Research on the presidential system
A noteworthy research paper on the presidential system, based on internationally recognized data and which was done comparatively, is titled “Presidential System and Turkey with Comparative Analyses.” The report, written by Associate Professor Alican Kaptı from the think tank Global Politics and Strategy, is very enlightening, especially on the correlation between development levels and administrative systems.
First, there is a geographic picture. Leaving aside exceptional systems like the Swiss confederal system, 69 percent of European countries are ruled by the parliamentarian system. However, 70 percent of Central African countries are ruled by the presidential system.
Qualitatively ranking the top countries in terms of “human development,” such as Norway, Holland, the U.S., the U.K. and France, 16 of them are ruled by the parliamentarian system; only three of them are ruled by the presidential or semi-presidential system. Among the 20 countries that ranked at the lowest places in the human development index, such as Sudan, Afghanistan and Congo, 16 of them are ruled by a presidential system, three of them by a semi-presidential system and only one of them, Ethiopia, is ruled by a parliamentarian system.
The research concluded that “Those countries that have adopted the parliamentarian system are in a better place in the human development index compared to countries ruled by the presidential system.”
Among the 20 best-governed countries, 16 of them have a parliamentarian system. Among the 20 countries at the bottom of this list, 16 of them are ruled by the presidential system, three with a semi-presidential system and one with a parliamentarian system.
Among top 20 welfare states such as Switzerland, the U.S., Canada, Germany, the U.K. and Singapore, 16 of them are ruled by a parliamentarian system, one with a presidential system and one with a semi-presidential system. Switzerland and Hong Kong are outside this classification.
Among the poorest 20 countries such as Zimbabwe, Yemen, Togo and Angola, 15 of them are ruled with a presidential system. The rest are ruled either with a parliamentarian or semi-presidential system.
Therefore, the presidential system does not lift all countries. No system is a magic wand. Development is a matter associated with hundreds of factors. This data is scientific, because it is based on data compiled from institutions such as the United Nations, the World Bank and Transparency International.
Quite obviously, the presidential system is more widespread in backward and authoritarian societies. The question to be asked is this: Why is the presidential system more widespread and has an authoritarian characteristic in societies with lower levels of human and economic development?
Professor Burhan Kuzu, in his book where he defended the presidential system, explained in many pages why this system transforms into authoritarian chief administrations in Latin American countries. In a nutshell, he wrote, “A South American political party is completely different from a North American political party. In South America, a political party constitutes of basically a group of ‘chens’ who are gathered around one man actually and who have totally dedicated themselves to serving him. They are more of a clan than a political party.”
With the frequent closures by military coups, our parties are more or less like this.
The presidential system is successful in liberal America because the society has been individualized and diversified to a great extent and to an advanced level. It is impossible to make a clan out of these wide masses or activate them as a political force. In American parties, there is not even a “leader,” whereas, here, the presidential system is demanded for by the “leader.”
Since its foundation, in the United States, the impartiality of justice and rule of law have been deep rooted. Here, in our country, justice, in every era, bends according to power.
At the conclusion of the research, it has been very well explained how Turkey should proceed with “rationalizing the parliamentarian system.”