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The State of Democracy

The extremes of progress and power.

From Russia to China and many smaller countries in between, there is a real and persistent threat to people being able to freely and fairly elect their political leaders.

Democracy spread to most parts of the globe over our grandparents' lifetimes. However, the rate of free democracies has slowed over the past twenty-plus years.

In particular, we are witnessing a growing divide between nations along the democratic-antidemocratic axis. Most Western countries are highly democratic, but many non-Western nations — China, Saudi Arabia, the OPEC cartel, and Russia — still deny their citizens the right to choose political representatives freely.

A tip of the cap to the fine folks at OWID for visualizing the extremes.