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Do you think the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a surge in authoritarian behavior by governments around the world, posing a growing threat to democracy, free movement, free speech, public assembly and other civic rights?

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Irresponsible and unruly citizens are to be blamed.

10 ( +23 / -13 )

Can't speak for the rest of the world, but I'm not seeing any of that here in Japan. However, across the pond...

COVID-19? No.

The wholesale assault, injuring and murdering of citizens by the police for little to no reason bringing a rise of authoritarian behavior in the United States? Absolutely.

5 ( +21 / -16 )

The wholesale assault, injuring and murdering of citizens by the police for little to no reason bringing a rise of authoritarian behavior in the United States? 

You know this statement is absolute bull. Why don’t you go Stateside. There’s still a chance to pick up some electronics at a five finger discount. There’s probably a statue of Lincoln with your name on it.

-8 ( +10 / -18 )

never waste a good opportunity to introduce tougher laws and surveillance measures disguised as government efforts to protect and help the people through a crisis.

20 ( +24 / -4 )

I don’t believe a word of it. Governments have on the contrary been shown to be in disarray and relatively powerless. Attempts to be more intrusive have generally failed, except perhaps in China.

-10 ( +8 / -18 )

Yeah, it is called house arrest without due process. Executive orders and not legislation passed in state houses and city halls.

3 ( +12 / -9 )

Seriously? Well, if it has "...led to a surge in authoritarian behavior by governments around the world, posing a growing threat to democracy, free movement, free speech, public assembly and other civic rights", it plainly hasn't been effective, has it? In reality, that has been exactly what has been needed.

-11 ( +5 / -16 )

Not so much in Japan, though it’s hard to pin down precisely why. Manipulating counts of infected people to make it look like the infection rate is low is hardly tyrannical - more like run of the mill dishonestly with a splash of incompetence. And Japan seems to be constitutionally disallowed from doing anything beyond urging. That might change if a vaccine is released that they want everyone to take, though I’d expect more urging plus social rather than compulsion. There is plenty of propaganda about thIs “new normal” But it’s quite clumsy and easy to spot and not give any credibility to.

As for Australia, glad I’m not living there these days. The country has long since devolved from a laid-back backwater to a fine-happy, over-regulated proto police state. Especially Victoria. Governments enforcing lockdowns, limiting freedom of association and movement, ramping up the fear factor, destroying small business through the lockdowns, allowing far-left protestors to fill the streets without interference yet harassing people fishing off a pier with plenty of distance between them. Lots of Aussies seem to have Stockholm syndrome or have just resigned themselves to the new abnormal as well.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

The only people who think that way are most likely Americans living in continental US.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Those who say no are either blind or they themselves are in favor of this kind of authoritarianism.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

Just because you don't see it on the surface, and probably don't understand it, doesn't mean the government isn't taking such steps here. The government has been ramping up it's A.I. systems, and that wonderful app to help you track COVID-19 can be a dangerous tool. That's only scratching the surface.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Businesses have been taking full advantage of the CCP virus to let go of employees under the guise of loss of business due to the virus. The excuses these businesses now make for the delays in dealing with you when they were already a 'remote worker' based business is beyond unbelievable. It's just more greed, making more money with even less effort. Clearly we in a race to bottom and companies, not the government, are seeing just how far they can push and get away with it. Vote with your wallets and punish the companies treating you like their cash cow.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Japan was unable to introduce a legally enforceable lockdown and most importantly, did not rush through legislation that would have created stronger emergency powers. Others would have done.

I don't not know what other governments in other countries have been doing, but asking people to wear a mask is not authoritarianism.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

It was going on way before Covid-19.But this pandemic has only strengthened and "legitimized" their grips on power.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Or in the case of the USA, "stupid behavior".

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Fear is a tyrants weapon of choice to remove an individuals liberty, under the guise of security. Benjamin Franklin said those who give up liberty for security end up with neither.

Liberty is the soul's right to breathe and by extension is the virtue that gives life its joy and meaning. Security is sold as protection from death but liberty is the only real protection of life.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Benjamin Franklin said those who give up liberty for security end up with neither.

I hope this was said later in life, when he went against slavery.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

New Zealand for sure.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Luis David Yanez,

Those who say no are either blind or they themselves are in favor of this kind of authoritarianism.

More like illiterate. It seems like no one here is reading any news outside of Japanese or American. Then they complain Japanese news is so sheltered (although, I entirely agree)

hasn’t anyone read stories about Kenya, India, South Africa to name a few?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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