Why does the left have a bad record and a bad reputation with regard to its attachment to democracy?
He points to “a single inescapable fact”:
[N]amely that, flawed as they may be, the capitalist democracies are democracies and none of the would-be anti-capitalist countries, anywhere, has managed to sustain comparably good or better democratic institutions over any length of time. Note that I do not say this means it could never happen; I don’t believe that. What it does mean, however, is that the democratic institutions we are familiar with have yet to be improved upon in any of those places that some leftists are given to casting an indulgent eye upon even while they seek to distance themselves critically from the institutions they themselves benefit from and which are superior.
Unwilling to profess a clear allegiance towards what is democratically better, a certain type of leftist is always ready to make allowances for what is democratically worse. Is it any wonder, then, if his or her democratic avowals are regarded by many with suspicion?