P R E S E N T E D B Y : S U M E R A B I B IP R E S E N T E D T O :D R . M U S H T A Q A H M A D( U N I V E R S I T Y O F G U J R A T , D E P ; P O L -S C , P U N J A B , P A K I S T A N . )Theories of Democracy
Introduction Political equals is the key characteristic ofdemocracy. Such responsiveness requires that citizens haveopportunities to ;1) Formulate their preferences2) Signify their preferences to their fellow citizens andthe government by individual and collective actions3) Have their preferences weighed equally in theconduct of the government, that is, weighted withno discrimination because of the content or sourceof the preference.
Institutional guarantees The freedom to form and join organizations The freedom of expression The right to vote The eligibility for public office The right of political leaders to compete for support andfor votes Alternative sources of information Free and fair elections The dependence of policymaking institutions ingovernment on votes and other expression of preference
Democratic regimes Nondemocratic regimes There exist institutions andprocedures through whichcitizens can express effectivepreferences about alternativepolicies at the nationallevel, and there areinstitutionalized constraintson the exercise of power bythe executive( competition) There exists inclusive suffrageor the right of participation inselecting national leaders andpolicies(inclusiveness/participation). Political regimes thatfail to meet therequirement ofcompetition & therequirement of theinclusivenessDemocratic vs. Nondemocratic regimes
Requirements of political regimesCompetitionInclusivenessNondemocratic regime(closed hegemony)- -Nondemocratic regime(competitive oligarchy)+ -Nondemocratic regime(inclusive hegemony)- +Democracy + +
Meaning of DemocracyDemocracy [demos = the people;cracy >kratos =strength/rule,so democracy = rule by the people]Democracy offers one means topermit a people to live in safetyand enjoy both liberty and justice.The people shall be as bothgovernors and governed, they willadvance the common good withoutoppressing themselves also the asyou.
Types of DemocracyDirect democracy• Ancient Greek/ Rome and India Modern period-SwitzerlandIndirect democracy• India, France, USA
Aristotle on DemocracyAristotle: in AncientGreece• Monarchy – ruled byone• Oligarchy, Aristocracy– ruled by a few• Democracy – ruled bymany
Rise of Democracy in Athens The value of the ordinary citizen as a soldier wasfinally recognized. His military importance came a sense that he had aright to be involved in decision-making processes. The economy that developed between the eupatridsand the ordinary citizens
Democracy Helped Solve Ancient GreekProblemsThe ancient Athenian Greeks are credited withinventing the institution of democracy. therewere problems, and the problems led to inventivesolutions Greek democracy: Conflict between Farmers and Aristocrats Draco, the Draconian Law-Giver Solons constitution Cleisthenes and the 10 tribes of Athens
Waves of democracy The most democracies emerged in a series of waves, Democratic transitions are determined by the evolvingeconomic status and political mobilization of the “middleclass,” both in good economic times as well as in bad. Instill inﬂuential work, Lipset (1959) argues thatmodernization leads to democracy.A wave of democracy is defined as a groupof transitions from nondemocratic to democraticregimes that occurs within a specified period oftime and that significantly outnumbers transitionsin the opposite direction
Waves…….. The fall of the Berlin wall on 23 August 1989, Hungryopened the iron curtain to Austria, and in Septembermore than 13,000 East German escaped via Hungrywithin three days. It was the first mass exodus of East Germans afterthe Berlin wall was built in 1961. The end of cold War provided also a “Window ofopportunity” for regime change After the cold war, the movement toward democracyhas been a global one.
Waves……… This rapid political transformation began in EasternEurope, spread Africa. The democratic wave did not engulfChina, Iran, Kuwait, Libya, Zimbabwe, and manyother states. Democracy is produced by human beings, especiallyby the strategies and choices of individualleaders, E.g. Spain This transformation from authoritarian rule todemocracy comes first from gestures by exemplaryindividuals “who begin testing the boundaries ofbehavior initially imposed by the incumbent regime”
Waves…….First wave of democratization, 1893-1924• Before World War I, new Zealand and Australiamade the transition to democracy.• During or shortly after World WarI, Australia, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Norway, Sweden, and the United States introduced a democraticpolitical system..• Germany is also democratized.
