When times get tough, voting for autocratic leadership is the worst thing we can do

Sue Nethercott
5 min readMar 16, 2024

Do you long for the good old days?

First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.
Poem based on prose by pastor Martin Niemöller

The world is getting more and more complex, and more and more stressful. More and more we are seeing the consequences of our ancestors’ actions and ideologies — from manifest destiny and empire-building to evangelism and Reaganomics which destroyed whole societies and gave political and/or economic power to the few. We now use technologies which most of us do not understand, and most of us are dependent on experts to fix our cars and computers. Supply chains are very long and leave us vulnerable to shortages. The continuous greed for growth and profit destroys the air we breathe, the water we drink, our health and the nature that we rely on.

It is no wonder that many people feel the need to go back to the ‘good old days’ when things were simpler, and are tempted to choose to be led by a dictator who will deal with everything for us. But that would be a huge mistake.

The people who want to control us are not kind or wise people

For our leaders and would-be leaders, that would mean their having more control over us. In the USA, Republicans are already trying to ‘put women back in their place’ with their bans on abortion and putting gays back in the closet…



Sue Nethercott

Open University BA, UMIST MSc, OU BSc Environmental Studies. Interests: environment, COVID19. Double #ostomate. Thom Hartmann’s newsletter editor. Views my own.