Conclusion: Liberal Democracy’s Shortcomings and Overriding Advantage
Ideology is like a plot formula for politics. A recipe for a romance novel provides the author with an ending (happily ever after) and a set of ordinary means toward that end (man rescues woman). Likewise, an ideology organizes our thoughts about politics over time. It defines an end (the political good) and the means for attaining it (e.g., revolution, war, or negotiations). Ideology is thus as useful to politicians as the plot formula is to the budding novelist. It helps to economize on effort and to focus the imagination. A certain end is given, and the acceptable means are outlined. This hardly means that ideology is a rigid template for political action. One plot formula gives rise to shelf upon shelf of variations on the theme, as any trip to the public library will attest. Similarly, ideology awaits the creative politician and the interpretive public. It is flexible and malleable, though not limitlessly so.
KeywordsProcedural Justice Restorative Justice Liberal Democracy Transitional Justice Democratic Transition
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