Nov 18, 2018

Faith in democracy fades in Latin America

A banner in front of the Brazilian embassy in Buenos Aires. Photo: Mario De Fina/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Belief in democracy is eroding across Latin America, where 71% are dissatisfied with how democracy works and only half believe it's the best form of government, according to a Latinobarómetro survey of 18 countries published by the Economist.

By the numbers: 15% believe authoritarianism is best, while 28% are neutral — up from 16% in 2010. Satisfaction with democracy is lowest in Brazil, which just elected far-right firebrand Jair Bolsonaro, who has expressed admiration of military dictators.

  • Confidence in government and the courts is low. "Only the armed forces and the church, powerful institutions before the advent of mass democracy, retain much respect."
  • Faith in democracy is higher in countries where it is being dismantled (Venezuela, Nicaragua) and those where it has brought relative prosperity (Uruguay, Costa Rica, Chile). It is lowest in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.

How we got here: Economic growth has slowed and concerns about safety have grown. So too has outrage over corruption.

What to watch: "The young are more skeptical than the old, which bodes ill for democracy’s future."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Situational awareness

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Catch up on today's biggest news:

  1. Scoop: New White House personnel chief tells Cabinet liaisons to target Never Trumpers
  2. Trump misrepresents 2020 Russia briefing as Democratic "misinformation"
  3. Bernie Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"
  4. Nearly half of Republicans support pardoning Roger Stone
  5. Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Sanders takes aim at Bloomberg: "Trump will chew him up and spit him out"

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Bernie Sanders told CBS "60 Minutes" that he was surprised by Mike Bloomberg's lackluster performance at Wednesday's Democratic debate.

What he's saying: "If that's what happened in a Democratic debate, you know, I think it's quite likely that Trump will chew him up and spit him out."

Scoop: Lyft acquires cartop advertising startup Halo Cars

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Lyft has acquired Halo Cars, a small startup that lets ride-hailing drivers earn money via ad displays mounted atop their cars. Lyft confirmed the deal but declined to share any details.

Why it matters: Ride-hailing companies are increasingly eyeing additional ways to generate revenue, and Lyft rival Uber has been quietly testing a partnership with New York-based Cargo that gives it a cut of the advertising revenue, as I previously reported.