account_circle Log in
add Create
cancel Log out
settings Settings
Email address



By Levi Clancy for Student Reader on

▶︎ View related▼︎ Tap to hide

There are three principles of a democratic government:

Popular sovereigntyThe right of all citizens to vote (universal suffrage -- exceptions include felons in some states). Government leaders are elected. Elections are free, fair and frequent. People participate in the political process. High-quality information is available. The majority rules.
Political equalityOne person, one vote. Equal before the law.
Political libertyFreedom to participate in processes that converts popular will into public policy. Popular opinion is the distribution of benefits and privileges preferred by the citizenry. Popular will is the distribution of benefits and privileges preferred by the citizenry when two conditions are met: high-quality information and opportunity to deliberate. Popular will is then converted into public policy via: elections; citizens receiving information about government activity; expressing preferences individually, beyond voting; joining associations to articulate preferences.

There are three kinds of Democracy:

MajoritarianDemocracies where policy decisions reflect the preference of the majority of individuals.
ElitistDemocracies where policy decisions reflect the preferences of a select few.
PluralistDemocracies where policy decisions reflect compromises among various competing factions.

Two issues frequently arise regarding political liberty: privately funded lobbyists and transparency. Some people have proposed public funding of lobbyists, while others have suggested the government maintain a maximum of transparency.


Combined political and economic systems:

Soviet UnionTotalitarianCommunist
Nazi GermanyTotalitarianSocialist
United StatesDemocraticCapitalist