Tag Archives: citizen

Thomas Hobbes and John Locke as thinkers about a pre-political state of nature

From the seventeen and eighteen century, the concept of a state of nature became popular and controversial between political thinkers such as Thomas Hobbes and John Locke because in most cases it raised freedom and equality as a natural right to all man.  Even this, there is the debate around those thinkers and the ways their conceptions changed the overcoming political theories. This essay will Compare and contrast Thomas Hobbes and John Locke as thinkers about a pre-political state of nature

Thomas Hobbes political philosophy, which comes to full fruitition in Leviathan it simply change the way of political reasoning. Because he rejected as inadequate the fundamental assumption of ancient classical theorizing that in the polis or republic man found his natural fulfillment, and that civil freedom was to be defined as the privilege of the citizen who participated in rule.[1]  ‘With extraordinary boldness he claimed that in his writings he was not merely reforming or correcting the political philosophy of the past, but founding political philosophy itself.  In this scenario, it can be argued that Leviathan, like Plato’s Republic, is a work of inauguration. It inaugurates the modern theory of the state.’ [2] Hobbes’s Leviathan is commonly described as one of the greatest masterpieces of political theory in English language and the first of the great social contract treatises. In this book according to Hobbes the state can only be conceived as overcoming something anterior to it; something that empirically can only be glimpsed here and there, but which it is the task of the political theorist to draw out and present in its unadulterated form.  In addition, the lineaments of the Hobbesian state of nature are well known. It is a ‘condition which is called war; and such a war, as is of every man, against every man.  The state of nature here becomes a generalized picture of a world in which men are guided solely by their own ideas of what is “good” and ‘evil” and refuse to make any acknowledgement of a “common good” or “common evil”.[3]

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Can armed humanitarian intervention ever be justified?

Since its beginnings armed humanitarian intervention has represented a dilemma to war, peace and international ethics because it involves the moral issue of when to intervene and if these interventions are justifiable.  Moreover there are the different theories in favour and against of armed intervention. This essay will discuss:  Can armed humanitarian intervention ever be justified?

In order to make this essay clearer is to believe that a couple of definitions should be made beforehand; humanitarian intervention and armed intervention. Firstly, ‘humanitarian intervention is traditionally defined as the use of force by states to protect human rights. This definition presumes that states should do the intervening in order to maintain civil rights and of course the welfare and peace in society’.[1]Nowadays, it is sometimes argued that this traditional definition is obsolete because humanitarian intervention is increasingly a matter of collective action under UN auspices, not action undertaken by states acting on their own authority and under their own law. Secondly, we speak of armed intervention when that exercise involves the use of military force. An armed intervention is humanitarian when its aim is to protect innocent people who are not nationals of the intervening state from violence perpetrated or permitted by the government of the target state.[2] Additionally, armed intervention to stop a massacre is likely to be only the first of many measures needed to restore order to a chaotic society and prevent subsequent massacres. If prevention is important, then is to believe that the challenge for humanitarian policy is to move from responding to humanitarian crises to forestalling them.

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Can democracy ever be ‘fully’ consolidated?

In democratic theories there is the debate whether democracy can be fully consolidated or not. There is the common argument that consolidation is possible in every democratic regime, but a ‘fully consolidation’ seems to be more unlikely.  This essay will discuss: Can democracy ever be ‘fully consolidated’?

In the last decades ‘democracy has been widely recognized as the best political regime yet invented, because its citizens are both treated with respect, dignity and have some say in political decision-making’.[1] In this sense, democracy can be consolidated, but not completely. To understand this: consolidation is seen as a scale; because of multiple different factors that are used to work out whether a democracy is consolidated or not. Therefore, it would be wrong to see democratic consolidation as a dichotomy. For example; if two democracies (A,B) were equal in almost every way sharing similar political institutions, ethnic divisions, size, region, political culture; it would be absurd to classify A as a consolidated democracy and B not just because A has more equality of wealth.  Instead a better classification would be to say that A is more consolidated than B. The bottom-line here is that, democratic consolidation is best understood as a scale; this means that for a country to be ‘fully consolidated’ it must be at the very top of the consolidation scale. Moreover, for a country to be consolidated it would have to be on balance more likely to it to remain a democracy than to revert back to a non-democracy. In this case; it could be argued that for such a state to exist is almost impossible as for it to do so all the possibly relevant factors would have to be a factor strengthening democracy or at least not weakening it. To a national level, even in Britain for example, the lack of a codified constitution, the rise of BNP and declining turnout can all be pointed to as factors which make Britain’s democracy not fully consolidated because under the right conditions they could make the UK slide into authoritarianism.  Although this is not likely the existence of these weaknesses in Britain’s democracy still mean that the UK can’t be called a fully consolidated democracy.

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UK US effective leadership

Compare the powers of the American President and British Prime Minister. Which can provide more effective leadership?

After comparing British Prime Minister and American President roles is believed that the U.S president leadership can provide more effectiveness, the reason are the following:

The president of the US is the head of the State, while the British prime minister is the effective head of British government. In this case is believed that the US president as head of the state is able to make decisions without consulting the executive.

The Article II, Section 2 of the US Constitution determines that the president is the sole commander-in-chief of the nation’s armed forces and of the state militias when they are called into national duty.  In other words, the president is given the power to require responses from the principal officers in each constituent department of the executive. As commander-in chief the president leads an armed force of almost 1.5 million. There are also many civilian personnel involved, and the Department of Defense is the largest executive department.[1]

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