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CONTENTS. ........................................................................................ 3 PREFACE. ........................................................................................... 6 1. ON THE NEW WORLD ORDER........................................................ 9 i. About Global Government and the mutation of the Nation-State. ................................................................................... 22


ii. Trans-Regulatory Networks: government of the future............................................................................................... 23 ii. Conclusions.................................................................................. 34 2. ON THE CONCEPT OF LEGITIMACY.............................................. 37 i. Legal legitimacy. ........................................................................... 39 ii. Democratic legitimacy................................................................. 42 iii. International legitimacy.............................................................. 45 a. With no recognition................................................. 49 b. Recognized by countries with partial recognition. ................................................................. 51 c. Recognized only by one country.............................. 52 d. With Limited Recognition........................................ 53


e. With Majoritary Recognition................................... 57 iv. Functional Legitimacy................................................. 61 v. Ideological Legitimacy. ................................................ 63 vi. Moral legitimacy......................................................... 65 vii. Integral Legitimacy > A proposal. .............................. 67 viii. Conclusions. .............................................................. 74 3. LEGITIMACY AND GLOBAL GOVERNMENT..................... 4. FINAL CONCLUSIONS. ................................................. 79 WORKS CITED. ................................................................. 91



The overall aim of this essay is to provide a brief definition of legitimacy as seen in the recent political literature in order to find a definitive concept that can be applied to all current governments and, also, global governments as we will study them.

We believe that the relevance of this study is evident






government agencies is understood, as the role they will play in the coming years for the development of humanity.


The impulse that drives us is the desire of those who have the power to take decisions affecting millions of people in their hands to understand that on their shoulders rests a serious obligation, and that the legitimacy of their actions will be the element that grants them of force required to use this power in favour of growth and progress of mankind.

Therefore, we raise the question that we will try to solve in this essay: which conditions must be fulfilled in order for global governance agencies to be legitimate?


In order to answer that, we will review the concept of global government, the concept of legitimacy itself and, at last, propose a definition of legitimacy that can be applied to bodies of global government, both current and future.



The notable late advance in the technological capacity of human beings and the growing international market have transformed the entire world in an intricate network of possibilities, and with this, problems have multiplied. Somehow, along with huge cultural, economic, political and human profits, a series of problems silently pulse under the vast ocean of modern fascination. A war with a country to the other side of the world can begin in a few hours, and terrorist


nuclei find the way to hijack aircraft to knock down capitalist castles. Borders have been forgotten. Defence systems can stop tanks and guns, but they are totally useless to stop knowledge, ideas and ideologies. From the First World War - and perhaps since long before – the reality we see everyday in the newspapers could be envisaged. War blocks used on that occasion seemed to hint at political developments in the 21st century. From the creation of the UN, politics has acquired a new dimension that aspires to universality and is moving ever closer to the phenomenon of globalization. Who would have thought a hundred


years ago that a delegate of Spain would have a voice and vote on decisions affecting some Oceania village? Faculties which the organized international society granted to representatives of States open the door to a much more complex and far more supportive international policy. Indeed, the world today comes face to face with a historic crossroads of atlantic proportions. To anticipate what will come of the world is not easy. However there are several ideas already looming between theorists of the State, some of which we will try to analyze briefly, so that our study can throw a possible light on the specific issue before us, which is "Global Governance".


“For the first time in the history of mankind, notes Yehezkel Dror, human action has the ability to exert influence on global phenomena, critical for human survival (...) States alone are inadequate to serve as effective action units. The major challenges posed by the processes of the 21st century require multi-State structures capable of achieving





global�.(Dror 1996: 17). Behold, therefore, that we are confronted with already unavoidable reality: the State is not enough in itself. The common good in a State cannot






administering the internal affairs of the State. The


internal administration of a country is becoming increasingly dependent on external relations that exist for trade, defence, culture, migration, etc. Even national identity in the States has diluted slightly; perhaps humans have enriched and fed the conscience of a true global society, where intricate human relations are conducted, in which there are sectors and classes different from those we have always known; a society in which neighbourhoods take the shape of countries, and social classes dress up as continents. Let us see, therefore, the world as it is – and every day is more -: a society of societies; a sort of State inhabited by States. And, given the case, who is to


be the ruler of this great monster? Who will lead and manage the overall mass of States that occupy the entire map? Since society grows into a kind of political metanational community, this universal community itself is not capable of abstracting from the nature of human society. And in this context, is its particular purpose to seek the common good of the human persons populating such society. In the search for a global common good, the notion of "Global Government" appears to generate new ideas in the collective unconscious about the future of politics.


