The Democracy Deficit: Taming Globalization Through Law Reform
Alfred C. Aman Jr.
Indiana University-Bloomington, Maurer School of Law
Alfred C. Aman, THE DEMOCRACY DEFICIT: TAMING GLOBALIZATION THROUGH LAW REFORM, New York University Press, 2004
Economic globalization has had a chilling effect on democracy since markets now do some of the work that governments used to do through the political process. More than two decades of deregulation have made a healthy economy appear to depend on unrestrained markets. But appearances are misleading-globalization is also a legal and political process. The future of democracy in the twenty-first century depends on the ability of citizens to reclaim a voice in taming globalization through domestic politics and law reform.
Can citizens govern globalization? Aman argues that they can, and that domestic law has a crucial role to play in this process. He proposes to redefine the legal distinction between public and private to correspond to the realities of the new role of the private sector in delivering public services, and thereby to bring crucial sectors of globalization back within the scope of democratic reform.
Basing his argument on the history of the policies that led to globalization, and the current policies that sustain it, Aman advocates specific reforms meant to increase private citizens' influence on globalization. He looks at particular problem areas usually thought to be domestic in nature, such as privatization, prisons, prescription drugs, and the minimum wage, as well as constitutional structural issues such as federalism and separation of powers.
Date posted: November 19, 2004