THE WORLD IN 2OO7
The economist Intelligence building blocks index of body politic
By Laza Kekic, director, country forecasting services, Economist Intelligence Unit
Defining and measuring res publica There is no consensus on how to measure democracy, de?nitions of democracy are contested and in that respect is an ongoing lively debate on the subject. The issue is non only of academic interest. For example, although democracy-promotion is high on the list of American foreign-policy priorities, there is no consensus within the American government on what constitutes a democracy. As one observer recently put in it, the worlds only superpower is rhetorically and militarily promoting a political system that remains unde?nedand it is staking its credibility and pry on that pursuit (Horowitz, 2006, p 114). Although the terms freedom and democracy are often used interchangeably, the two are non synonymous. Democracy can be seen as a raise of practices and principles that institutionalise and thus ultimately protect freedom.
Even if a consensus on precise de?nitions has proved elusive, most observers today would sustain that, at a minimum, the fundamental features of a democracy take government based on majority rule and the respond of the governed, the existence of free and fair elections, the protection of minorities and respect for base human rights. Democracy presupposes equality before the law, due dish out and political pluralism. Is reference to these basic features suf?cient for a satisfactory innovation of democracy? As discussed below, there is a question of how removed the de?nition may need to be widened. Some insist that democracy is necessarily a dichotomous concepta call down is either democratic or not. But most measures right off appear to adhere to a continuous concept, with the possibility of varying degrees of democracy. At present, the best-known measure is produced by the US-based Freedom syndicate organisation. The average of its indexes, on a 1 to 7...If you want to repair a full essay, order it on our website: Ordercustompaper.com
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