The issues already raised have unleashed a new discussion about the trend that modern States seem to be following regarding their organization. Samuel l. Huntington proposes a “realistic� response as he observes the world and the different civilizations that occupy it, and founds that they exists

in very diverse (when not

contradictory) cultural quadrants. Broadly speaking, Huntington in his book the shock of civilizations, notes a world organized in large cultural blocks - Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Islamic, Orthodox, Western, Latin American and perhaps African (Huntington 2002: 50) - which seem unlikely to be capable of melting into a single


cultural reality. Extremely dissimilar cultures as the Islamic world, the West and the East may not join due to their differences, and rather the world cultures will tend to group into these sectors, which will form large state-like structures with a cultural basis. Huntington ends the book saying that “the future of peace and civilization depends on the understanding and cooperation between the political






civilisations of the world. In the clash of civilizations, Europe and the United States may remain partners or not. In the big shock, the real global shock, between civilization and barbarism,


also the great civilizations of the world, with its rich achievements in the field of religion, art, literature,




morality and compassion, can associate or follow separate paths. At the time that is emerging, clashes of civilizations are the greatest threat to world peace, and an international order based on civilizations is more secure protection from the world war� (Huntington 2002: 385). Whether or not we agree with Samuel Huntington, we must accept that, indeed, the differences between these cultures are deeply rooted, and will probably be a major obstacle to a supposed


globalization, especially when globalization still means, as until now it has meant, westernization. It is a lucky thing that history allows us to observe this






organization is emerging to be the new pattern in the everyday world order for the centuries to come. The formation of the European Union marks a relevant milestone in history, which is most likely to be a before-and-after


in the

development of humanity itself. Even their values match the needs that we pointed out in the present thesis: the Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, rule of law and respect for human rights,


including the rights of persons belonging to minorities. These values are common to the Member States in a society characterised by pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men. And yet in this organization, the path of the internal organization has not been an easy one. What up to recently developed in an enviable way within the field of international law, had its first great disruption with the rejection of the draft of European Constitution by several States in 2005. This does not amount to the failure of the Union of States for a common purpose, but shows us that


the changes are not always as easy as we would like them to be. Let's take a moment to see the world order as we know it today. Perhaps the first thing we can see is that today, more than ever, it is an ever-changing order. It is an order that finds its balance in the movement itself, which sometimes seems a dance and is sometimes seen as a cluttered chaos. The current policy context tends increasingly to cultural pluralism (even within the States) and the search for what has been called the third way. The third way, as proposed by Anthony Giddens, is a different sort of intermediate point, different from the absolute liberalism of the American market, in


the one hand, and from Soviet Communism in the other (Giddens 2001: 11), meaning that it is radically opposed to any ideological extremism. It is a way, in any case, more practical and conciliating which seeks to stir the ideological rubble of history and, after the cold war, chooses to learn from different points of view on politics and Government. As we have already noted, the world does not seem likely to be able to turn back on globalization. We can not cancel globalization; it is here to stay. The question is how to make it work (Stiglitz






internationalized society requires the existence of


organizations, institutions and rules to achieve a real order by nature.

i. About Global Government and the mutation of the Nation-State.

Attempts to achieve these international public institutions have given some fruit worthy of taking into account, such as the United Nations, European Union or the International Criminal Court. However, we can not ignore the unifying efforts






organizations as the Red Cross, the Universal Postal Union and the World Youth Alliance, among


many other international organizations. Perhaps one of the best projections on the future Government is within the European Union, which is yet to approve, as we have seen, a common Constitution and to define a large number of parameters for the Community agenda.

ii. Trans-Regulatory Networks: government of the future.

However, there are other particularly relevant figures that, indeed, occupy a special place in the environment of a potential global government. We refer to the Trans-National Regulatory Networks,


which hold a function of creation and discussion of laws and rules of international character which, in one way or another, are beginning to give shape to what will be the reality in the near future – a future populated by meta-state structures and global regulations. A future, perhaps, where the flow of information, people and goods across borders can be attributed to a true global regulatory network and not, as at the time, to a mere sum of local rules. More depth on this topic in particular we find in works of Prof. Julia Black, in particular The development of the global markets as rule-makers: engagement and legitimacy (2008) and others.


