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Department
Political Science
Course Code
POLI 2051
Professor
All

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PoliticalScience2051TestIIntroductionChapter 1IWhat is Government and why do we have itIf men were angels government would not be necessary James MadisonGovernment is formed because of our imperfectionsGovernmenta formally established way of making and carrying out political decisions Politicsthe competition to shape governments impact on societys problems and goalsII Why consent to be governedWhy do we allow ourselves into this arrangementBecause our government can do things for us Life without government would be worse Without government we would have to exist in what some have called the state of natureWhat would life be like without governmentThe state of nature existsLife in this state is nasty and short so we allow ourselves to be governedLife would definitely be worse without governmentSocial contract theory can guide us here to some extentIts a normative rather than empirical theoryNormativethe way things ought to beEmpiricalthe way things actually are We do not have a fully direct democracy We have three branches of governmentIt is not a written contract but rather a general agreement between the people and their government Each accept certain obligations and limitations on what they can doPeople agree to give up some of their liberty and in exchange the government guarantees to protect what were called natural rights What are theseOur natural rights are life liberty and propertyThe contract derives from the assumption that government is based on the consent of the governed If we believe government has broken consent we have the responsibility to replace or at least resist the government Example citizen watch groupsEx guy who got mugged and shot 4 teensWhat purposes has government traditionally servedWhat does government doa Protecting life providing national defense and police within communitiesb Protecting rights and liberties John Lock thought that the government should protect more than just life and he thought this was much more importantc Providing public goods libraries trash pickup postal services cant easily be provided by the individual actions of citizensd Promoting equality most recent and most controversial because some people are against some aspects of equality ex affirmative action programs some people think social inequalities translate to political inequalityIIIBut these things may at times conflictCitizens disagree about which functions are most important and which functions should be most vigorously enforcedEx drugs and drug testing protecting life by infringing on libertyPatriot act protecting life above protecting libertyDisagreements usually arise from differences in individual priorities and the way these priorities are organized is called aPolitical ideologya coherent set of beliefs about how policies affect society and which policies are desirableIn the US we mainly think of two liberals and conservativeswhats the difference between the twoHow else might views be characterizedLiberals want more government and conservatives want a smaller government Liberals believe that the government can solve problems conservatives are more of a states rights partySocial Issues ex gay marriage abortionControlInterventionConservative populistFreedomLiberals libertariansEconomical Issues ex bailing out industries welfare minimum wageControlInterventionLiberal PopulistFreedomLibertarian Conservative1These are just tendencies these are not hardened rules2It doesnt allow you to pick out what things you stand strongly for it considers our issues equally when you may care about some issues more than others3Not all issues work with this chart ex gun controlEXAMPLE QUESTIONSGovernment should bail out industries to save jobs and marijuana should be legalizedLiberalYou believe that taxes are much too high and should be reduced but marijuana should be legalized LibertarianTaxes should be reduced and we should have strict obscenity laws to protect our children conservativeWe need to regulate financial to prevent another economic collapse and gambling should be against the law populistYou think government should save jobs and bail out industries and we need to regulate internet content PopulistYou believe that welfare is wasteful and we should reduce welfare programs and regulate music to a much greater extent because lyrics are offensive ConservativeShould be a conservative or populist issue gun control but Libertarians and Liberals actually believe in gun control Chart does not always work but it usually doesThe chart doesnt mean that those are hard facts because each person has their own personal beliefs on each issue The chart represents TENDENCIESLiberals Control Economical Issues Freedom on Social Issues
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