Modern Democracy

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Published on 13 Dec 2010
School
UTSG
Department
Political Science
Course
POL101Y1
Democracy: Institutions (Lecture 4)
-Marx felt that reality is the reality of exploitation
-Democracy is a method for choosing leaders. Universal franchise, secret ballot,
majoritarianism.
-Democracy is possible even if everyone is poor, as long as everyone has an equal amount of
rights
-emerges out of different pre-democratic contexts
-democracies evolve out of almost any society
-poor countries can be democracies but often dont stay democracies; rich countries most
likely to succeed
-But, there are different kinds of democratic political institutions, different ways of
organizing democratic government. These have profound implications for how government
is carried out, how social interests are channelled into politics, what political competitions
looks like, what kind of parties you get, what the flow of legislation is etc.
Parliamentary vs. Presidential Systems
BritainU.S
AncientModern constitution
Constitution Not written constitution
greatest democracy in the
history of continuity, 600 years
1.Significant acts of parliament
and documents
2.Custom
3. Important interpretations of
law (Dicey)
Importance of common law,
Written constitution
Enumerated rights
rules of the game are clearly
articulated
this document is pure human
design
institutions are product of
human design rather than
evolution
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Document Summary

Marx felt that reality is the reality of exploitation. Democracy is possible even if everyone is poor, as long as everyone has an equal amount of rights. Poor countries can be democracies but often don"t stay democracies; rich countries most likely to succeed. But, there are different kinds of democratic political institutions, different ways of organizing democratic government. These have profound implications for how government is carried out, how social interests are channelled into politics, what political competitions looks like, what kind of parties you get, what the flow of legislation is etc. Ancient: not written constitution greatest democracy in the history of continuity, 600 years, significant acts of parliament and documents, custom. Evolution law evolves through the institutions are the product of. Parties: prime minister and cabinet, responsible government, house of commons and house, president and cabinet. No checks and balances pass: that is a vote of no confidence and government falls.