Describes the administrative institution for a political state. The government is responsible for fundamental concerns of security, economic stability, public infrastructure, diplomacy amongst other state actors and variety of societal concerns.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

32
votes
6answers
2k views

When did the practice of formally “declaring war” cease and why?

Here's a detailed description of ambassador Neville Henderson being received by the foreign ministry in Berlin in 1939. Perhaps the most famous example. He came in looking very serious, shook ...
25
votes
5answers
2k views

Did the communication lag become a problem for the ever expanding Roman Empire?

There is a dispute among historians over whether the Roman Empire collapsed because of its increasing size and system-imminent flaws which were not suited for this size. The bigger the territory, the ...
21
votes
5answers
816 views

What were the reasons for making Prohibition a constitutional amendment?

What were the reasons that the Prohibition in the United States was passed as a constitutional amendment, rather than a normal federal law, or a set of state laws?
16
votes
1answer
454 views

Did President Kennedy really cut 100,000 government jobs during his presidency?

In Michel Crozier's book, La crise de l'intelligence, he states that during John F. Kennedy's presidency about 100,000 government jobs were terminated. Is this figure accurate? Where can I find any ...
16
votes
5answers
5k views

Why M.K. Gandhi preferred Nehru for Prime Minister candidate and not Sardar Patel?

I've heard different stories on why Sardar Patel was not selected for PM post. Some says it was Gandhi who opted Nehru over Patel, whereas some suggests it was Sardar Patel who stepped back from PM ...
16
votes
1answer
207 views

What was the Mantineian form of government and what praise did it receive?

In his comparison of the Roman form of government with those of other states, Polybius mentions Mantineia as having one which had been praised by almost all historians. However, he does not go into ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

What does it mean that the early supreme court “gave themselves” the power of judicial review?

I'm watching the "Crash Course: American History" youtube series, and I like, it, but it obviously skips over a ton because it's packing decades at a time into 10 minutes. So he just (briefly) ...
14
votes
1answer
751 views

Why is the charter of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations signed “HOWARD”?

Why is the charter of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations signed "HOWARD"? Note also that the Charter of Connecticut is likewise signed "By Writ of Privy Seal, HOWARD". But, the keeper of the ...
14
votes
4answers
840 views

What was Libya's form of direct democracy (Jamahiria) like in practice?

I've been following the recent events in Libya and I learned about the Green Book, which outlines Gaddafi's vision for a democratic socialism. Published in 1975, it proposed a form of direct democracy ...
13
votes
2answers
537 views

Were there elections in France under the absolute monarchy?

I was wondering, if any elections allowed in France during the period of absolutism. In the Middle age, people with civil and political rights were allowed to elect some kind of city council (also in ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

What was the original cause of the Camel War in Islamic history?

There are different interpretations about the Camel War. Who started this war and why? Which side of the war was the aggressor? The leaders of both sides were from the companions of the prophet ...
12
votes
2answers
776 views

Role of Indian princes and aristocratic landowners under British colonial rule?

I am currently reading Ludwig von Mises' Human Action and find it rewarding in various ways. For instance, von Mises points out the following about volunteers' roles even around autocratic rulers: ...
11
votes
3answers
692 views

Why did monarchy become common practice after the fall of Rome?

Why did the government of most nations after the fall of Rome and the beginning of medieval age turn to monarchy? Before the fall of Rome most nations seem to be organized after different model and ...
11
votes
5answers
526 views

Why did non-monarchic rule meet with so little success in ancient China?

In the ancient world, the states around the Mediterranean were ruled by various forms of monarchy, aristocracy and democracy, each of which had varying levels of success. Meanwhile, in China, monarchy ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Gold Confiscation Act of 1933

On March 9, 1933 Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR) called Congress in for an emergency session, which would result in the speedy passing of the Gold Confiscation Act. According to FDR's Executive Order ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

What were the operating principles of Japan's MITI during the 1950s and 60s?

Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) guided Japan's economy through two decades of unprecedented economic growth. MITI was the primary instrument of Japan's industrial policy, ...
10
votes
6answers
3k views

In the United States government, has there been cases that electoral colleges don't vote for the candidate the majority of their state voted for?

