Liberal democracies are also characterised by periodic elections, in which the competing political views possess the opportunity to achieve political power.
They would argue that 'liberal democracy' does not respect majority rule (except when citizens are asked to vote for their representatives), and also that its "liberty" is restricted by the constitution or precedent (in the UK) decided by previous generations.
Since many liberals see democracies with strong statist reflections through the public choice theory as slow, dogmatic, conservative and not too apt for change, the liberal democracy contrasts with what could be called the "statist" democracy in that it emphasizes the civil society as the engine of its public discourse and development further.
Liberalism is a political current embracing several historical and present-day ideologies that claim defence of individual liberty as the purpose of government.
Liberals also argued that nations which had been under imperial rule should be allowed to form their own states, and that old empires should be broken up, at least on the European continent.
In a liberal state, their function is to act as a collective bargaining counterweight to the power of corporations, where as in social democracy, they are part of the power structure, and often assured of seats on corporate boards and a legally backed voice in the operation of large corporations.
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