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Political media

Political Science: Discussion Group Assignment

Sean Stafford 1340392

Are Political Parties in Decline?

No: Ronald Landes In Defence of Canadian Political Parties

Strong point-

Ronald Landed mentions that the several functions of a political party focus on the

responsibilities of it. His strongest point too lies within the responsibilities of political

governing. Walt Bagehot explains that a political party's chief role is to join the

government's executive portion to that of the legislative portion. In short, Bagelot

believes that parties force the government to run smoother, and encourage them to solve

more problems.

Weak point-

Landes' weakest point is in regards to the function of party financing. More spefically

the electroal functions of the parties financing. He feels that because a party can raise

money year in and year out (in fact the money is flowing more than ever), that the

organization is successful. A simple explantion exists explaining why more money is

coming into the political parties. First of all government legislation has changed

regarding the amounts of donations which can be made, i.e. parties can now take more,

and larger donations. Secondly, politicians are more bussiness oriented and influenced

by large corporations and recieve large donations for corporate involvements. Parties are

not more influencial due to more money, nor are they better organized.

Yes: John Meisel Decline of Party in Canada

Strong point-

John Meisel states that the primary factor leading to the dircet declination of political

parties in Canada is the rise of the bureaucratic state. Modern Politics have eclipsed the

past when political parties did not need to gain specific knowledge as the focused on a

few key points rather than large amounts of responsibility. Today too many complex

issues are dumped upon our elected representatives, and they have no hope in being able

to deal with all the issues or give the proper amount of time and care. The development

of appointed civil severents has greatly aided in the solution of this problem, but

unfortunatley the elected representitives have lost control over the matters. Meisel stated

that politicians now can only sit back and observe the results of the civil servants and

accept these results. The officials now can no longer act for the good of the people but

rather must obey the control of the civil servants.

Weak point-

Meisel's weakest point is the decline of the parties due to the media. He states in his

article that television, the largest form of media, has transformed poltics into a "show" in

which the politians play for the camara's and try to entertain the public. However, it

doesn't seem fair to blame the politians for playing up their roles in society without

condeming the very actions of society which causes the problems of the media in the first

place. Is the problem the politians effect on the media, or the media effects on the


Source: Essay UK -

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