Psychological aspects of political regimes, Democratic...

Psychological aspects of political regimes

Democratic Regime

As a result of studying this chapter, the student must:


• What is democracy and the democratic regime;

• The historical destinies of democracy;

be able to

• Analyze the paradoxes of democracy;


• The skills of critical analysis of the shortcomings of democracy.

Studying democracy

Through the optical sight.

Robert Christmas

The concept of democracy

The authorities can use various means and methods to realize their will. In other words, there can be different types of state. We remember that Plato contrasted the ideal state (aristocracy) with other types that he expressed in four forms (Figure 17.1).

The first form - timocracy - belongs to the ambitious, with it a passion for enrichment. People who have seized power lead a luxurious lifestyle. Nobody thinks about the people.

Classification of types of state system (according to Plato)

Fig. 17.1. Classification of types of state system (by Plato)

It is clear that such a political regime is not strong. Luxury leads to decay. There are many dissatisfied people in the society. The mode can not be stable.

After thymocracy, oligarchy is the power of the few in the state or in the world of finance. Under this political regime, a minority dominates the majority. Since power is in the hands of the rich, they, but to Plato, waste their property and turn into poor people, completely useless members of society. The ancient sage believed that the oligarchy in its development leads to democracy. Power is in the hands of the majority, but the opposition between the rich and the poor is becoming more acute.

Democracy (from the Greek demos - people and cratos - power) - democracy; a form of state-political structure in which the people are the source of power.

But what was meant by the word "demos"? In ancient Greece, where there was a word and a concept, the demos consisted of free citizens of the city-policy, who carried out democracy. Needless to say, slaves had nothing to do with this process. Gradually, the idea was established that democracy is the equality of all without exception. Perhaps, it should be so, and elections, of course, must be universal, equal and free. Only who said that the majority is always right? During the general elections of 1932 Hitler defeated Germany ...

Democracy dictates the right of the people to participate in the decision of state affairs.

Democracy is based on the principles of subordination of the minority to the majority, the election of the main bodies of state power, the existence of the rights and political freedoms of citizens, as well as the conditions for their implementation. There are different institutions of representative democracy (elected institutions) and direct democracy (referendums).

Ancient Greek democracy reached its peak in the middle of the 5th century. BC. The democratic structure prevailing in the Ionian trade and handicraft policies was based on a meeting of all citizens and did not know the representation. Such a democracy is called a direct one, unlike a representative one, when deputies rule and adopt laws on behalf of the people elected by citizens.

According to Aristotle, democracy is determined by two characteristics: the rule of the majority and freedom.

Specialists note that the term "democracy" emerged as the name of the specific political practice of a number of Greek cities and, on the other hand, as opposed to the concepts of "aristocracy", "monarchy", "tyranny". It was this content of democracy that was fixed in a number of theoretical works that are the pride of Greek political thought, primarily from Aristotle. However, the democracy of the Greeks does not correspond to our ideal at all. From the ancient Greek concept of "demos" Slaves and even metekis were eliminated, i. social, national, property status precedes democracy, is, one might say, its condition. It is this status, as shown, in particular, by the domestic researcher K. Kobrin, that gives citizens the right to have a voice, to occupy posts, to defend their homeland. These rights are also duties, but duties are one more than rights. This extra "obligation" - Do not oppose democracy. It is very well known how, for example, in Athens, there were punishments against democracy.

The modern world tends to believe that democracy is more than other types of state system, suitable for political life. How Aristotle would be surprised if he found out about it. In his typology, democracy occupied the lowest place. Still - let the will of the people, he will do this ... Is it not out of the will of the crowd that Socrates left his life? People who did not even worth his little finger, having the right to vote, confidently led to the death of the greatest sage. It should be noted that neither in the era of Antiquity, nor in the Middle Ages, did anyone appreciate democracy. Only in the XVIII century. before the bourgeois revolutions began to speak of the will of the masses as the supreme law. After these revolutions, the slow and painful construction of a democratic life began, the legal relations were polished.

Tyranny (from the Greek tyrannis - arbitrariness) - a form of state power, established by force and based on one-man rule. Also, tyranny is a form of political organization of a number of medieval city-states of Northern and Central Italy, i.e. Signoria.

The term "tyranny", especially from the Enlightenment, acquired a nominal meaning - a cruel, despotic rule (including in relation to hereditary monarchies). Therefore, in relation to the form of government, it was replaced in the XIX century. more neutral term "dictatorship" (which now also has a negative connotation).

In February - March 40, the Roman emperor Caligula began preparing for a march to Britain. According to various estimates, it was collected from 200 to 250 thousand soldiers. The troops, reaching the coast of the English Channel, stood up, siege and throwing machines were installed along the shore. However, instead of the military order, Caligula ordered the collection of helmets and shells as a "gift of the ocean." Was it really so? About the folly of Caligula was written a lot. Albert Camus in the play "Caligula showed how absolute power corrupts the leader. Caligula sleeps with the wives of senators and enjoys the humiliation of their husbands. They are forced to pretend that they adore the emperor. The tyrant executes one after another, and those who are still alive are forced to laugh and joke. Caligula requires absolute power. A. Camus puts a hundred words on the word: "I want the moon."

The theme of the leaderism seemed exhausted after the Second World War, when philosophers and politicians proceeded to a comprehensive analysis of the phenomenon of totalitarianism. The works of Adorno, Fromm, Arendt, Jaspers gave a multifaceted examination of the self-will and tyranny of the leaders. E. Fromm wrote: "Caligula serves the illusion of absolute power, which transcends the boundaries of human existence."

Forms of state government (according to Aristotle)

Fig. 17.2. Forms of state government (according to Aristotle) ​​

However, at the beginning of the new century the theme of unlimited power again became urgent. Leader new philosophers in France Andre Glucksmann saw the origins of tyranny in German classical philosophy. He wrote that even in the first half of the XIX century. Heine threatened the French: "Beware of our philosophers!" Their teachings were produced by revolutionary forces, who wait only for a moment to explode and fill the world with horror and admiration. " Glucksmann finds similar thoughts among Fichte, Hegel, Schelling, Marx, Nietzsche. The revolutionaries and tyrants of the next century, in his opinion, are only salespeople German philosophy.

Aristotle, like Plato, derived his own classification of forms of government (Figure 17.2).

thematic pictures

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