Politics > Political Life in Society > Authorizing Solutions: CG5 > Systems for Change

Systems for Changing Society

There is No System!

Niccolo Machiavelli (1469–1527) … Closed "There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things."

Anon …Closed "Any sufficiently advanced bureaucracy is indistinguishable from molasses."

Governing as an Organic Process

Society is a human system and its political life is a form of life. So it is more accurate to think of governing as an organic process based on the inherently uncontrollable interaction of numerous leaders. Each leader is affected by their many and varied supporters and originating groups, all within an environment in constant flux and impacted by unpredictable and often unknowable events. So any directed and deliberate change of policy and wealth allocation is inherently difficult.

Change is hard because people desire continuity and highly value identity-defining aspects of their society. So the status quo is always the fall-back position for leaders. Nevertheless, change and how to get it is a major preoccupation of authorization and leadership. It is partly dealt with via two important mechanisms:

THEE Note:Closed Regime and ideology choices are subservient to politics. The nature and varieties of regimes and ideologies, their origins and properties, are found in THEE within Change (RL3/PH3), not yet posted.

Strong v Weak Leadership

ClosedStrong leadership in regard to change appears as:

ClosedWeak leadership in regard to change appears as:

John Kenneth Galbraith (1908–2006) … Closed"You will find that the State is the kind of organization which, though it does big things badly, does small things badly too."

So How does Change ever Happen?

The prime desire of people is for continuity in regard to aspects of society that are identity-defining for them. To produce change of any significance (and disrupt continuity), the power of the people in society must be unleashed in the form of «a will for change».

Political will depends on the intrinsic power of society as a whole—the power that if unleashed can move everybody and legitimate anything, even violence—and which no political leader can resist.

Confront now the power of a society.

Originally posted: August-2009; Last updated: 15-Nov-2010

All posted material is part of a scientific project and should be regarded as provisional. Visitors are encouraged to think through the topics and propositions for themselves. Copyright © Warren Kinston 2009-2016.
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