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Property, Power and PoliticsWhy We Need to Rethink the World Power System$
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Jean-Philippe Robé

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781529213164

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781529213164.001.0001

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The Mixing of Democracy and Despotism

The Mixing of Democracy and Despotism

Chapter:
(p.163) 5 The Mixing of Democracy and Despotism
Source:
Property, Power and Politics
Author(s):

Jean-Philippe Robé

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781529213164.003.0006

Constitutional systems of government promoting the protection of property actually lead to a mix of democracy and despotism. This is due to the fact that property, with its absolute prerogatives and the decentralization of sovereignty it represents, was designed to protect individuals’ autonomy. With the advent of a corporate economy, however, these prerogatives were concentrated within corporations used to legally structure business firms. A new form of legal pluralism developed, in an unofficial manner. Global firms are organizations coordinating the operation of large sectors of the economy. But they do it in an unofficial manner. After each of the major crises of the twentieth century - the two World Wars and the Great Depression, in particular - radical evolutions occurred in the legal systems to equilibrate the imbalanced operation of the private side of the Power System. Protective laws were adopted, social rights were granted. Via the Constitutional Revolutions of the twentieth century, the liberal, night watchman State, moved to become the welfare and regulatory State. These Constitutional Revolutions are now being challenged by globalization.

Keywords:   Constitutional systems of government, Democracy, Despotism, Corporate economy, Constitutional revolutions, Welfare and regulatory State, Globalization

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