For 40 years, elites in rich and poor countries alike promised that neoliberal policies would lead to faster economic growth, and that the benefits would trickle down so that everyone, including the poorest, would be better off.
Now that the evidence is in, is it any wonder that trust in elites and confidence in democracy have plummeted?
At the end of the Cold War, political scientist Francis Fukuyama wrote a celebrated essay called 'The End of History?' Communism’s collapse, he argued, would clear the last obstacle separating the entire world from its destiny of liberal democracy and market economies. Many people agreed.
Today, as we face a retreat from the rules-based, liberal global order, with autocratic rulers and demagogues leading countries that contain well over half the world’s population, Fukuyama’s idea seems quaint and naive.
Read the rest of this column at Project Syndicate.