During the Gettysburg Address in 1863, Abraham Lincoln stated that “government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth.” He must have thought democracy to be the best political system in the world. Albert Camus, a French philosopher trusted democracy to be the protection of the minority. For Harry Fosdick, democracy is based upon the conviction that there are extraordinary possibilities in ordinary people. If Lincoln, Camus, and Fosdick were alive today, they would probably be extremely disappointed to learn that democracy is in an acute crisis as it has failed to deliver on its promises.
JERUSALEM – If any Western country is suffering from democratic dysfunction, it is Israel. With the country’s political leaders having again failed to form a government following the most recent parliamentary election in September, voters will head back to the polls in March 2020 for the third time in less than a year. Yet, given Israel’s inflamed, polarized politics and its highly proportional electoral system, what else can one expect from this next national vote except more deadlock?
When Carl Linnaeus first coined the term Homo Sapiens in the year 1758, modern humans had already shed their seemingly homogenous biological construction to reveal differences that were far too festered for common grouping. The ideological, religious and cultural leanings of different societies all over the world have been shaped with experiences and doctrines that are unique and relevant only to a particular community or a group.
HONG KONG – Nearly six months after they began, the protests in our city have reached fever pitch. On one particularly devastating day earlier this month, police fired more than 1,500 rounds of tear gas, a police officer shot a demonstrator at point-blank range while being attacked, and protesters immolated a man who disagreed with them. More than 4,000 people have been arrested, infrastructure has been destroyed, and the economy has sunk into recession. And for what?
Media deserve talk. In modern democratic dialogue, it has been customary to frequently debate over media quality, performance and related issues. Media freedom, media diversity and media equality are closely related terms in vogue. These three elements, when enhanced, add to the strength and quality of one another; they become the cornerstones not only of advanced media performance but also of a full-fledged democracy. As integral elements, they identify a democratic society in its true form. However, misunderstanding these elements will result in their misuse, with dire consequences beyond measurement.
The concept of democracy is fairly straight-forward: ‘Government of the people, by the people and for the people.’ People choose the candidates who they believe are best poised to run the government. Why then is this fairly simple system losing its sheen, not just in Nepal but elsewhere as well? Why are so many “democratic” countries still facing chronic political crisis, rampant corruption, and gross under-development and governance failures?
While declaring the September 15 as the international day of democracy, the United Nations stated that “the will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of the people.” As democracy is about consulting, caring and comforting people, the job of any government is to protect people, improve their quality of life in larger freedom giving a sense of ownership in governance.
KATHMANDU, Sept 19: Prime Minister KP Oli on Wednesday said that the government would act ‘like a tigress’ to protect democracy and republicanism which he claimed was coming under threat. For months now, the government has been accusing royalist forces of hatching plots to overthrow the system to restore Nepal as a Hindu kingdom.
KATHMANDU, August 6: Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Gokul Prasad Baskota, said talks mentioning that democracy was in crisis just reflected the psychology to create unnecessary fear among the mass.
KATHMANDU, June 30: Softening his previous stance, Nepal Communist Party Chairman KP Sharma Oli on Saturday said that the party will adopt Janatako Janabad (peoples’ democracy) as its new guiding principle.
ISTANBUL, June 23: Millions of Istanbul residents voted on Sunday in a re-run of a mayoral election that has become a referendum on President Tayyip Erdogan’s policies and a test of Turkey’s ailing democracy.
KATHMANDU, June 10: Stating that democracy without economic rights and social justice remains incomplete, Prime Minister KP Oli has said that Nepal's conception of democracy goes beyond formalities such as formation of political party, take part in electoral process or enjoy freedom of expression.
Dichotomy dictates Nepal’s democracy. The mainstream news media is dominated by journalists, who hold an unwavering faith in democracy. However, a large majority of opinionators, freelancers, and wordsmiths hail from political ideologies that are hostile to democracy. The national narratives and political discourses seem to be titling toward favoring authoritarianism. Hence, the unwarranted desire for a ‘soft tyrant’ gets currency among the general public.
KATHMANDU, March 15: Director of Nepal Republic Media Pvt. Ltd, Shova Gyawali highlighted how Nepal’s vibrant media was playing an instrumental role to expose corruption and wrong practices in the country and safeguard democracy.
KATHMANDU, Feb 18: After receiving pressure from various forefronts of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) on his new satirical song ‘Lutna sake lut’, popular folk singer Pashupati Sharma removed the song from YouTube on Saturday. Claiming that such ‘unethical’ action of the government is a serious act of undermining freedom of expression, the general public has taken to various platforms to vent their ire against the government move.
KATHMANDU, Feb 18: The alleged government move to force singer Pashupati Sharma to take down his latest folk song, “Lutna Sakay Loot Kanchha” from YouTube has sparked a debate: is the government trying to curtail freedom of expression and speech by resorting to “reasonable restriction”, a constitutional provision which is subject to a government’s interpretation?
The Bibeksheel Sajha Party Nepal (BSPN), formed after the merger of Bibeksheel Nepali Party and Sajha Party in July 2017, split last week when Ujwal Thapa filed an application at the Election Commission (EC) to register a new party named Bibeksheel Nepali Dal. What led to the unexpected split? How will Bibeksheel Nepali Dal go ahead in the days to come? Republica’s Thira L Bhusal met with him for a comprehensive response.
KATHMANDU, Dec 21: Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli asserted that no political power can subvert the current democratic political system, hinting at former King Gyanendra Shah’s recent activities including visit to Pokhara.
DHADING, Nov 24: Former Prime Minister and Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba has said that the party has mired into factional politics, creating favorable environment for the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) to impose despotic rule on the country.
KATHMANDU, Nov 24: Former President Dr Ram Baran Yadav has advised republican and communist political parties to come together for national unity, geographical integrity and strengthening democracy in the country.