Government and Politics Unit 1- Democracy

Catherine Dilnot
Mind Map by Catherine Dilnot, updated more than 1 year ago
Catherine Dilnot
Created by Catherine Dilnot almost 5 years ago


Mind Map on Government and Politics Unit 1- Democracy, created by Catherine Dilnot on 03/17/2015.

Resource summary

Government and Politics Unit 1- Democracy
1 Types of Democracy
1.1 Direct Democracy
1.1.1 Ancient Greece where all the members of a state met to discuss matters and make votes on things daily Principles surviving in modern democracy: All citizens have right to vote and stand for office Duty of all citizens to actively participate Decisions should be made by majority vote Why it is not practical Today's society is too large Needs time, commitment and informed citizens
1.2 Representative Democracy
1.2.1 People choose someone to make decisions for them Elective representative
2 Democracy Definition
2.1 A system where the power is ultimately in the hands of the people
2.1.1 A political system organised on the basis that the government should serve the interests of the people
3 Manifesto Defintion
3.1 The document that sets out the party's intentions for the bills that they will introduce should they be elected
3.1.1 Voters base their decision on the manifesto Winning party's manifesto forms the basis of the mandate
4 Mandate Definition
4.1 The authority to govern, granted to the party that wins the general election
4.1.1 Government must introduce measures from their election mainfesto unless they have a good reason not to Parliament tries to ensure manifesto commitments are stuck to Gives the government the authority to take whatever action it deems necessary in an emergency
5 Democratic Deficit
5.1 Is a lack of people taking part in political life and a lack of actual power they can use to influence political decisions
5.1.1 Welsh devolution referendum had a total turnout of 35.2% 63.5 voted yes Tyranny of the minority
5.1.2 Non-elected posts in politics e.g HoL FPTP disadvantages smaller parties Labour party need 33,000 votes when the Lib Dems need 120,000 Parliament ineffective in scrutinising government EU Parliament has jurisdiction over UK Parliament
5.2 Participation crisis
5.2.1 Party membership declining only 500,000 party members (1.3% of electorate) in 2006 in 1981 it was 1.5million (4% of the electorate) Tories have had the biggest drop from 1.25m to 250,000
5.3 Voter turnout
5.3.1 General election results 1998- 78% 2001- 59% 2005- 61%
5.3.2 Partisan dealignment Fewer feel naturally drawn to a particular party Fewer take active part in politics Due to rising income levels blurring class lines
5.3.3 Improvements Use of 'e=democracy' Fraud risk seems frivolous Compulsory voting Devalues a vote
6 New forms of political participation
6.1 Pressure groups
6.2 E-Petitions
6.2.1 1.8 million people signed a petition about road pricing in 2007
6.2.2 2011-Hillsborough had 156,202 signatures Led to an inquest
6.3 Protest
6.3.1 2003- 1 million march in Iraq (link to pressure groups) Ignored by government Protests are usually ignored except in the case of the poll tax riots in 1990
6.4 Outcme of it
6.4.1 Could make British politics more democratic by according to Power Commission Report 2007 Capping donations Reforming electoral system Elect HoL Each voter allocation £3 of public money to a party Lowering voting age Logging and listing ministerial meetings
7 Referenda
7.1 Government can chose to ignore results
7.1.1 Would be a foolish government to ignore it
7.1.2 Results usually come out in the government's favour They pick the timing, wording and existence of the referendum Expensive – possible that one side can fail due to lack of resources e.g. 1975 EU referendum when 'yes' side spent far more than 'no', had support of business – therefore money
7.2 Issues can often be oversimplified by the tabloid press, could lead people to make a decision that they believe to be informed when they have only been informed by the likes of Rupert Murdoch – gives editors and proprietors too much influence.
7.3 Examples of Referenda
7.3.1 1975 referendum about staying in EU Wilson's Labour government was split over issue, but a decisive 67.2% 'yes' vote saved the government & resolved deadlock 1998 referendum on introduction of a London Mayor. Changed governance and implied rise in taxation, made consent essential 1998 Good Friday Agreement A decisive 'yes' vote was needed to make sure all sections of society were in favour & end violence. In 1973 there was a similar vote, but most Catholics boycotted it, so the result became irrelevant. 2004 referendum on NE Assembly Decisive (77.9%) 'no' vote made government drop plans for more regional devolved assemblies. May have been lost due to the fact that the proposing minister, Prescott, was deeply unpopular.
8 Power Definition
8.1 Ability to get people to do what you want them to
8.1.1 Can exist without authority person brandishing gun has power but no authority; armed policeman has power and authority
9 Authority Definition
9.1 The right to tell people what to do or the right to govern
9.1.1 Can exist without much or any power
9.2 Three types of authority
9.2.1 Traditional authority Rulers call for the consent of the people, on the basis of continuity, history, respect for institutions and religious tradition.. Example: Monarcies
9.2.2 Charismatic authority Authority based on the charisma of the leader – a 'cult of personality' Example: Tony Blair
9.2.3 Rational Legal Based on elections
10 Sovereignty
10.1 Can be used in various contexts
10.2 Legal- ultimate political authority
10.2.1 Power to make enforceable laws, exercised by the UK Parliament but shared with EU
10.3 Political- ultimate political power
10.3.1 In a democracy, political sovereignty is held by the people at elections and the government between them
10.4 External
10.4.1 Legitimacy within a territory, as recognised by other states. Where right to govern is widely recognised, state can claim sovereignty
11 Potential Questions
11.1 5 marker
11.1.1 Define representative democracy (5)
11.1.2 Define direct democracy (5)
11.1.3 Apart from voting in elections and referendums, describe two ways of participating in politics
11.1.4 How does a referendum differ from an election
11.1.5 Using an example, define direct democracy
11.2 10 marker
11.2.1 What are the main features of the UK's democratic system (10)
11.2.2 In what ways has political participation declined in the UK in recent years (10)
11.2.3 Explain three forms of democratic participation
11.2.4 Explain the arguements in favour of lowering the voting age
11.2.5 Explain the arguments in favour of making voting compulsory
11.2.6 Explain three criticisms of representative democracy
11.3 25 marker
11.3.1 How and why has the UK democratic system been criticised
11.3.2 Evaluate the effectiveness of the various ways in which participation and democracy could be strengthened in the UK
11.3.3 Assess the arguements in favour of the greater use of direct democracy in the UK
11.3.4 To what extent would the wider us of referendums improve democracy in the UK
11.3.5 How effectively does representative democracy operate in the UK
11.3.6 Assess the various measures, other than electoral reform, that have been suggested to improve democracy in the UK
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