The most important exceptions occurred in countries where revolutionary movements for independence arose, typically under the domination of Communist Parties, with support from the Soviet Union. When and if they won, a one-party state came into existence and, normally, was able to impose its domination over the inherited colonial bureaucracy and, consequently, to escape the trauma of military (bureaucratic) rule (Riggs 1993). Since Marxian analysis was rooted in the para-modern phenomenon of proletarianization, and the slogans of Communist-inspired revolutions were democratic and populist, we may classify many aspects of the whole experience of the Soviet Union and its world-wide influences as part of the para-modern phenomenon. The Bourgeois Foundation. In order to understand the linkage between industrialization and democratization we need to remember the seminal role of the bourgeoisie, the merchant communities of Western Europe mentioned above in connection with the Industrial Revolution. The age-old capitalistic drive to maximize profits and accumulate wealth cam to fruition in Western Europe when and as merchants acquired real power in large states, as noted above. The mercantilist phase of this process rested on collusion between kings and merchants who gained mutual advantages thereby, including the policy changes that launched the Industrial Revolution. Eventually, however, as kings demanded more income from the merchants and the industrialists became aware of their rising power, clashes between the two protagonists arose leading to demands for serious limitations on monarchic power.
At the risk of grave oversimplification, this synopsis can help us see how democracy arose in response to industrialization. Increasingly, powerful bourgeois communities, in conflict with monarchies, demanded power in their own right. However, they needed allies in order to wrest power from entrenched monarchic establishments, leading them to endorse ideas about popular sovereignty that brought non-bourgeois communities (land owners, laborers, farmers, and the clergy) into the coalitions that produced modern forms of representative government and democracy.
The same bourgeois forces that powered the drive toward democracy also drove the imperial urge to colonize new lands and to conquer weaker countries. Paradoxically, therefore, some of the most democratic modern states -- including the United States as well as Great Britain and France -- became globe-encircling empires. They were followed by other industrializing states where the democratic impulse was also present, though perhaps in weaker forms: i.e. Germany, Italy, the Russian (Soviet) and the Japanese empires. As noted above, our images about modern democracy focus on governance in the heartlands of these empires while excluding the para-modern aspects of their domination over conquered peoples. 6 The colonial subjects of the greatest democracies were not empowered to organize any political supervision over the colonial officers who came from abroad to control their lives. So long as they remained in subjection, their concerns could be ignored, but in today's post-imperial world, we can no longer afford to remain blind to the consequences of our own achievements. Bureaucratic Domination. Imperial rulers administered conquered peoples arbitrarily and they had no reason to create institutions for representative government in their dependencies. By contrast, they needed colonial bureaucracies able to maintain their domination in remote places and they could not afford, in most cases, to support expatriates in all the lower levels bureaucratic posts. A common practice in colonial administration, therefore, involved the recruitment of local people to help staff their bureaucracies. Most of the new states, therefore, inherited well organized bureaucratic institutions and quite a few nationals with experience in government service -- even though at lower levels -- were ready and eager to move up to higher level posts.
In fact, quite often the driving force in many liberation struggles was provided by indigenous officials in the colonial administration who sought to enhance their own career prospects, first by demanding reforms that would open better opportunities for promotion within the existing colonial administration, and eventually by demanding liberation so that they could replace expatriate officers in the top posts. These bureaucratic activists, however, typically lacked the incentives or experience to organize political parties, engage in electioneering, and sit on legislative councils or in top executive offices. Instead, they remained aloof from "politics" -- typically viewed as a"dirty game" -- preferring to administer (or maladminister) the established functions of the agencies in which they were employed. The typical authoritarianism of colonial administration was, therefore, inherited by the bureaucrats of new states, together with an inherited aversion to "politics," that colonial administrators oft equated with the struggle for liberation from imperial rule.
By contrast, the institutions needed to establish democratic controls over their bureaucracies were not available or only embryonic in the new states, having been set up only after the collapse of the empires had started. The new institutions for representative government that were established lacked the experience and knowledge required to maintain effective control over well-established bureaucracies and, all too often, they were dominated by cliques or factions who used their new-found power to advance their own selfish interests at the expense of the populations they were nominally "elected" to serve.