Waves…….. First Reverse Wave, 1924-1944 Regime changes to authoritarianism during this period reflected therise of the ideologies of communism and fascism Hitler‟s conquest of power ended German democracy Some democracy such as Austria and Finland, were effected andreverted to nondemocratic system, and the democratic institutions inPoland, Latvia, and Estonia were overthrown by military coups. Although Spanish democracy was installed in 1931, a military coup ledthe civil war in 1936 and a return to authoritarianism in 1939. In this antidemocratic period, the only transitions to democracy weremade by the competitive system of Britain and Iceland that adoptedinclusive suffrage in 1928 and 1934, respectively.
Waves…….Second Wave of democratization, 1944-1957 Short wave began with Allied victory in World War II and continueduntil approximately 1960. West Germany, Japan, and Finland, Latin American states of CostaRica, Chile, and Uruguay, Austria, Italy became democratic. The competitive system of Belgium and France allowed women to voteafter the war, resulting in democracies, and Italy also became ademocracy. Czechoslovakia was a democracy before World War II, experiencedand interruption period during the war, and turned to nondemocracyunder Soviet pressure following it.
Waves………….Third Wave of Democratization, 1976-1989 More global wave, began in southern Europe in the 1970sin Portugal, Greece, and Spain, then spread to LatinAmerica. In Ecuador, military withdrawal and elections in 1979produced a civilian government. A year later, a civilianpresident elected in Peru. Bolivia, Argentina, El Salvador, Uruguay, Honduras, andBrazil turned to democracy in the early 1980s. Some Asian countries also effected in the late 1980s.
Waves……Fourth wave of democratization, 1989-2001 At the end of the 1980s, the wave swept through Eastern Europe, withthe Hungarian transition to semidemocratic system beginning in 1988. In 1990, Hungary moved to democracy In 1989, Poland became democratic after elections for a nationalparliament and a president. In 1990 saw widespread, rapid collapse ofnondemocratizatic regime in Africa, and more than a dozendemocracies emerged. This recent democratization wave was not only more global andeffected more countries than earlier waves, there were also relativelyfewer regression to nondemocratic regimes than in the past. During the fourth wave of democratization, there were forty-seventransitions to democracy and only eighteen transitions back tonondemocratic regimes.
Models of Democracy What is the empirical strength of this new combinedmodels, and what are the possibilities of generalization ofthis integrated theory ? Such a model appears to be important, if only because itoffers the possibility of drawing more meaningfulconclusions concerning the relative influence of factorsinherent in the theories. Moreover, a test of so-called combination model isinteresting because such a model may be able to explaindemocracy better than the separate factors. There are various contrasting models of democracy:
Classical democracy This model of democracy is based on the polis, or city-state of AthensGreece. The form of direct democracy is portrayed as the only ideal system ofpopular participation. Athenian democracy can be described as a form of government by massmeetings. All major decisions were made by the Assembly to which all citizensbelong. Every Athenian citizen (male over 20 years of age) had the right toattend, to speak and to vote in the meetings of the Assembly which met40 times a year
Classical …… Every citizen belonged to one of ten „tribes‟ and each year50 members of each tribe were chosen to sit on theCouncil which set agenda for Assembly Citizens held office for one year, and no more than twicein a lifetime, except for ten generals who could be re-electedKEY PRINCIPLES OF ATHENIAN DEMOCRACY: Every citizen should have the right to vote and to holdoffice The duty of all citizens is to participate actively in thesystem Decisions should be made by the majority vote
Criticism of classical theory• Criticism of the descriptive accuracy of the classicaltheory has been wide spread in recent years.• The best statement of the basic objections usually madeis Joseph Schumpeter, Capitalism, Socialism andDemocracy (NewYork,1942), Since contemporaryscholars have found the classical theory of democracyinadequate, a "revisionist" movement hasdeveloped, much as it has among contemporary• Marxists, seeking to reconstitute the theory and bring itinto closer correspondence with the latest findings ofempirical research.• One major restatement, called the "elitist theory ofdemocracy"
Protective Democracy The idea of direct democracy was shelved. In the 17th and 18th centuries the focus was on protecting citizensfrom the encroachment of government, hence protective democracy. John Locke argued in the 17th century that the right to vote wasbased on the existence of natural rights If government, through taxation, has the power to expropriateproperty, citizen were entitled to control the composition of thelegislature. Democracy now meant a system of government byconsent, operating through a representative assembly. Jeremy Bentham and John Mills, utilitarian theorists in the 18thcentury proposed a radial approach and advanced their argument insupport of individual interest. Bentham opined that individuals seek pleasure and avoidpain, which was a way of promoting „the greatest happiness for thegreatest number.‟
Protective…… John Mills , His overall concern was with selfdevelopment, and laissez faire policies seemed toprovide the scope needed for individual freedom. The critical point of protective democracy It aims to give people the widest scope to live theirlives as they choose. This liberty must then be protected by a mechanismof the separation of powers via separateexecutive, legislature and judiciary.
