Supporting one form of government over another
Have you ever been caught in the discussion where you had supported one form of government; for example, democracy, and one of the persons from the group opposed it vehemently? Either, you couldn’t have convinced her regarding democracy or she couldn’t have convinced you regarding her support for a particular form of government. There is a strong possibility that in such discussions people are not convinced and the arguments end in poor taste.
The preference for supporting one form of government over another is totally personal and should be acceptable in good taste. A person develops a preference for a particular type of government or the other due to personal or political experiences she receives in her life. It also depends on her primary source of political knowledge and background. And, this preference is perfectly sane.
Four major types of governments around the world:
There are mainly four types of governments and managing a certain number of nations around the world. These are Dictatorship, Monarchy, Oligarchy, and Democracy.
Dictatorship: This is a form of government in which one person or a small group possesses absolute power without effective constitutional limitations. Countries like North Korea, Sudan, Cuba, and Belarus are under a dictatorship.
Monarchy: It is a political system based upon the undivided sovereignty or rule of a single person. The term applies to states in which supreme authority is vested in the monarch, an individual ruler who functions as the head of state and who achieves his position through heredity. Oman, Brunei, Swaziland and New Papua Guinea are monarchs.
Oligarchy: It is a government by the few, especially despotic power exercised by a small and privileged group for corrupt or selfish purposes. US, Russia, UK and South Africa are examples of Oligarchy.
Democracy: It literally means rule by the people. The term is derived from the Greek dēmokratiā, which was coined from dēmos (“people”) and Kratos (“rule”) in the middle of the 5th century. Australia, India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan are democratic countries.
The prosperity of a nation depends on people, not the governments
Iraq was a nation ruled by a dictator. It was under the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein from 16 July 1979 until 9 April 2003. The nation was more prosperous during Saddam’s reign than now when it is under a democratic government since January 2005. Iraq is now constantly struggling to contain internal conflicts, extremism, and turmoil. People’s lives have become miserable and poverty is rampant under the US-sponsored democracy.
Iraq now ranks below Bosnia – a democratic country and below South Africa which in some accounts considered oligarchy. It even ranks below country like Bhutan which is a poor monarch but is more peaceful than its democratic counterpart Iraq. Even North Korea under the dictatorship of Kim Jong-un has more peaceful and stable governance than Iraq.
This is painful to realize that after so much death and destruction, Iraq which was supposedly handed the best form of government – ‘democracy’ is currently the least peaceful nation on earth. People in countries with dictators, people in countries with monarchs and people in oligarchy nations are more happier than people in democratic Iraq.
Dictators might be better than monarchs which in turn can be better than democracies!
China and Vietnam officially being communist nations (considered under the dictatorship) are far more developed and prosperous than North Korea and Sudan which are also ruled by dictators. Furthermore, North Korea headed by Kim Jong-un is more stable and prosperous than Sudan headed by Omar al-Bashir, wherein both are supposed to be dictators. Similarly, countries like UAE and Morocco are far more prosperous than Swaziland and Papua and New Guinea; all of which are monarchs. India and Pakistan are democratic countries but the economic progress of India beats that of Pakistan with a huge difference.
It should be clear now that none of the government types can claim exclusive right to be called as ‘for the people’; not even democracies. It is no wonder the so-called ‘for the people’ governments are the most corrupt governments around the world. India continues to be among the most corrupt (with a score of 40, rendering it the 81st most corrupt country in the world) countries in the world, according to Transparency International. The poorest performers in South Asia are Sri Lanka (score 38, rank 91), the Maldives (score 33, rank 112), Pakistan (score 32, rank 117) and Bangladesh (score 28, rank 142). All are democratic countries.
If democratic countries are marred by corruption then the dictatorship is rampant with curtailing of media and political freedom. Speaking against the government becomes an act of treason. A dictator may go to any extent to curtail its citizen’s freedom and religious practices and even personal freedom and choices.
Similarly, monarchs are not free from criticism too. They have always been accused of amassing a lot of wealth and having a total control of every affair of the state. Since monarchs follows a lineage of kingship, he might not be serious of people’s issues as he has no fear to loose the government.
But, in Oligarchy; its citizens usually do not face any kind of above issues to an extent of revolt. Though, the governments might be involved in fueling instability in other countries.
If men are good, the government cannot be bad
Therefore, to run a country with honesty and dedication a nation needs people who are honest and dedicated sitting in government. If the people holding the power are corrupt and cruel one cannot expect good governance; be it democratic, dictator or a monarch.
William Penn once said, “If men are good, the government cannot be bad”. Hence, it is important to understand that the type of government does not matter a lot or maybe does not matter at all. This is because governments are nothing but a group of people governing the nation under a specific system. The system can be dictatorship, monarchy, oligarchy or democracy. But the people remains the same, mortals made of bone and flesh. So it is people that matters and not the system that those people run.
It is not fruitful and is futile to discuss the drawbacks of a type of government and feel good or bad about it. Instead, you should discuss the drawbacks of your government and see how they can improve. It is better to become part of the government and serve the nation. Because, if you leave the place void, some crooked person will fill the void and rule you. Plato once said. “The punishment suffered by wise that refuse to take part in government is to live under the government of bad men”.