Questions #6

. Why does modern democracy mean representative democracy? Too many people to directly vote on everything

Which are the defining characteristics of democracy? It should have limited government with a civil rights and a free media, power alternates between multiple parties through competitive elections with a constitution that restrains government. There are many interest groups and a market economy but a military that is under the elected officials and only minor corruption.

Which is more accurate, the elite or pluralist theory? As we’ve seen in the election, the elites in power do not always control who stays in power. There are many examples of governments who have been defeated in elections by nonelites, from Andrew Jackson to Hugo Chavez to Donald Trump.

Why is totalitarianism a twentieth century phenomenon? Before the 20th century governments did not have the means and technology to attempt to control the lives and minds of their constituencies.

What is the difference between totalitarian and authoritarian? Authoritarian governments want to rule over people, while totalitarian governments want to control them. Totalitarian governments demand not just obedience but open support from all.

Are totalitarian systems bound to fail? Why? Thus far totalitarian states are bound to fail because they have never been able to reform themselves as the situations changed. Will this always be the case? Possibly, unless one is able to create a alternative reality that gives the people an appearance of success while reforming out of the spotlight.

Why have many countries recently turned democratic? as authoritarian states have grown and prospered the people there have wanted democracy and more rights so the government stepped back. Other states failed due to totalitarian attempts to restructure and democracy was built from the rubble.

Why does democracy sometimes fail? Will it work in Iraq? It fails because some people need stability and security and will focus on that before the next level of rights. Iraq has that problem, as well as separate tribes of people who vote in blocks, which will make stable democracy very difficult, and the only stable democracy in the region is tiny Israel, so they don’t really see what progress looks like.

Should the United States try to export democracy? It generally has caused more problems than it has helped. I don’t think the government should support leaders who are authoritarian, but should not overthrow them either, once overthrown, the US can give advice and help, but should not get involved outside of that.

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