This does not mean, we must point out, that the State is approaching its disappearance. We do not believe, as some scholars do, that it will soon be the end of the State. The topic is not new. JesĂşs Reyes Heroles made a brilliant analysis of the phenomenon of mutations in the modern State: “The question that guides this essay is to know if global society suffers from a crisis of unusual size that affects the State of our days, that threatens the state structure with an unique large-scale crisis and






overcoming, and overrun of the modern State. If the set of factors which gave rise to the birth of the modern State is no longer historically valid,


then this political structure is fossilized and superimposed on a reality that does not interpret, but restricts, limits and clutters; if on the contrary, the factors that cause the modern State still exist and only suffered mutations or changes that do not substantially alter their historical validity, it must be concluded that the modern State is suitable to express those realities and only requires an adaptation or modification that restore its effectiveness� (Reyes Heroles: 1944:12). Both the mentioned study and a complete overview of all of the above, allow us to assert that it does not seem that we are seeing the destruction or the temporary end of the modern


State, but a mere mutation of it. The State maintains






maintaining the purposes that animate it, it requires a transformation that will help it to identify itself with this moment in history and its geographical latitude. This mutation can be distinguished for its study at two levels: on the one hand, an intrinsic mutation, which refers to the cultural and functional basis of the States and, on the other, an extrinsic mutation observed in economy and relations between different States. We will try to deepen our statement about these mutations, analyzing the evolution of the State in a comparative form. Let's talk first about what we


called intrinsic mutation. This we can see in two aspects: cultural and functional. The culture is an interesting aspect, directly related to the concept of nation. A thousand years ago, the States were small, and they had racial, religious and even cultural unity. In history, the tension between the unification and the fragmentation of the States has gone through specific cycles.

The Roman Empire had a

remarkable drive until its fall at the dawn of the middle ages. The Holy Roman Empire revived the ideals of its predecessor. New great unifications would come under the reign of Charlemagne and Charles V; until the birth of modern States raised a


new territorial division. Napoleon made impressive efforts of unification that could not transcend the centuries. Today, the EU resumes the historic ideal of western unity, hoping that the correct organization and preparation gives better results than the previous unifying efforts. Today the racial, religious and cultural unity is almost unimaginable. In virtually any State we see diversity in all three aspects: national unity is not based on these concepts, but in identification values that allow a healthy human interaction. That is why in the population structure of states a new face is taking form. The current facilities for migration and birth rate reduction in some


developed countries have pushed towards a massive mobilization of labour force which has been covering the population gaps. Tolerance has positioned itself as an absolutely essential value for the development of any society, and the struggle for the rights of minorities has spared major battles, some of which are still to be resolved.





migrants to the Basque separatists; from Roma communities in France to Kurd minorities in the Middle East, unity and tolerance are still only an ideal in many places on the planet. The







notoriously evolved with respect to the medieval


State. As already noted, a State whose system of Government or economic is system is radical in its fundamentals, capitalist or totalitarian, is today almost unthinkable and anachronistic. Here we refer to the commentary on the third way. The State of the 21st century is more practical and conciliatory; less dogmatic and radical. In a plural world that rejoiced in democracy, it is natural that Governments work in favour of the plural population which has given them power. The added intrinsic mutation of various States has resulted in an increase of their interaction capacity, as they agree on several points of view, find common ideals and share cultural, racial and


religious experiences at different levels. This makes it easier to develop solidarity among peoples, since it is easier for them to observe and conceptualize each other as equals. Extrinsic mutation, for its part, is expressed in two terms: economics and the international relations. It has been a while since States are no longer selfsufficient economic units. Even those economies that have fought for centuries by maintaining a policy closed outwards are in a serious dilemma with regard to globalization. As we have already said, globalization seems not to be an option, but an established fact. International trade and international funds allow us to observe this clear


truth in the economic field. So we can point out that the international political aspect (which certainly cannot disassociate itself from the economic), requires that leaders are not only brilliant administrators, but prepared statesmen and diplomats. In this extrinsic mutation lies the new permeable reality of the contemporary State, and refers us to the new international order which we have already been talking about, that evidences that the State is in






conceptualizacion of re-organizacion, restructuring and, even, re-creation; but not, we insist, in a process of destruction; not yet.


ii. Conclusions

As said at the beginning of the essay, the notable late advance in the technological capacity of human beings and the growing international market have transformed the entire world in an intricate network of possibilities, and with this, problems have multiplied. Internationalized society requires the existence of organizations, institutions and rules to achieve a real order by nature. Attempts to achieve these international public institutions have given some fruit worthy of taking into account, such as the








International Criminal Court. However, there are other particularly relevant figures that, indeed, occupy a special place in the environment of a potential global government. We refer to the Trans-National Regulatory Networks, which have a function on developing, discussing and creating laws and rules of international character, in one way or another, are beginning to give shape to what will be the reality in the near future – a future of State-like structures and global regulations. We believe that the future of global governance is in these Trans-National Regulatory Networks. Regardless of the form the global


government will take, there is the same problem of legitimacy which we shall study in the following chapters.



