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Types of government, different political regimes

Each form of government is an organization model taken on by a State regarding the relationship between the three powers.

Government is defined as an instance of supreme management and maximum control of the State’s administration. These tasks are carried out by a group of public officials.

The first studies regarding forms of government were conducted by the Greek. As a matter of fact, one of the earliest classifications was made by Aristotle, who posed that governments could be pure or impure. The first group included monarchy, aristocracy and democracy, and the latter involved tyranny, oligarchy and demagogy.

In present times, governments are split into monarchies, autocracies and democracies.

Monarchy

It is the form of government in which the head of State is a king or prince. They enjoy lifelong power (they rule for life) and it is hereditary (they inherit power, forming a dynasty or royal family).

At the same time, this form of government can be one of two types: absolute, if the ruler enforces all three State powers, and constitutional, if other government bodies participate and collaborate with the monarch.

This second type of monarchy is quite particular, for it resembles a democratic regime. An example of this takes place in the United Kingdom, which states that rulers must act in accordance with the will of the people and are forced to respect certain legal documents to guarantee a government that is concerned with the greater good.

Autocracy

The government is in the hands of an arbitrary authority and power is concentrated in a small group of people or in a single party.

Autocratic governments can be classified into:

Totalitarian regime: its main trait is that power is entirely concentrated in the State apparatus, allowing for total control of citizen activity.

One of its main characteristics is the existence of a single political party, which is the official voice of the State and it accepts no contradictions to its orders. A few examples of this type of regime have been Italian fascism, the German National Socialist State led by Hitler and the former Soviet Union.

Authoritarian regime: it is a system of government with limited political pluralism that allows the existence of a few political parties that share said government’s principles. There is no official party as in the totalitarian system, but there is a State head or a group that had more power. The duration of these regimes depends on the lifespan of its leader or founder or on the groups that support it. An example of this type of government is Myanmar.

Democracy

The origin of the word democracy comes from the Greek term demos, which means people, and kratos, which means government, authority.

This type of government originated centuries before the Christian age in the small Greek states or cities, when the assembly reached agreements that affected the entire community.

Therefore, democracy is defined as “a political organization system in which every member of society has the acknowledged right to participate in the direction and management of public matters”.

In addition, it is characterized by the existence of procedures that complement the aforementioned principles. They are:

– Majority rule versus minority rule.
– Multi-party system (the existence of several political parties) and ideological pluralism.
– Periodical, free and informed elections.
– Peaceful conflict resolution.
– High citizen participation.
– Existence of a lawful State.