Not surprisingly, in crisis situations, many of these regimes discredited themselves and provoked widespread public hostility. In such circumstances, civil servants led by military officers often felt they had no choice but to seize power by violence, suspend the constitution and discharge the legislature or any other institutions of democratic governance. Such coups cannot be explained, I believe, by the alleged ambitions and greed of those who seized power -- typically they received widespread support based on popular dissatisfaction and anger, not only at the existing regime's abuse of office but also by its inability to provide effective public administration.
Maladministration is no doubt endemic in all countries and no public bureaucracy can be exonerated of all complaints. However, when widely needed services -- roads, water supply, public safety, law and order, garbage disposal, transportation and postal services, to say nothing of equity and justice, freedom to speak and organize, health services, social security, education, parks and recreation, environmental safeguards, the full gamut of functions performed by modern governments -- are not provided or are handled with gross inefficiency and unfairness, popular antagonism, revolts, and revolutionary movements can be expected.
Among the victims of maladministration are not only the subject populations but also public officials themselves, especially when the salaries they receive (or fail to receive!) cannot cover their expenses. As noted above, modern bureaucrats are paid salaries and they are not expected to augment their stipends by prebendary income -- when they do take money for services rendered or rules not enforced, this is regarded as "corruption" and a reason for condemnation. It is, therefore, not surprising if hard-pressed and angry bureaucrats under the nominal control of weak political institutions should support coups designed to end these abuses and empower officials to replace them.
No doubt the maintenance of effective control over its bureaucracy is a fundamental problem in all countries, but it is especially poignant in democracies where notions of popular sovereignty lead citizens to view officials as public servants, who should serve the people unselfishly by providing services and implementing policies approved by the general public through their elected representatives. Such expectations did not prevail in traditional forms of authoritarianism where a ruler's "subjects" were expected to serve the rulers and not to demand rights of their own. The abuse of power by appointed officials was not only expected but it was also accepted in such environments, contributing to the stability of pre-modern forms of authoritarianism. When modernization spread to dependent countries, however, it spread democratic norms that led the citizens of the new states to expect their governments to respect and meet their needs. When this did not happen, we should not be surprised if they responded with anger and supported revolutionary movements, coups led by military officers, or revolts by oppressed minorities.
It has never been easy in even the most democratic countries for the organs of representative government to sustain effective control over their bureaucracies. No doubt socialization by means of good educational preparation and in-service training programs for public officials can help but, on the job, do we not also need the continuous presence of auditors and monitors who, representing the public interest, can reward responsible administration and punish delinquents? The para-modern aspects of public administration are most visible in the new states that are unable to establish effective institutions of representative government. However, even in the heartlands of the most democratic countries, we are becoming more aware of the limitations of modernity, how bureaucratic authority can be abused and how public administration can fail to solve the complex problems generated by industrialization. Thus democratization, as an aspect of modernization, has created great expectations of bureaucratic performance in all countries and failures to meet these expectations now causes great disappointment. In the context of industrialization, the need for highly professional and competent public administration has also increased -- together, therefore, industrialization and democratization have generated the crisis of confidence in governance that marks the para-modern syndrome.
The fundamental problems of para-modernism cannot be explained by reference only to the rise of industrialism and democracy. In addition, we must consider the third aspect of the triad of modernity, nationalism. Most writers about nationalism treat it as an independent phenomenon not linked with the other dimensions of modernity but, in my opinion, its real significance become apparent only when it is viewed as part of the broader process that started with the Peace of Westphalia in the middle of the 17th century with sovereignty as its central slogan.
This watershed event marked the end of the Holy Roman Empire and the European myth that all rulers were part of a single imperial hierarchy of authority and legitimacy. The new era was to be one in which sovereign states, each with its own borders and subject populations, could act on its own authority. Rival kings began to link their sovereignty as rulers to the sovereignty of their kingdoms as independent states. In the struggles which followed, states emerged as the focus not only of international conflict but of our understanding of society. Among the rival rulers, a few triumphed over their rivals and created the "great powers" where the industrial revolution took place and democratization became linked, perversely, with imperialism.
