Democratic Deficit?: Institutions and Regulation in the European Union, Switzerland, and the United States

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Swiss Consulting Group, Inc., 2002 - Law - 175 pages
Is the European Union democratic? Much has been written claiming that the EU's institutions and policymaking processes are insufficiently accountable to, and representative of, the European electorate. In Democratic Deficit?, Thomas D. Zweifel offers a provocative new treatment of the concept of democracy in the EU. The work provides a rigorous, comparative examination of the European Union and the federal democracies of Switzerland and the United States. Drawing upon established, quantifiable scales of democracy, the study demonstrates that the EU's decision-making and regulatory processes do not show a democratic deficit greater than that of the bureaucracies of most liberal democracies and finds that in certain policy areas liberal democracies may even benefit from adopting EU practices. Supported by two case studies comparing regulatory policymaking in action across the three polities, Zweifel's work will prove to be a valuable and thought-provoking addition to the debate about European governance and the increasingly important role of transnational and supranational organizations.
 

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Contents

VI
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VIII
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X
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XII
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XIV
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XVI
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Page xi - If men were angels, no Government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on Government would be necessary. In framing a Government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this : you must first enable the Government to control the governed ; and in the next place oblige it to control itself.
Page 4 - The conclusion to be drawn from this is that the Community constitutes a new legal order of international law for the benefit of which the states have limited their sovereign rights, albeit within limited fields, and the subjects of which comprise not only Member States but also their nationals. Independently of the legislation of Member States, Community law therefore not only imposes obligations on individuals but is also intended to confer upon them rights which become part of their legal heritage.
Page 4 - By contrast with ordinary international treaties, the EEC Treaty has created its own legal system which, on the entry into force of the Treaty has become an integral part of the legal systems of the Member States and which their courts are bound to apply.

About the author (2002)

Thomas D. Zweifel, Ph.D., is the CEO of Swiss Consulting Group, an international consulting practice headquartered in New York. He teaches at Columbia and New York universities.

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