The exact causal relationships between democracy and economic growth may be subject to debate. The empirical examination of causal links should not lead one to forget, however, that human empowerment and well-being, which should be the ultimate objective of political and economic institutions, requires both democratic institutions and economic prosperity. Embedding a vibrant market economy into strong democratic political institutions--institutions that promote fairness and equity--is the best way to ensure that political and economic empowerment play equal and complementary roles in improving the lives of citizens across the world.