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Comparing the Mongolian Government to the Book 1984

Comparing the Mongolian Government to the Book 1984

 

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The book 1984 is a dystopian novel published by author George Orwell in 1949. It revolves around a dictatorial government; the concepts of individual freedom no longer exist in the society. Three superpowers have taken control of the world and have created a culture of hatred, fear, and isolation (Lang & James 120). Eurasia, Oceania, and Eastasia are the superpowers, but Oceania is always fighting for dominance with one of them. Winston Smith works at the Department of Verity. His world is controlled by the party leader whose pictures and captions are everywhere containing the words “big brother is watching you.”  Winston’s job entails revising historical documents and rewriting the stories to reflect the party’s reliability (Hammond 320). The Oceania government rations everything including food, clothing, and electricity, war, and hatred dominate its society. The ruling party limits the freedom of its people by monitoring their actions and speeches through spies and hidden microphones. The government quells any sign of revolts and eliminates those who are termed as disloyal (Orwell 230). The goal of this essay is to relate the government of Oceania with that of Mongolia, by looking at the basic principles and views of the government and how these principles affect the society and life of its citizens.

Type of government and how the leader came into power.

In July 1990, Mongolia underwent a peaceful revolution in which the People’s Revolutionary Party was elected, this was the former communist party and had brought great development in Mongolia. The regime had brought food, security, hospitals, and schools to the people, unlike the Oceania government which ensured everything was rationed. Nonetheless, the communist system had broken the culture of Mongols, their nomadic pattern of life was destroyed and their cultural heritage was stripped, this caused the collapse of the communist regime that resulted in an economic recession in Mongolia in 1994 (Fish 11).  During the recession, an election was held and the Democratic party won establishing the first ever democratic government in Mongolia. This transition to a democratic government brought about relative stability with the peaceful transfer of powers with the election results showing the citizens’ desire for freedom in the economy and liberal business policies. Currently, Mongolia has been experiencing increased prosperity due to an abundant mineral reserve and inflow of foreign investment. The nomadic herders have found it necessary to participate in the market economy and have become less reliant on government subsidies.

Currently, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj is the Mongolian president. He was elected on May 25, 2009, under the democratic party. He led the party in a peaceful revolution in 1990 that saw the end of more than 70 years of communist rule in Mongolia. Since then, Tsakhiagiin has initiated economic and social development and has promoted the rule of law eliminating bureaucracy and red tape. He implemented a judicial reform in April 2011 that was the first in the country and guaranteed economic, political, and legal security for the judiciary (Houdret et al. 2393). The new reforms in the magistracy enabled citizen representatives in judicial procedures, this helped boost public confidence in the legal system and strengthened unity among the citizens.

Basic principles of Mongolia, the race, religion, and median income of its citizens.

The majority of the citizens are the Halh Mongols practicing Shamanism and Lamaism; the others are Triad and Kazakhs; the latter form 4% of Mongol’s total population. The pillar of liberal democracy is an important aspect of Mongolian society, the fact that personal forms of freedom are not just an obstruction. The Mongolians enjoy freedom from the Mongolian government unlike the citizens of Oceania, the ‘government of and by the people’ is a principle that strongly dominates the Mongolian political culture. The citizens are entitled to rights such as life, privacy, health, political participation, and education, while in the book 1984, citizens have limited rights and are constantly under survey by the government. Mongolian government also supports a free market economy that entails open competition and property privatisation which shows that they have completely transformed from a communist democracy to liberal democracy (Hulan and Hashbat 23).  The government is open and stable and allows freedom of the media, this enables the media to freely condemn the administration without fear of intimidation; while in the Oceania government, no citizen or media is allowed the freedom to express their views concerning the oppressive government, like in the case of Winston who is tortured and bitten to a breaking point because of plotting to expose the dictatorial Oceania government.

Restrictions that Mongolia puts on its citizens and measures used to limit freedoms.

The Mongolian government protects religious freedom and also enforces these protections. However, the Mongolian law on religious liberty limits proselytizing (Domdrowskey et al. 4705). The policies protect religious freedoms selectively; some religious groups were denied registration by local governments facing bureaucratic harassment. Some citizens were abused based on religious affiliation and belief, and the people who converted to Christianity were discriminated against.

