Weekend Roundup: Victory in Myanmar for Democracy — On a Leash

Pent-up democratic aspirations were unleashed this week in Myanmar’s first free election in decades, resulting in a landslide victory for Aung San Suu Kyi and her opposition party. But as Mark Farmaner and Hanna Hindstrom point out, it is “democracy on a leash” as the long-standing military rulers retain a constraining foothold through the current constitutional arrangement. It remains to be seen if Suu Kyi’s elected government will be “above” those constraints, as she has boldly asserted. Writing from Yangon, Ma Thida lays out the many issues in the political transition ahead.

Harrison Akins reminds us that the “shadow” over Myanmar’s democratic turn is the continuing persecution and discrimination against the Muslim Rohingya minority. In this week’s “Forgotten Fact,” we look at why the Rohingya could be the world’s next big refugee crisis.

If it stabilizes, Myanmar could have a bright future. It sits between the two fastest growing economies in the world, India and China, the second of which is revitalizing the ancient Silk Road trading route that George Yeo, Singapore’s former foreign minister, sees as making Eurasia the driver of the future global economy.

In our “Third Industrial Revolution” series this week, Jeremy Rifkin similarly sees the digital link up between Europe and China through the Eurasian landmass as shifting the economic center of gravity in the world. Byron McCormick says the Third Industrial Revolution is a kind of encompassing Moore’s Law that will unfold at an exponential pace. In her contribution to the series, Lisa Gansky argues that the new “Sharing Economy” can create value from waste. Jonathon Porritt describes how we can reach a low-carbon future even if the Paris climate —> Read More