The concept of legitimacy has suffered a difficult definition, discussion and study process in history. Sternberger (1968: 244) defines it as "the foundation of such governmental power as is exercised both with a consciousness on the government’s part that it has a right to govern and with some recognition by the governed of that right". The definition includes two parts worthy of being taken into account: on the one hand, the right of Government to govern and, on the other


hand, the recognition from the ruled on the power of Government. The first part, which we call inherent legitimacy, is the subject of much discussion. Does the right to govern arise only from the compliance on legal requisites? That is: mere compliance of regulatory processes

of power justify


use and

continuation? Or, as others say, is it necessary that public power meets with rules of an ethical or moral character? From here we can begin to draw different types of legitimacy, as they have different principles and geneses. We will try to outline each of these types of legitimacy, so we can, at last, propose a


definition of the necessary legitimacy for the exercise of global governance.

i. Legal legitimacy. First, we find the legal legitimacy, due to the fulfilment of the legal forms for power, according to each political system. Under this concept, so that a Government is considered legitimate, it is necessary that it follows legal forms to acquire political power. In a Democratic Republic, this process refers to the direct vote and the election system; while in other countries it may refer to a hereditary system or any other as stated in their legal system.


This definition of legitimacy presents a clearly understandable problem: it refers only to the genesis, the starting of the exercise of power; but says nothing in reference with its practice or maintenance. It answers the question "did the Government gain the power legitimately?". The problem is easy to understand if we note some rulers in history who have attained power legitimately, but once they had it, conducted under its auspices actions of Government whose legitimacy can be fairly questioned. Such is the case of characters as Porfirio DĂ­az in Mexico, Adolf Hitler in Germany, Hugo ChĂĄvez in Venezuela or Fidel Castro in Cuba. They all came to power by


means of legal mechanisms and, we must argue, with popular support from the voter. Once there, they were able to change the laws to remain in power legally, while their actions became soon those of dictators or tyrants de facto. We consider, therefore, that legal legitimacy has very short range in attaining the formal objectives of any Government. Legally acquiring power is essentially insufficient to justify the actions of Governments. We must, therefore, observe other types of legitimacy.


ii. Democratic legitimacy. Second, we define social or democratic legitimacy, which consists in the recognition from the ruled that the Government in power is legitimate. Lipset (1938: 64) affirms that it "involves the capacity of a political system to engender and maintain






institutions are the most appropriate and proper ones for the society". In this, he opts for a more realistic approach to the situation. According to this, legitimacy is the ability to create a widespread belief in the goodness of the government, which may give rise to an endless number of methods of control









objectionable. We do not share this idea at all, but we have to say that its practical application might be the rule in modern democracies. We are prepared to support the definition of Lipset provided that it contains a parameter of moral character, or at least legal. In other words: it is fair that the Government works to maintain the belief that individuals and institutions are the best for society, provided that the methods used for this do not involve media deception with fascistgovernments-style frames. However, for Lipset, the whole concept of legitimacy lies in the social or democratic element: is completely extrinsic. Easton (1975: 451) seems


to think accordingly when he defines it as "the conviction that it is right and proper... to accept and obey the authorities and to abide by the requirements of the regime". As such, he leaves the definition of legitimacy completely in the hands of the governed, stating this, more radically, complete separation between Government and its own legitimacy. This concept, we believe, is at least incomplete and potentially destructive. We believe that a more complete definition of legitimacy should include elements that are inherent to true legitimacy (moral and legal) and extrinsic or democratic legitimacy.


However, this would perhaps be not enough, since, as already noted, the modern world is actually a complex network of interconnected Nations. Therefore the existence of the notion of international legality is increasingly important. Furthermore, Max Weber, as well as Thomas Hobbes, did not consider democracy necessary for legitimacy, because that condition could be established via codified law, custom, and principle, not via popular suffrage.

iii. International legitimacy.


International legitimacy (also extrinsic to the same government) has to do with the acceptance of other Governments on the right of Government of a given state to govern. Although it is true that there are governments who do not enjoy full international legitimacy, it is also true that the need of global assimilation of a Government is increasingly important for the proper development of any nation. International legitimacy takes the specific form of an act of recognition that other Governments perform when the birth of a new State occurs, or the establishment of a new Government happens. The international legitimacy acquires special


significance in the modern world where, as we discussed in part I of this essay, international relations






maintenance and development of a Government and, above all, the state that they represent. We find a recognized definition of State in the Montevideo




intergovernmental organization that has received a standing invitation to participate as observer in sessions, and the work of the General Assembly, maintaining permanent offices at United Nations Headquarters. The issue of international legitimacy is complicated and thorny, especially because there is not a


universally accepted definition of what a country is, although the Montevideo Conference, in its first article, specific features what is considered a country: the State as a person of international law must meet the following requirements: I. Permanent population. II. Specific territory. III. Government. IV. Capacity to enter into relations with other States. This definition seems to support the existence of an element of recognition as necessary for the


legitimacy of a State and, by extension, its Government. But the situation is complex. Let's look at the situation of some States that lack of total







a. With no recognition.

