coup in the summer of 2016, he used the occasion to consolidate his hold over the country. Thanks to the vast emergency powers he claimed within days of the failed putsch, he was able to dismiss tens of thousands of civil servants he considered politically unreliable, and to jail some of the country’s most prominent journalists. The tremendous power Erdoğan now holds makes it all the more remarkable that a united opposition was, last month, able to gain an unexpected set of victories in the country’s municipal elections: Exploiting anger at Turkey’s growing economic crisis, and fielding a new crop of candidates who are both charismatic and conciliatory, the opposition pulled off two highly symbolic upsets, winning control of the country’s capital, Ankara, as well as its largest city, Istanbul. As a result, Erdoğan has, for the first time since the failed coup three years ago, faced a real trade-off: Would he allow the election results to stand, thereby acknowledging the public’s growing discontent with his rule? Or would he exploit his hold over Turkey’s institutions to have the election annulled, making it blatantly clear to anybody who cared to look that Turkey is no longer a democracy?

    Erdoğan went on to use his control over the country’s judiciary to cancel its result. Citing supposed irregularities, the electoral commission announced on Monday that Istanbul would hold new elections in June. The new crop of authoritarian leaders is much more invested in retaining the appearance of a genuine democratic mandate. As a result, they have to engage in a more complicated political calculus: They have to give the opposition enough of a chance to compete in the elections to look credible to a significant segment of the population. But they must also capture political institutions such as electoral commissions to a sufficient extent to ensure that the people can’t actually boot them out of office. A country whose president has the power to annul elections when he doesn’t like their outcome has clearly become a dictatorship. From now on, anybody who still insists on calling Turkey a democracy, or treating its elections as a fair barometer of public opinion, is a liar or a fool. Erdoğan’s loss of democratic legitimacy does not imply that he is about to lose power. As the long history of dictatorships demonstrates, many people are willing to support a leader who openly opposes democratic institutions—and many autocrats are able to stay in office for years or decades after they have become deeply unpopular. But it does suggest that his rule will, from now on, be based on a much more precarious foundation. With his claim to a popular mandate gone for good, Erdoğan will likely face an even more determined opposition—and need to resort to ever more naked oppression to stay in power.
    From Moscow to Damascus to Ankara to Caracas. The dictatorships are holding faux elections and manipulating election outcomes, either on the front end or at the back side.

    Not a word about Erdogan's attack on democracy from Donald Trump.

    Related: Turkey orders rerun after Erdogan rejects returns of Instanbul mayoral vote


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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Rogue Valley View Post
    How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    From Russia to Venezuela, the strongmen who have destroyed democratic institutions won high office at the ballot box.





    From Moscow to Damascus to Ankara to Caracas. The dictatorships are holding faux elections and manipulating election outcomes, either on the front end or at the back side.

    Not a word about Erdogan's attack on democracy from Donald Trump.

    Related: Turkey orders rerun after Erdogan rejects returns of Instanbul mayoral vote
    Trump is an absolute disgrace to this country.

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Rogue Valley View Post
    How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    From Russia to Venezuela, the strongmen who have destroyed democratic institutions won high office at the ballot box.





    From Moscow to Damascus to Ankara to Caracas. The dictatorships are holding faux elections and manipulating election outcomes, either on the front end or at the back side.

    Not a word about Erdogan's attack on democracy from Donald Trump.

    Related: Turkey orders rerun after Erdogan rejects returns of Instanbul mayoral vote
    So what exactly is it that you expect Mr. Trump to do?

    I've made no secret of my view on how the USA should deal with the internal affairs of foreign nations.

    From my blog:

    1. I do not believe The United States is morally responsible for taking "some action" outside of our own national borders. We don't have the right nor duty to act as the "World's Policeman." I support humanitarian aid; and use of political influence to keep other nations out of foreign internal struggles.

    2. Each nation is responsible for its own internal politics, no one should interfere. The people of each society must work things out on their own for there to be any chance of long-term stability. External interference typically serves to undermine the legitimacy of whichever factions wins, creating an unstable political environment ripe for further trouble.

    3. It does not matter the form of political ideology that ends up in control without outside influence or interference. If it has a negative effect on the society it governs, history has shown that as long as examples of other more positive options exist outside that State, it will either collapse on it's own or it's people will eventually overthrow and replace it.
    I don't mind giving moral support or even non-military humanitarian aid to this or that effort by groups in troubled nations who might be more in tune with our basic ideology (although these days our own ideological stance seems to be confused and conflicted). For example, Trump's "recognition" of the "rebel" democratic forces in Venezuela. Such recognition doesn't cost us much in a nation whose "official" government is already at odds with ours. However, we have to deal with Turkey as an "ally" in NATO despite their current leadership not evidencing much of being one in reality.

    So, what should Trump do? Send in the Marines?
    Last edited by Captain Adverse; 05-11-19 at 10:33 AM.
    If I stop responding it doesn't mean I've conceded the point or agree with you. It only means I've made my point and I don't mind you having the last word. Please wait a few minutes before "quoting" me. I often correct errors for a minute or two after I post before the final product is ready.

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Adverse View Post
    So what exactly is it that you expect Mr. Trump to do?
    At a bare minimum? I expext a US president to call Erdogan on annulling this election as many European leaders already have.

    That's what I expect at a bare minimum. Not crickets from the White House.


