Democracy society is based upon by either by direct


Democracy is the most used type of Government since it
allows for the equal participation of the population. The people of a democratic
country have the choice to choose the laws that their society is based upon by either
by direct representation or with the use of elected representatives. Thomas Hobbes
argues about the requirements needed for the development of a true democracy. The
first requirement that Hobbes mentions is that the people living inside a
democratic society must agree that they will indeed accept the will of the
majority. ‘For in that they willingly met, they are supposed obliged to the
observation of what shall be determined by the major part’ The English Works
volume 3.  The second requirement argued
by Hobbes is that there should be regular meetings. Hobbes insists that if there
are no regular meetings set up so that the people meet and discuss the laws and
development of their society the democracy will become and anarchy. Hobbes himself
states that the agreement on regular meetings is a probable weakness of
democracy. He continues to say that the amount of people that attend these
meetings is not of major importance but it is important that these meeting are
frequent so that any bad and anarchic developments are not given the chance to
develop due to the gaps between these meetings. These meetings are given a lot of
importance by Hobbes since a democracy can only act upon its power once the
people are amassed together, and therefore when the people fail to meet up there
is a halt in the governance of the country. Hobbes believes that in the time
between the meetings a person should be given supreme authority over the people.
Although he describes this as a possible solution he also understands that this
has it own array of issues. It is these complications that makes Hobbes favour Monarchy
over other forms of government since there is no time gap between the Sovereignty
and the exercise of monarchical power. Hobbes’s 3 causes of conflict are competition,
diffidence and glory and he states that democracy heavily supports two of these
causes, he says that competition and glory are encouraged in a democracy. He does
not attribute diffidence as an issue since he believes that diffidence is not
that big of an issue in democratic rule. Hobbes states that every man enters a
democracy with the ultimate goal to persuade the majority of the citizens to
agree with his views for his own personal benefit. This belief comes from the way
that Hobbes philosophy in which it is clear that Hobbes believes that everyone gives
the most importance to their own life and each person will have their own ideas
and agenda. With this he continues to elaborate on the fact that democracy does
not allow for everyone’s opinion and ideas to be heard. This lack of equal representation
this then leads to the increases the chance of dispute and conflict and
eventually it could become a reason of war. Hobbes says ‘there are very few so
foolish, that had not rather govern themselves, than be governed by another’ what
he means is that since the majority want to rule, conflict will arise due to diverse
ideologies. He blames the desire of praise for the creation of conflicts,
therefore Hobbes came to the conclusion that democracy appeals to the personal
glory of the people.

Whereas Hobbes offers viable arguments on how
a democracy could possibly be a good way to rule Plato completely dismisses democracy
as a way of rule. Plato opposed democracy since he viewed democracies to be unjust
and even viewed them as being a catalyst for tyranny.

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Plato’s distaste for democracy was enhanced by
the fact that his mentor Socrates was sentenced to death by a jury in the Athenian
court and eventually was forced to drink poison as was prescribed by Athenian law.
Apart from the death of his mentor Plato disliked democracy since the minority would
be at the will of the majority. He believed that the masses were not educated
enough to undergo decisions that were of high importance, another reason for his
negative stand on democracy was that the individuals care for their personal
gain and beliefs. It seems that both Hobbes and Plato agree that the natural self-centred
mentality of the people would only cause problems in a direct democracy since
the minority will be oppressed by the majority. Plato argues that the suppression
of the minorities would cause a revolution that after its success in removing
the old democracy it will go forth to create either tyranny or another
democracy. The biggest issue of direct democracy was that majority to a certain
extent do what they wanted, but this issue is not felt in modern democracies because
of the constitutions of the country and so laws and policies can not be changed
at the will of the majority but is discussed by the population as a whole. Plato’s
ideal form of government was an aristocracy that was ruled by a philosopher
king, a system where the state was ruled over by a group of enlightened philosophers
and aristocrats. Plato argues that to obtain the ideal form of government would
need a king that is truthful, knowledgeable and a philosopher. He adds that philosophers
are the best equipped to rule a city or state since they alone are able to view
the world accurately and are able to keep themselves from becoming corrupted by
the powerful role they have. Plato that a state that is ruled by a philosopher
king  is considered the best.