The Monday Morning Teaser

You see a lot of warnings that American democracy is in trouble in the Trump Era. (You see some of those warnings on this blog.) But how serious is the situation really? Are the comparisons to Mussolini or Putin overblown, or are the people who think so in denial? Will we bounce back and repair the damage as soon as Trump is gone, or has the country been put on a new track that may take us places we never imagined America could go? Or have we already been on that track for a while, and that’s how we got Trump in the first place? Can we get off it, or is already too late?

If only there were some way to set the current challenges in some kind of international or historical perspective and think about them like reasonable people, rather than swinging back and forth between optimism and despair according to whatever mood strikes us.

That’s why the featured article this week traces the discussion in the new book How Democracies Die by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt. They’ve done the research in a comprehensive way, rather than just seeking out whatever parallel proves some predetermined point. That should be out between 9 and 10 EDT.

In the weekly summary, I will do my best not to be blasé about the usual mix of corruption, foreign disasters, shootings, and rumblings of trade war. I picture that posting around noon.

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