ILL WINDS: SAVING DEMOCRACY FROM RUSSIAN RAGE, CHINESE AMBITION, AND AMERICAN COMPLACENCY

Welcome to the "Ill Winds: Saving democracy from Russian rage, Chinese ambition, and American complacency" launch page! Watch the videos, follow Larry Diamond's book tour schedule, download the book cover, and follow us on social media for more!
Human nature being what it is, power that is not checked will sooner or later be misused.
Larry Diamond
Senior Fellow, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies

Ill Winds

Ill Winds' core argument is stark: the defense and advancement of democratic ideals relies on U.S. global leadership. If we do not reclaim our traditional place as the keystone of democracy, today's authoritarian swell could become a tsunami, providing an opening for Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, and their admirers to turn the twenty-first century into a dark time of despotism. We are at a hinge in history, between a new era of tyranny and an age of democratic renewal. Free governments can defend their values; free citizens can exercise their rights. We can make the internet safe for liberal democracy, exploit the soft, kleptocratic underbelly of dictatorships, and revive America's degraded democracy. Ill Winds offers concrete, deeply informed suggestions to fight polarization, reduce the influence of money in politics, and make every vote count. In 2019, freedom's last line of defense still remains "We the people."

Book launch event

Introduction: Michael McFaul, Freeman Spogli Institute at Stanford, Director.
Speakers: Zin Mar Aung, Burmese MP and political activist; Vladimir Kara-Murza, Russian journalist and anti-corruption crusader and Cara McCormick, CEO, Chamberlain Project, Co-founder/Co-leader of The Committee for Ranked Choice Voting in Maine.

 

Stanford launch of Larry Diamond's "Ill Winds"

Stanford launch of Larry Diamond's "Ill Winds"

Excerpted from ILL WINDS -INTRODUCTION: THE CRISIS

On a gray Sunday afternoon two days before the November 2016 U.S. election, I entered the Berkeley Repertory Theatre with twenty Stanford students to see the final performance of a pro- duction of It Can’t Happen Here. Adapted from the classic 1935 novel by Sinclair Lewis, the play traces the rise of an ultranationalist demagogue who, in the midst of the Great Depression, snatches the 1936 Democratic presidential nomination away from Franklin Roosevelt, wins the presidency, and establishes...

BROWSE SELECTED VIDEOS

State of Democracy; Early Career

State of Democracy; Early Career

Personal Vietnam Protest

Personal Vietnam Protest

Individuals Can Make Changes Towards Democracy

Individuals Can Make Changes Towards Democracy

Third Wave of Democracy

Third Wave of Democracy

Russian Interference

Russian Interference

End of Liberal World Order

End of Liberal World Order

READ THE REVIEWS

KIRKUS REVIEW

A leading scholar of democracy combines his academic research with his direct experience to piece together a wide-ranging study of the creation—and possible destruction—of that specific form of governance. Although aware that the United States has termed itself a democracy since the 18th century, Diamond (In Search of Democracy, 2015, etc.), the founding editor of the Journal of Democracy and a senior fellow Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies

GOODREADS

Larry Diamond has made it his life's work to secure democracy's future by understanding its past and by advising dissidents fighting autocracy around the world. Deeply attuned to the cycles of democratic expansion and decay that determine the fates of nations, he watched with mounting unease as illiberal rulers rose in Hungary, Poland, Turkey, the Philippines, and beyond, while China and Russia grew increasingly bold and bullying. Then, with Trump's election at home, the global retreat from free

WSJ: The Global Crisis of Democracy

Democracy faces a global crisis. We have seen 12 consecutive years of erosion in global levels of political rights and civil liberties, with many more countries declining than gaining each year, according to the nonprofit group Freedom House. Over the past decade, one in six democracies has failed. Today only a bare majority of the world’s larger states remain democracies.

IN THE MEDIA

How the Freedom Agenda Fell Apart

The Iraq war was the initial turning point. Once it turned out that Saddam Hussein did not, in fact, possess weapons of mass destruction, the Bush administration’s “freedom agenda” became the only way to justify the war retrospectively. Whatever support for the intervention that had existed among the American public melted away as Iraq descended into violence and chaos. If this was democracy promotion, most Americans wanted no part of it.

Larry Diamond on the uncertain future of democracy

Is there a crisis of liberal democracy? Or is the health of western democracy generally good? Will democracy survive Donald Trump? And how will China and Russia challenge the future of democracy?

An Existential Moment for Democracy?

"Human nature being what it is, power that is not checked will sooner or later be misused," – Larry Diamond for Stanford Magazine

DOWNLOAD BOOK COVER