These regions have a de facto State, in spite of which they are considered internationally as an integrant part of a recognized country. A typical case is that of ethnic groups which declared their independence and won the war, but nevertheless their sovereignty is considered unlawful by the international community.


This is the case of the Republic of Somaliland, Somalia, located between Ethiopia, Djibouti, Puntland and the Gulf of Aden. In May 1991, the clans declared the independent Republic of Somaliland, which includes five of the eighteen administrative divisions of Somalia.

The Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh, Azerbaijan Republic, declared unilateral independence in 1991. This territory was historically part of Armenia, but after the formation of the Soviet Union became part of Azerbaijan. After the fall of the Soviet Union people of Karabagh, by means of a referendum, proclaimed its reunification with Armenia, a fact which was not recognized by


Azerbaijan. Since then, Azerbaijan has maintained an armed conflict with Nagorno-Karabakh.












(Transnistria), in Moldova, is located between Moldova and Ukraine, the outer part of the Dniester





unilaterally since 1990, although it is only recognized Abkhazia and South Ossetia, which are, themselves,

countries with limited recognition.

The majority of the population is Slavic.


c. Recognized only by one country.

The Turk Republic of North Cyprus, in Cyprus, declared free in 1975 after the invasion of the northern third of the island by the Turkish armed forces in 1974, which took place after the military coup led by the Greek Cypriot military who wanted enosis with Greece. It declared its independence in 1983 and has been recognized only by Turkey. In 2004, its territory was accepted in the EU as part of the Republic of Cyprus. It is still recognized only by Turkey and the Organization of the Islamic Conference.


d. With Limited Recognition.

These are, usually, states that the international community does not recognize due to pressures made by countries interested in the territory. There is also the case of States that retire from a previous recognition.

The Republic of Abkhazia is located between the Black Sea and the Caucasus. It is a Republic unilaterally declared independent by the Abkhaz Communists in 1992. When proclaimed, a war broke out, between the insurgents and Georgia, which ended two years later. Since then, it has been outside the control of the Government of


Georgia. Since 1998 it has been internationally accepted only by four members of the United Nations States: Nicaragua, Russia, Venezuela and Nauru. It is also recognised by Transnistria and South Ossetia.

The Republic of South Ossetia was declared unilaterally independent of Georgia in 1991. After a year of war, an end to fire was declared. A brief but intense war, in which Russia intervened to expel the Georgian invasion, took place in 2008. Since then, it is internationally recognized only by four members of the United Nations States: Nicaragua, Russia, Venezuela and Nauru. It is also recognized by Abkhazia and Transnistria.


The Republic of China (Taiwan) has governed Taiwan Formosa and some other small islands since it lost the Chinese civil war in 1949. It has lost most of its diplomatic recognition and its seat at the UN, to the People’s Republic of China, on 25 October 1971, by the 2758 UN General Assembly resolution. Currently it is officially recognized by only 23 States. It is recognized by 22 countries and the Holy See as the legitimate representative of the historic China. The Republic of Kosovo declared independence unilaterally in 2008 with Western support. It is historically part of Serbia, but progressively repopulated by Albanians. It had already declared


its independence in 1991, but then only Albania acknowledged it. It is not recognized, among others, by: Serbia, Russia, Spain, Romania, Cyprus, Slovakia, Venezuela, Argentina and Brazil. 69 UN member countries recognize Kosovo, including: Afghanistan, Germany, Armenia, Colombia, Costa Rica, United States, France, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Norway, Peru, United Kingdom and Turkey. The Arab Republic of Democratic Sahrawi holds a territory that was colonized largely by Morocco since Spain left the territory in 1976. The Arab Republic of Democratic Sahrawi controls the rest of the Western Sahara, it was proclaimed by the Polisario Front in 1976. The United Nations have


tried since 1991 to hold a referendum with the MINURSO mission. The ceasefire administered by the United Nations is has been in effect since September 1991. Western Sahara is included in the list of UN non-self-governing territories. In 1976 it was recognized by 81 more UN member countries and the African Union.

e. With Majoritary Recognition. These are countries whose historical legitimacy is disputed by other countries (in order from lowest to greater international recognition): Palestine, in 1988, was recognised by 96 UN member countries and started diplomatic relations


with another 12. It is not recognized, among others, by Israel, USA and most of the countries of Western Europe. The United Nations recognizes the PNA as an observer institution. The State of Israel was formed in 1946 and is not recognized by 26 countries. 16 States which recognize it does not have diplomatic relations with this country. The People’s Republic of China, not recognized by Taiwan, does not accept diplomatic relations with 23 countries that recognize Taiwan. f. particular cases of non-recognition


The Armenian Republic, formed in 1991 is not recognized by Pakistan. Republic of Cyprus, declared independent in 1974, is not recognised by Turkey. The People's Republic of Korea (North Korea), is not recognized by France, Estonia, Japan, South Korea. Republic of Korea (South Korea), is not recognized by North Korea. As we observe, the issue of international recognition is complex, but, in summary, it raises the following question: is international legitimacy essentially relevant? Do those countries that are not recognized by other countries or the United Nations lack legitimacy at all?


