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On the Evolutionary Limits of Democratization

Tatu Vanhanen


Published: 2010/09/01


It is a fact that the nature of political systems varies greatly from various autocracies to highly democratic systems. It is true that most contemporary countries have already crossed a minimum threshold of democracy, but there are persistent disparities in the level and quality of democracy. Why? Why has it not been possible for all countries to democratize and to establish an equal quality of democracy? That is the problem discussed and analyzed in this paper. It will be argued that the variation of political systems from the perspective of democracy reflects, in addition to the impact of many proximate factors, evolved human diversity and that, because of this diversity, it has not been possible to achieve the same level and quality of democracy in all parts of the world. This argumentation is based on the idea that because there are significant differences in the evolved mental abilities of populations (notably, national IQ) and because these differences affect social preconditions of democracy (resource distribution), there must be considerable differences in the level and quality of democracy. These differences will most probably persist because their roots can be traced via resource distribution (IPR) to differences in average national intelligence and, to some extent, to differences in annual mean temperature. This argument will be tested by empirical statistical evidence covering 172 contemporary countries.

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