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Canadian Politics Notes.pdf

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Political Science
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POL2101 Intro to Canadian Politics Gordon DiGiacomothLecture 1 June 18thMidterm July 4 thExam July 30 47 Canadian politics is a subfield of Politics comparative politics etcWhat is politicso The art and science of governments o Influencing and making policy o Politics is about power o Found pretty much anywhere in business in government at university level in churches and in familiesPolitics is the activity in which groups or individuals struggle for power and advantage to determine who get what when and howInfluencing and making collective decisionsWhat is the state o The totality of public institutions that have the authority and legitimacy to enact and enforce lawsApplies to an area of definite boundaries and has a monopoly over the legitimate use of force o Must have a permanent population a defined territory a government and a capacity to enter into relations with other statesIt can be likened to a car the State is the Car and the government in the driverThe public Sectoro Refers to institutions and departments and crown corporations within the governmentThe Private sectoro Refers to small businesses corporations charitable organizations and privately traded companyPolitical institution Persistent and connected sets of rules formal and informal that prescribe behavior rules constrainpermit activity and shapeDemocracy The people rule o A system of governance in which the people rule either directly or through the election of representativeCan be found anywhere o Struggle for democracy underlies many political struggles o Electoral process articulation of view and direct or indirect representation o The collective grouping of laws to the people subject to those laws o Minimal conditions includeControl of govt decision must be constitutionally bested by elected officialsElected officials are chosen in frequent and fair electionsAll adults may be allowed to vote and run for officeCitizens must have the right to express themselves without fear of punishmentCitizens must have the right to seek out informationCitizens must have the right to for independent associationsFor democracy to flourish citizens must hold certain beliefs and values Views of political engagement must be accepted by the citizens must value involvement must value participationCanada has been described as a liberal democracy o Liberal democracy Certain civil and political rights are guaranteed and are essential for a democracy to flourishA state bearing these rights is rights is referred to as a liberal democracyAccountability of officialsConstitutional limits on state powerBelief in liberalism and rightmajority rulePolitical competitionLegal and political equalityThe law is supreme and applies to all o Representative democracyCitizens elect representatives to make decisions on their behalfComprised of referendums initiatives people will draft a law of policy and if a number of citizens sign a petition it can be put to a vote recall citizens can acquired petitions to hold an election in a riding for a member whom is not liked o Deliberative democracyCitizens are assembled in groups and a period of time to discuss certain issuesA few years ago many Ontarians gathered to change the electoral systems in OntarioThe Canadian Constitution o Comprises the Charter of Rights and Freedoms o Establishes the institutions of government describes processes of by which laws can be made establishes restriction on the laws of the states and expresses shared valuesCivil Society o All organizations and groups between the family and the state while excluding business that provide cheques and balances to government o Essential for vibrant democracy o Can take many forms not all political book clubs religious associations hockey clubs o Some more political than othersPolitical engagement o Different from civic engagement o Civic engagement Set of activities in your community volunteering o Civic can be used along with citizen o Canada has a high level of citizen engagement o Political engagement The actions people take to raise awareness of issues and influences the choice of govt personnel and to shape the context of government policies Ex protest joining political parties petitions voting running for officeA reasonable level of political interest and knowledge a reasonable level of trust in government are essential to democratic cultureThe level of civic involvement in embarrassingly lowCanadians aged from 1824 fewer than 40 voted however there is a strong adherence to individualistic beliefsResulting in a declining level of political engagementThe highest level of political engagement in the US is during the depression years and during the War yearsCyber activismHas becomes more prominent in recent yearsPolitical activism employing online communications tools that has been used by protest groups to great effectTool for activism and may be where young people feel more comfortable TheoryA Logical explanation for why things are the way they are People look for explanarespotion of political phenomenaAnd concentrate on the actions of groups actions of classes the elitesHow social groups and institutions shape policy Class AnalysisWho pays Who determines Who benefitsthLecture 2 June 20Base PointsEconomicsocial contextCanadian Political cultureConfederationA successful country is wealthy democratic human rights are respected Indicators tho GDP 27 on the list th States ranks 15 o Human development index measures countries on life expectancy education and GNP per capita o Index of democracy measure the degree of democracy in a countryCanada ranks number 1 o Freedom house measures how political rights and liberties are respectedThe Canadian economy has a number of major features Economic context of politicsMarket based economy capitalist o Right to private property is protected o Prices determined by supply and demand o Industrial methodology is the motus operandi of business o Substantial business competitionHighly resource dependent o Canada has always been dependent on resources o Cod harvesting exploitation of forests mining reserves oil sands o Oil exports a huge driver of economy o North are resource rich areas awaiting exploitationForests are over exploitedSalmon are in an uncertain stateEnvironmental degradation is prominent across Canada
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