PoL111-Ch 3

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Political Science
Fiona Miller

POL111- Jan 7 2014 Chapter 1 & 3 - Basic Political Concepts Ch 3 – Democracy  Democracy o It’s an ideal o After the Cold War democracy grew ad expanded readily globally  Democracy and Expertise o Can bring stability to historically divided societies b/c each group can aim to secure a share of power through elections  Policy – making (by elected) vs. Decision-making (by experts)  Policy –making o Short –term o Prone to underweight events (after election) o Amplification of the business cycle (boost to the economy)  Decision-making o Offers greater predictability and stability for the longer term o Reduces uncertainty about outcome and future policy that elections creates for potential investors o Democracy is flexible and has changed throughout time  Forms of Democracy o Direct (participation) democracy  Citizens themselves are the primary agents for reaching collective decisions  Core principle of democracy is self-rule  Greek demokratia – Rule (Kratic) by the people (demo)  Direct popular (citizens) involvement  Educative in character  Yielding confident, informed and committed  Open both to public good and varied interest or opinions (from small to large communities)  State and society become one  Ex/ Athens (Polis = city –community ) Set agenda for Council Assembly People’s Court Right to Selection by lot attend and Selection by lot for speak for a one-year a specific case from period panel of volunteers Adult male citizens Women, slaves, non-residents and children  Characterization / advantages o “All to rule over each and each in his turn over all” o Appointed to all office, except those requiring experience and skill, by lot o No property qualification for office-holding, or only a very low one o Tenure of office should be brief and no man should hold the same office twice (except military positions) o Juries selected from all citizens should judge all major causes o The assembly should supreme over all causes o Those attending the assembly and serving as jurors and magistrates should be paid for their services o Would have multiple opportunities to become educated, public citizen. For society would have schooled them to participate  Disadvantages /Flaws o Citizenship was restricted to men whose parents where themselves citizens  Most adults (women, slaves and foreign residents were excluded) o Participation was not, in practice as claimed  Most citizens were absent from assembly meetings even after payment o Wasn’t a lean government  System was time-consuming, expensive and over-complex for a small society o Principle of self-government did not always lead to decisive and coherent policy  Lack of permanent bureaucracy contributed to ineffective governance, leading to fall of the Athenian republic  Indirect (Representative) democracy o
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