Eventually, as noted above, bourgeois clashes with monarchs led to a new conceptualization of sovereignty, in which the locus of legitimate authority within a state displaced the notion of its independence from other states as a primary focus of attention. The two ideas remained linked, however, and it is often difficult in today's struggles for "sovereignty" to know which is intended. In fact, they have become conjoined in the idea of a state nation. Such a state combines its independent (absolute?) authority with the idea of nationalism, i.e. that all citizens share (or ought to share) a common ethnic identity based on ancestry, language, religion and other cultural manifestations. This idea evolved as part of the democratic struggle -- to replace royal sovereignty with popular sovereignty involved defining the "people" -- who would have the right to create and maintain a representative government based on the principle of majority rule?
If the citizens of a state were, actually, members of different communities based on such significant criteria as language, religion and race, how could they be expected to agree on policies and rules to be shaped by their elected representatives? Somehow it was not only necessary to agree on the institutional arrangements needed to transfer sovereignty from monarchs to the people, but it was equally important to create a sense of common interest and identify among these people. In short, they were not only to become citizens of a state but also members of a nation. The notion of popular sovereignty required a sense of nationhood to displace the unity that had formerly been expressed in the person of a sovereign ruler. Similarly, for the Industrial Revolution to succeed, it was important for the managers of mass-production enterprises to be able to communicate with their employees -- having a common language was seen as especially necessary for industrialization to succeed.
The primary instrument for achieving national unity was, of course, the state itself. State policies were designed to create nations. Perhaps the most successful case was that of France where an elite based in Paris succeeded in creating a common language and ethos that, eventually, brought most (though never all) French people within its domain. Consider, for example, its inability to absorb the Francophones living in Switzerland and Belgium, to say nothing of Canada.
We need to be clear about the dynamics of this form of state-driven nationalism -- I call it state nationalism and stress that state-building preceded nation building. Modernity required nationalism in order to achieve the bourgeois goals of industrialism and democracy. Creating a national state, i.e. a state based on national (cultural or ethnic) unity, was seen by its bourgeois energizers as a requisite both for the success of industrialization and democracy. In other countries similar mechanisms evolved. The English state created Great Britain though British nationalism remains defective (and certainly the United Kingdom never became a unified nation). In the United States, after the Civil War seriously tested American unity, the leaders of industry and democracy in the Northern states gradually established a sense of American nationalism and identity that persists today despite the para-modern forces of diversity and separatism.
In order to understand the contemporary dynamics of nationalism we need to see how it contrasts with state nationalism and how it is linked to the collapse of all the modern empires, including, finally, the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia. Most importantly, the people living in the conquered domains accepted the borrowed notions of sovereignty and self-determination as rightfully theirs and used them in their struggles for independence.
The goals of state nationalism were met throughout most of the contiguous domains of the great modern states, but they could not be realized in the conquered domains. Instead, the goal of nationalism generated a powerful backlash as the motor for diverse liberation movements. Activists struggling to break the bonds of imperial control found that nationalist slogans had tremendous popular appeal. Consequently, the struggle for national identity preceded state building in the imperial possessions. Ethnic nationalism, therefore, reverses the historic sequence of state nationalism -- it starts with ethnic communities demanding sovereignty and seeking to create their own states. For the most part, the conflicts among nations that we see today, in the para-modern era of collapsed empires, involve ethnonational movements seeking sovereignty at the expense of established states.7 Legitimacy.
Just as industrialism and democracy brought distinctive challenges for public administration and bureaucracy, so also has nationalism created its own crises which may, perhaps, be best understood under the heading of legitimacy. In order for government officials to carry out their functions efficiently and effectively, they must depend, for the most part, on voluntary cooperation by those under their authority. To the degree that any substantial number of people, in autocracies as well as in democracies, seriously resist their bureaucrats, governments fail. Put differently, administrative success requires a high degree of popular consensus: this means that individuals not only must but they should comply with directives issued by public officials.
