Democracy under siege

Freedom and Democracy is under siege in the world according to the latest Freedom House report:

This is true. The USA does not figure into this study as it was not established as a true full democracy and never has been. In North America only Canada is considered to be a full democracy. Norway, Sweden, Iceland, New Zealand and Finland are the few full democracy countries according to some studies, though I would include Costa Rica myself. I hope they can hang on to what they have.

So true, how many people don’t really understand what a true democracy is, and how un-informed Americans are on this.

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The US score card;

I’m guessing 48 hours tops before this thread gets deep-sixed. It’ll be a fun ride though. :wink:

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Probably right but it would be an educational discussion if among objective people. Hard to find those however

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I say 33 comments & is forgotten way down at bottom of page due to predictable gcaptain echo chamber of worn out ideas. Unless ombugge makes it one of his pet projects that he keeps kicking up to the top that is.

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He will.

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Often outside the corral is the best place to see what is going on. With expatriate Americans living here and family members living in the US we see what is happening.
It is up to Americans to right the wrongs and get the place moving again. The rest of the world needs it like never before.

Wow, Freedom House, really?

Freedom House is funded by the U.S. government and has been responsible for attempted coups in both Iran and Ukraine. They work hand in hand with the CIA to attempt to destabilize countries that are considered unaligned with U.S. interests while turning a blind eye to slavery, torture, and corruption in regimes considered beneficial to the current U.S. policy.

Don’t post that garbage in here again. Maybe Democracy would be a bit less under siege if we quit spending billions undermining it.

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I think I’ll wait this one out and see how biased and ridiculous it gets.
Fully prepared to be called all kinds of stupid things for posting a link to something as “controversial” as this.
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Actually, As a Canadian. I’m surprised Canada makes the list.

But with a name like “Freedom House”, it sounds so wholesome. Like Toll House Cookies… :roll_eyes:

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Like Citizens United, Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Partners etc. Freedom House and the rest depend on morons not researching who is behind them and their agenda. My fellow workers and friends have never been interested in establishing one of these “think tanks” or influence groups. We cannot afford it. Which of course explains the kind of people that do form these influence groups.

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I never heard of Freedom House before this thread. So I looked it up on Wikipedia. According to Wiki:
It describes itself as a “clear voice for democracy and freedom around the world”, although critics have stated that the organization is biased towards US interests.

When an organization makes a statement like this, I immediately look to see who it is pissing off, on the theory that totalitarian governments would be the ones trying to shoot it down. This is what I find in Wiki [edited here for space]:

representatives of Cuba said that the organization is a U.S. [foreign policy] instrument linked to the CIA…Other countries such as China and Sudan also gave criticism… Russia, identified by Freedom House as “Not Free”, called Freedom House biased and accused the group of serving U.S. interests. Sergei Markov, an MP from the United Russia party, called Freedom House a “Russophobic” organization: "You can listen to everything they say, except when it comes to Russia … There are many Russophobes there”.

When I see China, Cuba, and Russia dislike an organization that is trying to quantify the relative freedom of different nations, I’m inclined to believe the organization is stepping on their toes, which is a good thing. Since this organization, which is mostly funded by the USA, ranks the USA only 83 out of a 100 in relative freedom, you can’t really call it a propaganda arm of the USA, can you? If it was, it would rate the USA as #1.

So you have an organization that pisses of dictators, and seems impartial to the hand that feeds it. You can argue over whether you want your tax dollar to fund it, but what is case that it isn’t being impartial in its survey?

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That’s a score, not a ranking…

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You went to the edit/talk page and looked at who made and edited the Wikipedia entries right?

Of course you didn’t.

The fact that the US has spent much of the last half century interfering with other countries democracies for its own benefit is not really a subject of debate. You can debate whether it does that for the benevolent interest of mankind if you’d like as the people who overthrew governments in South America surely believe. The purpose of NGOs like Freedom House is not exactly up for debate either.

Wikipedia is a good place to find things like what the capital and main exports of Uruguay are. If you want to get any more information from it than that, you need to learn how the talk/edit pages work and familiarize yourself with that process. If you go into the talk/edit page with some familiarity about the process you can see where Freedom House’s support for the military dictatorship in El Salvador was removed and where their rankings of Apartheid South Africa and Pinochets Chile as ‘Partly Free’ were removed.

But we’re not worried about those dictatorships are we? Just Russia.

Who removed them and why?

Do you know how to use the talk/edit sections and how to access the history of the page? Do you have an account? Here’s a link to some of it but not knowing what you know about Wikipedia makes it difficult to describe what you’re looking at.

First of all, I’m not carrying water for Freedom House. Never heard of it before this thread. They may be evil incarnate, for all I know. As far as how Wiki works, I understand the principles.

The question for this thread is, are FH’s democracy ratings reasonably accurate? Or does it have a secret agenda that makes its ratings inaccurate?

A Google search on FH shows positive press put out by FH itself. After wading through that fluff, the few negative views of FH are mostly from Indian websites, which take issue with FH rating India somewhat negatively, in terms of freedom.

There is an article from Irish Foreign Affairs accusing FH of "training and funding the youth movement in Egypt while the U.S. government and its Cairo Embassy were fully aware that the youth movement aimed to remove [then Egyptian president] Mubarak from power.” In other words, interfering in foreign elections. Senator Ron Paul made the same accusation in 2004 re: Ukraine.

But there isn’t a lot of controversy over these claims. I don’t see a lot of people arguing one way or the other over them. I don’t see a lot of people with pitchforks and torches out to get FH. Google FBI, CIA, etc. and you’re swept up in controversy. Google FH and prepare to snooze. And while the CIA has done a lot of nefarious stuff, that doesn’t mean the CIA World Factbook isn’t useful.

RE: this thread, the only controversy is: Are FH’s ratings accurate enough to be useful? Notable people kvetch over whether the ratings are too inclined towards political freedom, economic freedom, etc. In other words, they’re making subjective comments on a rating system which must be itself subjective at some level. Doesn’t mean the ratings are useless.

If FH’s rating system was completely biased, FH would be an easy target for the Republicans or Democrats to torpedo. It would be a political football, like ICE, or Goya’s beans. But it has a very low profile, and both parties quote its data.

So personally, I’m inclined to believe the ratings are kinda-sorta accurate. Others will differ.

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