Denmark Government and Politics

The Class Structure of Early Capitalism 1880-1900

Industrialization progressed more slowly than in the southern neighboring countries, and the working class grew similarly slowly. It was therefore not until 1871 that former officer Louis Pio sought to form a socialist party. The Socialists conducted a host of strikes and demonstrations that were turned down by the military, and Pio was eventually sent to the United States after imprisonment. In 1876 the Social Democracy was formally formed.

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Around 1900, Denmark was still predominantly an agricultural country; a large number of self-employed farmers produced for a market. The mode of production was petty bourgeois, but in the 1880’s the peasants joined it in cooperative cooperative movement. The products could then be refined and marketed together in the market. During the crisis of the 1880’s and 1990’s, agricultural production was switched from grain to butter and meat products. In addition to covering the domestic market, more and more went to exports – especially to England.

Although the economic structure was characterized by agricultural production, there has been some development of crafts and industry since the 1860’s. In the 1890’s, industrial development accelerated. due to the international boom, which, through the improved prices of agricultural products, enabled a higher consumption of industrial products on the domestic market. The business structure was dominated by many small craft-based companies, where the employer often also worked themselves. There was no real basis for any major industry with high capital concentration and few large companies. Only within industries such as shipbuilding industries or industries such as processed foods such as the food and beverage industry, larger companies emerged. In the early 20th century, the large capital had a rather weak foothold due to the low degree of industrialization and therefore did not play the same role as in the major imperialist countries. Check Countryaah for other countries that start with D.

The defeat of Germany in 1864 had put an end to Denmark’s imperialist aspirations and hopes of strong military power. This further reinforced the tendency for a relatively weak and politically withdrawn citizenship. Only after World War II did industrialization in Denmark reach such a level that one can speak of a politically strong industrial citizenship. The petty bourgeoisie in the cities, before the Second World War, it grew to a whole different scale – both in the provincial cities and in Copenhagen. The petty bourgeoisie was partly based on craftsmanship, partly on trade at the wholesale and retail level, and because of the relatively slow economic development, the size of this class remained until after 1945. Politically it was faltering. At the beginning of the century, it oriented itself to the right, but in the interwar period, the Social Democracy won a significant part of the petty bourgeoisie’s votes through its crisis policy – a policy that assumed the party’s transformation from “class party” to “people party” (see Denmark for the People).

The traditional electoral basis of the social democracy – the working class – was characterized by three factors that significantly influenced the consciousness of the class, both before and after World War I. First, because of the dominant agricultural production, it formed a relatively small part of society. Secondly, the craftsmanship and manufacturing production meant that the working class was part of a petty-bourgeois production method, organized in small businesses where the master participated in the work. Only a minor part of the production process was industrial in the sense that the machines had replaced muscle power or specialist knowledge. And thirdly, as a result of this, it was very disparate – from workplace to workplace – and with a wide range of professional divisions. This made it difficult for the working class to organize and act as a conscious acting force. Yet, professional organization was high – presumably over 50% at the turn of the century – and it continued to rise throughout the 20th century.

Copenhagen Municipality (Administrative history)

Copenhagen’s original special position was conditioned by the fact that the city belonged to the church, namely the bishop of Roskilde, originally a gift from Valdemar I the Great to Absalon. The scheme lasted until 1416, when Erik VII of Pomerania acquired the city. Although in the first city ​​court of 1524 there were certain local powers, and although the concept of mayor appears from the middle of the 14th century, the influence of the ordinary citizen on the city government was modest.

During and after the siege of Copenhagen during the war between Denmark and Sweden 1657-61, Frederik III made and renewed promises to the citizens about new privileges for the city, and these formed the basis for the city’s rule until 1840. The most important provision in the privileges was that the bourgeoisie together with the magistrate was given the right to choose 32 citizens among the city’s wealthy merchants, who in conjunction with the magistrate were to adopt the city’s affairs.

The magistrate consisted of 3-4 mayors and a changing number (usually 6-8) of councilors, all of whom were elected by the king. The mayor, who was president of the magistrate, had the title of president, from 1747 vice president.