In pre-modern societies, according to anthropologists and historians, popular acceptance of monarchic authority often prevailed (see Hocart 1927). However, it did not depend on a sense of national identity -- rather, it usually reflected a widespread belief that royal sovereignty rested on supernatural powers that could be managed by sacrifices, prayers and rituals so that royal sovereignty assured the prosperity and safety of subject populations.
With few exceptions, the authority of traditional rulers was undermined and destroyed by imperial rule -- exceptions may be found in a few island kingdoms like Tonga where cultural homogeneity persisted under indirect rule, or in some sultanates where rich natural resources, such as oil, enable autocrats to provide enough benefits to placate their subjects. Under imperial rule, however, new institutions of popular governance could not take root. When the traditional forms of monarchic authority collapsed, new forms of representative government proved abortive or failed to gain acceptance.
In modern democracies, the legitimacy of representative government rests heavily on the premise that sovereignty belongs to a nation and that all citizens are members of that nation. The idea of a nation is admittedly complex, but it rests on underlying notions of common birth or ancestry, shared language, religion and culture. More than just a population of co-inhabitants, nations are viewed as collectivities whose members can and should govern themselves and they have a right to exclude non-members or to naturalized ("nationalize") them. We need to remember that state nationalism attempted to create national states in which citizenship provided the basis for nationhood. This belief legitimated governance in most modern states, including such multi-ethnic polities as Switzerland and, more precariously, Belgium.
By contrast, ethnic nationalism, as explained above, emerged on the ashes of collapsed empires where traditional forms of legitimacy were destroyed and loyalty to the imperial state, or to its successor states, has failed to provide a unifying basis for political legitimacy. Would-be leaders of competing ethnonational communities now strive to gain the support of marginalized minorities and to create new states, replacing those that now exist with newer ones where they, in turn, can become a ruling elite. Their struggles, however, heighten the crisis of illegitimacy in the political vacuums that have arisen between collapsed regimes and new ones that are not yet born.
When a state cannot invoke the supernatural sanctions available to pre- modern rulers nor the sense of national identity that makes representative government feasible in modern states, it faces a serious crisis of authority. Unfortunately, the sense that governments are not legitimate is not only widespread in the successor states of the collapsed empires but, I fear, it is growing in the heartlands of modernity, even in the most democratic countries. We need to recognize this type of political illegitimacy as one of the three linked facets of the triad of para-modernity.
I have already discussed one reason for this failure -- the disparate power of residual colonial bureaucracies by contrast with the inherent fragility of new-born representative institutions of self-government. However, underlying this cause is another and perhaps deeper one that relates to the forces of ethnic nationalism. When the overarching structures of colonial administration collapsed, expectations of democracy rooted in national cohesion were sure to fail because, in most cases, national identities did not coincide with new state boundaries that had been created as the borders of empires or imperial provinces. Preexisting nations were sometimes divided between two or more states -- as illustrated by the Kurdish and Somali cases, and by the Koreans and the Chinese. More often, the new state linked heterogeneous ethnic communities under the weak control of dominant and often oppressive minorities.
Modern states cultivated a sense of national identity among their citizens by assimilating or excluding outsiders. Let me stress again that this modernizing process of state nationalism (or "nation-building" as it is sometimes called) needs to be sharply contrasted with the para-modern processes of ethnic nationalism whereby communities that are not states demand sovereignty as their right, challenging the authority of the states where they happen to live. Tapping the political dynamite of self-determination as an explicitly modern slogan, they promote resistance, even terrorism and civil war, as means to achieve their goals. The para-modern phenomenon of ethnic nationalism is assuredly a mirror image of the evolution of modernity which created nationalism as an integral aspect of industrialization and democratization. 8
In order to appreciate the importance of ethnic nationalism for modernized bureaucracies we must also remember that ethnicity, as such, was not a matter of controversy in traditional bureaucracies. Remember that, under the authority of kings and emperors, sovereignty did not rest in the people (nation) but in supernatural forces. Officials were appointed to serve their rulers, and were selected from the families of outsiders, as were the slave bureaucrats of the Ottoman Empire. The obvious intention was to avoid the conflicts of interest inimical to the authority of sovereigns that could be generated by powerful families, as illustrated in the breakup of the Roman Empire where officials were able to make their posts hereditary and destroyed the Imperial power.
