Alex published a new opinion piece for Neue Zürcher Zeitung on the state of affairs in Turkey. He argues that almost half of the population has not voted for Mr Erdogan in the last election and the constitutional referendum. This large part of the population has been silenced in the aftermath of the alleged coup in the summer of 2016. It is the responsibility of all democracies to strengthen the people of Turkey that still support democracy and the republic. Do not give up on Turkey!
Can sport help overcome differences? While the Winter Olympic take place in South Korea people all across the peninsula and beyond hope for a new period of rapprochement between the North and the South. Alex remembers the World Cup of 1990, which took place shortly after the Berlin Wall came down and reunited the Germans that had been separated since the end of WWII.
Alex participated in the Burda Publishing House annual conference DLD, laying out his thoughts of the current "age of identity" as he frames it. The panel took place on January, 21st. You find the whole discussion here.
An excerpt from the text:
"Through history, the stories of Christianity and Islam have drifted further and further apart, and both religions have long moved away from the geographic contours of their antique realms. The majority of Christians now live on the American continent, and the majority of Muslims are in Malaysia and Indonesia. Rome, Jerusalem and Mecca retain their importance in the globalised state of the world religions. The burden of history weighs heavy; beneath this weight, the narratives of irreconcilability have migrated and have become entrenched in the new world.
A new approach to each other from the West and the East, from the Occident and the Orient, must form the start of a new chapter, a new narrative of the cultures which live around the Mediterranean. In the era of identity, it is the equal duty of the West and East to formulate an offer that doesn’t proffer salvation by repeating the stereotypes and demonisation of the past. Only in that way can they both stand the test of time."
Joining the program for the second time, Alex was invited to discuss with host Gavin Phipps and a further guest, Chieh-Ting Yeh of Ketagalan Media, current issues in regard to Taiwan. On this week's agenda are the amendment to the labor laws and the recent provocations by the People's Republic of China against the liberal democracy on the island. You can listen to the show here.
In his recent op-ed for the NYTimes "Is Angela Merkel Done For?" Alex lays out the state of the coalition talks in Germany: Chancellor Angela Merkel has not yet managed to form a new government after the election in late September 2017. As she blew up the coalition talks with the Liberals and the Greens in late November, she was only repeating her mistakes from the last election 2013 where she was incapable of forming a government with the Greens. Now she trying to take refugee, again, in a so-called Grand Coalition. The voters are not enthusiastic about this. Therefore, Alex argues, Merkel's tenure is over and she should step aside sooner rather than later in order to give her party the opportunity to get itself sorted and ready for the future.
Alex will be a panelist at this year's DLD Conference in January in Munich. DLD is the digital conference by German publishing house Hubert Burda Media. The gathering of the "Who is Who" of the digital hemisphere has established itself as the leading conference on all things digital. Alex' will be participating in the discussion about "reconquering democracy".
Alex will be holding a lecture at the City University of Hong Kong on November 14th. Subject is the global rise of populist movements, most of which highlight religion as part of their exclusionist narratives.
In his op-ed for the Taipei Times Alex elaborates on the question whether China may be invading Taiwan at any point soon. In the verge of the Communist Party's Congress in Beijing these days there has been much debate about this in Taiwanese media. Alex provides a European view on the subject matter in his piece.
Taking the stance that Catalonia and Taiwan are not in the slightest to be compared with one another, Alex spoke to IRCT, Radio Taipei, about the independence movement that threatens the stability of the European Union. The movement in Catalonia has gained some sympathy in Taiwan. You find the interview here, starting at almost about 29'50".
Alex will be delivering his first lecture in the new capacity as affiliate professor in the "In Defense of Democracy"-program of the F. D. Roosevelt-Foundation at Adams House, Harvard University College on December 4th, 2017.
Alex kicks of his time as visiting scholar to the College of Social Sciences at National Taiwan University. The prestigious department is also home to the Center for East Asia Democratic Studies. Alexander will contribute to their work with a series of lectures and events, highlighting his work on politics and religion in a Western framework. While in Asia he seeks to learn more about liberal democracy in the region such as the one in Taiwan, but also in South Korea and Japan. He also aims to be diving into learning about Confucian influence on policymaking and societies in the region, mostly China.
Alex, who is a senior fellow to the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, participated in an online roundtable of the institution concerning ethics in the age of populism and an era of rising autocrats in all parts of the world. Alex is laying out in his statement why he thinks an increasing emphasis on ethics may help brining these movements to an halt (please scroll to the end of the page).Read More
Alexander has been named "Defense of Democracy"-affiliated professor to the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Foundation. The Foundation is located at Adams House at Harvard College in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It aims to "highlight" Alex' work on liberal democracy as the chairman of the foundation, Jed Williard, noted in his appointment e-mail.
Link to the TEDxTalk: https://saveliberaldemocracy.com/2017/08/09/a-tedxtalk-how-narratives-of-inclusiveness-could-save-liberal-democracy/
Save Liberal Democracy founder Alexander Görlach delivered a TEDxTalk in Berlin, elaborating on how to save liberal democracy. His take is that the authoritarians of today use a simple and easy rhetoric to target minority groups such as Muslims or migrants. By doing so, they cater to the oldest and meanest trick in political ideology — “us versus them” labeling, with the result of “scapegoating” these minorties.
By defining their own peers as righteous and drawing a picture of them being endangered by a common enemy, the self proclaimd strong-men and women give way to a superstitutious, archaic model of human interaction for the sake of their hunger for power.
Healing is only possible through narratives of inclusiveness that tackle the scapegoater and label his rhetoric as not only removing the voice of the people, but also creating social unrest.
Being a visiting professor to the University of th Basque Country for the summer of 2017, Alex delivered a lecture on values in Europe alongside with Basque philosopher Daniel Innerarity at San Sebastian's Palacio de Miramar on July 13th.
Alex kicked off his thoughts with remarks on the comparision French philosopher Francois Baudrillard drew between the United States and Europe in his book "America": "Utopia" as paramount for the identity of the New World, and "History" as crucial for understanding Europe.