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Influence of Classical Democratic Theorists

Updated on July 27, 2019
Tiffany Dian Payne Bph profile image

American democracy can be confusing. I am here to share my knowledge so the people can understand how the system works

Influence of Classical Democratic Theorists

In America today, we are living a political nightmare and Plato was one that predicted this would happen. Neoliberalism was blamed for this nightmare by wanting to create a free market with minimal government influence (Brown, December 2006). This meant the rich got richer and the poor stayed poor. Neoliberals caused the destruction of small businesses and eliminated jobs and gutting the federal and state fund infrastructure that sustains families and towns (Brown, December 2006). With neoconservatism, many are unsure of the origins and debate the evolution and deviations. This structure brings balance to the free market and prevents the effects of neoliberalism (Brown, December 2006). The ideology of neoliberalism and neoconservatism open the doors to the horrific government administration since my existence. The view of Plato’s theories on democracy is proving to be true in todays world.

Counterpointing from Aristotle view of democracy, Plato’s sees this type of democracy as a false government (Daniel Skidmore-Hess, 2017). Under this ideology, people are said to be free, but this is an illusion that creates a hierarchy in the government. Aristotle sees democracy as one where the rich and poor participates in the election process and only capable people are elected to office. Plato’s view sees this form as a fake sense of freedom in which can lead to the downfall of our democracy (Daniel Skidmore-Hess, 2017). This form of democracy opens the pathway for tyranny and evil in the government. Looking at the Trump administration, Plato’s views are being seen, in my opinion his ideology has been in our democracy in prior administrations, the Trump administration is one of the horrific in American history. Aristotle does not believe in tyranny and our democracy is one that refused to be rule by one as well. This has not stop President Trump from trying to rule like king or dictator, we even notice him surrounded by people that fulfills his ego and are yes-men (Goldhill, 2018). I never thought I would witness so much corruption and conspiracies in our democracy today. But this is also something the citizens must take some blame for as well. Plato advocates for citizens to participate in our democracy and speak out when violations occur (Goldhill, 2018). The people should know and understand what is going on in our government, but I also know this is how politicians control our democracy. Under Plato’s views on democracy, the constitution should lay out clear rules, which it doesn’t. Our constitution does not clearly layout the rules when a sitting president violates the law, and this has led to debates among the people. Plato must have been seeing into the future, because most of his views on democracy is coming true. This is not saying Aristotle views are bad for our democracy, I am stating how these views has influenced today democracy.

There is without a doubt America is facing a horrific nightmare, one I hope will end soon. The influence of classical theorist like Plato and Aristotle, have greatly impact todays democracy. Aristotle could not have thought a person would be interested in government unless they qualified and were capable. Plato was able to see passed this, and suggested if there were not clear rules, someone would seek to take advantage of this opportunity. For many years this was not an issue, until the 2016 election. From corruption to conspiracy, American democracy is doomed. Facing challenges, I agree with Plato on citizens need to step up and speak up. Getting involved is becoming a priority and should have been a priority. I hope this is a wake-up call for the people in this country.


Brown, W. (December 2006). American Nightmare: Neoliberalism, Neoconservatism and De-Democratization . Political Theory , 690-714.

Daniel Skidmore-Hess, P. (2017). Policy Point – Counterpoint: Is Democracy the Best Form of Governance? Aristotelian vs. Platonic Thought. International Social Science Review.

Goldhill, O. (2018, June 2). 2,400 years ago, Plato saw democracy would give rise to a tyrannical leader filled with “false and braggart words”. Quartz .


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