The Chinese case was exceptional insofar as Chinese rather than outsiders were recruited to top bureaucratic positions, but throughout the empire they were, indeed, outsiders both because of the high educational achievements required to gain public office and because they were deliberately assigned to areas far from home where, actually, they typically could not even speak the same language as local folks and they were forbidden to marry local women. The differences between mandarins and locals was viewed as a class distinction with national implications.
Even modern empires, like the British and French, relied heavily on aliens to serve in their armed forces and, actually, in their civil bureaucracies also -- above all, they used their own nationals mainly for top level posts and relied heavily on locals to staff lower level positions. Actually, this imperial practice helped pave the way for the rise of nationalism in many conquered domains. Liberation movements often began as efforts to reform the bureaucracy by enabling locals to replace expatriates at higher and higher levels -- the Congress Party in India started with this purpose and is the best known example, but counterparts can be found in other imperial possessions. Increasingly, as these struggles progressed, their goals shifted from administrative reform to political liberation and, in this context, the focus also became increasingly nationalistic -- the imperial powers were outsiders and the natives became ethnic nationalists. Exclusive clubs reserved for the use of expatriate officials heightened the sense of racist and ethnic discrimination which fed the angry intensity of the nationalist independence movements.
After independence came it often happened that the new bureaucratic elites were drawn from ethnic communities that had, traditionally, clashed with other communities in the same state --here is where the "primordialists" can help trace the cleavages that fueled these conflicts. Just as nationalist leaders had reacted against the racism of imperial rulers to challenge their domination of conquered countries, so after independence marginalized communities soon turned against the new successor states whose imperial boundaries had little or nothing to do with the cultural identities of the conquered peoples.
Bureaucrats in the new states often became identified with oppression by dominant minorities, not only because after independence they perpetuated many of the practices and attitudes associated with the former colonial administrators but also because they had, often enough, been recruited from
The tendency to associate bureaucracies with minority domination in new states may often be attributed to the natural inclination of any imperial power to recruit members of disaffected minorities to help them administer their possessions. Understandably, many if not most conquered peoples resist their conquerors and refuse to work for them. By contrast, previously marginalized communities in a conquered land are more likely to view their new rulers as liberators and, in some cases, they were actually allies who helped the conquerors annex their new domains. Not surprisingly, working for the imperialists also widened their cleavages with marginalized majority communities.
Whether or not the new bureaucrats were actually members of collaborationist minorities, their role as members of a weak and authoritarian state apparatus was enough to generate antagonisms by various alienated communities. Moreover, when minority communities prevailed in states where military officers seized power by a coup d'etat, as was often the case, ethnonational hostilities accelerated.
Moreover, the inexperience of bureaucrats in the new states coupled with the lack of effective political control over their performance, meant that most of these polities have experienced ineffective public administration coupled with anarchy, lawlessness, and widespread poverty, made worse by the conspicuous extravagances of wasteful elites. Revolts against those in authority, whether led by revolutionary movements or by ethnonational activists, have undermined the ability of nominal rulers to rule, weakening the ability of quasi-states to govern (see Jackson 1990). Since bureaucrats (including military officers) are seriously threatened by such movements, they predictably organize revolts and seize power by a coup d'etat. Since a military-led bureaucracy lacks political legitimacy and has to rely on force to stay in power, it permits abuses in public office that aggravate the grievances of all communities, including cultural majorities as well as ethnic minorities.
Although great variations can be found, in most of the new states government bureaucracies are viewed as arrogant, oppressive, and inefficient both as class enemies and as members of dominant ethnic minorities. No doubt there are many exceptions and some officials in every bureaucracy are, despite all obstacles, public spirited men and women who do their best to serve the public despite all obstacles. Nevertheless, to the extent that negative practices and perceptions prevail, they fuel the anger felt by members of these communities and provoke activists among them to step forward as leaders of resistance movements and revolts. In multi-national countries, some ethnic communities have come increasingly to view other groups as enemies, especially those who hold dominant positions in the state and its bureaucracy. Moreover, to the degree that they are unable to exercise effective administrative control over the population or to provide necessary public services, anarchy and ethnonational revolts seem to be the inescapable consequences of collapsed modern empires.