Developmental democracy Jean-Jacques Rousseau provided an alternative view to thedemocratic theory. At the centre of Rousseau‟s model is thegeneral will: the genuine interests of a collectivebody, equivalent to the common good; the will of all providedeach person acts selflessly. He proposed that „ no citizen shallbe rich enough to buy another, and none so poor as to beforced to sell himself.‟ Rousseau‟s system of radical development required economicequality. Development of self can only be achieved whencitizen by participate in decisions that shape the their lives. Mills views are also instructive as he promotes the „highestand harmonious‟ development of individual capacities, byparticipating citizen enhance their understanding, strengthentheir sensibilities, and achieve the highest personaldevelopment.
People‟s democracy The term people democracy is derived from the orthodoxcommunist regime. Karl Marx believed in the principle of a democracy basedits implication of egalitarian prospects and thought of asociety in which there was common ownership of wealth(social democracy)He believed the overthrow ofcapitalism would lead to the flourishing of a genuinedemocracy A system of „bourgeois‟ democracy would be replaced by„proletarian‟ democracy. He predicted that class antagonisms would dissolved andthe capitalist state would „wither away‟. There would onlybe one class
Liberal Democracy Liberal democracy is accepted as the worldwide practicesof politics. Its key constructs are: Indirect or representative form ofdemocracy in which political office is gained by successin regular elections. It is based on competition and electoral choice. There is aclear distinction between the state and civil society. Characteristics of liberal Equality Fraternity
Characteristics of Lib….Democracy Sovereignty with the people Open competition for political parties Respect for opposition Freedom to form political parties Periodic elections Faith in constitutional means Rule of majority Independent and impartialJudiciary Rule of law Provision of rights Independent means of propaganda Decentralization of powers Secularism Responsible government Opposition of socialism and support of capitalism Rejection of violence Pluralistic nature of society
Criticism of the liberal theory of democracy More importance to quantity than quality It is based on the principle of unnatural equality It is cult of incompetence Dominance of bureaucracy It is expensive government Unstable government Bad effects of political parties Dictatorship of the majority It lowers the moral standard of people It is not government of all It is the government of rich Weak government during emergency Politics becomes a profession It weakens national unity Indifferent attitude of voters Rejection of liberal democracy by Marxists Criticism by elites
Marxist view of democracy The Marxists view of democracy is that power cannot be evenly dispersed in society as long as classpower is unequally distributed. Marxist theory of Democracy can be divided into three main categories. 1. Capitalistic democracy 2. Dictatorship of the Proletariat 3. Socialist democracy
Marxist….Capitalist democracy Bourgeoisie democracy protects the interests of minoritycapitalists Capitalist exploit the proletariat Workers fail to exercise their political rights Press and mass media safeguard the interest of rich people Use of education, religion and culture to promote the interestof rich Police military and courts protect the interests of the richpeople Bourgeoisie democracy divide the society intotwo classes
Marxist…Dictatorship of the proletariat Dictatorship essential to end the capitalism Dictatorship of proletariat is real democracy Dictatorship of proletariat is not all coercion It is transitional period Existence of only communist party Economic system during the dictatorship of the proletariat Political system during the dictatorship of the Ideological and cultural basis
Marxist….Characteristics of socialist democracy Absence of class conflict There will be no political apathy Consensus on general matters Collective leadership People‟s congresses are more representative Provision to recall the representatives Provision of referendum Basic rights and freedoms for citizens Special position of judiciary Preference to economic rights No place for anti socialism political parties Development of socialistic culture Withering away of the state
Critical Evaluation Of The Marxian Concept OfDemocracy Democracy and dictatorship can not go side by side Revolutionary methods are against democratic principles One party rule is undemocratic Political liberties are just eye-wash Judiciary is not independent State intervention in private affairs Democracy is not only a form of government, it is a way of life It is totalitarian form of government Unrepresentative character of representative assemblies Press is not independent Ignore the good points of capitalistic democracy State is not an instrument of exploitation State has not withered away
Economic Theory of Democracy clearly, rational behavior in a democracy is not what mostnormative theorists assume it to be. political theorists inparticular have often created models of how the citizens of ademocracy ought to behave without taking into account the economics of political action.Consequently, much of the evidence frequently cited to provethat democratic politics are dominated by irrational (non-logical)forces in fact demonstrates that citizens respondrationally (efficiently)to the exigencies of life in an imperfectlyin- formed world. Apathy among citizens toward elections, ignorance of theissues, the tendency of parties in a two-party system toresemble each other, and the anti consumer bias ofgovernment action can all be logically as efficient reactions toimperfect information in a large democracy.
