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February 04, 2014

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ajay

In the month before elections, state security and surveillance agents visit the homes of registered voters to verify their residential status and track citizens’ whereabouts, making sure that they are where they should be.

...In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus...

ajay

On the other hand, it is really remarkable that "democracy is a good thing" has been so widely accepted that even Kims feel the need to pay some sort of lip service to the popular mandate. I think the Gulf monarchies are probably the last bunch of rulers on the planet that really don't even feel the need to pretend to give a shit about it.

chris y

Is it the general acceptance of "democracy is a good thing", or is it simply that there's some residual Marxist rhetoric in the Juche playbook that they feel the need to act out?

jamie

what you might call *specific* interpretations of democracy have always been part of the wider actually existing Communist canon; as mechanisms for consultation and providing means to demonstrate approval. Non-party candidates are technically allowed to stand at local level in China. A few even win.

Alex

Even East Germany had a couple of blockparteien, one of which served the purpose of launching Angela Merkel's political career!

Igor Belanov

Was she a National, a Liberal or a Farmer?

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