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Unformatted text preview: 15/09/10 DEMOCRACY AND ITS ALTERNATIVES POL1101C Understanding Politics Professor Luc Turgeon KEY TERMS Legitimacy Non-democratic Direct systems democracy vs representative democracy Electoral democracy vs liberal democracy Country Spotlight: North Korea, Zimbabwe 2 KEY QUESTIONS Distinguish between democratic and non-democratic regimes? Why is legitimacy also important in non-democratic regimes? What is the difference between electoral democracy and liberal democracy? What is the case for democracy? Against democracy? Is democracy a universal value? 3 1 15/09/10 THE DIFFERENT VERSIONS OF DEMOCRACY Democracy Demos Kratia Forms of democracy: Ancient vs Modern Direct Democracy (Athens): A system in which citizens make the governing decisions Schmitter and Karl: "A system of governance in which rulers are held accountable for their actions in the public realm by citizens, acting indirectly through the competition and cooperation of their elected representatives" 4 Representative Democracy NON-DEMOCRATIC REGIMES Absolut monarchies Louis XIV: "L'tat c'est moi" Tsars of Russia Saudi Arabia Dictatorship Personal dictatorships Party dictatorships Military dictatorships Theocratic dictatorships 5 CONTEMPORARY TOTALITARIAN STATE: NORTH KOREA Totalitarian regimes Stalinist Soviet Union Nazi Germany China under Mao Cambodia Under Pol Pot Contemporary totalitarian regime: North Korea 6 2 15/09/10 NORTH KOREA: A CASE OF TOTALITARIANISM Police state and use of terror: Over 200,000 people imprisoned Punishment against entire families for dissent Forced abortions in prisons, prisoners are routinely executed in public Pluralism and civil society are nonexistent Freedoms of religion and press do not exist It is an act of treason to leave the country without state permission Controlled economy: Nearly 37% of all North Korean children are chronically malnourished Access to services such as health care, education and even food assistance are allocated according to social stratification 7 SOURCES OF POWERS: DEMOCRACY VS NON-DEMOCRATIC REGIMES Authority The power to make binding decisions and issue obligatory commands. In democracies - authority is not based on outright coercion. Non-democracies are more reliant on coercion (although even dictators cannot rely on coercion alone) Legitimacy When the members of the political community accept the authority of those in government When government authority is based on legitimacy, citizens feel they have a duty or obligation to obey, or abide by, what the government legislates. 8 NON-DEMOCRATIC REGIMES AND THE PROBLEM OF LEGITIMACY Governing is easier when people accept that those who are in position of authority are legitimate. 3 15/09/10 LEGITIMACY Sources of Legitimacy (Max Weber) Charismatic authority Traditional authority Legal-rational authority 10 LEGITIMACY: NORTH KOREA 11 ELECTION AS A LEGITIMACY-SEEKING PROCESS Elections are also used by authoritarian regimes/dictatorship Provide legitimacy at home and abroad But risky.... Yet, frequent... Russia (Free but really fair?) Zimbabwe 4 15/09/10 THE HISTORICAL LIMITS OF ELECTORAL DEMOCRACY: THE US CASE 13 THE LIMITS OF ELECTORAL DEMOCRACY Democracy is not just elections Does not guarantee accountability to citizens Does not guarantee the respect of civic and political rights Freedom House's 2010 Report Number of electoral democracies in 2009: 116 Number of free countries: 89 14 FREEDOM HOUSE Arctic Ocean Beaufort Sea Map of Freedom Greenland Sea GREENLAND ICELAND 2010 Sea of Okhotsk NORTH KOREA Norwegian Sea NORWAY SWEDEN FINLAND RUSSIA U.S.A. Bering Sea Hudson Bay Gulf of Alaska CANADA Labrador Sea IRELAND DENMARK U.K. RUSSIA ESTONIA LATVIA LITHUANIA Nor th Atlantic Ocean UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Nor th Paci c O cean BELARUS POLAND NETHERLANDS GERMANY BELGIUM TRANSNISTRIA CZECH REP. LUXEMBOURG SLOVAKIA UKRAINE LIECHTENSTEIN KAZAKHSTAN MOLDOVA SWITZERLAND AUSTRIA HUNGARY SLOVENIA ROMANIA FRANCE ITALY CROATIA SERBIA ABKHAZIA BOSNIA & HERZ. MONTENEGRO BULGARIA MONACO SOUTH OSSETIA UZBEKISTAN ANDORRA SAN MARINO MACEDONIA GEORGIA KYRGYZSTAN AZERBAIJAN KOSOVO PORTUGAL ARMENIA GREECE TURKMENISTAN SPAIN TURKEY TAJIKISTAN ALBANIA NAGORNO NORTHERN KARABAKH CYPRUS MALTA PAKISTANI KASHMIR SYRIA CYPRUS TUNISIA AFGHANISTAN LEBANON INDIAN KASHMIR IRAQ ISRAELI OCCUPIED/ PAL. AUTHORITY MOROCCO IRAN ISRAEL TIBET JORDAN ALGERIA KUWAIT LIBYA EGYPT BAHRAIN QATAR U.A.E. SAUDI ARABIA MAURITANIA MALI OMAN NIGER CHAD SUDAN NIGERIA CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC UGANDA GABON KENYA RWANDA CONGO (KINSHASA) BURUNDI ETHIOPIA DJIBOUTI SOMALILAND SRI LANKA ERITREA YEMEN INDIA PAKISTAN NEPAL MONGOLIA CHINA SOUTH KOREA East China Sea BHUTAN JAPAN MEXICO Gulf of Mexico CUBA JAMAICA BELIZE HONDURAS BAHAMAS PUERTO RICO WESTERN SAHARA TAIWAN BURMA BANGLADESH LAOS THAILAND HONG KONG Nor th Paci c O cean HAITI GUATEMALA EL SALVADOR Caribbean Sea DOM. REP. GRENADA ST. KITTS & NEVIS ANTIGUA & BARBUDA DOMINICA ST. LUCIA ST. VINCENT & GRENADINES BARBADOS TRINIDAD & TOBAGO GUYANA SURINAME FRENCH GUIANA CAPE VERDE SENEGAL THE GAMBIA GUINEA BISSAU SIERRA LEONE LIBERIA GUINEA BURKINA FASO BENIN CTE GHANA D'IVOIRE TOGO Bay of Bengal South China Sea VIETNAM PHILIPPINES MARSHALL ISLANDS NICARAGUA CAMBODIA COSTA RICA PANAMA COLOMBIA ECUADOR VENEZUELA MICRONESIA BRUNEI NAURU PALAU TUVALU KIRIBATI CAMEROON EQUATORIAL GUINEA SAO TOME & PRINCIPE SOMALIA MALDIVES MALAYSIA SINGAPORE PERU CONGO (BRAZZAVILLE) INDONESIA TANZANIA SEYCHELLES COMOROS ANGOLA ZAMBIA EAST TIMOR PAPUA NEW GUINEA SOLOMON ISLANDS BRAZIL SAMOA Indian Ocean MAURITIUS VANUATU FIJI TONGA AUSTRALIA SWAZILAND BOLIVIA NAMIBIA PARAGUAY CHILE ARGENTINA SOUTH AFRICA URUGUAY ZIMBABWE BOTSWANA MALAWI MOZAMBIQUE MADAGASCAR South Atlantic Ocean LESOTHO South Paci c O cean Tasman Sea Survey Findings Freedom Status Country Breakdown Population Breakdown FREE PARTLY FREE NOT FREE TOTAL 89 (46%) 58 (30%) 47 (24%) 194 3,088,704,000 (46%) 1,367,440,000 (20%) 2,333,869,000 (34%) 6,790,013,000 The Map of Freedom reflects the findings of Freedom House's Freedom in the World 2010 survey, which rates the level of political rights and civil liberties in 194 countries and 14 related and disputed territories during 2009. Based on these ratings, countries are divided into three categories: Free, Partly Free, and Not Free. A Free country is one where there is broad scope for open political competition, a climate of respect for civil liberties, significant independent civic life, and independent media. Partly Free countries are characterized by some restrictions on political rights and civil liberties, often in a context of corruption, weak rule of law, ethnic strife, or civil war. A Not Free country is one where basic political rights are absent, and basic civil liberties are widely and systematically denied. Freedom House is an independent nongovernmental organization that supports the expansion of freedom worldwide. 15 5 15/09/10 A MORE SUBSTANTIVE PERSPECTIVE: LIBERAL DEMOCRACY Liberalism as "constitutional and limited government, the rule of law, and the protection of individual rights" and includes the individual's right to privacy; Source: Plattner "From Liberalism to Liberal Democracy" Civil and political rights LIBERAL DEMOCRACY Elections + (see Schmitter and Karl) Open political competition Political equality Respect for civil liberties Significant independent civic life (civil society) Independent media Civilian control over military Rule of law and independent judiciary Respect for minorities Checks on majority rule 17 National sovereignty IS DEMOCRACY THE MOST DESIRABLE SYSTEM? Yes: Best way to achieve common good (see Sen's three ways in which democracy enrich the life of citizens) citizens are dumb, democracy is inefficient No: 6 15/09/10 IS DEMOCRACY A UNIVERSAL VALUE? Democracy is a universal value: "democratic government has now achieved the status of being taken to be generally right" and a "universally relevant system." (Amartya Sen). "While it is true that no system of government is perfect, democracy is the closest to our essential human nature." (His Holiness the Dailia Lama) Gabriel Satori universality (and exportability) of democracy rests on "harm avoidance rule." Given a choice, people will prefer a system in which the risk of political and arbitrary violence is low. IS DEMOCRACY A UNIVERSAL VALUE At a superficial level much of Western culture has indeed permeated the rest of the world. At a more basic level, however, Western concepts differ fundamentally from those prevalent in other civilizations. Western ideas of individualism, liberalism, constitutionalism, human rights, equality, liberty, the rule of law, democracy, free markets, the separation of church and state have little resonance in Islamic, Confucian, Japanese, Hindu, Buddhist or Orthodox Cultures. Western efforts to propagate such ideas produce instead a reaction against "human rights imperialism" and reaffirmation of indigenous values. (...) The very notion that there could be a "universal civilization" is a Western idea (...). Samuel Huntington 20 THE RISE OF LIBERAL DEMOCRACY 21 7 15/09/10 BUT A RECENT DECLINE 22 8 ...
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