The most visible consequence can be seen in the rise of ethnonational movements in some of the most industrialized countries, both among indigenous peoples who have long harbored deep anger because of past injustices, but also in protest movements by ethnic minorities whose members feel that they have been victimized because of racial, religious or linguistic differences. In public administration, this has led to a rising demand for more representative bureaucracy, for the recruitment of more members of minority groups and women into the public services and more sensitivity, in the management of public policies, to the special needs and sensitivities of marginalized communities.
The signs of unrest and crisis are so familiar to everyone that I do not need to say anything more about them here. To explain how they are related to the collapse of modern empires and the para-modern syndrome will take more time and space than I have available here. However, we should see that they represent, in great measure, the flip side of our greatest accomplishments, the dark face of modernization. Although the negative aspects of modernity have always been present, their implications for our understanding of bureaucracy and public administration are only now coming to the fore within the menacing contours of para-modernism. The conflicts emerging in third world countries will, I think, help us understand some of their counterparts in the most developed countries. Let me, therefore, try to generalize about some of the implications of para-modernism on a global basis, making a few specific references to the situation facing us in the most modern countries.
Three hypotheses can be offered as a framework for viewing the consequences of the three dimensions of our para-modern triad, under the headings of maladministration, bureau power, and authority.
In traditional monarchies -- as noted above -- the overwhelming majority of subjects were self-subsistent and had little or no need for public administration. Industrialization multiplied the need for administrative services and simultaneously increased the technical capabilities that enhance the capacity of a modern bureaucracy to act collectively and to dominate a society. We need to keep this in mind when we try to understand why maladministration has become such a threat to the viability of modern states.
Consider a concrete example: not long ago I visited a country where I learned on the day of my arrival that the Bureau in charge of collecting taxes was so corrupt that affluent people were scarcely paying any taxes and those who felt obliged or compelled to pay were thoroughly antagonized by the regime. The resulting inability of the government to collect taxes meant there was not enough money in the public treasury to pay for decent schools, to build and maintain highways, to support a credible police force, to maintain sanitary conditions and clean water or air. Above all, the inability of such a regime to balance the budget and to pay salaries to its employees has the double effect of generating inflation and alienating bureaucrats, two prime motivators of a coup d'etat.
Runaway inflation wipes out the savings of those who may have accumulated private savings. Public confidence in the regime plummets, revolutionary movements and ethnonationalism flourish. Not surprisingly, before any such movements can succeed, a military cabal, supported by civil servants, seizes power and establishes a military dictatorship. The resulting situation is what I call a bureaucratic polity. (see above and Riggs 1966). Although the rise of bureaucratic polities first became apparent as a distinctive third-world phenomenon, we must now recognize a growing sense of the dangers arising from the abuse of power by public officials as a global pattern.
However, comparable problems arise in democracies where the integrative capacities of elected officials are insufficient to handle the problems generated by an increasingly complex and potent bureaucracy. I believe that only parliamentary regimes where political power is fused can exercise such control over their bureaucracies in a reliable way. In regimes where the executive, legislative and judicial powers are independent of each other, according to the constitutional principle of separation of powers, divided political authority makes it almost impossible to maintain effective democratic control over a powerful modern bureaucracy. Actually, in all the countries that have adopted this principle, emulating the American model, catastrophic regime breakdowns have occurred -- with the only major exception being the United States.
We need to understand why this exception has occurred and what its costs have been -- I have tried to give an explanation in earlier writings (Riggs 1994b) and shall not repeat that discussion here, except to say that part of it lies in the exceptional weakness of the U.S. bureaucracy because of the prevalence of in-and-outers in patronage appointments at the top levels of governance; the fragmentation of power between central and local governments under federalism; the extraordinary degree to which public functions are carried out by private organizations; the internal fragmentation of power within the career bureaucracy because of its "professionalism" 9 and the lack of a system-wide mandarinate; and the geographic dispersion of the armed forces because of the patronage pressures ("pork barrel") generated by federalism in Congress.
