Countermajoritarian Institutions : Designing a Political System for the Stability of Transitional Democracies

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Puli Fuwongcharoen

Abstract

     How we may be able to restrain powerful actors from choosing to go against democracy? This article argues that one of the solutions is to establish within the political system an incentive structure that is conducive to democracy; it is necessary to ensure that compliance will yield more benefits to major actors than transgression. Anti-democratic behaviour, to put it differently, has to be rendered an “unprofitable” option. Accordingly, we need to resort to “countermajoritarian institutions.” As a temporary measure during a transition, countermajoritarian institutions grant some actors privileges in order to encourage them to “accept,” rather than “resist,” democracy. Though the consequence will be a limited democracy, such a regime would at least be able to survive uninterruptedly, allowing positive forces to take root and later reshape the balance of power in the society. This article will highlight that, under certain conditions, countermajoritarian institutions may induce influential actors to adhere to democracy and help avoid considerable tension while a democracy, like
the one in Thailand, is still unready to cope with pressure.

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fuwongcharoen , puli . (2020). Countermajoritarian Institutions : Designing a Political System for the Stability of Transitional Democracies. King Prajadhipok’s Institute Journal, 13(1), 48–71. Retrieved from https://so06.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/kpi_journal/article/view/244202
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Original Articles

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