For the purposes of this study, we consider that those countries that are not recognized by the international community (represented by the United Nations), lack of the essential element of International




Governments or countries do not have, in a sense, the right to govern or exist, but because the modern reality makes it necessary for the development






international interaction, both politically


economically. Today it is impossible to survive alone in the middle







Government or of a State will not be complete


until they have the approval of the international community.

iv. Functional Legitimacy.

Yankelovich (1974: 4) also proposes the functional legitimacy as one of the main types of legitimacy. In his own words, it "relates to the effectiveness with which the public credits institutions. Is local government giving the community adequate police and fire protection, trash collection, school and housing





government doing its job in protecting the national security, regulating the economy, etc.?"


However, Lipset (1965) distinguishes between effectiveness and legitimacy, as effectiveness can be measured objectively, while legitimacy offers only subjective valuation, which is a relevant circumstantial measurement problem. However, we believe that the functional legitimacy observes only one small element of the broader goal of governments. The government should not only provide the minimum and natural elements of public administration: trash, police, etc. The Government must look beyond and search for the integral development of individuals. It should be not just about solving only every day problems, but having a long-term vision so each


people can reach his or her full potential as human beings. In other words, legitimacy is not only justified with the "how" is governed, but also with the "towards where" goes the country as a whole. Ultimately, we believe that the so-called functional legitimacy is just a small part of what should be the legitimacy in its entirety. And as, of course, we cannot define a thing only on one of its parts, we deny the definitive relevance of this definition.

v. Ideological Legitimacy.

Another type of legitimacy is ideological; that is, “the support people give to the core values and


ideas underlying a political/economic system� (Yankelovich 1974: 3).

This type of legitimacy refers to the legitimacy of the







government in particular. For example, we can assume that most of the people who live in the United Kingdom support the core values of democracy and constitutional monarchy system, regardless of the party that is currently in power.

Under this view, one could argue that all Governments that work under the scheme of a generally accepted system and institutions have


sufficient ideological legitimacy to act within it with freedom and justification. We believe that the ideological legitimacy, rather than being a feature of the government, therefore, is a feature of the political system, and therefore belongs to another category from the studied in this essay. When the whole system has no ideological legitimacy, then it is necessary to develop much more profound and radical changes than a simple change of government. When there is no ideological legitimacy, what is needed is a change in the Constitutional basis of the state.

vi. Moral legitimacy.


Finally, we find ethical or moral legitimacy, which obliges the ruler to comply with the universal laws of ethics that govern the political spectrum. Under this consideration, a ruler that creates or implements unjust laws will lose, therefore, the part of legitimacy that corresponds to this nature. However, even if we accept the necessity of a moral legitimacy within any government, we also must accept that its definition presents deep difficulties, as the definition of morals encounters a wide plurality of opinions within a modern state. We might relate the creation of a moral code to a natural order or a higher power but, ultimately, morals are a commonly accepted code in a


population. If a government acts against such morals, the impact of such actions would affect the democratic acceptance of the government and reflect directly on the trust levels of the people towards the system, thus transforming its measurement in a mere social or democratic legitimacy, which we already discussed.

vii. Integral Legitimacy > A proposal.

According to the study of the different types of legitimacy, we believe that the term suffers from too much indefinition. This is due to the fact that each of the types of legitimacy studied attends to a


singular and incomplete aspect of the true concept of legitimacy. We believe that the concept of legitimacy must obey and follow the nature of the State. We must remember that the Government acquires and maintains its legitimacy at different times and on different acts. To know if these acts are legitimate or not, we must address directly the nature and objectives of the State. It is part of any State objectives to safeguard its own elements and institutions. The legitimacy is justified when the government, in the acquisition


of power and its exercise, looks at the physical and metaphysical





institutions that make up the State. The set of conditions that favour the development of capacities and rights of human beings within the State is called the common good. The common good must comply with the set of social conditions which






development of every person. The common good of the people that make up the State should be the ultimate aim of every political action. Integral Legitimacy includes, necessarily, three elements:



The lawful acquisition of power, through institutional routes according to the legal and moral order.


INTRINCSIC. The worthy exercise of power, according to the fundamental mandate of searching the common good.


EXTRINSIC. The extrinsic or international legitimacy that allows the government of the state to interact in the international community legally and effectively.

