The Flaws of Democracy and Humanitarianism – Part 5/7

Left Coast Voices posted a piece about Liu Xiabo, a leader of the Chinese democracy movement, who won the latest Nobel Peace Prize. My response turned into a seven part series.

In this segment, I will write about the self-esteem movement in America and make the connection that Western style democracy and Humanitarianism are not right for cultures such as China.

The self-esteem movement in the US had its start in the 18th century and as a cancer grew from there to the epidemic that now threatens the foundations of the United States.

The self-esteem movement makes sure that children hear only positive praise and that before turning 18, that the facade of success and getting good grades (not necessarily earning those grades) in school are guaranteed.

In the last few decades, this leg of Western style democratic humanitarianism has put much pressure on teachers to deliver the impossible.

However, in China, students must earn school grades through hard work (there are no gifts to help one feel good) and the competition is fierce while failure is crushing, which explains the high suicide rate in “all” of Asia (where the self-esteem movement in the US did not take root) and not just China.

Most US children have been told that if he or she can dream it, he or she will achieve that dream as if every child can become the next Tiger Woods, Bill Gates, a super star of some kind, or a future president of the US.

Then those American children with high false self-esteem turn 18 and reality bites, which may explain the high incidence of drug and alcohol use in the US.

Then there is Frankenstein of Humanitarianism — armed nation building where Western democracies are willing to start wars to create nations that will support the West’s concept of Humanitarianism. This mutated arm of Humanitarianism led to the Iraq and Afghan wars.

Return to The Flaws of Democracy and Humanitarianism – Part 4


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

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