Economic…. Thus political theory has suffered because it has nottaken into account certain economic realities. On the Other hand, economic theory has sufferedbecause it has not taken into account the politicalrealities of government the attempt demonstrates how much economistsand political scientists must depend on each other toanalyze government decision-making, which is themost important economic and political force in theworld today.
Constitutional Democracy Constructing constitutions and creating theories toexplain and justify those constitutions are products ofthat larger legal project. They are also exercises inpractical politics. And theories that account for andjustify constitutions rest, ultimately, on arguments frompolitical philosophy. Thomas Hobbes sneered at efforts to use language totame passions power: “Covenants being but words andbreath, have no force to oblige, contain, constrain, orprotect any man, but what it has from the public Sword” -an instrument, he believed, that could be effectivelywielded
Constitutional……... tyranny of the majority” haunts the dark corners of democraticpower. First some theorists make the empirical claim that in democracieswhose populations are ethnically, religiously, economically, andsocially diverse, political cleavages are rarely cumulative. The limited scope and lifespan of these common interests, sometheorists assert, force democratic politics to play according to theprinciple the Russian Foreign Minister gave John Quincy Adams in1815 about diplomacy:Always hate your enemy as if tomorrow he may be yourfriend, and always love your friend as if tomorrow hemay be your enemy. In sum, officials will be wary of oppressing any group for fear it willbe part of tomorrows winning coalition and exact revenge.
Constitutional…… A second set of protections is cultural. Both for the population as awhole and more particularly for professional politicians, truedemocracy attempts to build up, through opposing groupsnegotiating and compromising with each other, an intellectual andemotional environment-a political culture-that fosters moderation. “Rules of the political game” that demand respect for the rights ofall participants. Even if initially based on self-interest rather thangeneral moral principles, those “rules” are likely to fosterintellectual habits that will influence behavior. Robert A. Dahl claims that “the democratic process is itself a formof justice: It is a just procedure for arriving at collective decisions.” Prudential or moral acceptance of the maxim that, in a democraticcontext, “some things simply arent done” is likely to include amongthose “some things” trampling on individual rights and treatingclasses of people unfairly.
Constitutional…… Constitutionalists believe that, where questions of basic rights areinvolved, it is the quality of reasoned argument that should prevail, notnumbers of votes; and, for reason to have a fighting chance, it must operate A reasoned justification for constitutional democracy must mainly rest onits commitment to political freedom and individual liberty. Like ancientIsrael, constitutional democracies have often violated the covenant thepeople made with themselves and their posterity, adding to the chancerynature of attachment to such a system. Constitutional democracys pledge does not imply the end of economic andpolitical struggle, but the beginning, or continuation, of a politicsconducted in peace, through clearly marked and more or less openprocesses, for limited goals that always include respect for the interests ofopponents as well as allies. It is the “pursuit of happiness” constitutional democracy promises, nothappiness itself. “The dignity of man shall be inviolable. To respect and protect it shall bethe duty of all state authority.”
Noam ChomskyConsent Without Consent: Reflectionson the Theory and Practice of Democracy A decent democratic society should be based on the principle of “consent of thegoverned.” That idea has won general acceptance, but it can be challenged asboth too strong and too weak. These explanations capture the real meaning of the doctrine of "consent of thegoverned." The people must submit to their rulers, and it is enough if they give"consent without consent." Within a tyrannical state or in foreign domains, force can beused. When the resources of violence are limited, the consent of the governedmust be obtained by the devices called "manufacture of consent" by progressiveand liberal opinion. The enormous Public Relations industry, from its origins early in thiscentury, has In other words, we find it hard to induce people to accept our doctrine, that therich should plunder the poor, a public relations problem that had not yet beensolved.
