In the run-up to Britain’s 2015 election, party leaders have again been shouting insults at each other. Politicians in parliament called the Prime Minister a chicken, and the spectacle was shown on national television.
Most people would regard that as bad behaviour in a nursery school, but in politics it has become normal. The consequences have spread all round the world: Thoughtful people – those who think seriously about who should be voted into government – are turned off politics by childish arguments and foolish promises. Shouting insults in parliament encourages politicians in less stable countries to do the same, where insults can escalate to killings and extremism.
China’s leaders are criticized for rejecting democracy, but the bad behaviour of elected politicians in other countries has destroyed public trust and respect. It’s easy to see why China does not want to follow that path.
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