Does having a Nobility lead to higher political stability?

Discussion in 'Political Science' started by kazenatsu, Aug 24, 2018.

  1. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Does having a nobility, or at least an upper middle class, in a society lead to a higher degree of political stability, and ultimately help ensure more freedom for everyone?

    The less centralized power is in a government, the more enduring and stable it is.

    When there is a large group of people of a surplus of time and financial resources at their disposal, many of these individuals will take an interest in politics, and even attempt to have some influence on government. One could say that it really takes the existence of a nobility for a country to be democratic. Yes, it's also important to have an informed citizenry, but there also needs to be a few people with the means to play a stronger role.

    Look at the history in the U.S. Many office holders came from what could be described as the upper middle class, or families with a lot of money.

    Obviously there are some downsides to having a society that is so much run by nobility, such as the people making the decisions being out of touch with the needs of the poor, but there are some values common to all, such as civil liberties.

    Then there are values of the nobility that get imprinted on the rest of society.


    The more centralized financial resources are, the easier it will be for political movements to be organized.

    Obviously creating a nobility may not be the most efficient way to do this, since the majority of the wealth is going to be superfluous and not directed towards political ends, but the existence does serve a function. From the standpoint of a political structure, it's very important in whose hands the resources and power is in.

    If you look throughout the history of Europe, the first council of voting bodies (progenitor democracies you could call it) were composed of the nobility, and exercised a check against the power of the king.

    A middle class, in general, is too busy to get too involved in politics. Very few individuals in the middle class have both the time and money to do so. (Until they reach their retirement years, but by then they're often too old to do many things) It's true that retired middle class people exert a huge political influence with their votes, but there is less tendency for them to organize themselves into a powerful political body. That might requiring hiring some full-time employees, frequent travel across different parts of the country, compilation of lots of information, it's just not so likely to happen. Middle class people make donations to political parties, but most of the donations come from the more wealthy.
     
  2. Spooky

    Spooky Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    No.

    It is dependent on what the nobility or the leaders of a society do that dictates how stable it will be.

    They have to address the needs of their populace, whatever those may be, or their grip on power will crumble.

    This is, of course, determined by their ability to maintain control through power but even that will eventually wear out.

    So really it's only a determination of time that is the question.
     
  3. Lil Mike

    Lil Mike Well-Known Member

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    I don't know if having a titled nobility adds to stability, but having a large, stable middle class certainly does. I suspect that as the US loses it's middle class it will become more and more politically unstable.
     
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  4. unkotare

    unkotare Well-Known Member

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    A nobility is NOT a middle class, and does NOT add stability.
     
  5. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    If a middle class can add stability, why can't a very upper tier middle class not add stability? Especially when that class is very decentralized in power. Isn't the nobility basically a class in the middle between the king (or political elites) and everyone else?

    They're basically a "middle class" (or sorts) with an extreme amount of financial resources. Not to mention a wealth of both money combined with a surplus of time, which is rare in other cases. It's that combination that drives the creation of culture and art.
    (And probably why middle class Switzerland never really developed its own high culture historically, despite a high average standard of living)

    One does not have to approve of a nobility to be able to appreciate the positives it contributed to society.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2019
  6. DavidMK

    DavidMK Well-Known Member

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    Nobility is UPPER class by definition. I don't think you understand what it actually is.
     
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  7. The Rhetoric of Life

    The Rhetoric of Life Banned

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    You mean, does having a class system stabilise a class system based society?

    I'm going to say yes.
     
  8. The Rhetoric of Life

    The Rhetoric of Life Banned

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    Aristocracy is just upper class, and; The rich need the poor.
     
  9. Dissily Mordentroge

    Dissily Mordentroge Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    What do you mean by ‘nobility’? A hereditary collection of the privileged? A moral and intellectual elite fantasised about in Plato’s Republic?
    Something as absurd as the present Whitehouse inhabitants?
    If you mean something like the British Royal Family a brief examination of their history reveals they’ve often been anything but dignified or moral, let alone noble.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
  10. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    All I'm saying is that if you don't have a strong thriving upper class, the society is eventually going to devolve into an autocracy (or possibly even a virtual political plutocracy like exists in China).

    In other words, if wealth is not unequal, political power will end up even more unequal.

    In Russia today they don't have an upper class, they have an oligarchy.
    (somewhat similar to an upper class but where wealth and influence is even far more concentrated)
    Sometimes compromises that you may feel are less than ideal provide an adequate safeguard against something that is even worse.

    I'm not sure that more equal democracies really work long-term, except in very small countries, like Iceland.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2019
  11. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    The Economic Case for Aristocracy

    "...Interestingly, the notion of economic efficiency can be traced back to the Italian economist and sociologist Vilfredo Pareto. Initially Pareto seemed to fall into the classical liberal tradition of thinking that simply liberating market forces would result in optimal outcomes. But as time went on Pareto grew disillusioned with this view and started to focus on the importance of elite structures in society, which eventually led to his flirtation with the then-ascendent Italian fascist movement. This flirtation can in large part be explained by Pareto’s intransigent modernism and his unwillingness to take more classical political traditions seriously, but the very fact that the key theorist of efficiency ended up realizing the need for nonmarket-based political hierarchies is revealing...."

    read more: https://www.postliberalorder.com/p/the-economic-case-for-aristocracy
    Philip Pilkington, Postliberal Order, Aug 7, 2023
     
  12. FreshAir

    FreshAir Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    100% agree
     
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  13. FreshAir

    FreshAir Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    just as if the lower class have no hope, the entire society falls apart

    AI is gonna be a fun one....
     
  14. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Correct, there needs to be a balance. Just because an aristocracy may be important does not mean both a middle class and well-doing lower class is not important, for both the well-being of society and stability.

    Right before the start of the French Revolution there were multiple factions. The king had been trying to take away more power from the nobility, and the nobility realized they would soon likely lose all their rights and privileges, so the nobility initially stood back and did not interfere. The up-and-coming middle class wanted their say and new rights for the people, and the lower class was disgruntled desperate and starving. And the country was in deep debt and the king had found himself in a crisis with the Treasury running out of money. The provincial judges (parlements) who were responsible for administering the country took advantage of the situation to try to push the king to relinquish some of his power, by refusing to collect taxes in that time of crisis.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2023

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