In 1840, Christian VIII issued an ordinance on the municipal council in Copenhagen. This created the basis for a modern city government. The 32-member assembly, which had gradually become self-supplementing, was replaced by a popularly elected citizen representation of 36 members.

Suffrage and eligibility were conditional on citizenship and tax payment as well as half of property ownership. At the first election in 1840, only 1.6% of the population had the right to vote.

The magistrate consisted of a vice president and three mayors as well as six councilors. The chief president and mayors were, as before, appointed by the king, while the councilors were now elected by the citizens’ representation. However, the influence of the citizens’ representation was still very limited, because the state’s central administrative body, the Danish Chancellery, had to make a decision in disagreements between the citizens’ representation and the magistrate, and the chancellery generally supported the magistrate.

The Constitution of 1849 established the municipalities’ right to self-government, and new provisions were subsequently drawn up both for Copenhagen and for the country’s other municipalities. The magistrate and the civic representation jointly had the decision-making authority, and the division of competences between them was in practice maintained from 1857 to 1938. In 1857, the position of power of the civic representation vis-à-vis the magistrate was established. The area of ​​authority of the Citizens’ Representation was expanded with cases that had previously belonged to various executive boards and commissions. The members of the magistrate were now to be elected by the citizens’ representation with subsequent royal confirmation. The magistrate came to consist of four mayors who were elected by notice for life, and four councilors who were elected for six years at a time. The King-appointed Vice-President

In 1861, 1865 and in 1908, the circle of municipal voters in Copenhagen was expanded. In 1901-02, the City of Copenhagen, which previously included the city within the ramparts and the common areas outside, tripled the area with the incorporation of Valby, Brønshøj and Sundbyerne. In 1902, the civic representation was expanded to 42 members, in 1913 to 55. Only in 1938 was the decisive democratization carried out, in that the 55 members of the civic representation were only given the decision-making authority in municipal affairs, while the magistrate was given the administrative authority. The vice president resigned from the magistrate, and the presidency passed to the elected mayor.

As an offshoot of the local government reform in 1970, the City of Copenhagen passed a new government law in 1978. The main principles of the law were, firstly, that Copenhagen should be maintained as one municipality, which remains both a primary and a county municipality. Secondly, the previous magistrate system was retained, whereby Copenhagen would continue to be governed by two bodies, where the citizens’ representation was the municipal council and the decision-making authority, while the magistrate was the executive authority. As the third main principle, the members of the magistrate, a total of seven, including the mayor, were to be elected only from among the members of the citizens’ representation, and the councilor institution was abolished.

Although the City of Copenhagen was now aligned with the other municipalities on a number of points, especially the so-called magistrate municipalities, it has until 1998 retained a special position enshrined in special legislation.

From 1998, by law and by decision of the citizens’ representation, a significant reorganization of Copenhagen’s government has taken place, at the same time as the special Copenhagen government law has been repealed. The municipal government has been replaced by an intermediate form government with shared administration. The board then consists of a citizen representation of 55 members, including the seven mayors. It constitutes the municipal council and elects a finance committee and six standing committees, between which the tasks are divided. The Lord Mayor is chairman of both the citizens’ representation and the finance committee.

Each of the six standing committees is chaired by a committee chairman, called the mayor, who also has the day-to-day administrative management within the committee’s subject area, while a number of financial and general matters fall under the Finance Committee. At the same time, seven unit administrations will be established, corresponding to the seven committees.

Prior to the adoption of the 1978 Government Act, there were proposals in both the Citizens’ Representation and the Folketing to divide Copenhagen into several municipalities. By a decision in the Citizens’ Representation, which was later followed up by legislation, experiments were carried out in 1997-2001 with the city council in the City of Copenhagen. During this period, locally elected city ​​councils in four districts approx. 80% of the primary municipal tasks. In 2000, an indicative referendum was held in the municipality on whether local city government should be introduced; 33.6% voted yes, 66.4% voted no and the turnout was 70.5. On the basis of this, the Citizens’ Representation decided that the experiment with the city council should not be continued after the end of the experiment period. 2001-05 examined a special committee of politicians, appointed by the Citizens’ Representation, the development of democracy and service in the City of Copenhagen.

Denmark Head of Government

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