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Stasiology and Electoral Systems

Adrian Gorun

It is obvious today that the democratic political regime cannot be considered reality without taking into account political parties; it is as obvious as the phenomenon of partidocracy, expressed through the quasi-total domination of parties in politics. Such judgements prompted the title of the book Stasiology and Electoral Systems. The book itself revives the term stasiology, introduced by M. Duverger in 1951, which defines the science of political parties but has not been used very much over the last decades. Its approach is explanatory and perspective alike, emphasizing the myriad of correlations surrounding the emergence, functions, types and systems of parties, on the one hand, and the electoral systems used to elect parliaments, styles of representation and executive formation on the other.

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Chapter IV: Governments

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187 Chapter IV Governments The problems surrounding governments are multifarious, raising issues such as roles and competences, structures and types, legislative-executive relations, con- stituting conditions, etc. The question R. Dahl asks: “Who governs?”391 requires answers to questions such as: “What is the government? What is its role and what are its competences in the political system? The term government is used with many different mean- ings in Great Britain: Her Majesty's government, cabinet government, shadow government, party government, yet it is not used in the United States at all “where the President’s government means firstly administration and it contains both the presidency, as a role and a device, and the federal bureaucracy that is dependent on the executive”392. What we consider as being significant from the point of view of definition (to govern = to lead) is the fact that most of the time the government is identified with the executive power, a power that, over time, has changed significantly. 4.1 Government Organization It is well-known that, before J. Locke – who presages a division of power into legislative power, executive power and federative power – but especially before Montesquieu (the theoretician behind the division of power into legislative power, executive power and judicial power and of their “philosophy” through the “effect of freedom”), power was exercised by the sovereign (monist power). Pasquino writes: “The monarch ruled and governed, hired and fired the staff to which he entrusted political and administrative tasks, issued laws and sentences, granted amnesties and pardons. As...

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