The world is in the throes of a pervasive crisis. The gap between rich and poor has widened in most countries. Although industrialized economies are still growing, the real incomes of people working in them have barely increased since 1980, and in some places, such as the United States, the real wages of low-skilled workers have dropped sharply. The economic malaise has a corollary in politics: democracy is floundering. According to Freedom House, more countries have lost freedom than gained it every year for the past 17 years. Authoritarianism seems to be on the rise.