Faced with a stagnant economy, for instance, France and Italy have avoided the pain of deep structural reforms on labor and taxes. Estonia and Ireland, meanwhile, have had little alternative but to become leaner through fiscal consolidation and structural reform.
Small liberal democratic countries are better governed – mainly because they can avoid the pitfalls of liberal democracy. In a small country the causal links are shorter, democratic decisions are less industrialized and more personal.
The downside of course is the potential for negative instability:
Orban’s increasing control of both state media, and private media by proxy, has caused alarm bells to ring in the EU and at the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe which has an important media freedom remit. Hungary’s press has been downgraded from “free” to only “partly-free” by Freedom House, an American NGO.