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Lecture 3 Political Systems

Lecture 3 Political Systems - Lecture 3 Political Systems...

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Lecture 3 Political Systems: Authoritarianism, Totalitarianism, and Post- Totalitarianism II. Political Regimes Utopia “A nonexistent place in which people dwell in perfect harmony, health, and happiness.” Karl Marx, Plato, Aristotle wrote about how to achieve. Thomas Moore. 1. Authoritarian States A. Characteristics of authoritarian states 1) concentration of power: -- Power resides in one: autocracy or monarchy -- Power resides in a small group: oligarchy or junta 2) political and sometimes civil liberties are curbed or denied; lack of tolerance of political opposition press restriction, outlaw other political parties 3) high reliance on the army and the police; 4) the overriding aim is to remain in power at all cost; posit no utopian goals : Don’t care about utopian goals, very realistic – not interested in personals lives as long as they don’t oppose the government 5) the close relationship between a wealthy, elite class and the ruler or rulers Is not atypical in the U.S., very close relationship/ source of corruption B. Forms of authoritarianism 1) Modern forms: autocracy, oligarchy (few people rule) , and junta (group of military rulers after seizing power) Examples: Burma (junta), Lybia (autocracy), Singapore (oligarchy) 2) Traditional forms: monarchies or theocracy (a government based on religion and dominated by the clergy) monarchies concentrated in Middle East; Iran in 1980s; Tibet under the Dali Llama/ Vatican doesn’t count What is the difference between monarchs in Europe (e.g., UK, Spain, Scandinavia,
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