The Five Basic Forms of Government – An American perspective

This video was uploaded on Jun 24, 2010 on YouTube. I just watched it recently while I was studying about Democracy. It is more American perspective but I would be happy if I can see people’s opinions over the concept and theory of the person who is presenting on this video about the 5 kinds of government; especially what he says about ‘Democracy’ and ‘Republic’.

There are 5 basic forms of government which are Monarchy(Rule by one person), Oligarchy(Rule by a small handful of people), Democracy(Rule by majority of the citizens), Republic(Rule by law), and Anarchy(No Government). This video relates these basic forms of government to our American government to clarify that we are in fact not a democracy but rather a Republic since democracies lead to anarchy and ultimately the tyranny of oligarchy.

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About Merid Desta

I am a very passionate and mature African-Ethiopian researcher/ peacebuilder/ manager/ leader/ who have been doing a research on peace and conflict in the horn of Africa. I have learned that both my under- and post-graduate studies need to be topped up with formal studies of theories and praxis of peace, conflict, justice, identity, nationalism, ethnicity, religion and other related theories. All the trusts, institutes, faith-based and other secular organisations in which I was involved in leadership, mobilising and training capacities, were committed to addressing all aspects of individuals and communities’ life. Being an advocate for all human beings to be released from their spiritual, physical, social, mental and economic poverty, with a view to enabling them to become fulfilled and responsible human beings who live up to the standard of their best capacity, was at the core of all my work and the people and teams whose ministry I led. I have been involved in interfaith; interethnic; intercultural and interdenominational peacebuilding, conflict resolution and management work in the capital. My family’s life has always been sacrificial. We have committed our lives and are preparing for more commitments to work initially among a few communities and regions in Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Sudan/ South Sudan and the surrounding regions. These nations of Eastern Africa have often been under enormous threats and incidents of civil wars, ethno-religious conflicts, genocide etc.

2 thoughts on “The Five Basic Forms of Government – An American perspective

  1. Unlike what was said on this video, I would like to add a quote from what Churchill said long time ago about ‘Democracy’.
    “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.” (from a House of Commons speech on Nov. 11, 1947). What do you think?

    • The timing of this famous remark is significant. Churchill won the war, but in the election of July 1945, he was defeated. At the time I thought the public showed gross ingratitude, but I am willing to accept the interpretation that Churchill was not the man to organize the peace.

      When the news came out, Churchill was taking a bath (was there ever a statesman who spent more time in the bath?) He remarked “They have a perfect right to kick me out. That is democracy”. When he was offered the Order of the Garter, he asked “Why should I accept the Order of the Garter, when the British people have just given me the Order of the Boot?”.

      He returned to power in 1951. The remark about democracy was made when he had lost power and had every reason to be bitter. Fortunately he kept his sense of humor even in the most trying circumstances.

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