Some devout groups seeking cataloguing faced onerous bureaucratic requirements and delays which clearly shows that the Mongolian government explicitly recognises the separation of church and state.  The law clearly asserts proper support of Buddhism as the predominant religion; the government also contributed financially to support Buddhist projects like the restoration of historical Buddhist sites (Maskarinec and Travel 145). According to a report by the UN human rights commission, revealed that the government uses registration and renewals to extract favours in exchange for continued legal status with religious organisations. In a report by the UN Human Rights Council, the Mongolian government has taken steps to limit digital freedoms of opinion and expression.

The presidential election laws contain many defamation provisions, and the authority of consumers’ rights has the power to take complete control of election coverage content. They also have the authority to terminate broadcast operations for up to three months, including social media, mobile phones, and information websites. Authors and journalists are also required by law to prove their publications; this situation is similar to that in Oceania where citizens are limited from the freedom of expression.  Websites are entitled to a government filtering system and registration with the CRC, failure to which they will be closed. This action violates the international law of freedom to which the Mongolian government is a party (Dombrowski et al. 4705). The country does not have whistle-blowers’ legal protection, and journalists’ confidential sources are not ensured protection by the government. Content restriction and censorship control news content and their suppliers and also close services of news providers suspected to be giving uncensored information to the public.

Views of the Mongolian government, international politics, and whether they oppress certain groups in Mongolia.

Before the transition from communist to democratic rule in Mongolia, the country was once a loyal member of the communist regime. It had one-party totalitarian state and remained the same for more than six decades; the entire government prohibited any form of criticism from the public. After the peaceful transition to a democratic government, international lending agencies warned of any regress back to the former totalitarian rule. Hence the ruling party that formed the government-maintained policies that promoted privatisation, individual rights, and trade liberalisation, such demands from international organisations, have helped the country maintain its liberal position. Consequently, the country is known internationally as a third-wave democracy that has outperformed its neighboring counterparts (Hulan and Hashbat 31).

However, economic reforms and constitutional amendments have done little to narrow the gap between the rich and the have-nots, and periodic elections and changes in government institutions have done little to reduce the prevalence of political corruption and desecration of human rights in the country (Houdret et al. 2393). Mongolia today remains similar to the Oceanic society where citizens are apathetic to the political process, and strains of totalitarian rule persist.

Conclusion

Some aspects of Mongolian government and political culture are similar to that of the Oceanic Society. Limitations such as restrictions on media freedom and expression from the public are still dominant in Mongolian society. The Communications Regulatory Commission has put restrictions on information websites and media institutions that limit speech and the free sharing of information. The Mongolian governments also favour some religious organisations over others and offer easy registration and financial support to enable the whole establishment of the religion in Mongolia; this is similar to the situation in Oceanic society, where particular groups of people are marginalized; especially those not loyal to the government and its course.

Works Cited

Dombrowsky, I., N. Hagemann, and A. Houdret. “The river basin as a new scale for water governance in transition countries? A comparative study of Mongolia and Ukraine.” Environmental Earth Sciences 72.12 (2014): 4705-4726.

Fish, M. Steven. “What Has a Quarter Century of Post-Communism Taught Us About the Correlates of Democracy?.” A Quarter Century of Post-Communism Assessed. Springer International Publishing, 2017. 11-40.

Hulan, Hashbat. “Mongolia’s Political Transformation: Observations and Comparisons.” Mongolian Journal of International Affairs 1 (2015): 29-39.

Hammond, John. A George Orwell Companion: a guide to the novels, documentaries, and essays. Springer, 2016.

Houdret, Annabelle, Ines Dombrowsky, and Lena Horlemann. “The institutionalization of River Basin Management as politics of scale–Insights from Mongolia.” Journal of Hydrology 519 (2014): 2392-2404.

Lang, James M. “The Poor of 1984: The Roots of George Orwell’s Final Novel.” (2015).

Maškarinec, Pavel. “Testing Duvergerʼs law: strategic voting in Mongolian elections, 1996–2004.” Post-Soviet Affairs 33.2 (2017): 145-160.

Orwell, George. 1984. Digital Deen Publications, 2017.

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