Class Notes (809,444)
Canada (493,713)
POL214Y1 (206)
Lecture 4

Lecture 4.docx

4 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Toronto St. George
Political Science
Nelson Wiseman

Lecture 4 30/09/2013 The Machinery of Government 1. Prime Minister 2. Cabinet 3. Central Agencies a. Finance, TBS, PCO, INTER-GOVT AFFS, PMO What would good questions be for the test? According to Prof: What are the PM’s powers? Are they unlimited? What are the powers of the governor general? Are they too few or too many? Prime Minister  A lot of authority and power  Easy to see where responsibility/accountability lie  MP’s become less important due to public opinion surveys  Theory: Responsible government o Subverted in practise: Strong party discipline  Patronage: Potential for advancing, glue for party discipline  Drawbacks of PM power (From a democratic theory point of view) o Pre-determined end of parliamentary debates o Party discipline o Cabinet Solidarity, only 1 position on an issue, even if the cabinet is divided they have to support it or they are out o PM has too much centralized power o Secrecy, don’t really know what the debate is about  Positive aspects: o Permits strong, centralized, authoritative, robust government o No legislative deadlock, like the US  Savoie reading: o Pessimistic, no checks on gov o Cabinet has become a ‘focus’ group  Appears to be like a rubber stamp Cabinet  Members selected by the PM  Collectively/Individually responsible for government office actions  Only 1 government position on an issue  PM selects anyone he wants o BUT, conventions restrict him o Example, regional/provincial need for representation  Convention: Can’t have a cabinet that is only francophone or Anglophone  Values have changed: Religion does not matter in selections anymore, as much as previously  Bilingual aspect: Must make certain announcements/reports bilingual  Profession  Cabinet size: Not fixed, generally want a small number of ministers to show that they are not many costs  Different PM’s have different styles: o Ex. Pierre Trudeau ran it as a seminar o Mulroney, very personal-many phone calls o PM Harper never says publicly when the cabinet meets o Largely related to PM’s personalities  The Departmentalized Cabinet o Until the 1960’s o Individualized o Ministers remained in their position for a long time  Pierre Trudeau: Strong bureaucrats/ministers can get what they want  He didn’t want personalities, he wanted alternative ideas and practicality  Reformed the cabinet system  PM can change/restructure the cabinet as he wishes  Institutionalized cabinet o P+P: Planning and priorities  If they approve policies, they are pretty much done (Most powerful committee) o PCO: Privy Council office o OPS: Operations  They meet very re
More Less

Related notes for POL214Y1

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.