Even in a society as tightly controlled as Singapore’s, the market creates certain forces which perhaps in the long run may lead to democracy.
The past is malleable and flexible, changing as our recollection interprets and re-explains what has happened.
We also have a cultural phenomenon: the emergence of a global culture, or of cultural globalization.
Our institute’s agenda is relatively simple. We study the relationship between social-economic change and culture. By culture we mean beliefs, values and lifestyles. We cover a broad range of issues, and we work very internationally.
The problem with liberal Protestantism in America is not that it has not been orthodox enough, but that it has lost a lot of religious substance.
The basic fault lines today are not between people with different beliefs but between people who hold these beliefs with an element of uncertainty and people who hold these beliefs with a pretense of certitude.
Let me say again that the relationship is asymmetrical: there’s no democracy without a market economy, but you can have a market economy without democracy.
Some people think that as the Chinese economy becomes more and more capitalistic it will inevitably become more democratic.
But we don’t have an example of a democratic society existing in a socialist economy – which is the only real alternative to capitalism in the modern world.
One can’t understand the Christian Right and similar movements unless one sees them as reactive – they’re reacting to what they call secular humanism.