Noam…. The issues were addressed 250 years ago by David Hume inclassic work. Hume was intrigued by "the easiness with whichthe many are governed by the few, the implicit submissionwith which men resign" their fate to their rulers. This he found surprising, because "Force is always on the sideof the governed." If people would realize that, they would riseup and overthrow the masters. He concluded that governmentis founded on control of opinion, a principle that "extends tothe most despotic and most military governments, as well asto the most free and most popular." A more accurate version is that the more "free and popular" agovernment, the more it becomes necessary to rely on controlof opinion to ensure submission to the rulers. That people must submit is taken for granted pretty muchacross the spectrum.
Noam… Such ideas greatly distressed "the men of best quality," as theycalled themselves: the "responsible men," in modern terminology. They wereprepared to grant the people rights, but within limits, and on the principle that by "thepeople" we do not mean the confused and ignorant rabble, they explained. But how is thatfundamental principle of social life to be reconciled with the doctrine of "consent of thegoverned," which was not so easy to suppress by then? A solution to the problem wasproposed by Humes contemporary Frances Hutcheson, a distinguished moralphilosopher.
Theories of democracy There is four basic theories of democracy. these theories belong to afamily, and they share some family resemblances. The general response of democratic theorists is to move towardmoral relativism. Thus they are best left not to principled judgments by publicphilosophers, but to adjustments made by elected officials who areboth in close touch with the citizenry and able to bargain andcompromise. Where do political theories come from? One important answer isthat they are often produced in times of social and politicalcrisis, when existing political institutions and values are underthreat, and urgent new questions arise. One of the most important things to do when you are comparingpolitical theories, which are in a sense answers, is to be clear exactlywhich questions those theorists were addressing.
Traditional Theory Traditional Theory, everyone has the right to participatein government. This participation can occur either bydirect or representative vote. In a direct vote, the people approve public policythemselves. This situation works well on a small scale, asin a town meeting. In a representative vote, a group of elected officials actson behalf of their constituents. This type of vote is usedat the state and national levels to determine publicpolicy. For voting to be effective at any level, people needaccess to information, so they can make informeddecisions.
Traditional….. Citizens have the power to decide on policy proposalsand politicians assume the role of policy implementation. Real life experiences of participatory democracy havemainly materialized in processes of „„ParticipatoryBudgeting‟‟ at the city level. This is the case of nearly 200Brazilian municipalities where direct democracy, in theform of popular assemblies, coexists with formal politicalparties and local elections: Citizens have to make abudget proposal but they also have to elect the cityexecutive and legislative bodies. Participatory systems have also been implemented at thestate level in Rio Grande del Sul (Brazil) and in WestBengal and Kerala (India), and at the school level inChicago, through the Local School Councils.
Our analysis builds on the model of pure direct democracy by Osborne etal. (2000). There, the members of a society decide independently whetherto attend a meeting, at a cost, where the policy decision taken will be acompromise among the attendees‟ ideal positions. Attendance is based ona cost beneﬁt calculation: Citizens compare the cost of participation withthe impact that their presence will have on the compromise. We extendtheir analysis by considering the existence of representative or legislatorwho is in charge of policy implementation. The legislator can choose freelythe policy to be implemented. The results we obtain show the relevance of two features: (1) The alignmentbetween the policy preferences of the legislator and the policy preferencesof society; and (2) the degree of extremism of the legislator. Formally, weﬁnd that pure strategy equilibrium can only be of two types: Interiorequilibrium or maximal compromise equilibrium. Interior equilibrium: If the most preferred outcome to the society liesrelatively close to the legislator‟s ideal point, that is, when society andlegislator‟s preferences are aligned, the policy implemented in equilibriumis the assembly‟s most preferred policyTraditional ……
Radical democracy Radical democracy was articulated by Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe intheir book Hegemony and Socialist Strategy: Towards a Radical DemocraticPolitics, written in 1985. They argue that social movements which attempt to createsocial and political change need a strategy which challenges neoliberal andneoconservative concepts of democracy. This strategy is to expand the liberaldefinition of democracy, based on freedom and equality, to include difference. "Radical democracy" means "the root of democracy." Laclau and Mouffe claim thatliberal democracy and deliberative democracy, in their attempts to buildconsensus, oppress differing opinions, races, classes, genders, and worldviews. Inthe world, in a country, and in a social movement there are many (a plurality of)differences which resist consensus. Radical democracy is not only accepting ofdifference, dissent and antagonisms, but is dependent on it. Laclau and Mouffeargue based on the assumption that there are oppressive power relations that existin society and that those oppressive relations should be made visible, re-negotiatedand altered. By building democracy around difference and dissent, oppressiverelations of power that exist in society[clarification needed] are able to come to theforefront so that they can be challenged.
