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Representative democracy

elected representativerepresentative democraticparliamentary democracy
Liberal democracy is a liberal political ideology and a form of government in which representative democracy operates under the principles of classical liberalism.
Nearly all modern Western-style democracies are types of representative democracies; for example, the United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy, France is a unitary state, and the United States is a federal republic.

Liberalism

liberalliberalssocially liberal
Liberal democracy is a liberal political ideology and a form of government in which representative democracy operates under the principles of classical liberalism. These ideas and beliefs inspired the American Revolution and the French Revolution, which gave birth to the ideology of liberalism and instituted forms of government that attempted to apply the principles of the Enlightenment philosophers into practice.
However, during the 20th century liberal ideas also spread even further—especially in Western Europe—as liberal democracies found themselves on the winning side in both world wars.

Parliamentary system

parliamentaryparliamentarismparliamentary democracy
It may have a parliamentary system (Australia, Canada, India, Israel, Ireland, Italy, the United Kingdom), a presidential system (Indonesia, the United States) or a semi-presidential system (France, Romania).
Later, in the 17th century, the Parliament of England pioneered some of the ideas and systems of liberal democracy culminating in the Glorious Revolution and passage of the Bill of Rights 1689.

Civil liberties

individual libertypersonal freedomcivil liberty
Also called Western democracy, it is characterised by elections between multiple distinct political parties, a separation of powers into different branches of government, the rule of law in everyday life as part of an open society, a market economy with private property, and the equal protection of human rights, civil rights, civil liberties and political freedoms for all people. The research institute Freedom House today simply defines liberal democracy as an electoral democracy also protecting civil liberties.
These include individual rights common to most liberal democracies, incorporated in the fundamental law of the land and are enforceable in a court of law.

Politics of the Republic of Ireland

IrelandIrish politicsIrish
A liberal democracy may take various constitutional forms: it may be a constitutional monarchy (Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, the United Kingdom) or a republic (France, India, Italy, Ireland, the United States).
The constitution falls within the liberal democratic tradition.

French Revolution

RevolutionRevolutionaryrevolutionary France
These ideas and beliefs inspired the American Revolution and the French Revolution, which gave birth to the ideology of liberalism and instituted forms of government that attempted to apply the principles of the Enlightenment philosophers into practice.
Inspired by liberal and radical ideas, the Revolution profoundly altered the course of modern history, triggering the global decline of absolute monarchies while replacing them with republics and liberal democracies.

Separation of powers

checks and balancesbranches of governmentdivision of powers
Also called Western democracy, it is characterised by elections between multiple distinct political parties, a separation of powers into different branches of government, the rule of law in everyday life as part of an open society, a market economy with private property, and the equal protection of human rights, civil rights, civil liberties and political freedoms for all people.
India follows constitutional democracy which offers a clear separation of powers.

Cold War

the Cold Warcold-warCold War era
In the United States more than in Europe, during the Cold War such restrictions applied to communists.
The First World nations of the Western Bloc were generally liberal democratic with a free press and independent organizations, but were economically and politically entwined with a network of banana republics and other authoritarian regimes throughout the Third World, most of which were the Western Bloc's former colonies.

Fascism

fascistfascistsfascistic
Members of political organisations with connections to prior totalitarianism (typically formerly predominant communist, fascist or National Socialists) may be deprived of the vote and the privilege of holding certain jobs.
Fascists believe that liberal democracy is obsolete and they regard the complete mobilization of society under a totalitarian one-party state as necessary to prepare a nation for armed conflict and to respond effectively to economic difficulties.

Democratic socialism

democratic socialistdemocratic socialistssocialist
Liberal democracy has also been attacked by some socialists as a dishonest farce used to keep the masses from realizing that their will is irrelevant in the political process, while at the same time a conspiracy for making them restless for some political agenda.
A variant of this set of definitions is Joseph Schumpeter's argument, set out in Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy (1941), that liberal democracies were evolving from "liberal capitalism" into democratic socialism, with the growth of workers' self-management, industrial democracy and regulatory institutions.

Government

governmentsform of governmentgovernmental
Liberal democracy is a liberal political ideology and a form of government in which representative democracy operates under the principles of classical liberalism.
Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, liberal democracy has become an even more prevalent form of government.

