Politician

Politician

A politician (from Greek "polis") is an individual who is involved in influencing public decision making through the influence of politics or a person who influences the way a society is governed through an understanding of political power and group dynamics. This includes people who hold decision-making positions in government, and people who seek those positions, whether by means of election, coup d'état, appointment, electoral fraud, conquest, right of inheritance (see also: divine right) or other means. Politics are not limited to governance through public office. Political offices may also be held in corporations, and other entities that are governed by self-defined political processes.

Definitions

Considered a politician

* A person who is active in party politics.
* In a state, a member of the executive branch of government, or the office of Head of State, as well as the legislative branch, and regional and local levels of government.
* Any person influencing group opinions in his or her favor can be termed a politician. For example, a worker participating in office politics is a politician, but only so far as the operations of his or her workplace are concerned.
* Some law enforcement officers, such as sheriffs, and many judges who are elected or appointed because of their political views or popularity.

Not considered a politician

* Members of government who serve purely functional roles, such as bureaucrats.
* Members of the judicial branch, law enforcement, and the military are not usually regarded as being politicians since they are generally executing or adjudicating established law and custom.
* Ordinary citizens with the power to vote cannot properly be called politicians even though they can participate in group decision-making. A politician participates in public debate that leads to a group decision being reached, while a voter is simply responding to that debate.

Criticism

International equity expert Professor Paul Finn has underlined, “the most fundamental fiduciary relationship in our society is manifestly that which exists between the community (the people) and the state, its agencies and officials. " Many suggest the basic problem of stopping Human Rights violations and political negligence stems from the lack of understanding by media and politicians on the laws of fiduciary control. In equity fiduciary control suggests obligations that not only include duties of good faith and loyalty, but also include duties of skill and competence in managing the people's interests. After all, Government is a trust structure created by people to manage certain services within society with the politicians depended on by the people to do that task. Therefore the relationship between government and it's politicians and the governed is clearly a fiduciary one.

Rules such as Sovereign Immunity and Crown and Judicial Immunity are now being targeted as the very tools of oppression that are preventing victims from taking action against the people controlling the country who are causing the failure of care. Originating from within the Courts of Equity, the fiduciary concept was partly designed to prevent those holding positions of power from abusing their authority. This new thinking suggests anyone accepting any political or government control over the interests of people should be judged by the most exacting fiduciary standards given politicians are the most important fiduciaries in any society given they hold power over the people with power that comes from the people through elections. The fiduciary relationship arises from the government and its politicians ability to control people with the exercise of that power. In effect the argument is, if politicians have the power to abolish or ignore any rights they should be burdened with the fiduciary duty to protect people's rights because the government (or others engaging politicians on their behalf) would benefit from the exercise of discretion to extinguish rights which it alone had the power to dispose of.

Although members of governing bodies are often honored, many people today have a poor opinion of politicians as a class. Not only do people often disagree with their policies, they are sometimes seen as unscrupulous, willing to do anything to gain power, or abusive of their position and privileges.

Politicians can also be criticized for becoming "career politicians." A politician who makes politics the source of their income, yet has to face re-election every few years can be less likely to make bold decisions or side with an unpopular bill. Some feel that fear of "rocking the boat" leads to a stagnant political climate, in which it becomes hard to address injustices and create change. Various measures have been taken in attempt to mitigate this effect, such as the implementation of term limits.

References

* Welch, Susan, John Gruhl, John Comer, and Susan M. Rigdon."Understanding American Government. 8th ed. Belmont, USA: Thompson Wadsworth, 2006"
* [http://www.webster.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?sourceid=Mozilla-search&va=politician "Merriam Webster Online Dictionary." Definition of politician] 5 June 2006

See also

* Richest American politicians
* List of Canadian senators
** List of Canadian Senate appointments by Prime Minister
* List of Members of the Canadian House of Commons
* Political spectrum
* Political party
* United States Politicians with Doctorates
* Highwayman

External links

* [http://politicalgraveyard.com/chrono/index.html List of American Politicians by Year Born or Died]
* [http://www.politicalheroes.org Political heroes]


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Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • politician — politician, statesman, politico are comparable when they denote a person who is versed in or engaged in politics or in the science or art of government, though they are often regarded as contrasting rather than as interchangeable terms.… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • politician — POLITICIÁN, politicieni, s.m. 1. Om politic. 2. (peior.) Persoană care face din politică un mijloc abil şi demagogic de realizare a intereselor personale. [pr.: ci an] – Din fr. politicien. Trimis de oprocopiuc, 30.03.2004. Sursa: DEX 98 … …   Dicționar Român

  • Politician — Pol i*ti cian, n. [Cf. F. politicien.] [1913 Webster] 1. One versed or experienced in the science of government; one devoted to politics; a statesman. [1913 Webster] While empiric politicians use deceit. Dryden. [1913 Webster] 2. One primarily… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Politician — Pol i*ti cian, a. Cunning; using artifice; politic; artful. Ill meaning politician lords. Milton. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • politician — I noun campaigner, candidate, governmental leader, lawgiver, lawmaker, legislator, office seeker, officeholder, officer of state, official, partisan, party member, politico, public servant, representative, statesman II index demagogue, lawmaker,… …   Law dictionary

  • politician — (n.) 1580s, from POLITICS (Cf. politics) + IAN (Cf. ian) …   Etymology dictionary

  • politician — [n] person pursuing or occupying elective office baby kisser*, boss, chieftain, congressperson, democrat, grandstander*, handshaker*, lawmaker, leader, legislator, member of Congress, member of parliament, officeholder, office seeker, orator,… …   New thesaurus

  • politician — ► NOUN 1) a person who is professionally involved in politics, especially as a holder of an elected office. 2) chiefly US a person who acts in a manipulative and devious way, typically to gain advancement …   English terms dictionary

  • politician — [päl΄ə tish′ən] n. [ POLITIC & IAN] 1. a person actively engaged in politics, esp. party politics, professionally or otherwise; often, a person holding or seeking political office: frequently used in a derogatory sense, with implications of… …   English World dictionary

  • politician — /pol i tish euhn/, n. 1. a person who is active in party politics. 2. a seeker or holder of public office, who is more concerned about winning favor or retaining power than about maintaining principles. 3. a person who holds a political office. 4 …   Universalium


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