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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Rogue Valley View Post
    At a bare minimum? I expext a US president to call Erdogan on annulling this election as many European leaders already have.

    That's what I expect at a bare minimum. Not crickets from the White House.
    Sooo…"virtue signaling" is what you seek? I have no problem with that, aside from the fact that IMO this wouldn't win him any points from the Left in our nation. They'd just figure some way to turn it into a negative anyway.

    Still, if that's all you want...I have no problem with it.
    If I stop responding it doesn't mean I've conceded the point or agree with you. It only means I've made my point and I don't mind you having the last word. Please wait a few minutes before "quoting" me. I often correct errors for a minute or two after I post before the final product is ready.

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Rogue Valley View Post
    At a bare minimum? I expext a US president to call Erdogan on annulling this election as many European leaders already have.

    That's what I expect at a bare minimum. Not crickets from the White House.
    Authoritarianism it turns out is compatible with Capitalism, as China has demonstrated over the past couple decades. The world is no longer caught between two polar movements of Capitalism versus Communism, instead country's are going back and looking for a more absolutist and even racial justification for their policy visions. Authoritarianism isn't rising simply because people want that kind of government, certain segments in these societies want the strong man so that he can handle the problems and enemies that this base faces.

    It is no mistake that the ChristChruch shooter most admired China, it is brutally suppressing and replacing all cultures and ethnicities with Confuscian-Socialist values and Han Chinese ethnic majorities. They've built concentration camps for ethnic Muslims Ughyrs who they are eradicating their culture and religion first, then systematically colonizing the area to make it truly "China."

    Nationalism and Racialism are reemerging in tandom yet again, and it means the decline of Liberal Republicanism is at hand. Trump is a sign of that decline, and no one has aided similar movements more than Trump has here in America. The Great White Hope as Jesse Lee Peterson calls him. I think we should confront autocracy and virulent nationalism abroad and at home. Strong and intelligent leadership is needed at this delicate moment. Thankfully the United States is more robust than the Weimar Republic.

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Adverse View Post
    So what exactly is it that you expect Mr. Trump to do?

    I've made no secret of my view on how the USA should deal with the internal affairs of foreign nations.

    From my blog:



    I don't mind giving moral support or even non-military humanitarian aid to this or that effort by groups in troubled nations who might be more in tune with our basic ideology (although these days our own ideological stance seems to be confused and conflicted). For example, Trump's "recognition" of the "rebel" democratic forces in Venezuela. Such recognition doesn't cost us much in a nation whose "official" government is already at odds with ours. However, we have to deal with Turkey as an "ally" in NATO despite their current leadership not evidencing much of being one in reality.

    So, what should Trump do? Send in the Marines?
    What are you even arguing against, no one is saying we should "Send in the Marines." I'm pretty sure Rogue and I are both against ideological wars, unless that nation has engaged in war with our allies for the purpose of conquest. I hate what China is doing inside their country, but I don't think we should invade and force them to cowtow to our morality and values.

    These are far more complex issues than simple military intervention. Your laissez faire Foreign Policy I feel is really out of touch with history. This isn't the 1790s, we can just sit back and let the world have at in a Battle Royal of authoritarian barbarity. America should stand firmly behind our allies and NOT our adversaries, and we should take our leadership role in the world given by history with the proper responsibility it deserves and reinvest heavily in the State Department and practical day to day diplomacy. We must engage with the world in this shaping time, not step back and shrink back and let China and Russia continue unchecked in their foreign policy visions.

    The issue of Climate Change alone refutes your foriegn policy vision, which requires global cooperation, so it does sort of matter the behavior of these countries. People need to get beyond Nation-State absolutism, that these are somehow real moral barriers or some nonsense. Human suffering and oppression is real whether it happens in Sudan, China, Russia, Venezuela, North Korea. There are no easy solutions, but such is the nature of the complex emergent world of human civilization that we find ourselves in.

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Adverse View Post
    Sooo…"virtue signaling" is what you seek? I have no problem with that, aside from the fact that IMO this wouldn't win him any points from the Left in our nation. They'd just figure some way to turn it into a negative anyway.

    Still, if that's all you want...I have no problem with it.
    This is such a cop out that I find from so many Libertarians, who seem obsessed with "signaling." That's a clever way to advocate for watching Democracy and Liberalism crumble around the world, while we say and do nothing.

    Wouldn't want to get on our moral high horse and speak up for those millions of people who will now have to live under authoritarian oppression. That might hurt people's feelings who like those autocrats, and we don't want to promote division. Better to have countries united under the Autocrat for all we care, right?

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    The patriotic Turkish army used to know how to deal with leaders who did not know how to keep their place.

    Obviously, His Excellency President Erdogan has gotten too big for his britches.

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    Re: How Authoritarians Manipulate Elections

    Recep Erdogan is chosen because he promised to restore the ISLAMIC CALIPHATE AKA Ottoman Empire.




    Maduro was chosen because capitalism created to many poor people in the nation. Venezuela used to a hardcore capitalist nation. Before they became a communist nation. Capitalism is making communism popular. In USA you can see that capitalism is failing the poor people. In a capitalist nation few people get rich. And then you get many poor homeless people. Popular capitalist argument "The market will fix everything". The funny thing with Americans. You always try to fix other nations before fixing your own.


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