No, Goonswarm is not Athenian democracy nor is it Roman republicanism. Now, there are many out there saying, "hey stupid, it's a military hierarchy! Derp!" Yes, all military organizations are by necessity authoritarian command structures. Democracy get's people killed on the battlefield. In Eve Online it not only gets ships exploded but capsuleers podded. Thus it is that any PvP corporation, alliance or coalition naturally gravitates to an authoritarian structure in time of conflict. That is the nature of the beast.
But that only pertains to combat. Goonswarm is for the most part not involved in an alliance wide war. They have enforcement actions ongoing but more about that later. That's where the military explanation ends. Random acts of violence do not negate the mootness of the argument. So how is the CFC ruled in this time of peace? In short, by an authoritarian regime.
Authoritarianism is a form of social organization characterized by submission to authority as well as the administration of said authority. In politics, an authoritarian government is one in which political authority is concentrated in a small group of politicians. So what defines the characteristics of an authoritarian system and how can we be certain Goonswarm is ruled by one? Well, according to Wikipedia, authoritarian regimes manifest thusly.
- Authoritarianism is characterized by highly concentrated and centralized power maintained by political repression and the exclusion of potential challengers. It uses political parties and mass organizations to mobilize people around the goals of the regime.
- Authoritarianism emphasizes arbitrary law rather than the rule of law, it often includes election rigging, political decisions being made by a select group of officials behind closed doors, a bureaucracy that sometimes operates independently of rules, which does not properly supervise elected officials, and fails to serve the concerns of the constituencies they purportedly serve. Authoritarianism also tends to embrace the informal and unregulated exercise of political power, a leadership that is "self-appointed and even if elected cannot be displaced by citizens' free choice among competitors," the arbitrary deprivation of civil liberties, and little tolerance for meaningful opposition.
- A range of social controls also attempt to stifle civil society, while political stability is maintained by control over and support of the armed forces, a bureaucracy staffed by the regime, and creation of allegiance through various means of socialization and indoctrination.
As for the rest of the characteristics, I can't say for certain they have or have not manifested themselves. As far as we know, not one has tried to depose The Mittani. I also can't speak to the Goonswarm bureaucracy's internal workings or any desire members of Goonswarm may have to affect a change in leadership. This does not necessarily prove Goonswarm is not ruled by an authoritarian regime. In fact, it opens the door for an even more onerous political formation.
You see, there are many gradations of authoritarianism. We who live in Roman style republican states often lump all authoritarian forms of government into one bushel basket of bad apples. We fail to see there are different forms of authoritarianism that have arisen for various reasons. Just because the Goonswarm political system doesn't hit every single point of the authoritarian spectrum doesn't mean it isn't suffering under a specific form of authoritarianism. Let's consider totalitarianism  for instance.
So how does one tell the difference between generic authoritarianism and totalitarianism? There are several categories one compares to make the distinction. Here they are straight from the Wikipedia site.
(1) Unlike their bland and generally unpopular authoritarian brethren, totalitarian dictators develop a charismatic 'mystique' and a mass-based, pseudo-democratic interdependence with their followers via the conscious manipulation of a prophetic image.Sansha Kuvakei's balls if the first one doesn't describe The Mittani to a nano-particle! I also see "indispensable 'function' to guide and reshape the universe" as particularly damning as well. Oh, but wait, it gets worse. There are further sub-types of totalitarianism responsible for innumerable heinous crimes against humanity. Compare this definition to Goonswarm and you'll understand the true nature of the situation.
(2) Concomitant role conceptions differentiate totalitarians from authoritarians. Authoritarians view themselves as individual beings, largely content to control; and often maintain the status quo. Totalitarian self-conceptions are largely teleological. The tyrant is less a person than an indispensable 'function' to guide and reshape the universe.
Fascism is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism that came to prominence in mid-20th century Europe. Fascists seek to unify their nation through a totalitarian state that promotes the mass mobilization of the national community, relying on a vanguard party to initiate a revolution to organize the nation on fascist principles. Hostile to liberal democracy, socialism, and communism, fascist movements share certain common features, including the veneration of the state, a devotion to a strong leader, and an emphasis on ultranationalism, ethnocentrism, and militarism. Fascism views political violence, war, and imperialism as a means to achieve national rejuvenation and asserts that nations and races deemed "superior" should attain living space by displacing ones deemed "weak" or "inferior".The emphasis is mine and the meaning is clear. I could quote goon after goon leader who has espoused fascist ideals, but I really don't need to. Every line of goon propaganda, every goon denunciation, every war declaration from the Ministry of Love proves my point. Goonswarm is a fascist organization and The Mittani is their Duce. But it's okay, Eve Online is just a game. Live with it. Revive il Duce!
Just kidding... except for the fascist part.
*Note: comments on this post will be heavily moderated. Those comments that do not contribute to the discussion will not see the light of day. You are warned.