Political science class 5 11/11/2011
Democracy and equality
• Rules of the game
• Managing diversity
• Institutionalized uncertainty: democracy institutionalizes uncertainty. This is what keeps democracy
stable, the not knowing of who is going to win an election. If your party loses, you can run again
next time. Uncertainty gives stability.
• variations of democracy: no two democracies are the same. Democratic institutions are tailored to
different kinds of ethinic, cultural, and economic contexts. In some political systems, efficiency is
more important. Democracy depends on the needs of society. It is applied to reflect different social
and economic needs and contexts. It changes over time as societies change.
• equality: at the core of democracy is equality. Individuals are treated equally. Your vote is the same
as anyone else’s. the truest form of democracy is one in which we see the greatest social and
economic equality. No matter what form of democracy, equality is central
1) equality of opportunity
procedural democracy procedures and processes of democrac. Were really focused on the rules
of the game. Focus on the constitution and such. We always and free and fair elections.
polyarchy (Robert dahl) – public contestation and inclusive participation
challenges: collective action problem
2) equality of outcome
politicaleconomic equity concerns the consequences of democratic action. How does
democracy matter in people’s everyday lives?
procedural versus substantive democracy rules are important as they deliver more equitable
outcomes. Expectation that a democracy will provide a greater equality of outcomes
example: democratic welfare state creates more equitable outcomes or fair outcomes. Thus, it
is a fair process.
Equality of Opportunity – Challenges:
Challenge 2: The Fallacy of Democratic pluralism
Democratic pluralism assumes political equality