How democracies deal with crises

From The Nation: “Democratic societies seem to lurch from one crisis to another, without ever thoroughly addressing the problems that caused them, but also without ever (well, hardly ever) collapsing altogether. The explanation for this pattern depends on … the belief that democracy was part of ‘the providential plan of the universe,’ which could lead to a supreme confidence in its capacity to withstand challenges. But confidence could become a trap, by encouraging complacency and ultimately a kind of fatalism. And fatalism in turn could foster recklessness as well as resignation.”