Views:4989
fakenews

In the era of fake news, democracies need to protect themselves from a deluge of disinformation. False facts and unsubstantiated rumors not only provide fertile ground for political extremists to fool the public, they can also discredit and undermine the legitimacy of democratic institutions.   European countries facing general elections this year have become particularly vulnerable and concerned about fake news that can influence the outcome. Officials and analysts are looking at the conduct of the US elections as a negative precedent. American intelligence sources are convinced that Russian professionals created false stories to influence the election in favor of Donald Trump. Fake news was sent through Facebook, Google, Twitter, and other social media outlets, although no one can accurately measure how it swayed voters.   With Germany facing general

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jb-march-2012-1

  Following the US elections, the Brexit vote, and the rise of non-conventional parties throughout Europe, the populist wave is sweeping both sides of the Atlantic. Populism is a revolutionary movement, but unlike its 20th century predecessors, such as communism or fascism, it eschews violent rebellion and favors a democratic replacement of incumbent governments.   Traditional and mainstream political parties need to learn lessons from the rise of populism rather than simply condemning the phenomenon and bemoaning their election losses. Ultimately, populism can contribute to democratic development by exposing the fissures, frustrations, and failures in Western societies, by involving new players in the political process, by reconnecting politicians with the populace, and by energizing the electorate to view politics as the responsibility of every citizen.   In its essence, populism