Has there ever been a case where electoral colleges vote for someone the people didn't vote for during an election for president of the United States?
10
votes
2answers
278 views

When and how did the presidents of states became governors in the U.S.A?

In the earliest days of the U.S.A., the heads of the governments of some of the states were called governors and those of some states were called presidents (hence the U.S. Constitution refers to the ...
10
votes
1answer
293 views

Were mattress labels inspired by public outcry?

If you're an American consumer, you likely know the "mattress tag", labels attached to mattresses, pillows, stuffed animals, and pet beds, which often begin "This tag may not be removed under penalty ...
10
votes
0answers
205 views

What government functions, if any, did the archchancellor of the HRE actually exercise?

Although the Holy Roman Empire was famous for being a loose confederation of largely independent feudal lords, it nevertheless possessed institutions akin to a unified state even near the end of its ...
9
votes
3answers
212 views

Were there any political checks on the U.S. executive during their covert support of the military junta of Pinochet?

U.S. secretary of state Kissinger- with the support of the executive- actively supported the overthrow of Chilean president Allende in favor of the military dictatorship of Pinochet. After the fact, ...
9
votes
3answers
525 views

How did the First French Empire and allies differ from the other European monarchies at that time?

During the Napoleonic Wars (especially towards the end), France and most of its allies (e.g. Kingdom of Italy, Duchy of Warsaw, Kingdom of Spain) are absolute monarchies. However, they seemed to ...
9
votes
1answer
247 views

How many citizens were in each of century of the Roman electoral system?

The Centuriate assembly (Comicia centuriata) was arguably the most important assembly of the Roman republic. It was in charge of electing consuls, praetors and censors, of voting laws, declaring war ...
8
votes
2answers
472 views

How would a large kingdom be ruled?

Genghis Khan, Alexander etc. are rulers who had kingdoms which were larger than most of the countries now. How would they have ruled their countries efficiently when it would take weeks for ...
8
votes
3answers
553 views

Why was the government expenditures of the Roman Empire very low compared to modern governments?

I was trying to compare the military spending of the Roman empire in the 1st century with modern military spending and how much of a burden that was to Roman people. The Wikipedia page of the ...
8
votes
2answers
9k views

Has there ever been a successful “Anarchy”? [closed]

By definition anarchism advocates a stateless society, so I guess I can't be talking about an Anarchist State or Country so I will just use state of anarchy (with no negative connotation). In any ...
8
votes
3answers
188 views

At which point did election in a large country become feasible?

According to this answer by Anixx In the ancient world, democracy or oligarchical republics existed only in city-states because it was unfeasible to conduct elections in a large country and ...
8
votes
1answer
275 views

Was the house of representatives really as rowdy a place as it is portrayed in the 2012 film Lincoln?

In the 2012 film Lincoln the House of Representatives is portrayed as being a rather rowdy and disorderly place. There are frequent interruptions of the person holding the floor, lots of booing and ...
8
votes
1answer
107 views

How was the lower chamber of the Japanese Imperial Diet elected under the Meiji constitution?

During the period 1868-1945, Japan was ruled under the "constitution of the empire of Japan" better known as the "Meiji constitution". Under this constitution, the Imperial Diet was the legislature ...
8
votes
1answer
377 views

National Symbology and Iconography of Carthage

Are there any design elements that symbolized the Carthaginian empire? The Roman empire is associated with many iconographic and stylistic elements, like the golden eagle on military standards and ...
7
votes
1answer
235 views

How was the Roman Princeps Senatus appointed?

In Republican Rome, the princeps senatus (~head of the senate) was supposed to have been nominated by the censors, who were elected every 5 years for 1 and a half years. What happened when the ...
7
votes
2answers
144 views

Why did Peter the Great tie particular expenditures to particular revenue sources?

Peter the Great founded the Russian Academy in 1724. In his decree, he says the Academy will be supported by an annual grant of 25,000 rubles drawn from the custom tolls of Baltic Sea ports. (source) ...
7
votes
1answer
96 views

What was the first emergency management agency in the world?

