Democracy and the Rule of Law by José María Maravall, Adam Przeworski

By José María Maravall, Adam Przeworski

A global workforce of experts from the fields of legislation, politics, economics, and philosophy handle the query of why governments act or don't act in accordance with legislation. The authors interpret the guideline of legislations as a strategic selection of actors with robust pursuits, instead of as an exogenous constraint on politicians. the guideline of legislations emerges whilst no workforce is robust sufficient to dominate the others, and political actors search to solve their conflicts by way of recourse to legislation. legislations is therefore deeply rooted in politics.

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But the most conspicuous disorder of such a system, according to Rousseau, is asymmetrical pluralism. Written law may declare otherwise, but members of politically influential groups receive, in reality, much better legal protection than members of politically insignificant groups. 22 CY207-02 0521825598 May 7, 2003 8:34 Char Count= 0 Lineages of the Rule of Law Group power can never be fully equalized. But if the majority of citizens in a highly pluralistic order nevertheless belongs to groups with some political leverage, these citizens will, on a predictable basis, be able to use law to pursue their goals and safeguard their assets to some extent.

The threat to withdraw cooperation, in fact, provides a more enduring motivation for the regularization of governmental power than the threat to inflict physical harm noted by Machiavelli and stressed by Przeworski. The prince who concedes benefits to diffuse an ongoing revolt may withdraw these concessions as soon as the rebels have been disarmed; he will keep his word only so long as it is useful. The prince who concedes benefits to maintain the loyalty of his troops, by contrast, will be unable to withdraw his generous concessions so long as he has enemies abroad.

40 CY207-02 0521825598 May 7, 2003 8:34 Char Count= 0 Lineages of the Rule of Law upon through consultations between regulators and regulated tend to work better than rules imposed by unilateral diktat. Such rules are better adapted to “reality on the ground” and are more likely to elicit cooperation from groundlings at the stage of implementation. Even when laws thwart private interests, a degree of compliance can sometimes be obtained simply by a generous expansion of the suffrage, by granting all groups a “voice” in the legislative assembly.

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