Events happening do not just affect your opinion, influence also goes the other way around. Your opinion fuels what you tend to see just as much. I am very much aware of this effect in my desire to be optimistic about human progress. Even though democracy has increased in the past century, we are seeing cracks in the veneer and setbacks in countries around the world.
When the trend of increasing democracy in the world is suddenly interrupted, we tend to question what has felt as certainty; would this trend reverse? Isn't the only way up?
One thing to hold on to in times of doubt is Obama's illustration that history does not progress in a straight line. We should look with a blurry, averaging eye at history and see the trend that is definitely there.
Looking a bit deeper at the underlying mechanics, I feel like there are also fundamentals that favour democracies over autocracies. Einstein nicely summed it up:
'Everything truly great and inspiring has been created by an individual that was able to work in freedom.'
On an intuitive level, this makes total sense to me. Following orders is one thing, but being inspired to create something great takes a different environment. As we explored before, creativity is rapidly becoming the dominant characteristic in having an edge in business. Being open to diversity is another important element in this equation.
To sum things up, being a free, open, tolerant and diverse society seems not just to be a choice that a majority of people prefer. It also gives these societies an edge in economical terms. Not a bad choice.