The End of Tyranny?

John Quiggin:

The seemingly imminent downfall of Muammar Gaddafi may not represent “the end of history”, but, for the moment at least, it’s pretty close to being the end of tyranny, in the historical sense of absolute rule by an individual who has seized power, rather than acquiring it by inheritance or election…

Now, there’s Mugabe clinging to a share of power in Zimbabwe, a couple of shaky-looking strongmen in the ‘stans, and that’s about it for tyrants in the classical sense… There’s Kim jr, Assad jr and Castro minor, the first two of whom are certainly tyrannical in the ordinary modern sense, but all of whom inherited their positions, as of course, did the remaining absolute monarchs.

You might know Quiggin from his work on zombies.


About brianbergfeld
I am an economics PhD student at Washington University in St. Louis.

One Response to The End of Tyranny?

  1. Adam says:

    When are tyrants ever going to catch a break?

    I have a little trouble with this assessment because it gives me little reassurance whether my tyrant has himself taken power or inherited it from his father or political mentor. in fact, I would argue that the latter is even worse because you have at least one generation of citizens who don’t know anything different from the rule of the tyrant.

    Regardless, the recent fall of several tyrants is a welcome change, except by Brian whose opposition to NATO intervention in Libya makes him a de facto Qaddafi supporter and lover of all things tyrant.

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