-Those who promote the democratic ideal argue that it is the best way to achieve the common good. By involving the population as a whole in governing, the interests and values of different parts of the population are more likely to be reflected in decisions that if control of decision making is in the hands of a single individual or a particular group.

-Governments that have been chosen by the people are more likely to be accepted as legitimate by their populations. Because the people have a role in the governing process, they are more likely to accept what the government does, even if they happen to disagree with particular decisions.



-Critics of democracy often question whether the ordinary citizens have the time and knowledge to make intelligent decisions concerning the governing of their society.

-Some political thinkers have worried about whether democracy can degenerate into the "tyranny of the majority".

-Democracy is also sometimes criticized for being "all talk, no action," involving endless debate and rules that often seem designed to prevent government from acting.

-There are also those who argue that democracy is an impossible ideal to achieve. Power will always be in the hands of just a few people, rather than derived from the views and interests of all those within a society.

Full Review


Democracy, meaning rule by the people, is one of the most popular political ideals in contemporary societies. Almost all contemporary government leaders proclaim their belief in democracy, and claim that their country is democratic or on the path to democracy. The democratic ideal that all adult citizens should have an equal and effective voice in the running of their country is a powerful force in the contemporary world. Despite the popularity of democracy, the ideal of rule by the people is difficult to fully implement.


In Closing


Many political thinkers over the centuries have had serious concerns about democracy. Even if, in general, democratic countries seem to function better than non-democratic ones, this does not mean that every democracy functions well, nor does it mean that every non-democratic country is corrupt or tyrannical.