Radical……… The word democracy has been used to justifyrevolutions, counterrevolution, terror, compromise, andmediocrity. Radical democracy is the foundation of all political discourse.As a physical matter, it is the root source of the stuff out ofwhich politics is formed: power. As a normative matter, it isthe root source of value, the radical answer to the question “What is justice” Given this fact, it is strange to find that radical democracy is asubject largely avoided by the political theorists. Who amongthe classic political philosophers is a defender of radicaldemocracy? Though we can catch of it in John Locke, in Jeanjacques Rousseau, in Thomas Jefferson, in Tom Paine, or inKarl Marx, democracy quickly moves away from it to othersubjects before the 1890
Elite (elitist) theory of democracy In every society there is a class of people which is thoughsmall in number but has more control over political power.The power belonging to this class occupy command officesand provide leadership in ruling affairs of the society and thisclass of the people is known as elite. The theoretical view held by many social scientists whichholds that American politics is best understood through thegeneralization that nearly all political power is held by arelatively small and wealthy group of people sharing similarvalues and interests and mostly coming from relatively similarprivileged backgrounds. It doesn‟t matter who is in charge of the government, thewealthy upper-class are always controlling things › 1/3 of thenation‟s wealth held by 1% of the population
Elites….. The elite theory of democracy has emerged out of two majorconcerns of its precursors: no theory of democracy until nowhas given leadership the importance it ought to have, andnone has really settled the issue of whether the common manis up to the task of governing a modern and large society.Characteristics of political elites Small in number Organised Open entry Monopoly over political power Open competition among different elite groups Conscious of their interests Absence of absolutism
Main features of the elitist theory of democracy Inevitability of political elites in every society In every society there are two classes Iron laws of oligarchy Democratic method of appointing and dismissing the policymakers Plurality of elites Leadership is necessary for democracy Government of the people and by the people is a mere myth In democracy elections are elections of elites Non participation of people in policy making Circulation of elites Faith in government by experts and not by the people No special importance is given to ideology
Why Elite democracy fails?1. Elite Democracy theory fails to describe the conditions of modern society, i.e., it fails asa descriptive model. It assumes that the atomized mass is “natural” and inevitable rather than investigating itssources. It concludes that nothing can be done by the masses through protest or self-governancebecause of the absence of community -- rather than imagining ways to build community andmake citizen action effective. It inaccurately locates the source of anti-democratic backlashes. It is mistaken about the motives of elites. It assumes elites are elites because they are smart; i.e., it fails to identify the real source of elitepower, which, in capitalist society, is wealth. It does not give ordinary people enough credit for their astounding accomplishment inmaintaining as much democracy as we have.2. Elite Democracy theory fails as a normative model for effective “democratic” government. We do not need elites to protect us from ourselves. We do not face a world of scarcity unless we put our fate in the hands of the elites who havedone the most to deplete earth‟s reserves. The theory does not have an adequate concept of freedom (it uses an outmoded 19th centuryconception). It misconstrues the purpose of democracy.
Criticism of elitist theory Lack of faith in common people It is conservative theory Elites can not maintain equilibrium in society This theory is silent about democratic society This theory gives no importance to ideology This theory gives no importance to man Leaders are given undue importance This theory does not give due importance to public opinion This theory is against the principle of social and economicequality What should be the basis of political elite Protection of the interest of capitalism
Pluralist theory of democracy Society is ruled by competing organized groups in whichindividuals are represented largely through theirmembership, and all groups have access to the policy process. Groups with shared interests influence public policy › Ex:National Rifle Association, United Auto Workers, NationalEducators Association, American Association of RetiredPersons Argues Modern democratic societies are characterized bypower being dispersed between elite groups, represented bypressure groups and political parties. R.A Dahl 1961 Looked at the role of interest groups andfound several groups influenced the State. State isneutral, never dominated by one group. Contrast to Marxistview.
