Martin Wolf: ‘Democracy will fail if we don’t think as citizens’

Covid-19 has been a global shock. But will it be a transformative one? The answer is that it might be a transformative event for a number of western societies, notably the US and UK.For western liberal democracies, the era after the second world war can be divided into two sub-periods. The first, running roughly from 1945 to 1970 was the era of a “social democratic” or, as Americans might say, a “New Deal” consensus. The second, starting around 1980, was that of the “global free market”, or the “Thatcher-Reagan consensus”.Between these two periods came an interregnum — the high-inflation 1970s…

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