Pluralism (political philosophy)

pluralismpolitical pluralismpluralistic
Also called Western democracy, it is characterised by elections between multiple distinct political parties, a separation of powers into different branches of government, the rule of law in everyday life as part of an open society, a market economy with private property, and the equal protection of human rights, civil rights, civil liberties and political freedoms for all people.
Liberal democracy

Participatory democracy

participatoryparticipative democracypolitical participation
Some Marxists, communists, socialists and anarchists argue that liberal democracy, under capitalist ideology, is constitutively class-based and therefore can never be democratic or participatory.
Some scholars argue for refocusing the term on community-based activity within the domain of civil society, based on the belief that a strong non-governmental public sphere is a precondition for the emergence of a strong liberal democracy.

Classical liberalism

classical liberalliberalclassical liberals
Liberal democracy is a liberal political ideology and a form of government in which representative democracy operates under the principles of classical liberalism.
Liberal democracy

Republic

constitutional republicrepublicsrepublican form of government
A liberal democracy may take various constitutional forms: it may be a constitutional monarchy (Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, the United Kingdom) or a republic (France, India, Italy, Ireland, the United States).
In liberal democracies presidents are elected, either directly by the people or indirectly by a parliament or council.

Karl Popper

PopperSir Karl PopperPopperian
This criticism assumes that it is possible to make long term predictions for a society, something Karl Popper has criticised as historicism.
In political discourse, he is known for his vigorous defence of liberal democracy and the principles of social criticism that he came to believe made a flourishing open society possible.

Nazism

NaziNazisNational Socialist
An often quoted example of the "tyranny of the majority" is that Adolf Hitler came to power by "legitimate" democratic procedures. The Nazi Party gained the largest share of votes in the democratic Weimar Republic in 1933. Some might consider this an example of "tyranny of a minority" since he never gained a majority vote, but it is common for a plurality to exercise power in democracies, so the rise of Hitler cannot be considered irrelevant. However, his regime's large-scale human rights violations took place after the democratic system had been abolished. Also, the Weimar constitution in an "emergency" allowed dictatorial powers and suspension of the essentials of the constitution itself without any vote or election.
Nazism is a form of fascism and showed that ideology's disdain for liberal democracy and the parliamentary system, but also incorporated fervent antisemitism, scientific racism, and eugenics into its creed.

Freedom House

Freedom House’sFreedom on the Netorganization created by Eleanor Roosevelt
The research institute Freedom House today simply defines liberal democracy as an electoral democracy also protecting civil liberties.
Bush shows in her report that its ideology has long reflected that of the people who are most involved in US foreign policy, and that liberal democracy was the main form of democracy that was considered.

Social democracy

social democraticsocial-democraticsocial democrat
Social democracy
Social democracy is a political, social, and economic ideology that supports economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a liberal democratic policy and capitalist economy.

Noam Chomsky

ChomskyChomsky, NoamChomskyan
In Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media, Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky argue via their Propaganda Model that the corporate media limits the availability of contesting views and assert this creates a narrow spectrum of elite opinion.
Chomsky has said he focuses on criticizing the U.S. over other countries because, during his lifetime, the country has militarily and economically dominated the world, and because its liberal democratic electoral system allows the citizenry to influence government policy.

Democratization

democratisationdemocratic reformdemocratic transition
The collapse of the Soviet Union and the partial democratisation of Soviet bloc states was followed by wars in the former Yugoslavia, in the Caucasus and in Moldova.
Francis Fukuyama wrote another classic in democratization studies entitled The End of History and the Last Man which spoke of the rise of liberal democracy as the final form of human government.

Transparency (behavior)

transparencytransparentgovernment transparency
Freedom of information legislation is important for accountability and transparency.
While a liberal democracy can be a plutocracy, where decisions are made behind locked doors and the people have fewer possibilities to influence politics between the elections, a participative democracy is more closely connected to the will of the people.

Communism

communistcommunistscommunist ideology
In the United States more than in Europe, during the Cold War such restrictions applied to communists. Some Marxists, communists, socialists and anarchists argue that liberal democracy, under capitalist ideology, is constitutively class-based and therefore can never be democratic or participatory.
Marxism is also subject to general criticisms, criticisms related to historical materialism that it is a type of historical determinism, the necessary suppression of liberal democratic rights, issues with the implementation of communism and economic issues such as the distortion or absence of price signals.

The Phantom Public

Walter Lippmann writing in The Phantom Public (1925) sought to "put the public in its place" so that those in power would be "free of the trampling and roar of a bewildered herd", while Edward Bernays, originator of public relations, sought to "regiment the public mind every bit as much as an army regiments their bodies".
Liberal democracy

Illiberal democracy

illiberalhybrid regimeilliberal democracies
Illiberal democracy
In order to discourage this problem and promote the development of liberal democracies with "free and fair" elections, Zakaria proposes that the international community and the United States must end their and promote gradual liberalization of societies.