A political system is a system of politics and government. It is usually compared to the law system, economic system, cultural system and other social systems. It is different from them, and can be generally defined on a spectrum from left, i.e. communism (kind of socialism that says that there should not be social classes or states), to the right, i.e. fascism (the country is considered more important than any one person/dictatorship). However, this is a very simplified view of a much more complex system of categories involving i.e. the view on who will have the authority, the view of religious questions and the government's influence on its people and economy.
There are several definitions of "political system":
• A political system is a complete set of institutions, interest groups (such as political parties, trade unions, lobby groups), the relationships between those institutions and the political norms and rules that govern their functions (constitution, election law).
• A political system is composed of the members of a social organisation (group) who are in power.
• A political system is a system that necessarily has two properties: a set of interdependent components and boundaries toward the environment with which it interacts.
• A political system is a concept in which theoretically regarded as a way of the government makes a policy and also to make them more organised in their administration.
• A political system is one that ensures the maintaining of order and sanity in the society, and at the same time makes it possible for some other institutions to also have their grievances (wrongs or hardships suffered) and complaints put across in the course of social existence.
Commonalities (similarities) between political systems:
• Interdependent parts
The most left person, 43th President George W. Bush of the United States (Constitutional Republic), talking to Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom (Constitutional Monarchy). →
The following are examples of political systems, some of which are typically mutually exclusive (e.g. Monarchy and Republic), while others may (or may not) overlap in various combinations (e.g. Democracy and Westminster system, Democracy and Socialism).
• Anarchism. The belief that people can organise themselves without having someone from up above tell them what to do.
• Democracy. A form of government in which power is held by people under a free electoral system.
• Monarchy. Monarchies are one of the oldest political systems known, developing from tribal structure with one person the absolute ruler.
• Republic. A state or country that is not led by a hereditary monarch, but in which the people (or at least a part of its people) have impact on its government. The word originates from the Latin term res publica, which literally translates as "public thing" or "public matter". The first recorded Republic was in India in the 6th century BCE.
• Socialism. Socialism can refer to a large number of political systems, almost all of which are Left Wing. In general, socialist systems want to redistribute wealth from those of greater means to those of lesser means. Degrees of socialism have been present in political systems since antiquity, the modern socialist movement largely originated in the late-19th century and spawned communism and democratic socialism.
• Sultanates. Islamic political structure which combines aspects of Monarchy and Theocracy.
• Theocracy. In a theocracy, the institutions and people that govern the state are very close to the leaders of the main religion. If the religious leaders do not directly run some bodies of the state, they influence them very much. The word theocracy literally means God-government, and means the government is run by "The Church".
• Westminster system. A democratic parliamentary system of government modelled after the British government (the Parliament of the United Kingdom). The term comes from the Palace of Westminster, the seat of the UK Parliament. The system is a series of procedures for operating a legislature.
• Feudalism. A system by which a nobility of warriors ruled Europe during the Middle Ages. The nobility owned the land and ruled the peasantry.
Anthropologists generally recognise four kinds of political systems, two of which are uncentralised and two of which are centralised.
• Uncentralised systems
o Band (a small kin group, no larger than an extended family or clan)
• Centralised systems
Two countries, two different political systems (I)
Our choice fell on the two countries Morocco and North Korea, two countries that are totally different from each other. Not only because they are situated in different continents, but because they have many differences in the way the country is ruled.
The biggest difference between Morocco and North Korea is their political system. Morocco is a “constitutional (heredity) monarchy”, in which a king or queen acts as Head of State. Unlike an absolute monarchy there is the ability to make legislations resides with a Parliament, which is elected by the people of Morocco. Opposition political parties are legal and several have been formed in recent years. Since 1999 king Mohammed VI is ruling the country and is helped by his Prime Minister Abbes El Fassi.
The word heredity is between brackets because it isn’t an official term used. It is there because when a king or queen dies, he/she will be replaced by his/her (oldest) son/daughter who then will be king/queen.
On the other hand you have North Korea that is a “socialist republic”/ “one-party system”. This means that there’s one political party which forms the government. Opposition political parties aren’t permitted and can’t run candidates for election. It also means that the economy is controlled by the whole population. All the goods and services produced are owned by the government. After Korea was split in two different states, Kim II-sung organised the country by himself. Although Kim II-sung died in 1994, he wasn’t replaced and was given the title ‘Eternal President of the Republic’. Because no one replaced him as president, Kim Jong-il is the present head of the state. He is ‘Chairman of the National Defence Commission of North Korea’.
Two countries, two different political systems (II)
Italy and China both have a government that is chosen for a couple of years (in Italy 7 years and in China 5 years). In China this government still is a communistic government, but with other people. The differences are that China has a communistic government system and that Italy has a democratic government system. The comparisons are small but there are a few, like they both have a president and a sort of second minister. In China the standard demand of being president is that you help China to build consensus for new policies among party members, local and regional leaders, influential non-party members, and the population at large. Also they have both human rights, but in China these are a little bit different than in Italy. China and Italy both rule their country from the capital. In Italy this capital is Rome and in China it is Beijing. Italy is divided in 20 regions of which all can vote, but 5 regions are more important than the other 15. These 5 regions have a special autonomy status. The rest of the regions were established in 1970 and vote for regional “councils”. China has 23 provinces. For them it is a little bit harder to rule the country because it is almost 32 times as big (total area China 9.596.961 km2, total area Italy 301,338 km2). The age you need to be, to be able to vote is the same. In both countries you have to be 18 years old. Both countries have a communistic party. In China this party forms the government, but in Italy it doesn’t.
There aren’t any more differences between China and Italy. This is caused by the distance between the two countries (they are very far from each other) and the economic development. China is a little bit behind with their government system. The Chinese still haven’t as much rights as people in Europe have. These differences make it very difficult to see the comparisons between these two countries.
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