Secondly, political Siri's who is going to talk about the crisis of democracy is probably not the most exciting topic you can think about.
And plus, I'm not going to give you any answers.
I'm much more trying to add to some of the questions we're talking about.
And one of the things that I want to question is it is very popular hope these days.
The transparency and openness can restore the trust in democratic institutions.
There is one more reason for you to be suspicious about me, you people, The Church of Ted.
A very optimistic community.
Basically, you believe in complexity, but not in a bigot.
As you have been told.
I'm Bulgarian and, according to the surveys, were among the most pessimistic people in the world.
The Economist magazine recently wrote an article covering one of the recent studies on happiness and the title Waas, the happy Done Happy and the Bulgarians.
So now where you know what to expect, let's give you the story and this is a rainy election day in a small country that can be my country but could be also your country.
And because of the rain till four o'clock in the afternoon, nobody went to the polling stations.
But then the rain stopped.
People went to vote.
And when the votes have been counted, the 3/4 of the people have voted with a blank ballots.
The government and the opposition.
They have been simply paralysed because you know what to do about the protests, you know, come to arrest him to negotiate with but what to do about people who are voting with a blank ballots.
So the government decided to have the elections once again.
And this type even a greater number.
83% of the people voted with blank ballots.
Basically, they went to the ballot boxes to tell that they have nobody to vote for.
This is the opening of a beautiful novel by Jos Saramago, Old see.
But in my view, it very well captures part of the problem that we have with democracy in Europe these days.
On one level, nobody's questioning The democracy is the best form of government.
Democracy is the only game in town.
The problem is that many people start to believe that it is not a game worth playing.
For the last 30 years, political scientists has observed that there is a constant decline in electoral turnout and the people who list interested to vote at the people whom you expect are going to vote to gain most out of voting.
I mean the unemployed down the privileged.
This is a major because especially now with the economic crisis, you can see that the trust in politics that in trust in democratic institutions was really destroyed.
According to the latest survey being done by the European Commission, 89% of the citizens of Europe believe that there is a growing gap between the opinion of the policy makers and the opinion of the public on the 18% of the Italians, and 15% of Greeks believe that their vote matters what.
Basically, people start to understand that they can change governments, but they cannot change policies.
And the question which I want to ask is the following how it happened that we're living in societies which are much freer than ever.
Before we get more rights, we can travel easier.
We have access to more information.
At the same time, the trust in our democratic institutions basically has collapsed.
So basically I want to ask what went right and what went wrong in this 50 years when we talk about democracy and don't start with what went right.
And the first thing that went right was, of course, the five Revolutions, which in my view very much change the way we're living and deepened our democratic experience.
And the first was the cultural and social revolution of the 1968 and 19 seventies, which put the individual at the center of politics.
It was the human rights moment.
Basically, this was also a major outbreak, a culture of dissent, a culture off, basically non compromise, Um, which was not known before.
So I do believe that even things like that very much the Children of 68 nevertheless it most of us had been even not born there.
But after that you have the market revolution of the 19 eighties.
It nevertheless that many people on the left tries educated.
The truce is that it was very much the market revolution that sent the message the government does not know better and you have a much more choice driven societies.
And of course, you have the 1989 the end of communism get of the Cold War and it was the birth of the global world.
Did you get the Internet?
And this is not the audience to which I'm going to preach To what extent the Internet empowered people.
It has changed the way we are communicating, and basically we are viewing politics.
The very idea of political community daughter has changed, and I'm going to name one more revolution.
And this is the revolution in brain sciences, which totally changed the way we understand how people are taking decisions.
So this is what went right.
But if we're going to see what went wrong, we're going to end up with the same five revolutions because first we have 19 sixties and 19 seventies cultural and social revolution, which in a certain way destroyed a day of a collective purpose.
The period, the oldest collective now's that we have been taught about nation for US family.
We start to like the worst thing if we're married at all.
All this was very much on the tech and it is so difficult to engage people in politics, which they do believe that what really matters is where they personally stent and to have the market revolution of the 19 eighties and the huge increase of inequality in societies.
Remember till 19 seventies, the spread of democracy has always been accompanied by the decline of inequality.
The more democratic our societies have bean, the more an equal they have been becoming.
Now we have the reverse tendency.
The spread of democracy now is very much accompanied by the increase in inequality.