Given the impending landfall of Hurricane Sandy I wondered what was the first established emergency management agency akin to the United States Federal Emergency Management Agency?
7
votes
1answer
49 views

Which of LBJ's fellow representatives were less active than him in the House?

In the first book of Robert Caro's series on Lyndon Johnson, The Path to Power, he observes that in his time as a member of the House of Representatives, LBJ had introduced only 5 bills of national ...
6
votes
5answers
595 views

How did the United States avoid (or recover from) post revolution corruption?

I was recently reading a novel set in post-revolution Ghana1. A central theme of the novel was the deeply entrenched culture of corruption that developed with independence. It seems that this type ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Benefits of Athenian citizenship

Besides the right to vote, were there any other advantages or benefits in being a citizen in Pericles' Athens?
6
votes
4answers
310 views

Has there ever been a war between members of a personal union?

A personal union occurs when two otherwise independent states (each with their own territories, governments, etc.) come to share the same monarch. Has it ever come to pass that two member states of a ...
6
votes
1answer
108 views

Were there any elections in the First French Empire?

I know Napoleon's senate was appointed, but what about the lower house? Were there political factions like in the first republic?
5
votes
4answers
666 views

What is the most historically prevalent reason of states dissolving, other than military activity? [closed]

By "military activity" here I mean both internal disturbances and interventions from the outside. Also, by "reason" I don't mean the motivation or ideological background, but rather the actions that ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the basic structure of British Politics?

This is obviously an extremely broad (but answerable!) question, and I honestly don't know where to start and have no knowledge whatsoever about the topic. Basically I would like to know how the ...
5
votes
3answers
446 views

When did the Commonwealth of England start being considered a Republic?

For instance, it was under the absolute rule of a person (Cromwell), and after his death the rule is passed to his son. When was it classified as a republic, as opposed to a monarchy? Was that before, ...
5
votes
2answers
228 views

What is the first example of a Western government passing a sin tax?

What is the first example of a Western government passing a sin or vice tax -- that is, a tax passed primarily to discourage consumption of certain goods due to moral, not economic, concerns? ...
5
votes
1answer
196 views

Did the American Founders Debate on the Relative Size of the Government?

It seems to me that the concern with the size of government, specifically that it's too large and therefore complex, is a relatively modern concern in American politics. I would assume that given the ...
5
votes
3answers
144 views

Historical examples of secessionist movements fighting alongside their de jure governments

In the complicated many-sided conflict in Mali, the MNLA, are fighting for a secular state in Azawad, whereas islamists (such as Ansar Dine), seek the imposition of Sharia law across Mali. Recently, ...
5
votes
1answer
149 views

Is there any evidence of Edward VIII trying to influence the UK Government?

Edward VIII was King of the UK, however he abdicated because he wanted to marry a divorced woman. Someone told me that the "real reason" was that he was trying to influence the UK government and/or ...
5
votes
2answers
109 views

What post 18thC countries rulers escaped to a remote/separate region and hung on while the country collapsed under revolution?

Other than Taiwan/China, what other countries had revolutions where the ruling party/rulers escaped to a remote area or region and held onto power as a country/government while the rest of the country ...
4
votes
1answer
102 views

President proposes bills: provenance

The President of the United States sends proposed bills to members of Congress, that they may introduce the bills on his behalf. There's no provision for this in the Constitution (AFAICT). What was ...
4
votes
1answer
410 views

The Great Compromise, is there analysis on the outcome?

I'm doing a research about the Great Compromise and how it originated from the Virginia and the New Jersey Plan. Has there been any analysis on which side got the better part of the compromise. (The ...
4
votes
1answer
89 views

What caused the decline in support for the Protectionist Party of Australia?

The Protectionist Party of Australia was one of the three main federal parties at the time of federation and produced the country's first two Prime Ministers, but it was not long before their share of ...
4
votes
1answer
117 views

History of terrorist organizations designations/undesignations by Israel

In 1948, Israel passed the Prevention of Terrorism Ordinance, which allows it to officially designate organizations as terrorists in the Official Gazette. What organizations have been designated this ...