This is a general principal that some schools of thought use when they think about how to design a community or government. Generally the principal is preferred by "republican" in the old sense or egalitarian schools.

The idea is that you don't want any entity or small group of entities to have lots of power.


For instance, you don't want a king. You don't want a GodKing. You don't want an army which also governs. You don't want monopolies. You want separation of powers into separate branches of government (e.g. the police should not also be the judicial system). You don't want vast inequalities of wealth or income.

Note that there are other justifications for each of these, sometimes stronger ones.


More fundamentally, any system of law-making may fail if a faction accumulates a sufficient concentration of power to alter the system.



Some more radical schools of thought say, when possible, simply AvoidAllPower?.

The AvoidConcentrationsOfPower people would probably agree with the spirit behind that, but would say that it is almost never practical.

When power is concentrated at the top of some hierarchy, a movement to AvoidConcentrationsOfPower becomes equivalent to DevolvePower.

See also ConcentrationOfPower.

See also PowerLawDistribution, a mathematical formula that models certain kinds of concentrations of power.



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