Affiliated member of the WPA – World Psychiatric Association

Democracies in Crisis – How Can We Defend the Democratic Idea?

Volker Tschuschke

Western democracies suffer from internal contradictions. On the one hand they offer liberalism which includes free speech and people nearly can behave at their own whim. On the other hand, it is an inherent problem that not everyone has the basic ethics and the responsibility at his or her own disposal. Individual freedom in a social community needs boundaries in order to protect those of others. Social prosperity and too much liberalism over decades as well wide ranged degrees of freedom have furthered a crass narcissistic entitlement mentality in the populations which hardly can be curtailed. Such developments inevitably promote divergence in solidarity and contribute to an erosion of the feelings of fairness and equality. It is a badly needed task of politicians to fence in the unlimited, archaic selfish aspirations in many parts of the populations. Otherwise the democratic endeavor would suffer from irreparable damage.

Volker Tschuschke was full professor at the University Hospital of the University of Cologne and is professor emeritus since 2013. He was chair holder in medical psychology, psychotherapy researcher and practicing psychoanalyst. Currently he is engaged as supervisor and lecturer at the German Institute of Psychoanalysis in Berlin.