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Vol 21 No 9 Sept/Oct 2016

Book of the Month

Cover of Goode on Commercial Law

Goode on Commercial Law

Edited by: Ewan McKendrick
Price: £170.00

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The Speculative Imagination in Democratic Lawmaking

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Charles O. JonesJohn M. Olin Visiting Professor in American Government, University of Oxford

ISBN13: 9780199513918
ISBN: 0199513910
Published: February 2000
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Format: Paperback
Price: Out of print

In his inaugural lecture Dr Jones explains that the speculative imagination is crucial to effective lawmaking in a democracy. There is no single institutional or structural formula for its realization. It can be achieved in a party government featuring strict accountability (as in a parliamentary system), but it may also be nurtured in a government of parties with diffused accountability (as in a separated powers system like that of the United States). Stalemate need not be the result of the separation of elections, the variability of term lengths, or split-party government. The independence of public roles in a government of parties can expand the speculative horizon and produce change not otherwise possible. However, leeway is vital for fostering competitive speculation whatever the governmental form, as is the commitment on the part of lawmakers to their public roles as representatives and speculators.

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