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Portal:Politics

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Politics refers to a set of activities associated with the governance of a country, or an area. It involves making decisions that apply to members of a group.

It refers to achieving and exercising positions of governance—organized control over a human community, particularly a state. The academic study focusing on just politics, which is therefore more targeted than general political science, is sometimes referred to as politology (not to be confused with politicology, a synonym for political science).

In modern nation-states, people have formed political parties to represent their ideas. They agree to take the same position on many issues and agree to support the same changes to law and the same leaders.

An election is usually a competition between different parties. Some examples of political parties worldwide are: the African National Congress (ANC) in South Africa, the Democratic Party (D) in the United States, the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in Germany and the Indian National Congress in India.

Politics is a multifaceted word. It has a set of fairly specific meanings that are descriptive and nonjudgmental (such as "the art or science of government" and "political principles"), but does often colloquially carry a negative connotation. The word has been used negatively for many years: the British national anthem as published in 1745 calls on God to "Confound their politics", and the phrase "play politics", for example, has been in use since at least 1853, when abolitionist Wendell Phillips declared: "We do not play politics; anti-slavery is no half-jest with us."

A variety of methods are deployed in politics, which include promoting one's own political views among people, negotiation with other political subjects, making laws, and exercising force, including warfare against adversaries. Politics is exercised on a wide range of social levels, from clans and tribes of traditional societies, through modern local governments, companies and institutions up to sovereign states, to the international level.

A political system is a framework which defines acceptable political methods within a given society. The history of political thought can be traced back to early antiquity, with seminal works such as Plato's Republic, Aristotle's Politics and the works of Confucius.

Selected article

Recruiting new members at The Ohio State University.

The College Republican National Committee is a national organization for college and university students who support the Republican Party of the United States. The organization is known as an active recruiting tool for the Republican Party and has produced many prominent Republican and conservative activists and introduced more party members to the Republican party than any other organization in the nation. The College Republicans were founded as the American Republican College League on May 17, 1892, at the University of Michigan. The organization was spear-headed by law student James Francis Burke, who would later serve as a Congressman from Pennsylvania. The inaugural meeting was attended by over 1,000 students from across the county, from Stanford University in the west to Harvard University in the east. Contemporary politicians also attended the meeting, including Judge John M. Thurston, Senator Russell A. Alger, Congressman J. Sloat Fassett, Congressman W. E. Mason, John M. Langston, and Abraham Lincoln's successor in the Illinois State Legislature, A. J. Lester. Then-Governor of Ohio William McKinley gave a rousing keynote speech.

Featured picture

Andrew Curtin2.jpg
Credit: Photo: Mathew Brady/Levin Handy; Restoration: Michel Vuijlsteke

Andrew Gregg Curtin (1817–1894) was a U.S. lawyer and politician. He served as the 15th Governor of Pennsylvania during the American Civil War. During the Civil War, Curtin organized the Pennsylvania reserves into combat units, and oversaw the construction of the first Union military camp for training militia. After the Battle of Gettysburg, Governor Curtin was the principal force behind the establishment of the National Cemetery there. After serving two terms as governor, Curtin was appointed ambassador to Russia by Ulysses S. Grant, and he later served in the House of Representatives from 1881 until 1887.

Selected quote

Chairman Mao
In other countries there is no need for each of the bourgeois parties to have an armed force under its direct command. But things are different in China, where, because of the feudal division of the country, those landlord or bourgeois groupings or parties which have guns have power, and those which have more guns have more power. Placed in such an environment, the party of the proletariat should see clearly to the heart of the matter.

Communists do not fight for personal military power (they must in no circumstances do that, and let no one ever again follow the example of Chang Kuo-tao), but they must fight for military power for the Party, for military power for the people. As a national war of resistance is going on, we must also fight for military power for the nation. Where there is naivety on the question of military power, nothing whatsoever can be achieved. It is very difficult for the labouring people, who have been deceived and intimidated by the reactionary ruling classes for thousands of years, to awaken to the importance of having guns in their own hands. Now that Japanese imperialist oppression and the nation-wide resistance to it have pushed our labouring people into the arena of war, Communists should prove themselves the most politically conscious leaders in this war. Every Communist must grasp the truth, "Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun." Our principle is that the Party commands the gun, and the gun must never be allowed to command the Party. Yet, having guns, we can create Party organizations, as witness the powerful Party organizations which the Eighth Route Army has created in northern China. We can also create cadres, create schools, create culture, create mass movements. Everything in Yenan has been created by having guns. All things grow out of the barrel of a gun. According to the Marxist theory of the state, the army is the chief component of state power. Whoever wants to seize and retain state power must have a strong army. Some people ridicule us as advocates of the "omnipotence of war". Yes, we are advocates of the omnipotence of revolutionary war; that is good, not bad, it is Marxist. The guns of the Russian Communist Party created socialism. We shall create a democratic republic. Experience in the class struggle in the era of imperialism teaches us that it is only by the power of the gun that the working class and the labouring masses can defeat the armed bourgeoisie and landlords; in this sense we may say that only with guns can the whole world be transformed. We are advocates of the abolition of war, we do not want war; but war can only be abolished through war, and in order to get rid of the gun it is necessary to take up the gun.

Mao Zedong, Problems of war and strategy, 1938
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News and Current Events

Wikinews on Politics and conflicts
  • May 21: Nickey Iyambo, former vice-president of Namibia, dies aged 82
  • May 18: Governor of US state of Alabama signs state anti-abortion measure
  • May 15: Polish leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski promises stricter punishments for child abusers
  • May 12: Pope Francis instructs reporting of sexual abuse to higher church authorities
  • March 28: Thousands march in anti-Brexit protest, London
  • March 15: Former Trump advisor, Paul Manafort, receives second sentence in U.S. Federal Court
  • February 25: Texas federal judge says drafting only men violates United States Constitution
  • February 21: Sixteen states sue U.S. President Trump to stop declaration of emergency for border wall
  • February 17: Francis D'Souza, former Deputy Chief Minister of Goa, dies aged 64
  • February 12: German migrant rescue charity renames ship after drowned Syrian toddler

Selected biography

George I, King of the Hellenes

George I of Greece was King of Greece from 1863 to 1913. Originally a Danish prince, when only 17 years old he was elected King by the Greek National Assembly, which had deposed the former King Otto. His nomination was suggested and supported by the three Great Powers (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Second French Empire and the Russian Empire). As the first monarch of the new Greek dynasty, his 50-year reign (the longest in modern Greek history) was characterized by territorial gains as Greece established its place in pre-World War I Europe. Two weeks short of the fiftieth anniversary of his accession, and during the First Balkan War, he was assassinated. In sharp contrast to his reign, the reigns of his successors would prove short and insecure.

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