Main features of the pluralist democracy There is a wide dispersal of political power amongstcompeting groups. There is a high degree of responsiveness with groupleaders being accountable to members There is a neutral government machine that issufficiently fragmented to offer groups a number ofpoints of access. Robert Dahl, a noted pluralist, suggested in one of hisearly writings that in societies like ours "politics is asideshow in the great circus of life."
Pluralist views of the state Pluralists Dunleavy and O‟Leary indentified the three mainpluralist views of the state. They were; The Weathervane model; The states direction reflectspublic opinion and the demands of pressure groups. Thismeans that state policy is based on the concerns and interestsof society. The neutral state model: The state is seen as the neutralor impartial arbiter who acts in the publics interests. Thisarbiter compromises between the demands of differentpressure groups and makes sure that even the weakest groupsare heard The broker state model: This view sees groups within thestate as having their own interests and concerns. Most policiestend to reflect the concerns of the state officials themselves.
The Pluralist View of Powero Potential versus Actual Power. Pluralists also stressthe differences between potential and actual power. Three of the major tenets of the pluralist school are(1)resources and hence potential power are widelyscattered throughout society;(2) at least some resources are available to nearlyeveryone; and(3) at any time the amount of potential power exceedsthe amount of actual power.o Scope of Power. Finally, and perhaps mostimportant, no one is all-powerful. An individual or groupthat is influential in one realm may be weak in another.
A Critique of Pluralism They charge, first, that it does not adequately describewho governs and, second, even if it did, pluralism is anundesirable form of government.1. Pluralism Is a Faulty Description.2. Pluralism is Morally Bankrupt System. The pluralist theory is criticised for being too optimisticabout the State and the government. The State cannot act as an honest broker as it isimpossible to govern without using power and withoutfavouring certain power and political groups. R.A Dahl is correct in his theory because many groups doinfluence the State, it‟s not just down to one group.
Hyper pluralism › Pluralism gone bad ,There are so many competing groups thatthe, government can‟t accomplish anyone, Politicians are trying to makeeveryone happy- but you can‟t do that if you are going to get anything done. If the groups don‟t get their way- they Leads to policy gridlock Hyperpluralism is one theory of American democracy. Pluralism states that several groups with a common goal would influence apolicy through planned and effective efforts. Hyperpluralism is basically the same theory with different perspective.While people who believe in pluralism is optimistic, hyper-pluralism is apessimistic and extreme. They believe the groups are too strong and they suppress the power of thegovernment. In other words, hyper-pluralists think too many cooks spoil the broth. Thetheory observes that policy makers try please every groups, and results witha policy that pleases no one and improves nothing.
Hyper……… Groups are so strong that government is weakened.Extreme, exaggerated form of pluralism. Sub governments consist of a network of groups that exercisea great deal of control over specific policy areas. Interest groups have become too powerful as the governmenttries to serve every interest. The many sub-governments (iron triangles) aggravate theprocess. When the government tries to please all the groups, thepolicies become confusing and contradictory. With more interest groups getting involved, these subgovernments may be dissolving. Exaggerated / perverted form of pluralism Confusing / contradictory policies, inability to act at all
Evaluation Democracy is not every thing but something Political role not a stage of economic development Democracy is not a way of governing whether bymajority but primarily a way of determining whoshall govern
ReferencesPartIV. SeealsoBernardBereisonetal.,Voting(Chicago,1954),chapter14;articlesbyLouisHartzandSamuelBeer inW.N.ChambersandR.H.Salisbury(eds.),Democracy in theMid-20th Alesina, A., Rosenthal, H., 1989. Partisan cycles incongressional elections and the macroeconomy. AmericanPolitical Science Review 83, 373–398. Austen-Smith, D., Banks, J., 1989. Electoral accountabilityand incumbency. In: Ordeshook, P. (Ed.), Models of StrategicChoice in Politics. University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor. Banks, J., Sundaram, R.K., 1998. Optimal retention in agencyproblems. Journal of Economic Theory 82, 293–323.