Tuesday, February 17, 2009

FOUR ESTATES

In my earlier post I referred Media as the Fourth Estate. One of the comments on that post included "What is the Fourth Estate in the title refers to?".....I thought of posting it on my blog instead on the comments window....So here we are....

I remembered this word from my social classes during my high school. I know that there are four estates implemented in a democratic system for the proper operation of our society. The first estate isLegislature, Second comes Civil administaration, third comes Judiaciary and fourth is the Press. I found an interesting article on this over the Internet which expanded on the details of Estates....
 

"There are multiple estates of government each of which has a check and balance on the other.The first estate is of course the legislature which is elected by the people, and can enact laws.

Then comes the executive. Which is the civil service/bureaucracy; selected meritocratically.
But what prevents the executive and legislature from colluding merrily?

In come the stern judges with their stuffy wigs and robes. The judiciary; who are supposed to ensure that the laws enacted by the legislature adhere to certain "norms". These norms are typically encoded in something called a constitution.

When you look at the rampant corruption in many democracies, in India for e.g., caused by the collusive escapades of the legislature and executive, you are basically looking at the problem of a weak judiciary.

Ok, assuming one has a strong judiciary, is that enough?

Let's suppose the legislature and the executive collude. Even though the judges with their snazzy robes and wigs might be strong and bold, how would they come to know about the wrongdoings?

In comes the fourth estate: the press. While this does not have the status of an official estate, it is as important to the functioning of a democracy providing the necessary be-a-good-boy-you-naughty-legislature checks and balances.

So, we see that the proper checked-and-balanced functioning of the four estates listed above, are necessary for a democracy to succeed.

The above four estates are not all that exist in a democracy. There are two more.... in fact these two are more powerful than the first four put together. The Army and... the People. The army is an estate that has snazzy weapons like missiles and Donald Rumsfelds, and can thus rule over the country by force after declaring the constitution void on some pretext. 

This brings us to the last estate --- the People. Nobody believes this estate actually exists, and so are taken aback when confided in that they are a part of this estate too. This People estate has the ultimate power --- to throw away any and all forms of government and install any and all forms of government. It could thus reinstate a democracy by overthrowing the existing monarchy/military autocracy/etc."


Unfortunately, we have the corruption deeply rooted into all those estates which is totally changing the very cause of forming them.....

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks sindhu for the clarification.. edo nick name ala pettav anukuna.. intha meaning undhi ani guess cheyale other wise i would have googled it. Nake surpise vesindhi entha chadiva civics asalu ekada it did not catch my attention.. asala too much rasthunav...

Sinnuu... said...

Hey thanks sharath....antha em chadavledu.....just konni konni ala gurthu undipotayi kada....idi one of them anthe......

Anonymous said...

Nee next post release date kosam waiting.. kanisam topic peru aina release cheyu.. avunu enti nenu na name secret petadninke anonymous ani pedithe.. comment lo peru rasav

SaMy said...

Thanks sindhu garu !!

Uma Shankar sureddy said...

hey all.,nd sindhu garu,thank u very much for the info and also you clarified why there need to be all these logically giving the reasons...i really hope to remember this my entire life :-)