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Politics lecture notes

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Malcolm Mac Kinnon

14 POLITICS 14.1 INTRODUCTION Free Trade and Democracy - CATJO Canadian alliance for trade and job opportunities o CATJO funded a media blitz promoting the progressive conservatives and their free trade policies o The PCs won w 43% of the vote and six weeks later the Canada-US free trade agreement was implemented... - Who backed CATJO? BCNI the business council on national issues o The guys at BCNI wanted free trade because it would benefit their companies What is Politics? Key Terms - Power: ability to control others, even against their will - The use of power sometimes involves force - Ppl obey political rules bc they are afraid to disobey, and bc ppl agree w the distribution system or at least accept it - Authority: legitimate, institutionalized power - When ppl basically agree w how the political machine is run, raw power becomes authority - Max Weber described three ideal bases on which authority can rest o Traditional authority : the norm in tribal and feudal societies, involves rulers inheriting authority thru family or clan ties. The right of a family or clan to monopolize leadership is widely believed to derive from the will of a god. o Legal-rational authority : is typical of modern societies. It derives from respect for the law. Laws specify how one can achieve office. Ppl generally believe these laws are rational. If someone achieves office by following these laws, ppl respect his or her authority o Charismatic authority : is based on belief in the claims of extraordinary individuals that they are inspired by a god or some higher principle Political revolution: is the overthrow of political institutions by an opposition movement and its replacement by new institutions - State: consists of institutions responsible for formulating and carrying out a countrys laws and public policies - Civil society: is the private sphere of social life - Authoritarian: states sharply restrict citizen control of the state - Totalitarian: a state in which citizens lack almost any control of the state - Democracy: citizens exercise a high degree of control over the state. They do this mainly by choosing representatives in regular, competitive elections. - Political parties: are organizations that compete for control of govt in regular elections. In the process, they give voice to policy alternatives and rally adult citizens to vote - Lobbies: are organizations formed by special interest groups to advise and influence politicians
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