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Democracy and capitalism

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Democracy and capitalism

By: Carlos Yepes A.

Understanding what is happening in the world, in our region, in geopolitical terms, allows us to understand the reality that every day presents us with new questions and situations that often seem incomprehensible to us. At present, one of the great challenges of the economic policy that the State faces is overcoming the inequality that increases every day together with the distrust in leaders, not only in Colombia but in a large part of the entire world and especially in Latin America.

The increase in inequality has generated a latent danger for democracy, the global financial crises of 2007 and 2013 left great lessons regarding the role of the State, announced the risk to the stability of the marriage of convenience between democracy and capitalism.

Capitalism based on the free market loses its credibility every day based on the fact that the increase in wealth leads to general prosperity, it is not understood how sectors such as the financial sector hold disproportionate political and economic power, breaking the most radical concept of capitalism. democratic based on the separation of powers between the political and the economic.

The progressive concentration of wealth, in the hands of a few, produces a progressive deterioration of the middle classes, which are on the way to disappearing and has generated the greatest inequality in the last 50 years, weakening trust in the elites and reinforcing the processes populists both left and right and the so-called “liberal” democracies, such as Putin’s, and not to mention hardly imaginable systems with “communist capitalism” led by China.

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The hitherto marriage of convenience between democracy and capitalism, undoubtedly manager of very successful societies in the history of humanity, could enter into crisis if capitalism continues to weaken democracy. A prime example of this process occurred in January 2021 when fanatical Trump supporters tried to annul the presidential election results.

Our societies are bound to make decisions if they really want to straighten their course and strengthen their democracies, although it is true that it is the weak link of capitalism, courageous decisions are required to maintain it. Colombia, like Latin America, has to turn its efforts towards a society that offers its citizens security, opportunities, work, prosperity and dignity, as well as ending corruption and the privileges of a few.

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