And I find this very much disturbing when we're talking about what's going on right and wrong with democracy these days and difficult to the 1989 something that basically don't expect that anybody's going to criticize.
But many are going to tell you.
It was the end of the Cold War, the tears social contract between day leads and the people in Western Europe.
When the Soviet Union was still there, the region, the powerful they needed the people because they feared them Now they leads, basically have been liberated.
They're very mobile, you cannot take them, and basically they don't fear the people So as a result of it, you have this very strange situation in which they leads basically got out of the control of the voters.
This is not by accident that the voters are not interested to vote anymore.
And when we talk about the Internet, yes, it's true.
Internet connected all of us.
But we also know that Internet created this equal chambers and political ghettos in which, for all your life you can state with the political community you belong to, and it's becoming more and more difficult to understand the people who are not like you.
I know that many people here here is splendidly speaking about the digital world and the possibility for cooperation.
But you could see what the digital world have done to the American politics these days.
This is also packed the results of the Internet revolution.
This is the other side of the things that we like.
And when you go to the brain sciences, what political consultants weren't from the brain scientist is.
Don't talk me about ideas anymore.
Don't talk me about policy program.
What really matter is basically to manipulate the emotions of the people and you have this very strongly to the extent that even if you see when we talk about revolutions these days, this revolutions are not named anymore around ideologies or ideas.
Before revolutions used to have ideological names, they could be communist.
They could be liberal.
They could be fascist or Islamic.
Now the revolutions that called under the medium, which is most used.
You can Facebook, revolutions, tweeters, revolutions.
The content doesn't matter anymore.
The problem is the media and saying this because one of my major point is what went right is also what went wrong.
And when we're now trying to see how we can change the situation when basically we're trying to see what can be done about democracy, we should keep this ambiguity in mind because probably some of the things that we love most are going to be also the things that can hurt us most.
This place is very kind of popular to believe that this push for transparency, this kind of a combination between active citizens, new technologists and much more transparency friendly regulation can restore trust in politics.
You believe that when you have these new technologies and people who are ready to use this it can make much more difficult for the government to lie.
It's going to be more difficult for them to steal and probably even going to be more difficult for them to kill.
This is probably true, but I do believe that we should be also very clear that now when we put the transparency at the center of politics, where the message is, it is the transparency.
Stupid transparency is not about restoring trust in institutions.
Transparency is a politics as management of mistrust.
We're assuming that our societies are going to be based on mistrust.
And by the way, mistrust was always very important for democracy.
This is why you have checks and balances.
This is why basically, we have all this creative mistrust between the representatives and those whom they represent.
But when politics is only management of mistrust, then I'm very glad that 1984 has been mentioned.
Now we're going to have 1984 in reverse.
It's not going to be the big brother.
Watching killed is going to be we being the big brother watching the political class.
But is this idea of a free society, for example, can you imagine that the decent civic, talented people is going to run forfeits if they really do believe that politics is also about managing mistrust.
Are you not afraid that with all these technologies that they're going to track down any statement the politicians are going to make on certain issues are not afraid that it's very going to be a very strong signal to politicians to repeat their positions, even the very wrong positions?
Because consistency is going to be more important than common sense and the Americans quite the room.
Are you not afraid that your presidents are going to govern on the base What they said on the primary elections?
I find this extremely important because democracy is about people changing their views based on the rational arguments and discussions.
And we can lose this with the very noble idea to keep people accountable for showing the people that we're not going to tolerate politicians.
They are opportunism in politics.
So for me, this is extremely important and I do believe that when we're discussing politics these days probably makes sense to look also about this type of a story.
But also don't forget.
Any unveiling is also veiling.
Nevertheless, called transparent.
Our governments want to be there going to be selectively transparent in a small country that could be my country but could be also your country.
They took a decision.
It It's a real case story that all of the governmental decisions discussions of the Council of Ministers are going to be published on the Internet 24 hours after the council discussions took place and the public was extremely all for it.
So I had the opportunity to talk to the prime minister why he took this decision, he said.
Listen, this is the best way to keep the mouths of my ministers closed because it's going to be very difficult for them to dissent, knowing the 24 hours after this is going to be on the public space and this is innocent and we're going to be a political crisis.
So when we talk about transparency, when we talk about openness, I really do believe that we should keep in mind.
Is that what went right?
What went wrong?
And this is daughter who is neither Bulgarian?
No political scientists.
Some centuries ago, he set there is a big shadow where there is much light.