Some political scholars suggest "democracy through strength" for certain countries. I would like to know what democracy through strength is and why it is recommended for certain countries. What are the prerequisites for such model of democratization?

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    It might help if you gave us an example of such a political scientist and where he suggested "democracy through strength."
    – Publius
    Mar 20, 2014 at 3:41
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    First point: I changed the word "scientists" to "scholars" to be precise. And Dan Slater and Joseph Wong are the two who have supported the idea of democracy through strength. They have one paper I do not have access: "The Strength to Concede: Ruling Parties and Democratization in Developmental Asia", that might be useful for me. However, I am still looking for more information about the issue.
    – Saeid
    Mar 21, 2014 at 5:23
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    @Saeid - that should be edited into the Q
    – user4012
    Mar 21, 2014 at 17:07

1 Answer 1


I'd claim that a concept of "democracy through strength" is very different from the western democratic concepts.

A key requirement of democracy is equal protection of all stakeholders - i.e., if at some point there is a completely fair vote of 2/3 population preferring the choices advocated and implemented by party A; and 1/3 preferring the choices of party B - then a system must ensure that the minority gets adequate protections and fair treatment; so that while at this moment country gets steered to choice A, the minority doesn't get punished in any way for saying that in their opinion choice B might be best; and if some of the original voters change their mind, the choice B can still be known even if the governing clique that was elected on the idea of A wants to continue with A forever. In short; it's important that the mandate and the right to implement 'will of the people' is temporarary and can easily be taken away as soon as the people believe that they want something different than what the elected rulers are doing right now.

In that regard, any ruling party that is powerful of it's own - i.e., has intrinsic power not derived from voters; a power to stick to ruling despite the changing desires of people - is antidemocratic; so a 'democracy through strength' is a danger that might (not always, but a possibility) turn into a dictatorship; and a 'democracy through weakness' which is unable to do so and needs to re-estabilish it's power (and right to exist) at every single elections is a preferrable system of governance that would pay more attention towards their people, and be better for the people (as opposed to their own nomenclature).

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    Why is supposed to be good for Asian countries?
    – Razie Mah
    Mar 25, 2014 at 6:40

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