Download e-book for kindle: A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country by Steven L. Taylor

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By Steven L. Taylor

ISBN-10: 0300210701

ISBN-13: 9780300210705

4 exotic students in political technological know-how study American democracy from a comparative viewpoint, exploring how the U.S. political method differs from that of thirty different democracies and what these modifications finally suggest for democratic functionality. This crucial textual content ways the next associations from a political engineering standpoint: constitutions, electoral structures, and political events, in addition to legislative, govt, and judicial strength. The textual content appears at democracies from world wide over a two-decade time-frame. the result's not just a clean view of the much-discussed subject matter of yankee exceptionalism but in addition an leading edge method of comparative politics that treats the U.S. as yet one case between many. a terrific textbook for either American and comparative politics courses.

Steven L. Taylor is professor and chair of political technology, Troy collage. Matthew S. Shugart is professor of political technological know-how, college of California, Davis. Arend Lijphart is examine professor emeritus of political technology, collage of California, San Diego. Bernard Grofman is professor of political technological know-how, collage of California, Irvine.

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Here democracy is realised in the first instance, not as direct popular control over decision-making, but as control over the decision-makers who act in their stead. How effective that control is, and how equally distributed it is between individual citizens, and between different groups of citizens, according to their numbers, are key criteria for how democratic is a system of representative government. At this point it is useful to distinguish between the concept of representative government, which mayor may not be particularly democratic, and representative democracy, which is a representative government conducted according to democratic principles.

Walsh concludes that if efficiency arguments are to be followed, what is 26 Introduction required is a wider democratic mix of institutions and instruments at the local level. In Chapter 5 Frazer explores the debate about communitarianism and examines its implications for the normative underpinnings of local government. Communitarians believe that local government should be strengthened. Yet, on closer examination, communitarian arguments are clouded by inadequate conceptions of community and locality.

Let us suppose, for the sake of argument, that this model were to lose its most obvious defect in practice, from the point of view of accountability, and that all agencies in receipt of public funds were required to meet the same conditions of openness as currently apply to local government. 7 Although it might be argued that this is not an accidental defect - since it is intrinsic to a philosophy which assumes that the norms of private sector management can be transferred without remainder to the public services - nevertheless there is no reason to regard secrecy as being intrinsic to such a model of 36 Theorising Democracy and Local Government administrative accountability.

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A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective by Steven L. Taylor


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