For those seeking the world’s saddest axiom, a gift: The more a democracy matures, the dumber its election cycles become.

Recall the United States during the 2016 presidential campaign, which was richly spiced by dick jokes, schoolyard taunts, and a fat reality TV star ripping through a field of professional (if professionally lousy) political lifers. Wherever you look these days — Canada, the United Kingdom, Kenya, Hungary, India — idea-free election campaigns have resulted in corporatist sleazebags running the show.

On one hand, there are the populist “men of the people”, who insist they’re destroying state institutions in order to vanquish elites, when what they’re actually doing is unfettering elite power. On the other hand, there are the moderates, who at their Davos meet-n-greets pretend to worry about “the rise of ethno-nationalism”, “the end of liberalism” and “the global inequality problem”, while further entrenching the elite establishment…..more

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