Democracy: The God That Failed

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Democracy: The God That Failed is a 2001 book by Hans-Hermann Hoppe, containing a series of thirteen essays on the subject of democracy. The book "examines modern democracies in the light of various evident failures" which, in Hoppe's view, include rising unemployment rates, expanding public debt, and insolvent social security systems. He attributes democracy's failures to pressure groups seeking increased government expenditures, regulations and taxation and a lack of counter-measures to them. He discusses as solutions secession, "shifting of control over the nationalised wealth from a larger, central government to a smaller, regional one" and "complete freedom of contract, occupation, trade and migration introduced".[1] It concludes that democracy is the primary cause of the decivilization sweeping the world since World War I, and that it must be delegitimized.[citation needed]

Hoppe characterizes democracy as "publicly owned government", which he compares to monarchy—"privately owned government"—to conclude that the latter is preferable; however, Hoppe aims to show that both monarchy and democracy are deficient systems compared to his preferred structure to advance civilization—what he calls the natural order, a system free of both taxation and coercive monopoly in which jurisdictions freely compete for adherents. In his Introduction to the book, he lists other names used elsewhere to refer to the same thing, including "ordered anarchy", "private property anarchism", "anarcho-capitalism", "autogovernment", "private law society", and "pure capitalism".[2]

The title of the work is an allusion to The God That Failed, a 1949 work in which six authors who were former communist (or former communist sympathizers) describe their experience of and disillusion with communism.


  1. On Time Preference, Government, and the Process of Decivilization
  2. On Monarchy, Democracy, and the Idea of Natural Order
  3. On Monarchy, Democracy, Public Opinion, and Delegitimation
  4. On Democracy, Redistribution, and the Destruction of Property
  5. On Centralization and Secession
  6. On Socialism and Desocialization
  7. On Free Immigration and Forced Integration
  8. On Free Trade and Restricted Immigration
  9. On Cooperation, Tribe, City, and State
  10. On Conservatism and Libertarianism
  11. On the Errors of Classical Liberalism and the Future of Liberty
  12. On Government and the Private Production of Defense
  13. On the Impossibility of Limited Government and the Prospects for Revolution

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