It can be reasonably expected from the use of scientific method that it would generate inter-subjectively transmissible generalisations to Political Science which would further lead to the development of an explanatory ‘theory’. It could discover laws of principles of political behaviour in a definite, objective, general, valid and reliable manner. Knowledge based on scientific generalisations gives power to control and direct the social forces, and makes it possible to predict coming events.
A careful analysis will demonstrate that such laws or verified generalisations of political behaviour have so far not appeared even in the advanced countries: Mosca’s concept about the ruling class that there is a smaller governing oligarchy within a larger society, or Robert Michel’s doctrine of ‘iron law of oligarchy’ cannot be regarded as a law of political behaviour.
There have appeared some trends, tendencies, and causal-emotional insights, but no theory which can make reliable prediction or generate controlling power, has been evolved. Montesquieu’s principle of ‘separation of powers’ is also controversial, dubious, and doubtful as a theory. The prismatic model of W.F. Riggs cannot be regarded a scientific generalisation, explanation or a theory. In the name of scientific study.
Political Science does have:
(i) Some empirical studies,
(ii) Some practical suggestions on the solution of problems, and
(iii) Descriptive analysis of some institutions.
Many of them cannot be put under the categories of cent per cent scientific studies. While describing important political institutions and systems, some attempts have been made to present classificatory schemes, general propositions, and frameworks of middle-range theories. Studies like The Politics of the Developing Areas by Almond and Coleman also repeat the same performance without producing an explanatory theory. Meehan calls them as ‘quasi-theories’.
In a way, scientific method has enabled the studies of politics to reach the Political Science in matters of collection of data, description and classification, and formulation of working hypothesis; but the goal is still far away. Many factors are responsible for it: ambiguous relations between cause and effect, lack of uniformity in political events, problem of objectivity, impossibility of replication, changeable and qualitative nature of facts, etc.
Most important problem among them pertains to values. If this problem is analysed, understood and solved, a good number of difficulties can be removed coming in the way of achieving the goal of scientific political theory. Dahl has rightly found both of them as anti-polar views.