Most studies on public policies are written with reference to the complex arrangements established by liberal democratic states. However, it must be kept in mind that by no means all nations are liberal democracies and many are governed as oligarchies or dictatorships. The following chapter outlines the subjective values such as self-interest, ideology and, in some countries, a cavalier concern for ethical principles that determine the content and policy processes within the many non-liberal democratic regimes and organisations. This discussion is not, however, to demonstrate how far policy making is a wholly different process in such regimes from the practices of liberal democracy. It is made from the point of view that within Western liberal democracies many of the institutions, public and private, are also autocratic in structure and attitudes. Liberal democracies through their electoral systems build a further dynamic and greater element of complexity into the processing of public policy. They do so, however, through the operation of elements of the state that has autocratic institutional and procedural arrangements that are influenced by many independent and often highly autocratic private interests such as corporate businesses and much of the media and particularly the printed media. In most regimes, for example, whether autocratic or democratic, civil services, the military and police, some political parties, almost all newspapers and many private sector companies operate hierarchic, top down leadership styles. Consequently, the following discussion on policy making in autocracies, whilst being of interest in its own right, can be used also to illustrate some of the less than open and responsive elements of the state in liberal democratic regimes.