The English Constitution
Cosimo, Inc., Apr 1, 2007 - Political Science - 368 pages
Chronicling the past is much easier than chronicling the present, which was exactly Walter Bagehot's project when writing The English Constitution, first published in 1873. His ambitious undertaking was to describe the British government as it actually worked during 1865 and 1866. Government as it functions is very different from the government as it is spelled out on paper. Many factors, including the mindset of the people and the habits of those already in government, affect how a country is run. Political scientists and historians will find Bagehot's commentary on the living English government and invaluable tool in understanding the politics of the era. British journalist WALTER BAGEHOT (1826-1877) was an early editor of The Economist and was among the first economists to discuss the concept of the business cycle. He is also the author of Physics and Politics (1872) and The Postulates of English Political Economy (1885).
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able action administration American arguments assembly authority better body cabinet cabinet government chamber choose classes Constitution course critical defect difficulty discussion educated effect elected England English equal executive existence experience fact feeling force foreign function George give greatest head House of Commons House of Lords ideas imagine important influence interest keep king leader least legislation legislature less live look majority matter means ment mind minister ministry monarch nation nature never object once opinion opposition Parliament Parliamentary parliamentary government party peers perhaps persons political popular possible present President presidential system principle probably Queen questions reason representatives respect result rule society sort sovereign speak statesmen sure things thought true vote whole wish
Page xxxviii - Commanding-in-Chief downwards ; she could dismiss all the sailors too ; she could sell off all our ships of war and all our naval stores ; she could make a peace by the sacrifice of Cornwall, and begin a war for the conquest of Brittany. She could make every citizen in the United Kingdom, male or female, a peer ; she could make every parish in the United Kingdom a " university ;" she could dismiss most of the civil servants ; she could pardon all offenders.
Page xxiii - But in all cases it must be remembered that a political combination of the lower classes, as such and for their own objects, is an evil of the first magnitude; that a permanent combination of them would make them (now that so many of them have the suffrage) supreme in the country; and that their supremacy, in the state they now are, means the supremacy of ignorance over instruction and of numbers over knowledge.
References to this book
Institutional Theory in Political Science: The 'new Institutionalism'
B. Guy Peters
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Jane J. Mansbridge
Limited preview - 1990