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A Theory of Militant DemocracyThe Ethics of Combatting Political Extremism$
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Alexander S. Kirshner

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780300188240

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300188240.001.0001

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On Preventive Intervention

On Preventive Intervention

(p.107) Five On Preventive Intervention
A Theory of Militant Democracy

Alexander S. Kirshner

Yale University Press

This chapter argues that preventive party bans or preventive interventions of any sort are democratically illegitimate. When large parties appear likely to challenge basic democratic institutions, democrats confront a distinctive and potentially tragic dilemma. Only by acknowledging this dilemma, and only by acknowledging both the potential costs of action and inaction (the principle of democratic responsibility), can democrats manage these intricate challenges in a manner consistent with the self-limiting theory of militant democracy.

Keywords:   antidemocratic groups, preventive party bans, militant democracy, self-limiting theory

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