For the first time, democracy stands unchallenged as the world's only legitimate form of government. Its proliferation has prompted negotiations to end apartheid in South Africa, freedom of opposition within one-party systems in Mexico, Egypt and Taiwan, and efforts by China's octogenarian leaders to liberalize the economy. The most likely outcome is a classless global bourgeoisie, but only if world- wide industrial growth, global disarmament and free migration can help overcome the glaring discrepancies in economic development between Northern and Southern regions of the globe in the next century.