What are the Basic Questions and Problems of Political Philosophy?June 28, 2021
Political philosophy, like other branches of philosophy, is based on questions. These questions, namely the issues that political philosophy deals with, are listed below.
Fundamental Questions of Political Philosophy
What is the state’s reason for existence?
Should it be a state or not?
What is the function of the state?
Where does it get its source of power?
What are the types of sovereignty?
What is civil society?
What is the place of civil society in democratic life?
What is equality?
What is justice?
Can bureaucracy be abandoned?
What is the best form of management?
Can there be a management style that everyone can be satisfied with? These questions are fundamental questions of political philosophy.
Answers to Fundamental Questions of Political Philosophy
What is the source of power and the criterion of legitimacy?
What are the uses of sovereignty?
Can bureaucracy be abandoned?
What is the meaning of civil society?
What are the fundamental rights of the individual?
What is the Source of Power?
Where there is society, there is power. Power can be defined as the power to influence people’s opinions and thoughts. Although the state emerged as a political organization in a later period of humanity, power has existed in every society where people live together. Power is not only the power to determine/influence the behavior of others, but also to exercise control, control and change.
Wherever there is a state, there is power, but power is not just a state. For example, an intellectual can influence people’s opinions. A newspaper can have an impact on people’s political views. These also contain a power, but the power of the state (sovereignty) is the power of control over people with the means of material and moral control. In other words, while the power of the state has a wider area and stronger control tools, the power of individuals or social groups is limited. Unlike other forms of power, the state has a monopoly on legitimate use of force. The control he exercises is legitimate control. Along with the development of the modern state, the power of the state was also tied to certain rules. We call this law. Law functions as a common document in which power and authority sharing, duties and responsibilities are assigned between the state and society.
One of the fundamental questions of political philosophy is the source of power and the measure of legitimacy. Basically, three answers were given to this question: protection and meeting basic needs, religious legitimacy, that is, the will of God, and common will, that is, law and democracy.
What is Right, Justice and Freedom?
Rights are the gains that every human has just because he is human. Right; It encompasses actions within the freedom of every human being, regardless of religion, language, colour, race or gender. Freedom of life, property, expression of opinion, freedom of belief, freedom of the press, etc. These rights that people have cannot be separated from duties and responsibilities. Rights holders are also responsible for the rights of others, nature and other living things while exercising these rights. The earth is not only the home of humans, but also of other living things. For this reason, realizing our lives without harming nature and other people includes responsibility, which is the complement of our rights.
Equality and justice are not the same thing.
The exercise of rights is based on the will to choose these rights. The right to express thought is based on the freedom to have our own opinion first. Freedom means making choices without external or internal pressure. Of course, freedom is not unlimited. Freedoms do not include harming nature, animals and other people. Freedom includes both staying away from external pressure and expressing oneself against the power that directs and manipulates us from within.
The concept of justice is a much discussed concept in philosophy. According to Plato, justice is the supreme aim of political life. It’s what we’re all looking for. Philosophers who can directly grasp the knowledge of the truth (who can manage to get out of the cave) should lead the way in this regard. Justice can be defined as lawfulness, but this definition remains incomplete. Because the law may not provide justice. Justice is everyone getting their money’s worth. But there is no absolute equality between innate people. Children, the weak and the disabled are not on an equal footing with others. In this sense, justice means that every human being should live humanely as he deserves, and that he should continue his life as an equal subject of law.
Could there be an Ideal State Order? (Utopias)
When philosophers, like most people, were not satisfied with the world they lived in, they dreamed of ideal (perfect) order, states. This word, which is called “utopia” and means not actually somewhere, is the name given to the mental constructs of philosophers. Philosophers have not only imagined this perfect order, but also discussed how it could be. Such utopias are very common in the history of philosophy. Plato’s “State”, Aristotle’s “Politics”, St. Augustine’s “God State”, Farabi’s “Virtue City”, Thomas More’s (Tamis Mor) “Utopia”, Tommaso Campenella’s (Tomaso Kampenella ) “Land of the Sun”, F. Bacon’s “New Atlantis” are just some of them.