The Democratic Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States along with the Republican Party . Since the 1930s, the party has promoted a socially liberal and progressive platform, [ 2 ] [ 3 ] [ 4 ] and its Congressional caucus is composed of progressives , liberals , and centrists . [ 5 ] The party has the lengthiest record of continuous operation in the United States and is among the oldest political parties in the world. [ 6 ] Current President of the United States Barack Obama is the 15th Democrat to hold the office of Presidency. As of the 113th Congress following the 2012 elections , the Democratic Party currently holds a minority of seats in the House of Representatives and a majority of seats in the Senate , as well as a minority of state governorships and control of a minority of state legislatures .
The Republican Party , also commonly called the GOP (for " Grand Old Party "), is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States , the other being the Democratic Party . Founded by anti-slavery activists in 1854, it dominated politics nationally for most of the period from 1860 to 1932. There have been 18 Republican presidents, the first being Abraham Lincoln , serving from 1861-1865, and the most recent being George W. Bush , serving from 2001-2009. Currently the party's platform is generally based upon American conservatism , [ 1 ] [ 2 ] [ 3 ] in contrast to the Democratic Party , who endorse more liberal policies.
Totalitarianism (or totalitarian rule ) is a political system in which the state holds total authority over the society and seeks to control all aspects of public and private life whenever necessary. [ 1 ] The concept of totalitarianism was first developed on a positive sense in the 1920s by the Italian fascists . The concept became prominent in Western anti-communist political discourse during the Cold War era, in order to highlight perceived similarities between Nazi Germany and other fascist regimes on the one hand, and Soviet communism on the other. [ 2 ] [ 3 ] [ 4 ] [ 5 ] [ 6 ] Aside from fascist and Stalinist movements, there have been other movements that are totalitarian. The leader of the historic Spanish reactionary conservative movement called the Spanish Confederation of the Autonomous Right declared his intention to "give Spain a true unity, a new spirit, a totalitarian polity..." and went on to say " Democracy is not an end but a means to the conquest of the new state.
Johanna [ 1 ] "Hannah" Arendt (October 14, 1906 – December 4, 1975) was a German - American political theorist . Though often described as a philosopher , she rejected that label on the grounds that philosophy is concerned with "man in the singular" and instead described herself as a political theorist because her work centers on the fact that "men, not Man, live on the earth and inhabit the world." [ 2 ] Arendt's work deals with the nature of power , and the subjects of politics , authority , and totalitarianism . [ edit ] Life and career Arendt was born into a family of secular German Jews in the city of Linden (now part of Hanover ). She was the daughter of Martha (née Cohn) and Paul Arendt. [ 3 ] She grew up in Königsberg (renamed Kaliningrad and annexed to the Soviet Union in 1946) and Berlin .