The development of theories of absolute government involved a radical break with a long tradition of political thinking that sought to restrain the actions of governors by systems of law. Law defined the nature of the environment in which rulers acted and formed the framework within which they exercised power. Both the ideas on natural law and the theories of mixed constitutions that have been discussed in previous chapters served this general function, the first by identifying an objective standard to which human law has to conform, the second by stipulating arrangements of offices and/or powers that effectively regulate the conduct of particular political actors. But while there is some common ground between these ways of regulating the exercise of political power and those discussed in this chapter, the theories considered here are distinctive because they identify human law itself as the source of regulation.
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- The Rule of Law and Rule-Bound Orders
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- Chapter 11