Questions tagged [political-theory]

Political theory is the study of the concepts in politics. Use this tag for questions regarding political philosophy or scientific theories.

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4answers
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What conditions must happen to end a cult of personality?

Background Cults of Personality are a long standing phenomenon going back to at least the Roman Emperor Commodus. However the term really only entered popular lexicon after Nikita Khrushchev's Secret ...
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How did the US end up so evenly split?

When looking at the popular vote for 2016, about 49% to 51%, and the current numbers for 2020, it's astonishing how close it is — how evenly the country is divided. Surely this is unexpected and ...
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If the goal of communism is a stateless society, then why do we refer to authoritarian governments such as China as communist?

The actions taken by these governments seem to be more fascist than communist. The term communism is used to describe so many contradicting policies and it is very confusing.
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Writings or public statements advising elected politicians on how to make hard choices

While not always seen in this light, members of congressional or parliamentary bodies are regularly faced with moral choices when deciding how to vote in situations where the answers to questions like ...
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Are there sources that try to demonstrate that democracy is just an oligarchy?

My concern is certainly both philosophical and political ...I'm looking for interesting writings ( book, article, essay, etc .. ) about a theory on similarities between known forms of democracy and ...
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Direct voting on every issue (referendum) - new political system

First of all, I am not a politician. I am just a computer scientist. I asked this question because I do not think that I have adequate knowledge of various political systems. Background: Over the ...
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399 views

Is an “enlightened public” political system a form of democracy, or of technocracy/epistocracy?

I am not sure who originally came up with this idea, but in his book Against Democracy, Jason Brennan talks about a political system he calls "simulated oracle", or an "enlightened ...
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What is the meaning of “artificial borders”?

In the political analysis of many conflicts, especially regarding Africa or the Middle East, many people explain the conflicts as being caused, in part, by "artificial borders." There are also ...
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Is there any form of political system using math, informatics or psychology as a basis for decision-making?

Politician are often demagogic. They can say things without citing sources, statistics, etc. The laws are created to fulfill some purpose but this purposes are not defined in a formal language. The ...
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Is there any formal research into the concept of “nothing more permanent than a temporary government program”?

According to a quote attributed to Milton Friedman, "there's nothing more permanent than a temporary government program". Is there any formal academic research into this concept, i.e. ...
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What has divided the country so severely since Bill Clinton's election?

I recently saw this article by the New York Times' Upshot showing that last 50 years of electoral college results from the presidential elections. Something that stand out is how drastically voting ...
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Are there modern theories of free speech that account for the inequality of the marketplace of ideas?

Recent critiques of the "marketplace of ideas" theory of free speech have noted inherent shortcomings with this system, namely: People do not have equal ability to spread their ideas in the ...
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What did Black Panther, Huey Newton, mean by 'Non-State' in this speech?

In a speech to Boston College, on the 18th November, 1970, Huey Newton, one of the founders of the Black Panther Party in 1966, said: ... But by and large you can see the transformation which was ...
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Are the differences between capitalism's and socialism's analysis of resource distribution fairness fundamental?

I have always understood a (broadly speaking) capitalist, free market approach to economics to rest on the notion that a resource distribution is fair in light of how closely it correlates the ...
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What ideas about policing, police power, and police conduct have classical theorists offered? [closed]

For the sake of this question I'm defining "classical" as "Pre-Renaissance." I am looking for quotes or sources from authors recognized as political theorists or philosophers, but ...
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Understanding how Fascism showed that direct government is not same as self-government

Harold Joseph Laski in his book Parliamentary Government in England writes: Direct government, in short, is not the same thing as self-government; it may, indeed, as the experience of Fascist ...
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Is Duverger's Law a theorem or an empirical regularity?

I wanted to know if Duverger's law ("[T]he simple-majority single-ballot system favours the two-party system") was/can be derived from a mathematical model of elections, like the Median ...
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Has authoritarianism been removed as an attribute of the right?

Historically, authoritarianism was an attribute of the right; during the French parliament in the momentous 1789 vote in which a decision was made regarding the veto power against the king post ...
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1answer
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What is the distinction between constitutional power and statutory power?

I know it sounds easy on the surface. Constitutional powers are conferred through constitutional text, whereas statutory powers are conferred through legislation. But consider the following scenario (...
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Why allow convicted criminals to vote?

According to a 1998 HRW report, The United States may have the world’s most restrictive criminal disenfranchisement laws. We know of no other democracy besides the United States in which convicted ...
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Have any Marxists won the Nobel Prize in the last 50 years?

Have any avowed Marxists recently won the Nobel Prize, or any other significant economic recognition award?
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Is there a standard political process which a government uses to verify claims?

https://thehill.com/homenews/sunday-talk-shows/456092-top-aide-names-seven-deadly-sins-china-must-end-to-stop-trade-war “Stop stealing our intellectual property, stop forcing technology transfers,...
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What differentiates Trotskyism from Marxism/Leninism?

I understand that the split originated in a power struggle, but I'm more interested in the modern theoretical differences. In the present day, there appears to be an ideological split between ...
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1answer
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How does Prejudice Plus Power apply to third party minorities?

This post pertains to the political theory of Prejudice Plus Power, a.k.a. R = P + P, which redefines the word "racism" as "prejudice plus power," meaning, among other things, that ...
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What is an alternative theory to the Paradox of Tolerance?

