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Portal:Politics

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Introduction

Politics (from Greek: πολιτικά, translit. Politiká, meaning "affairs of the cities") is the process of 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.

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 are the African National Congress (ANC) in South Africa, the Tories in Great Britain and the Indian National Congress.

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 often does carry a connotation of dishonest malpractice. 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.

It is very often said that politics is about power. 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

Flag of the Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang

The Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang is a revolutionary socialist political party that sought independence from French colonial rule in Vietnam during the early 20th century. Its origins lie in the mid-1920s, when a group of young Hanoi-based intellectuals began publishing revolutionary material. From 1928, the VNQDD attracted attention through its assassinations of French officials and Vietnamese collaborators. Under increasing French pressure, the VNQDD leadership switched tack, replacing a strategy of isolated clandestine attacks against individuals with a plan to expel the French in a single blow with a large-scale popular uprising. After stockpiling home-made weapons, the VNQDD launched an uprising on 10 February 1930 at Yen Bai with the aim of sparking a widespread revolt. The mutiny was quickly put down, with heavy French retribution. Nguyen Thai Hoc and other leading figures were captured and executed and the VNQDD never regained its political strength in the country. During the 1930s, the party was eclipsed by Ho Chi Minh's Indochinese Communist Party (ICP). Vietnam was occupied by Japan during World War II and, in the chaos that followed the Japanese surrender in 1945, the VNQDD and the ICP briefly joined forces in the fight for Vietnamese independence. However, after a falling out, Ho purged the VNQDD, leaving his communist-dominated Vietminh unchallenged as the foremost anti-colonial militant organisation.

Featured picture

Republican presidential ticket 1864b.jpg
Credit: Lithograph: Currier and Ives, Restoration: Lise Broer

A campaign poster from the National Union Party during the US election of 1864, showing presidential candidate Abraham Lincoln (left) and his running-mate Andrew Johnson. The Republican Party changed its name and selected Johnson, a former Democrat, to draw support from War Democrats during the Civil War.

Selected quote

George W. Bush in 2003
Dealing with Congress is a matter of give and take. The president doesn't get everything he wants, the Congress doesn't get everything they want. But we're finding good common ground. A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, there's no question about it.
George W. Bush, 46th Governor of Texas (1995-2000), 43rd President of the United States (2001-2009), July 2001
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News and Current Events

Wikinews on Politics and conflicts
  • July 31: 40th Berlin Christopher Street Day celebration attracts thousands: in pictures
  • July 26: Palestine elected as G-77's presiding country, ambassador Riyad Mansour confirms
  • July 25: German footballer Mesut Özil announces retirement from international football over 'racism'
  • July 22: Israeli Knesset passes 'Jewish nation-state' bill
  • July 21: Indian Supreme Court: unconstitutional to bar women of certain age group from entering Sabarimala temple
  • July 19: After signing peace declarations, Eritrea reopens embassy in Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa
  • July 11: London Pride organisers apologise after protestors interrupt parade
  • June 29: Dutch senate votes in favour of face veil ban
  • June 29: India: Punjab cabinet republishes ordinance approving capital punishment for rape of girls under age twelve
  • June 25: Serbian Football Association complain about Swiss footballers Xhaka, Shaqiri eagle salute celebration

Selected biography

Ed Stelmach

Ed Stelmach (born 1951) was the Premier of Alberta, Canada, from December 14, 2006 to October 7, 2011. He spent his entire pre-political adult life as a farmer, except for some time spent studying at the University of Alberta. His first foray into politics was a 1986 municipal election, when he was elected to the county council of Lamont County. A year into his term, he was appointed reeve. He continued in this position until his entry into provincial politics. In the 1993 provincial election, Stelmach was elected as the Member of the Legislative Assembly for Vegreville-Viking. A Progressive Conservative, he served in the cabinets of Ralph Klein. When Klein resigned the party's leadership in 2006, Stelmach was among the first to run to replace him. After a third place finish on the first ballot of the leadership race, he won an upset second ballot victory over former provincial treasurer Jim Dinning. Stelmach's premiership has been heavily focused on management of the province's oil reserves, especially those of the Athabasca Oil Sands. Other policy initiatives have included commencing an overhaul of the province's health governance system, a re-introduction of all-party committees to the Legislature, and the conclusion of a major labour agreement with Alberta's teachers.

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