George Soros: Democracy is in crisis around the world, and don’t count on Trump to rise to its defense
Democracy is in “crisis,” with fascist dictatorships and mafia-type states on the rise, a situation that won’t be alleviated by President-elect Donald Trump.
That’s the warning from billionaire investor George Soros in a Project Syndicate opinion piece penned in late December.
The reason the world has found itself in this situation is that leaders have failed their electorates, with a significant proportion of the latter having reached the conclusion that “elites had stolen their democracy,” Soros said, adding that the phenomenon has played out over 2016 through events such as Brexit and, of course, the U.S. presidential election.
Opinion: Donald Trump is on the wrong side of almost every issue voters care about
The 86-year-old, Hungarian-born Soros has made no secret of the fact he was not on the Trump train. He reportedly gathered big-money liberals in Washington for a three-day November conference covering such subjects as resisting Trump’s 100-day plan and getting more Democrats elected in 2017 and 2018.
‘Democracy is now in crisis. Even the U.S., the world’s leading democracy, elected a con artist and would-be dictator as its president.’
he result of the U.S. presidential election means the country will spend more time dealing with internal conflicts, with minorities most at risk, than performing the traditional function of promoting democracy around the world, Soros warned.
Democracy will “prove resilient” in the U.S., but Trump “will have greater affinity with dictators,” who will be allowed to carry on without any interference as the new president will prefer “making deals [to] defending principles,” said Soros.
Soros repeated fears that the European Union, which has suffered blows from the U.K.’s Brexit vote and a rejection of constitutional reforms by Italian voters in 2016, is increasingly vulnerable. And he reiterated a concern that Russian President Vladimir Putin was seeking a growing influence over Europe.
He warned that if Russia’s leader exploits “misinformation and fake news” to influence big European elections next year, as he is believed to have done in the U.S. election, then the EU will be in trouble.
“In France, the two leading contenders are close to Putin and eager to appease him. If either wins, Putin’s dominance of Europe will become a fait accompli,” said Soros.