Lecture Notes 3

Lecture Notes 3 - Types of Government: Parliament vs the...

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Types of Government: Parliament vs the Rest Lecture 3 January 14, 2008 Pol 1101
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Types of democratic government The two principal forms of democracy in the modern world: 1. The presidential system Exemplified by the United States and Latin America for the 2. The parliamentary system Exemplified by most European countries Also French-style “semi-presidentialism”, an intermediate form between parliamentary and presidential, combining a powerful president with an executive responsible to parliament
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Key concept: The State It is all institutions of government or rule It is a concept, an idea. It refers to the source of all government authority In reality: a complex arrangement of institutions and processes that have authority and legitimacy Key building block is legitimacy – hence the importance of popular consent
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What is the state? For Thomas Hobbes , the state should be paramount over society. Society is a population beneath an authority, and this sovereign, whether monarchy, aristocracy or democracy should be a Leviathan , an absolute authority. Strong government necessary to restrain man from war-like impulses For John Locke , governments necessary to preserve property and justice. If state fails to do this, people have a right to revolt since the contract between the people and the state has been broken. Also argued for separation between church and state For Jürgen Habermas , there is a public sphere, a site of extra-institutional engagement with matters of public interest autonomous from the state and yet necessarily connected with it
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Key Concept: Civil Society Key words: community, civil, trust 1) The “good society”: the goals and challenges that motivate the search for freedom and human progress 2) Associational life: how to meet those challenges through non-state action 3) The “public sphere”: providing a framework for
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Lecture Notes 3 - Types of Government: Parliament vs the...

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