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Compound Democracies: Why the United States and Europe Are by Sergio Fabbrini

By Sergio Fabbrini

It is a significant new comparability of the yank and eu political platforms. through deploying a strong new version to investigate the 2 structures it attracts a few difficult conclusions approximately their expanding similarity. Professor Fabbrini argues that the method of nearby integration in Europe during the last 60 years, has considerably lowered the old ameliorations among the democracies on each side of the Atlantic. the european and the united states at the moment are comparable simply because they characterize various species of an analogous political genus: the compound democracy. The defining function of compound democracy is the union of states and their electorate. via such union, the states conform to pool their sovereignty inside a bigger built-in supra-state or supranational framework. They achieve this simply because those unions are basically pacts for averting struggle. as the states which made these unions have been, and stay, asymmetrically correlated, any try and create a unified polity--that is a political approach the place the decision-making strength is monopolized by way of just one institution--is more likely to fail. He is going directly to argue that the U.S. and the european are in response to a a number of diffusion of powers which promises that any curiosity could have a voice within the decision-making method and no majority might be capable of keep an eye on all of the institutional degrees of the polity. this kind of approach permits an inter-states association to function as a supra-state polity--but it does so on the rate of decision-making ability and responsibility.

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Extra resources for Compound Democracies: Why the United States and Europe Are Becoming Similar

Sample text

Certainly, the combination between interstate (confederal, intergovernmental) and supra-state (federal, supranational) features may reach different equilibria in different periods, but no equilibrium might be possible 16 Democratic transformations in Europe and America without including elements of both of them. This variable combination constitutes not only the structural nature of polities like the USA and the EU, but also the reason why they have come to adopt (de jure in the case of the USA, de facto in the case of the EU) a specific democratic model that I define as compound democracy.

Points to the citizenship, not the nativity or nationality, of the men and women it designates.

America is a case of national sovereignty neither made possible by a central state nor hindered by separated national entities. Although its identity had a common linguistic basis, its commonality was politically constructed, not naturally inherited. According to some scholars (Lipset 1979), this overlap between nation- and democracy-building contributed to the creation of a liberal society in America (contrary to what happened in Europe). The political conception of nationality has been able to hold together states and individuals, that is to integrate territories and groups with different manners and opposed customs.

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