We therefore believe that the generally accepted concept of democratic legitimacy is insufficient, on the basis that the public opinion about the


government can be moulded with relative ease on the media controlled by the government, as in the style of Goebbels during the Nazi regime in Germany. The moral legitimacy for its part is difficult to define since the concept of morality is becoming most discussed, and it is difficult to separate it from religious and cultural conceptions in each community. It is true that in one way or another, all human beings understand the essentials of morality and some basic and universal laws such as theft and murder acts being considered immoral. But each culture gives different content to morality according to their history and customs.


For example, in some Islamic countries it is considered "moral" to stone to death adulterous women, while in Western culture these acts are aberrant and opposed to the most essential human rights. The functional legitimacy as already explained, only attends to an incomplete part of the integral concept of common good. We believe that our definition contains elements of government functionality perfectly, but includes others that are much more important. The ideological legitimacy, for its part, does not refer only to the government, but the entire system of the State and its institutions. The lack of


it calls for a radical change in the bases of states and its organization. Therefore our definition does not contain this element which, we believe, belongs to another type of study. Also the legal legitimacy, although correct, only attends to the first object (and in part to the second) of our definition. To acquire power and avoid illegal actions are only a part of the true mission of government and the final aim of the state. As in the case of functional legitimacy, the legal lies entirely within our definition, which deepens on the final goals of all states. All that said, we propose a definition of the word legitimacy which, we hope, will collaborate with


the study of this phenomenon in the future, and throw a light on the need to fully understand international, moral and legal obligations of Governments. Legitimacy is the essential justification of a government, as it has come to power according to the nature of the institutions in the State, maintains a legal activity to achieve the common good of the community and is recognized as such by the international community

viii. Conclusions. The concept of legitimacy has suffered a difficult definition, discussion and study process in history.


Various definitions found in political literature include different elements of legitimacy: intrinsic and





international, moral and ideological. In the study of these definitions, we believe that most of them are incomplete and tend to see only one or few of the elements that make up the entire concept of legitimacy. Therefore, we propose a definition of legitimacy that, we believe, contains all the essential elements: Legitimacy is the essential justification of a government, as it has come to power according to the nature of the institutions in the State, maintains a legal activity to achieve the common good of the community


and is recognized as such by the international community. We believe that this definition is applicable to all States and modern Governments, as well as the regulatory networks that form (and will form) Global Government, as it does not include the opinion of the governed, that is a totally subjective element in the states, and impossible in the case of global governance.


Having said all that, we must raise a further problem, which should be the subject of deeper considerations, in the form of a question. How does the concept of legitimacy apply to global governance?





regulatory networks fulfil the three elements of integral legitimacy? On the one hand, we find the problem of the election of these global authorities. So far, the election of persons representing them is not made in a modern, democratic sense. There are no


voters who can qualify and grant the democratic element to the concept of legitimacy which, as we have seen, is the most commonly accepted in traditional definitions. In the absence of a democratic element, perhaps local government agencies will conform with other elements of the definition, although it remains to be seen if the rest of the planet will also conform to, finally, support law and authority of regulatory structures that are almost invisible and distant. Is this possible or, as some claim, the Global Government is only a utopia? Regardless of the form that the bodies and institutions of global governance acquire, they, by


virtue of their functions of Government, are also subject to the definition of legality presented in the previous chapter. They should get to the power by legal means, maintain an activity that aims for the common good, and be supported by the international community as regulatory and international government systems that are fair and valid.


The first question we raised in this essay is: Which form will global governance take in the coming


years or centuries? The views here are diverse and, sometimes, opposite. Dror (1996:17) affirms that the major challenges posed by the processes of the 21st century require multi-State





governability, both regional and global. Still, this does not say much about a solution, but rather states the mere problem. Indeed, it seems to be a general accepted idea that meta-state or multistate structures are an absolute need in the times to come.

Huntington (2002) and Giddens (2001) approach this problem from their different points of view.


Huntington sees chaos and clash where Giddens finds an opportunity for conciliation. Siglitz (2002: 278) merely notes the reality of the globalization and states the question: how do we make it work?

Black (2008) appears with a much more practical approach and notes that the Trans-Regulatory Networks appear to be the new reality of global governance. It is not feeble to say that, indeed, aside from the obvious international organizations that pull the strings on world politics, these networks represent, at one time, the ruthless law of the markets and the human interests of millions.


We consider that the Trans-National Regulatory Networks have a structure that is closer to reality and more effective in the international reality that we find ourselves in today. Nevertheless, the aim of this essay is not to solve the matter of who does or will rule the new world order; but to examine the figure of legitimacy on whatever forms this ruling may take. Whichever form it assumes, we aimed to demonstrate the need to establish a clear, objective and complete concept of legitimacy, so such institutions can be observed and measured by international actors not only under immediate


results, or popularity, or attachment to legality surveys. If it is true that the global government requires new bodies, it is also true that these agencies cannot be separated from the rules under which there are all the other agencies of government. On the concept of legitimacy we, too, find different opinions. Some of them are opposite; some are complementary. Most of them, we believe, have the weakness of looking only at a specific or few of the elements of true legitimacy. One is Legal Legitimacy, for example, which observes only how the political power was acquired, but fails to note the actual exercise of it.


