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Pol Sci 2D03 Lec #2, Tuesday Jan 14th 2014.docx

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Political Science
Todd Alway

Pol Sci 2D03 Lecture #2, Tuesday January 14 , 2014 Canadian Citizenship- Institutional Foundations Theoretical Foundations • Private citizen challenging the governments right to the law (SCC case) o Is it democratic? • Theory= descriptive and proscriptive 1. Pluralism and Elite Pluralism • Equal playing field- everyone in society has opportunity to participate and power id widely dispersed and it acknowledges that some people will lack that power which the can overcome that lack of power by banding with others (alliances, collective organization) they are then able to obtain power and overcome others who have existing power, the result is that politics becomes structured around groups • Group politics versus individual politics for pluralism • Government responds to societal pressure- government has no role in this, they do not choose winners or losers, they are neutral arbiters of power and responds to those who have the most power, politics tends to be about brokerage (brokerage politics- they do not stand for one thing) they seek to cater to the largest groups of individuals so they try to broker interest, politics is about accommodation (Conservatives and Liberals have historically been brokerage; non-ideological) o This has changed conservatives more ideological, liberals brokerage • Wide variety of actors/influences- it isn’t just political parties, there are social movements and interest groups, political actors to sway in government decisions all on a pluralist perspectives Critiques of Pluralism • Power not evenly divided- resources and access to government not equally divided therefore not an even play field • Privileged groups in society •
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