Home / Robert Farley / On foreign policy and democracy. . .

On foreign policy and democracy. . .


Tacitus is concerned the the election of Kerry will end the peculiarly American quest for a democratic world.

John Kerry thinks that stability may sometimes be more important than democracy. The sin that Kerry commits, apparently, is not to think this, but to say it. What administration, in any era, has valued democracy higher than stability? This is not to say that American foreign policy is based on cynical self-interest, but rather to recognize historical fact. Accepting democracy means accepting that people may legitimately disagree with us and act contrary to our interests, and we have never been willing to do that. Indeed we shouldn’t, at least not in every case. Democracy is one value, to be weighed against a set of other values. To claim otherwise is to grandstand.
To claim otherwise and still support this administration, which has abandoned any effort to preserve democracy in Russia, to bring reform to China, to come to terms with the democratic government of Venezuela, or to spur even the most meagre democratic effort in central asia, is to suffer from profound blindness.

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