Why does Aristotle believe that there are multiple forms of good government? What do each of these forms have in common? To start off, I will define what Aristotle means when he is talking about forms of good government. He says, “The true forms of government, therefore, are those in which the one, or the few, or the many, govern with a view to the common interest. ” This means that the elected ruler or rulers make their political decisions based on the people. If the people want something, the ruler takes their opinion into consideration when making decisions.
Aristotle says that there are many perversions of this form of government. These perversions, rather than govern with a view of the common interest, govern with the view of a private group. The different forms of government Aristotle refers to are the following. The constitutions that are geared toward helping the well-being of its citizens, and then there are the unjust forms that are geared to help the people who are in power. Aristotle says that there are six forms of government.
Three are just forms which include a kingship, small aristocracy, and a constitutional government. The three unjust forms of government are the opposite of the three above. One is a tyranny that’s interest is in the sole ruler only. Second is an aristocracy where the rulers take the interests of themselves. Thirdly, a constitutional government where the leader only cares for the poor. Aristotle says that the best forms of government are those in which allow the “masses who bear arms” or the people, participate.
How might each form of the state deal differently with the problems states face, like inequality? A democratic form of government would deal with the issue of inequality by declaring that all who are equal in free birth should be given an equal share of the government’s money. Aristocracies and tyrannies deal with injustice by not allowing the citizens to hold a public office which deprives them of a basic human right to vote. An issue with these forms of government is the subject of sovereignty.
He goes on to say that if the government decides what is just then that makes them just forms of government but yet as I previously stated, some forms such as tyranny’s and aristocracy’s take away the people’s right to vote, therefore they are unjust in that aspect. Aristotle proposes that if each of these governments allow more interaction of the people in the judicial aspect that this would minimize problems. He says, that the only time the government groups should be involved is when there are particular cases of general law but anything else should be left for the people.