One of the most popular ideas of legitimacy seems to be the Democratic Legitimacy, strongly defended by Lipset (1938) and Easton (1975). They believe that the legitimacy lies in the idea that people have about the right their government has to maintain power. This is: Legitimacy is entirely a subjective, psychological entity in the mind of the subject, and not an objective characteristic of power or government. As we noted before, we believe this to be incomplete and potentially destructive, since there are many methods, in a machiavellic sense, by means of

which the

government can maintain its subjects ignorant or mislead about the affairs of the state, thus


creating an illusion of legitimacy: nothing more than a lie. Other



of which








recognition that the International Community extends to a newly created state or a new government in power. Although its nature and use are quite complicated, we just affirm that such recognition (whether partial or complete) is essential to the performance of any state. No one can subsist all alone in this new global order. Yankelovich (1974) proposes also the Functional Legitimacy, which consists on the ability of the government to maintain effectively the public


institutions of the state. Is the government doing its work properly? –Then it is legitimate. Even if we think that this idea of legitimacy is not complete, we must note that is has the good sense to observe an objective and measureable reality as the main component of true legitimacy. Yankelovich himself observes a different type of legitimacy: the Ideological Legitimacy, which is the support that people give to the core values of a government. This brings us back to the democratic idea of Legitimacy, and is only a component of our final definition.


We must admit, as well, the possibility of a Moral Legitimacy, which relates to the universal laws of morals and ethics that apply to the political reality, as any other human reality. After a close examination of all different definitions and types of Legitimacy, we must, as well, propose a definition that, we believe, includes all the essential requirements of true Legitimacy. It’s worthless to be legally legitimate when you are not so in a democratic sense; not enough to be functionally legitimate if you lack moral legitimacy and so on. This definition we call Integral Legitimacy, and it’s the essential justification of a government, as it


has come to power according to the nature of the institutions in the State, maintains a legal activity to achieve the common good of the community and is recognized as such by the international community. It is to note that this definition does not include a democratic element in a traditional sense, as the first part (as it has come to power according to the nature of the institutions in the State) implies the necessity of suffrage when it is the nature of such states institutions. This is: objective democracy, as opposed to a subjectve idea of legitimacy. Now that we are witnessing the birth of new forms of power, we find ourselves at the perfect moment


to establish mechanisms and parameters so government bodies can keep, at all times, the elements that give them legitimacy, both its genesis and its exercise. All in all, these organisms are called to transform mankind in the coming years. We believe that the values of freedom, legality, solidarity, peace and human development must guide their actions at all times. While their election is not subject, today, to direct vote democratic systems, its actions affect so populations that under no circumstances can they forget their legal and moral mandate. The integral legitimacy is located in a time of rapid changes, and states may not claim blindness


before a fundamental truth, which is now almost a forgotten





environment. And that is that, in the essentially, international relations remain, as it has always been and always will, relations between human beings.



BLACK, Julia and Rouch, David. 2008. “The development of the global markets as rulemakers: engagement and legitimacy”. Law and financial markets review, 2 (3). pp. 218-233. ISSN 1752-1440

DROR, Yehezkel. 1996. “How to prepare the State for Global Transformations” in The Capacity to Govern, Economic Culture Fund, México.


EASTON, David. 1975. “A Re-Assesment of the concept of Political Support.” Brittish Journal of Politicial Science 5(4):435:457.

GIDDENS, Anthony. 2001. The Third Way and its Critics, Taurus, Madrid.

HUNTINGTON, Samuel. 2002. Clash of Civilizations, Paidós, México.

LIPSET, Seymor Martin. 1983. Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics (2nd ed.). London, Heinemann.

STERNBERGER, DOLF. 1968. “Legitimacy” in International Encyclopaedia of the Social Sciences (ed. D.L. Sills) Vol. 9 (p.224) New York: McMillan.


STIGLITZ, Joseph. 2002. Globalization and its discontents, Taurus, Madrid. _with_limited_recognition

YANKELOVICH, Daniel, 1974, A Crisis in Moral


in f. •

LIPSET, Seymour Martin, 1959 'Political Sociology," in Sociology Today: Problems and Prospects (New York: Basic Books; Harper Torchbooks 1965).


REYES HEROLES, Jesús. 1944. Actual Trends of the State, UNAM,, México, , p. 12.





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