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Lecture 15

POLSCI 3VV3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 15: Joseph Schumpeter, Category Mistake, Limited Government

Political Science
Course Code
James Ingram

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Page 152- What is competitive elitism —> He takes himself on the theory of the
classical model of democracy which is a distillation of Rousseau and it is on idealistic
people, when the people rule for themselves for their own good
-Held’s criticism of Schumpeter in which he made a category mistake, criticizing topics
on the wrong type of thing. When you critics the idea of democracy for being impossible
you’ve missed what it is. Democracy is a term that is used as an aspiration and also
used as a criticism. It could be that the general will is too much to expect on an existing
democracy however you cannot operationalize it is that people in a democracy can
criticize their government for failing to live up to the idea of being the authors of the law.
The way the idea operates is through the criticism of the leaders and individuals trying
to aspire themselves to do better things
-Democracy could take different factual forms but those facts are always meant to be an
ideal or a norm
-These ideas and norms play an effect in the ongoing life or a polity
-The second criticism is Schempeter’s argument on the average intelligence of an
individual in which he explains that citizens “descend” to a lower level when they start to
abstract to public affairs of the law or government. Page (154) Most of the things that
government have to deal with do impact poeple’s lives. Public affairs are too expert
therefore we should choose among those experts in order to rule it
-Schumpeter reads a lot like an economist. The analogy of a market: Lets say it is a
marketplace, what kind of market are we talking about? (Page 156) His model of
democracy holds a “competitive” system. It does not represent free competition. This is
not democracy.
-(Page 114) —> Marx talks about the Paris Commune. The Germans had properly
prepared for this war and the French didn’t. The government of France left the country
whereas the people wanted to work on the country and make it better. Marx thought if
you had a revolution the needs of the country would be accomplished. Simply get rid of
the ruling class and the people would take over which is what Marx thinks is the ideal
Hannah Arendt (1906-1975)
-Hungary after World War 2 was on the Eastern European side and had a revolution in 1956 but
the problem is that there were the Soviet Union did not want Hungary to create their own
democratic rule yet they still set up institutions to create as much community control in which
revolutionary democracies create deeply democratic forms of governments
-Arendt tries to make an argument in which people who try to make themselves democratic. Her
book is an attempt is to rethink the phenomenon on revolution that they understand politics,
democracy and revolution wrongly and if they understood right we would live in a much better
-What her book tries to do it tries to understand why revolution have failed in the past. The
revolutionary traditions that occurred are such as the 1776 in America, 1789 in France, 1917 in
Russia, 1949 in China. Revolutions are something that communists do. They result in terror
then tyranny. Arendt thinks this is a terrible mistake. (Page 220-221) Revolutions in the past
resulted in 1. tyranny 2. limited government and civil rights and liberties 3. civil rights does not
mean freedom
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