Ideal Types of Authorities

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SOC 1301-01
Ideal Types of Authorities
According to Max Weber, there are three kinds of authority: the legal rational authority, the charismatic authority and the traditional authority. President Nixon, Adolf Hitler and Moroccan Monarch Hassan II were all great leaders. However, the source of their powerful domination and their political leadership differ from one to another. In fact, considering a “Weberian” classification, we will consider Nixon as a legal rational leader, Hitler as a charismatic leader and Hassan II as a traditional leader. In this paper, we will try to emphasize the characteristics of each one of them based on their domestic or foreign policies. And then we will see their resemblance and similarities. Richard Milhous Nixon was sworn in as president on November 5, 1968 with only five hundred fifty thousand votes more than the Democratic candidate, and Vice-President under Johnson administration, Hubert Humphrey. (Strober & Strober, 2003) According to Weber: “Rulership is seen to rest on legal authority. As citizens of constitutional governments we assent to authority because its powers are based on procedures and institutions which have been legally enacted.” (Whimster, 2004) Nixon is a legal rational leader since his authority is tied to the American government that is a rational and bureaucratic institution. As he was putting his administration together, “Nixon was always bringing in new people…this was one of the keys to his success.” He chose to work with a small group of assistants, advisors “and his longtime secretary Rose Mary Woods.” Nixon had a simple, but efficient philosophy: to bring in new blood to his administration. “He understood that people can perform up to a certain level; then they may lose interest, or may get bored.” Moreover, one of his biggest strength was his political foresight. “Some of the best political minds of the past twenty years have been Nixon’s finds.” (Strober & Strober, 2003)

Domestically, Nixon believed in equality in the repartition of civil rights. He insisted that the country should help black people and that “the answer was to give them a chance to be capitalists - not just jobs” but figure out a way to have them involved in the American economy and the capitalist system. Afterwards, black people began to have more ‘office’ jobs and less physical or illegal jobs, for instance “they became employers and tax payers,” which “shifts the whole burden in the economy.” Nixon also believed that although it was not necessarily a good political move because it will not get the administration any votes, they “will do it, because it’s the right thing to do. He had a conviction that that was something that needed to be done.” Subsequently, the program was called Minority Business and was expanded to “four ethnic groupings of people in the United States that are considered by the Congress to be minorities: blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and American Indians.” It was a success but what Nixon mostly saw in it was what he called “an equal Place at the starting line.” Nixon continued to fulfill his domestic policy, and one of his most remarkable works in this area is clearly the integration of the South. His “administration had to desegregate the school systems” they tend to do it in a diplomatic way in order not to impose radical changes on very conservative people in the South. “And by 1972, the South had some of the most integrated systems in the country. This whole integration issue made Nixon very popular in the South.” (Strober & Strober, 2003) Furthermore, Nixon brought reforms to ex-President Johnson’s Health care system. In Nixon’s proposal on health care systems, he proposed a health insurance coverage that everyone would benefit from and created the Environmental Protection Agency.

According to Max Weber “The charismatic leader gains and maintains authority solely by proving his strength in life. If he wants to be a prophet, he must perform miracles; if...
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