Term Definition
Policy or programme designed to redress historic injustices committed against racial minorities and other specified groups by making special efforts to provide members of these groups with access to educational and employment opportunities. AFFIRMATIVE ACTION attempts to provide immediate remedy for past discrimination and prevent discrimination from taking place in the future. It promotes EQUALITY by recognising that when people are in unequal positions treating them the same perpetuates
The opposite of RULE OF LAW, ie, an environment in which there is no LAW, LAW is ignored, LAW is not applicable or applied to all people within its jurisdiction or different LAWs are applied in similar cases. Too many LAWs or contradictory LAWs may have the same effect of promoting ARBITRARINESS.
The ability to freely determine one’s own course in life. Referring to territory within a STATE: a clearly defined region within a STATE with far-reaching powers of self-government. The STATE retains overall SOVEREIGNTY and some important responsibilities (eg, the legal system (including the CONSTITUTION), overall security (including defence) and relations with foreign STATES).
The distribution of power in a system such that no one ESTATE may overwhelm others. This is achieved through mutual control. Acts by the Legislature, for instance, are subject to judicial review. The legislature may vote a government out of office.
An inhabitant of a country who is recognised to have full rights, including all political rights, who has a corresponding set of obligations to fulfill and who is entitled to protection by the government. A resident who is not a citizen also enjoys rights and has obligations to fulfil – but they are not as extensive, eg., rights would not include a right to a passport and, usually, the right to vote and to be elected into office; obligations would not include military service or
In the narrower sense of the term civil liberties include the freedom to act, assemble, think or speak as you wish.
A FIRST GENERATION of HUMAN RIGHTS compiled during the 17th and 18th centuries that aim to defend individual freedom against the power of the STATE. They include the rights to equal treatment before the LAW, to security, to protection against ARBITRARY RULE, to ownership of property, to freedom of conscience, expression and opinion.

A term frequently used in modern political discourse often meaning little more than PLURALISM. Originally the term had a very specific meaning. In Democracy in America, Alexis de Tocqueville delineated three realms of society: 1) the STATE, which comprises the system of formal political representation, courts, bureaucracies, police and army; 2) CIVIL SOCIETY, which essentially comprises the system of private and economic interests; and 3) political society with its political

Aleksandar Lahtov

Liberal is committed to a market economy and competition is a defining feature thereof. When we talk about the liberalisation of markets we are talking about promoting competition as a means creating a more prosperous society. Competition may be seen as a liberal value. It requires that an equal playing field exists for all market participants to buy and sell products and to develop and implement ideas and strategies to maximise their respective

Government by the people, either by them directly, or through elected representatives (REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY). Commonly used in a broader sense: a society which favours equal rights, freedom of speech, a fair trial and tolerates the views of minorities.
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Compiled and edited by Dr. Stefan Melnik, a senior advisor to the Friedrich Naumann Foundation as well as political communication trainer, editor and author of many books on liberalism. Names of outside contributors are respectively mentioned under the terms.

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