In western democracies, people tend to say they are their own rulers. Representative democracy however, is at the same time criticized as a dictatorship between elections (in which one again can only chose the dictator for the next four years). As long as the choices of the rulers can be traced back to an initial consenting decision at the basic level of society, this is said to satisfy the democratic principle of everybody’s fair chance of participation. What however, if government, once put into place, takes over more responsibilities than initially anticipated? What if democratic institutions begin enlarging the scope of their own powers? And what if those in power are not willing to give up this newly achieved position anymore?It may happen during the course of a revolution or slowly in the process of ongoing decision making within a system. This presentation/paper will take a look at recent examples in modern democracies, where the power entrusted to a government or similar agency has been enlarged autopoietically. From the Nuremberg trials, the European Court of Justice decisions on the direct applicability and supremacy of community law up the recent decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges. Though possibly being used for good, one should always be aware of the dangers and pitfalls of such developments.
Pascal Soepper, Independent Scholar, Germany
Paper Information Conference: ACERP2018
Stream: Philosophy - Philosophy and Public Policy
Added on Monday, April 9th, 2018
The full paper is not available for this title