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GS Free Sample Test Section II Writing Task A

GS Free Sample Test Section II Writing Task A

Postby admin » Thu Dec 15, 2011 9:42 am

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Re: GS Free Sample Test Section II Writing Task A

Postby kelly24 » Mon Sep 16, 2013 9:34 pm

Hi Everyone

I've just done my first practice essay and I was hoping for some feedback?
This is what I ended up with

Democracy has long been held in western culture as the pinnacle of a fair government. To many, a democracy allows freedom of speech and the right for everyone to be heard. This view however, is not shared by everyone. Winston Churchill himself once said "Democracy is the worst of all types of government, apart from all the other types tried."

While democracy may be viewed as the fairest way to govern a country, it cannot go unnoticed that a democracy votes in favour of a majority and thus does not take into account the view of the minority. Thomas Jefferson, an advocate of democracy once stated that "If the measures which have been pursued are approved by the majority, it is the duty of the minority to acquiesce and conform". It is this aspect of a democracy that many people opposing democracy do not agree with.

Ayn Rand once said "Individual rights are not subject to a public vote; a majority has no right to vote away the rights of a minority; the political function of rights is precisely to protect minorities from oppression by majorities (and the smallest minority on earth is the individual)." This statement begs the question, how do we represent the opinion of the minority in a democratic government? One answer may be to introduce proportional seating. This is an idea that has been lobbied by many smaller parties in the English government for a long time. However, while proportional seating may allow some minority views to be better voiced, the "smallest minority on earth" may still go unheard.

That being said, without a democracy in which at the least the majority opinion is heard, the likelihood of a tyrannical rule emerging may increase. So perhaps Churchill was correct, while democracy may not be the archetypal governing style western countries put on a pedestal, perhaps it is the best we have for now.
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Re: GS Free Sample Test Section II Writing Task A

Postby dirtworm » Fri Feb 27, 2015 2:13 pm

In my opinion you could use a counter example to further your analysis of the issue. You talk about democracy following the majority and how different people criticise it, but you should probably also mention why it's tempting to do what the majority wants. People thinking about how to counter minority oppression by the majority should probably think about the ways it has actually happened, or at least one example where the promise was tempting.
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Re: GS Free Sample Test Section II Writing Task A

Postby rmatson » Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:14 am

Any comments on this will be welcome

The question of whether democracy can fairly serve the populous is a controversial one. On one hand, if the majority of a population feel they are gaining from a movement then this is for the greater good. On the other hand, when most people may benefit a small minority may be adversely affected.
In the grand scheme of things when the majority gain, then most of the populous will be pleased, but some people will inevitably lose out. One such example is the opposition party Labour leading up to the general election. In their manifesto they wanted to increase spending in various key areas such as the NHS, schools, social care and the environment. Where did they propose that they would gain this money? They wanted to increase corporation tax. On the face of this it seems great; corporations avoid tax and never pay enough, just look at Starbucks or Apple. But what a lot of people don't realise is that corporation tax effects small businesses as well. Someone who has a few small shops and scrapes a living from their businesses will have their taxes raised and will struggle even further. Would raising the corporation tax help the many? Yes, it would. Would it hinder the few? Yes, it would. From this it is clear to see that with any situation not all parties can be pleased.
Another example of not being able to please all in society would be raising the living wage. The increase of the living wage increases the amount that many earn so that they may be able to lead a better quality of life, provide for their children better, not be hand-to-mouth every month. But, again, who would lose out in this situation? Small businesses who are struggling to keep their current employees on the living wage we have now. If the government were to increase the living wage, as stated previously, many would benefit. But, and a big but, small businesses may not be able to cope. They may have to reduce staff, reduce output, and essentially lose money. These businesses would obviously want to pay their low payed employees more (unless they are extremely Scrooge-like), but it would not be better for them in the long term.
With the above examples, it is clear that this topic is a highly difficult one to navigate. Every gain for the many produces a loss for the few. Every situation where someone gains and someone loses has to be scrutinised to the finest detail to ensure that they do not lose overly. Democracy in the end means everyone gets a say, but just because someone gets a say, doesn't mean that they will get their way. As Henrik Ibsen once said "The majority is always wrong; the minority is rarely right".
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Re: GS Free Sample Test Section II Writing Task A

Postby Zully » Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:02 pm

The democritisation of Civil Liberties, or as some would call it, individual private rights is bringing the discussion of political representation to the public eye. One approach is somewhat Utalitarian in nature, the greater good is with the greater majority. As Thomas Jefferson highlights, @if the measures which have been pursued are approved by the majority, it is the duty of the minority to acquiesce and conform". Here, Sir Thomas Jefferson doesn't display any consideration of the minority. However, Rand and Madison raise concerns about potentially not being able to respect the rights of the minority and putting the essential individual rights second, instead of 3rd
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