Among the costs of this system of divided authority at the top of the bureaucracy is an inability to integrate cross-agency programs, such as those affecting public health, social welfare, the environment, the capitalist market and financial system, education, drug addiction and crime. Thus, although the American bureaucracy is too weak to seize power despite the separation-of-powers constitutional system, its inability to coordinate its activities effectively aggravates the widespread sense of bureaucratic incompetence and abuse of power that seems to be growing.
Citizens voluntarily accept the authority of public officials only when it is based on widely accepted sources of legitimacy rather than on fear of violence and oppression. Although authority appears in many forms, there seem to be only two basic principles that sustain the legitimacy of the state: the top-down traditional principles of monarchic authority rooted in religious beliefs and the assumed capacity of rulers to secure supernatural support for their welfare and safety; and the bottom-up modern belief in popular sovereignty and the right of peoples to govern themselves.
No doubt, by coercion and threats of violence, many ruling elites and oligarchies cajole or threaten subject populations to accept their rule and even to believe that no viable alternative to injustice and oppression can be found. However, I believe that the most efficient and effective forms of government depend on a widespread belief that governance serves the interests of the governed and respects their preferences. Such beliefs require one of the two forms of legitimation mentioned here. However, industrialization (accompanied by secularization) has, I believe, fundamentally eroded the acceptance of monarchic sovereignty except in a few states where isolation or natural wealth enables monarchic rule to persist.
Overwhelmingly, in the world today, the only form of sovereignty that commands widespread acceptance is based on the democratic myth. However, this notion presupposes the ability of a people to reach agreements on who will govern them and how public policies will be made and implemented. The core myth which supports this belief is the idea that the people who constitute a state must be members of a nation, i.e. they share a common culture and identity based on beliefs and practices that are truly important in their lives. Reality, of course, contradicts this premise -- vast cultural differences separate peoples into a large number of ethnic communities, competing cultures (even "civilizations") with quite different ideas about how and for whom legitimate governance is possible.
As modern states evolved in the West, industrialization and democratization reinforced state nationalism -- the processes of Americanization whereby large numbers of immigrants came to accept themselves as citizens and Americans, This is only one example of a process that was prototypical for modernity throughout the Western world, as I have explained above. In this context, the notion that public officials would serve the best interests of the nation -- and its many sub-units -- gained widespread acceptance.
The American case is not exceptional: comparable beliefs now permeate the world where an escalating number of ethnic nations are organizing themselves to demand sovereignty and to challenge the authority of the state (or states) in which their members live. This aspect of para-modernism is strongest in all the successor states generated by the collapse of the modern empires (communist as well as capitalist) but its impact can also be felt in the heartlands of these empires, including our own country. It looks like the state is withering but, I think, behind this phenomenon lies the growing inability of modern states to create a sense of national identity among their citizens.
My concluding observation, therefore, is that underlying the manifestations of para-modernism in bureaucracy and public administration that can be attributed to industrialism and democratization, there is a third form that undermines the legitimacy of the state and puts all of its appointed officials in jeopardy -- they must increasingly not only struggle to perform their official duties, but they must seek, as do the FBI officials in Montana, to justify their right to do what they are doing. No doubt efforts to make bureaucracy more "representative," e.g. by appointing more women and members of ethnic minorities and by treating them better, will be quite helpful.
However, I believe the underlying crisis of authority has much deeper roots -- it reflects the pervasive impact of para-modernism as the dark side of modernity begins to manifest itself, globally, in ugly and inescapable forms. Because of the spread of ethnic nationalism at the expense of state nationalism, the tasks faced by public administrators will, increasingly, become politicized, not in the sense that their influence on public policies are involved, but rather in the far deeper sense that their authority to administer any policies has been undermined. Manifestations of bureaucratic power and authority that might once have been accepted as normal and legitimate can be see, today, as evidence of the usurpation of power. This, I think, is the deeper impact of the para-modern syndrome on public administration and bureaucracy throughout the world today.
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