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Political Ideologies and Political PartiesPolitical Ideology: A set of ethical principles that helps provide an outline of the proper ordering of society, and explains how society should work.Categories of Political Ideologies•Communism: Advocates a political system in which all property is held in common, usually by the state•Socialism: Advocates a political system in which the means of production and distribution are held in common, usually by the state•Liberalism: Advocates a political system in which the individual is autonomous, civil liberties are respected, and rapid progress is encouraged•Conservatism: Advocates a political system in which traditional institutions are respected and maintained, while allowing for slow and minimal change•Fascism: Advocates a political system in which the nation or a race is seen as most important, not the individual or even the people as a collective*Note* Democracy is not an ideology, but an ideal. It simply means that the people, which all the categories except Fascism deems important, hold powerFunctions of Political Parties
•Articulating ideology•Recruiting leaders•Staffing the government bureaucracy•Proposing, forming, and shaping policy•Connecting people to government•Mobilising citizens•Aggregating interests•Engaging in political socialisation and education the publicTypes of Political Party Systems•Single-Party Systems: A single party holds all, or almost all, power. This does not necessarily mean that there is only one party. Single-Party system can occur in a two-party or multiparty system. Political forces that tend to produce one-party systems include:oA revolution or coup that installs a single party (China, USSR)oEmergence of a charismatic leader oConstitutional requirements of a single party (China)oExternal threat that leads citizens to rally around a single party or leaderoEthnic, religious, or other social fragmentations (Nigeria)oEconomic crisis that leads citizens to unify around a single leader or party (Putin) •Two-Party Systems: Two major parties tend to vie for political power. This system creates a need for “big tent” parties, or parties that are supported by broad coalitions of citizens and often crosscut a number of cleavages within a society. Political forces that tend to produce two-party systems include:oSingle member district plurality systems (SMDP) where the winner is only required to get a plurality of the voteoSingle member majority districts, winner takes all•Multiparty Systems: More than two parties vie for real power within the political structure. In this system, there is no need for “big tent” parties, for parties frequently focus on attracting voters along clear cleavages in society.