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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. The academic study focusing on just politics, which is therefore more targeted than all Political science, is sometimes referred to as Politology (not to be confused with Politicology).

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 Conservatives 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 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

Facsimile of the Act of February 16

The Act of Independence of Lithuania was signed by the Council of Lithuania on 16 February 1918, proclaiming the restoration of an independent State of Lithuania, governed by democratic principles, with Vilnius as its capital. The act was signed by all twenty members of the council, chaired by Jonas Basanavičius. The act of 16 February was the end result of a series of resolutions on the issue, including one issued by the Vilnius Conference and the act of 8 January. The path to the act was long and complex because the German Empire exerted pressure on the council to form an alliance. The Council had to carefully manoeuvre between the Germans, whose troops were present in Lithuania, and the demands of the Lithuanian people. While the act's original document has been lost, its legacy continues. The laconic act is the legal basis for the existence of modern Lithuania, both during the interwar period and since 1990. The act formulated the basic constitutional principles that were and still are followed by all Constitutions of Lithuania. The act itself was a key element in the foundation of Lithuania's Act of the Re-Establishment of the State of Lithuania, adopted on 11 March 1990. Lithuania, breaking away from the Soviet Union, stressed that it was simply re-establishing the independent state that existed between the world wars and that the act never lost its legal power.

Featured picture

Cuban missiles.jpg
Credit: United States Air Force

Photo taken by a Lockheed U-2 spy plane of the San Cristobal MRBM launch site in Cuba, November 1962, after the Cuban Missile Crisis. Although this image was taken days after the crisis had ended (October 28), this image has become iconic of the crisis to the point where it is often cited incorrectly as having been taken during the crisis.

Selected quote

Naturally, the common people don't want war; neither in Russia nor in England nor in America, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a Parliament or a Communist dictatorship... the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.
Hermann Göring, Nazi founder of the Gestapo, Head of the Luftwaffe
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News and Current Events

Wikinews on Politics and conflicts
  • January 14: Arrest made as mayor of Gdańsk, Poland stabbed on stage
  • January 7: President Trump says he 'can' and 'may' put US into state of emergency to build border wall
  • January 6: Senator Ted Cruz proposes amendment to U.S. Constitution setting Congressional term limits
  • January 4: Nancy Pelosi again elected Speaker as 116th U.S. Congress sworn in
  • December 30: US political pundit Bre Payton, 26, dies suddenly
  • December 29: German government considers introducing mosque taxes, like church taxes
  • December 18: Australia now recognises West Jerusalem as Israeli capital, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announces
  • December 6: UK Parliament begins debate on Brexit deal
  • November 26: US National Climate Assessment warns of climate-related damages to economy, ecosystems, human health
  • November 22: Airbnb announces intent to remove Israeli West Bank settlement property listings

Selected biography

Rt. Hon. Edmund Burke

Edmund Burke PC (12 January [NS] 1729– 9 July 1797) was an Irish statesman, author, orator, political theorist and philosopher who, after moving to England, served for many years in the House of Commons of Great Britain as a member of the Whig party. He is mainly remembered for his support of the cause of the American Revolutionaries, and for his later opposition to the French Revolution. The latter led to his becoming the leading figure within the conservative faction of the Whig party, which he dubbed the "Old Whigs", in opposition to the pro–French Revolution "New Whigs", led by Charles James Fox. Burke was praised by both conservatives and liberals in the 19th century. Since the 20th century, he has generally been viewed as the philosophical founder of modern Conservatism, as well as a representative of classical liberalism.

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