Despite their failure to predict the 1989 revolutions, those …

Despite their failure to predict the 1989 revolutions, those same western governments assumed that that they knew best how to manage the transition to democracy. They imposed a neo-liberal formula of privatisation, budget cuts, and liberalisation. Former communist elites were able to exchange their political positions for material wealth while the majority came to associate democracy with deprivation and inequality – ‘we got banks instead of tanks’ said young Hungarians.

Mary Kaldor: Civil Society in 1989 and 2011 (via)

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