List of Forms of Government
Forms of Government: The governance of nations differs significantly based on who has power. This lesson will differentiate five forms of government: monarchy, democracy, oligarchy, authoritarianism, and totalitarianism.
Let’s begin with the monarchy. Monarchy was the most common form of government until the 19th century. Monarchy is a form of government in which single-family rules from generation to generation. The power, or sovereignty, is personified in a single individual.
There are two main types of monarchy that differ based on the level of power held by the individual or family currently in power. Absolute monarchy exists when the monarch has no or few legal limitations in political matters. Constitutional monarchies, which are more common, exist when the monarch retains a distinctive legal and ceremonial role but exercises limited or no political power.
The most familiar example of a monarchy is the constitutional monarchy that exists in the United Kingdom. Queen Elizabeth II is the head of state of the U.K. as well as the monarch of fifteen other independent countries. She and the royal family have ceremonial roles but do not make up the laws that govern the people.
Another form of government is democracy. Democracy is defined as a form of government in which power belongs to the people. There are two forms of democracy. One is a direct democracy, in which all eligible citizens have direct participation in the decision making of the government. The second and more common form of democracy is a representative democracy, in which citizens exercise their power through elected representatives. The elected representatives propose, develop, and create laws for the citizens to abide by.
The most familiar example of democracy is the representative democracy that exists in the United States of America. Americans elect a president and representatives of Congress.
The next form of government is an oligarchy. An oligarchy is a form of government in which all power resides with a few people or in a dominant class or group within the society. These groups of people may be distinguished by royalty, wealth, education, or military control. Sometimes oligarchy governments are controlled by a few families who pass their power from one generation to the next.
Unlike monarchs, however, oligarchs do not have to be connected by bloodlines in order to inherit power. For example, one family may have power for several years, and then the power may be shifted to another group of people or another family based on their military ties or wealth. These decisions are not influenced by people. They are influenced solely within the small group of people with whom the power is held.
The most well-known example is the former Soviet Union. Other examples of oligarchy governments are found in the countries of China, North Korea, and Venezuela.
Authoritarianism is a form of government characterized by strong central power and limited political freedoms. Political scientists have created many typologies describing variations of authoritarian forms of government. Authoritarian regimes may be either autocratic or oligarchic in nature and may be based upon the rule of a party or the military.
The United States Forms Of Government
The federal government of the United States (U.S. federal government) is the national government of the United States, a federal republic in North America, composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and several island possessions.
The federal government is composed of three distinct branches: legislative, executive and judicial, whose powers are vested by the U.S. Constitution in the Congress, the president, and the federal courts, respectively. The powers and duties of these branches are further defined by acts of Congress, including the creation of executive departments and courts inferior to the Supreme Court.
China Forms Of Government
The central government of the People’s Republic of China is divided among several state organs:
- National People’s Congress (NPC): the ultimate power of the state that supervises and elects all the following organs;
- Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPCSC): the legislative branch;
- President (together with the NPCSC, act as head of state) and the Vice-President, who has no power itself, but exercise power by holding other offices;
- State Council (synonymous with “Central People’s Government”): the executive branch, whose Premier is the head of government;
- Central Military Commission (CMC): the military branch, whose Chairman is the commander-in-chief of the national armed forces including the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the People’s Armed Police (PAP), and the Militia;
- National Supervisory Commission (NSC): the supervisory branch;
- Supreme People’s Court (SPC): the judicial branch;
- Supreme People’s Procuratorate (SPP): the prosecutorial branch.
Forms Of Government ID
Identity documents in the United States are typically the regional state-issued driver’s license or identity card, while also the Social Security card (or just the Social Security number) and the United States Passport Card may serve as national identification. The United States passport itself also may serve as identification. However, there is no official “national identity card” in the United States, in the sense that there is no federal agency with nationwide jurisdiction that directly issues an identity document to all US citizens for mandatory regular use.
There have been proposals to nationalize ID cards, as currently citizens are identified by a patchwork of documents issued by both the federal government as well as individual state and local governments.
It is both a political issue and a practical one, and the idea of federalism is cited as supporting federated (regional) identification. All legislative attempts to create a national identity card have failed due to tenacious opposition from liberal and conservative politicians alike, who regard the national identity card as the mark of a totalitarian society.
At present, the only national photo identity documents are the passport and passport card, which are issued by the U.S. Department of State to U.S. nationals only upon voluntary application. Issuance of these documents is discretionary – that is, for various reasons, the State Department can refuse an application for a passport or passport card.
The driver’s license, which is issued by each individual state, operates as the de facto national identity card due to the ubiquity of driving in the United States. Each state also issues a non-driver state identity card that fulfills the same identification functions as the driver’s license but does not permit the operation of a motor vehicle.
Social Security cards have federal jurisdiction but cannot verify identity. They verify only the match between a given name and a Social Security Number (SSN) and were intended only for use in complying with Social Security payroll tax laws. They now are used in a wider scope of activities, such as for obtaining credit and other regulated financial services in banking and investments.
Mexico Forms Of Government
The Federal government of Mexico (alternately known as the Government of the Republic of Gobierno de la República) is the national government of the United Mexican States, the central government established by its constitution to share sovereignty over the republic with the governments of the 31 individual Mexican states, and to represent such governments before international bodies such as the United Nations.
The Mexican federal government has three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial and functions per the Constitution of the United Mexican States, as enacted in 1917, and as amended. The executive power is exercised by the executive branch, which is headed by the president and his Cabinet, which, together, are independent of the legislature.
Legislative power is vested upon the Congress of the Union, a bicameral legislature comprising the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. Judicial power is exercised by the judiciary, consisting of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation, the Council of the Federal Judiciary, and the collegiate, unitary, and district courts.
Republic Forms Of Government
What Are The 7 Types Of Government?
- Democracy. A government where the majority makes the decisions by voting.
- Republic. A government where people choose other people to make decisions for us.
- Communism. A government where people are all “equal”.
- Autocracy. A government where one person makes all the rules.
What Are The 5 Forms Of Government?