Most discussions of populism and authoritarianism focus on their outward manifestations. But let us take a step back and consider underlying enabling factors.

A key factor in authoritarianism is the weakness of institutions; a key factor in rightwing populism is the weakening of institutions. This is the point of convergence of rightwing populism and authoritarianism.

A key factor of neoliberalism or permissive capitalism is the weakening of institutions via deregulation. Weak institutions enable the concentration of wealth and power. Forty years of neoliberalism have paved the way for rightwing populism.

Political authoritarianism prepares the way for market authoritarianism; alternatively, market authoritarianism prepares the way for political authoritarianism.

The Sustainable Development Goals are for inclusive and sustainable development; but weak institutions enable the opposite – exclusive growth and transactional and unsustainable policies.

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