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Evaluate the factors that affect the legitimacy of political systems

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Evaluate the factors that affect the legitimacy of political systems Before I can evaluate the factors that affect legitimacy , I need to define legitimacy. Legitimacy has been defined in a number of different ways, Max Weber defined it as "a belief in the right to rule", others see legitimacy as "the capacity of a political system to engender and maintain the belief that existing political institutions are the most appropriate and proper ones for the society." The basic idea is that without a legitimate government a country cannot effectively and then the government and people suffer. Something becomes legitimate when one approves of it. In a positive sense, legitimacy gets greater attention in political science. For example, an institution is perceived as legitimate, if approval for that institution is general among those people subject to its authority. Legitimacy can also link in with political power and authority. Power is the ability, to get things done either to enforce your own will, in the case of a dictator, or to enforce the will of a political group or over others. ...read more.


In theory this works, the people get want they want, if the majority of the people want a Labour government then they get it, giving legitimacy. This theory does not however work if only a small percent of the population turn out to vote or if the majority win is out numbered by other parties, for example if Labour got 42% majority win, they would technically have the majority of votes as a single party, however 58% of the voters voted against them. So there is a legitimacy crisis as a government is now in power but in a country in which more people are opposed to them than in favour. Another political factor that could affect legitimacy is policies. Good policies can get people elected, in times of hardship a changed in policy can help to elect in the hope that change and stability can be achieved, for example Barack Obama and his "Yes We Can" campaign in the 2008 American Presidency elections, Obama promised change for the American people after ...read more.


Things such as discrimination in Northern Ireland during the troubles were Catholics were discriminated against in areas such as housing, employment etc or on Nazi Germany with the holocaust against the Jews and other opponents of the Nazis. They were executed and used as slaves for years, this is an awful example of legitimacy gone wrong. Religious problems in a country leading to genocide, powerful and effective government with the wrong intentions, due to power hunger and corruption. There are many factors that affect the legitimacy of a political system, the major being inability to keep the peace and security in a country. If peace cannot be kept by a government then anarchy breaks out and corruption and downfall follows. Its other factors however that combine together to determine on whether or not the peace can be kept. Factors like democracy, a functioning economy, accountability and religious and racial stability that influence the decisions made by governments and it's these decisions that either make or brake a government and its legitimacy. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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