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Political Theory

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Aristotle on citizenship and sovereignty

Aristotle describes citizen as an individual who collectively makes up a city state. A city state is a collection of individuals and who are citizens. He distinguishes citizens from other people like slaves, resident alien’s .seniors and even children are not ruled out as citizens and most of the workers. He also describes citizen as an individual who can occupy a judicial or deliberative office. For example in Athens where he hailed from, citizens would sit in juries, attend assemblies, and attend assembly and other things. This tight bond that ties city state and citizen tells why he considered citizenship as a necessity for a good life.

Aristotle argues that if full sovereignty was given to the laws or the governing body, it would create a loop hole for abuse of power. He suggested that polity is not likely to be susceptible to corruption more so when more authority is accorded to the laws than the governing body. He suggests an idea of distributing justice arguing that the benefits should be awarded to citizens differently on the basis of what the citizens have contributed for the betterment of the state (Wempe, Ben 2004).

Hobbes view on sovereignty and citizenship

According to Hobbes, an effective sovereign is the fundamental and very important requirement for a productive political and social order. By this he meant by answering the questions such as; does there exist a government? Is the government in control? And who controls the government. He urges for the unification of the sovereign. He says this can be achieved by separating the sovereign from things like individuals in the community and then confining those who controls the sovereign power to smallest groups possible preferably a single person. Hobbes argues that whether people live in a republic or a monarchy, the obligation to liberty or to obey the law remains the same. This argument was based on a fundamentally negative perception of liberty Wempe, Ben 2004).

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Aristotle view on individual rights and civic duties

Aristotle described an individual as not an isolated item but a part of the community and subjective to all the duties that are accorded. He firmly believed that it was not right for any citizen to think that he belonged to him or herself .he also the basic importance of the community in his canonical articles. Stressing that city state is formed by groups of communities; he stated that the city state is prior to the individual by nature. To add to this foundation work on the idea of community, he also came up with the idea of natural law.  These are rules that are valid universally or natural justice that surpass traditions and local laws. These natural laws arise from ordinary features of human nature which are shared by all humans. They are capable of being understood and being recognized by humans. This means that the individual rights and duties are tied to the community. A person cannot perform his duties as an individual and that means he has the duty to serve his community. The persons own rights are also tied to the right of others meaning freedom is limited Wempe, Ben 2004).

Hobbes view on individual rights and civic duties

Hobbes argues that every individual acquires his or her rights when he is born. Hobbes adds to say that every person has the right to liberty, life and happiness. According to him sovereign is the one which should be responsible for determining what are to be worshiped, acceptable forms of religious worship. It should also make sure that the citizens are not allocated duties to God that will make it difficult to observe the political authority. Hobbes proposed a more free individuals where a person is entitled to personal rights and can perform his personal duties (Wempe, Ben 2004).

Aristotle view on just government

Aristotle argues that justice is all about giving people what they deserve. Before distributing what they deserve, the government should consider some factors. The government should consider the purpose of what is being distributed, its goal, and how it will end. The best flute players should be allocated the best flutes for example. People with the best civic virtue and the best judgment should be given the positions in the highest political offices. According to Aristotle, fitting a person’s virtue with an appropriate position or role is what he calls to justice Wempe, Ben 2004).

Hobbes view on just government

Hobbes believes that whatever its form the government is supposed to have an absolute authority. Its power should never be limited or divided. The powers to legislate, enforce, adjudicate, tax, make war control of doctrine, should be connected a way that absence of either of the one will render the others useless. For example, to legislate without interpreting and enforcing will not help regulate behavior. According to him, only a government that practices all theses fundamental rights of sovereignty can be just and effective. Since these partial of these fundamental rights are executed by different parts of the authority that might disagree in judgments, effective and just government might be paralyzed. This might also lead to civil war in attempt to settle the dispute (Wempe, Ben 2004).

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