The Paradox of Tolerance expresses the idea that a society that is unlimited in its tolerance of intolerant philosophies is unlikely to survive, and therefore that an otherwise tolerant society should ...
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Is it a fundamental tenet of liberalism to allow the expression of illiberal ideals?

In recent years, the US has seen a rise in a priori rejection or "cancelling" of illiberal ideas on the left. In essence, these ideas are being rejected from mainstream liberal society ...
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According to political scientists, what, if anything, are the benefits of election polling to a liberal democracy?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberal_democracy About 3 months and a million news-years ago, the pollsters and election analysts were taking a kicking for not predicting the US elections accurately ...
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What did Marx and Engels mean by “Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.”?

In the communist manifesto what did Marx and Engels mean by "Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes"?
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What is the difference between negative rights and positive rights?

What's the difference between negative rights and positive rights? Can negative rights co-exist? Can positive rights co-exist? Can negative rights co-exist with positive rights?
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Do we have a political term for the situation when a weak country milks from two stronger countries which are enemies of each other?

Do we have a political term for the situation when a weak country milks from two country which are enemies of each other? My research includes, studying about debt-trap, and other questions here. So I ...
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Alternatives to money and power as social incentive mechanisms

Capitalism does a pretty good job of incentivizing people to work on what's economically profitable, e.g., finance, law, tech, and what gives them power over others, e.g., becoming CEOs. Now let's ...
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Is there a scientific political ideology?

It could be argued, that the idea of "freedom" dictates much of US politics, that the idea of "nation" dictates much of Russian politics, that the idea "responsibility" directs German politics, and so ...
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Why fight political polarization? [closed]

Political polarization is one of the key topics in politics and society today, and there seems to be a consensus on the opinion that political polarization is something bad. The ability to “reduce ...
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Are there groups or parties considered far-right but not populist?

Some authors reject that populism is even a terribly meaningful concept, but leaving aside that general rejection, for those who admit that populism is "a thing" and likewise admit that the ...
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Why do working class people vote for the political right?

Some analysis of the 2017 General Election in the UK has been published in the Financial Times, which seems to indicate that people without a university degree, who were working class, and had poor ...
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When is a democratic vote actually the wrong tool?

Democracy is defined as: Democracy is sometimes referred to as "rule of the majority". Democracy is a system of processing conflicts in which outcomes depend on what participants do, but no ...
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1answer
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Which (subjective) measure of corruption is the best predictor for an outsider winning a major election?

There's a (somewhat vague) theory that once the electorate starts to believe the political system is corrupt, it is more likely to vote for an outsider (someone who hasn't had a long political career) ...
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Is it advantageous to lie in political polling answers?

When a person is asked questions by a poll, are there any rational reasons why they might lie with their answers in order to achieve their goals for the election? For example if they say they are ...
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“You can't call a country a democracy until a government has twice lost an election and given up power.” Whose quote or idea is this?

I've completed a "Moral Foundation of Politics" course on Coursera.org and there's an interesting quote that sounds like this: Schumpeterians will often say, you can't call a country a ...
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How can wages/income be aligned with social value production?

Many people would argue that nurses provide more value to society than investment bankers*, yet the latter position is paid significantly more than the former. This fact is often lamented. My question ...
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Is there a term for politicians enacting a policy where the negative consequences will be far after their political career is over?

For example, Governor Newsom has recently committed to banning internal combustion engine cars starting from the year 2035 or 15 years from now. Given that this will be long after he's out of office, ...
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Apparently many US voters think their candidate supports their politics even if they do not. Does this also apply to voters in other countries?

This surprising New York Times article says many US voters can't tell what political positions their candidate espouse, and in fact appear to simply attach their favored positions onto their candidate....
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Political philosophy: major developments in the last 20 years?

Has there been any groundbreaking academic/ scholarly research conducted in the field of political theory/philosophy in the past 20 years? Obviously the 20th century had a lot of novel political ...
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What are the ideological differences between the Soviet Union and Noam Chomsky?

What the Soviet Union used to be is usually considered a socialist state. Noam Chomsky is a political activist who is also considered a socialist. Still, Noam Chomsky appears to have a very ...
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Can the U.S. technically be called an oligarchy and a democracy?

I thought theoretically the U.S. could be a democracy (because people have a say in the daily workings of the government) and an oligarchy ( the president, the Supreme Court, etc... are the only ones ...
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What is the purpose of democracy?

In many modern political debates democracy is often considered an unalloyed virtue: things are good because they are democratic. Things the people have voted for are good because they represent the "...
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What is the difference between globalisation and imperialism?

It seems obvious to start by looking at the first few lines on Wikipedia: Wikipedia on globalisation Globalization or globalisation is the process of interaction and integration among people, ...
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If authoritarian regimes are so bad, why do we see so many of them?

This is my first question here... If authoritarian regimes are so bad, why do we see so many of them? I don't understand why they are so prevalent in the world. It can't be because people are gullible ...
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In Communism, what happens to property rights?

Picking up on a question that was posted here, it said that in Communism a home that one built could be reapportioned to someone by the vote of a majority It seems to me that this isn't a fair ...
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What word might describe a position between progressive and reactionary [duplicate]

My understanding of both terms is that they relate to one's tolerance of the status quo, with "progressive" meaning someone who wants to progress beyond the current status quo ("change&...

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