Isocracy pp 91-145 | Cite as

The Political Institutions of Isocracy

  • Nicolò BellancaEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Classical Liberalism book series (PASTCL)


In this chapter, starting with an appreciation of radical conflicts (antagonistic but non-destructive), the political institutions of isocracy are illustrated through five perspectives, partial but complementary to each other. The reputation of impartiality animates assemblies devoted to the preventive check of laws and independent authorities that follow a liberal tradition combining the Montesquieu approach with Friedrich August von Hayek’s proposals. The diffused power favours, inter alia, the electoral mandate with the right of revocation and the referendum with a preliminary random selection of participating citizens. In addition, it allows control over the financial remuneration of elected representatives and establishes that each citizen receives a token in currency that he can use to finance the electoral campaign of some candidate. The power-sharing incentivizes, inter alia, the proportional distribution of positions and resources, the positive discrimination policies and the multilateral horizontal surveillance (with which the members of each group submit their political actions to the scrutiny of the peer members of all the other groups). A “partisan” institution is, for instance, the multiple votes, taken from John Stuart Mill but applied to the parents of minors (including single-parent families, those with more than two parents and those made up of same-sex parents) in order to grant political representation to those who are not given a voice on the grounds of age. Another one is the “tribunate”, a peculiar form of counter-power (with the option to place a veto on choices not agreed upon) retrieved from Machiavelli and the tradition of republicanism. Finally, in tune with the polyarchic method that is the underlining fil rouge of the whole treatise, the federalist institutions also play a very important role. Multiple non-state governments, or jurisdictions, can perform all public functions, apart from a few crucial public goods, whose provision is assigned, through constitutionally defined procedures, only to one jurisdiction. This configuration is extended on a planetary scale in order to establish a multipolar and multilevel balance of power.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of FlorenceFlorenceItaly

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