State - State and Ideology.docx

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Political Science
Political Science 1020E
Bruce Morrison

CHAPTER 1 – PREFACE/STATE AND IDEOLOGY  To attempt to understand our modern political consciousness within the context of the modern state  In Europe, few thinkers doubted that the horrors of the last century were rooted in a political reality that went much deeper than the ideologies or insanities of a few particular leaders  In Europe, the state was formed by absolute monarchs who early on centralized a permanent, and for the subjects quite visible, structure of legal and administrative power  American citizens recognized that they possessed a government or rather governments, but had little sense of the existence of a centralized state  Capitalism came to be seen as the necessary prerequisite for a liberal democratic system, an idea that, however theoretically suspect, remains the cornerstone of American foreign policy to this day  The state is a necessary evil, an unfortunate necessity to insure the sanctity of contract and other legal requirements of a capitalist free market  Scientific study of politics should focus not on the state or on constitutional and legal institutions, but on the empir
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