Politics

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Chapter 1, 2, 3, 4 Vocabulary

globalization

the increasing interdependence of citizens and nations across the world

government

the legitimate use of force to control human behavior; also the organization or agency authorized to exercise that force

national sovereignty

a political entity's externally recognized right to exercise final authority over its own affairs

order

established ways of social behavior and the oldest purpose of the government

liberalism

the belief that states should leave individuals free to follow their individual pursuits

communism

a political system in which, in theory, ownership of all land and productive facilities is in the hands of the people, and all goods are equally shared. The production and distribution of goods are controlled by an authoritarian government

public goods

benefits and services, such as parks and sanitation, that benefit all citizens but are not likely to be produced voluntarily by individuals

freedom of

an absence of constraints on behavior

freedom from

immunity (synonym equality)

police power

the authority of a government to maintain order and safeguard citizens' health, morals, safety, and welfare

political equality

equality in political decision making: one vote per person, with all votes counted equally

social equality

equality in wealth, education, and status

equality of opportunity

the idea that each person is guaranteed the same chance to succeed in life

equality of outcome

the concept that society must ensure that people are equal,and governments must design policies to redistribute wealth and status so that economic and social equality is actually achieved

rights

the benefits of government to which every citizen is entitled

political ideology

a consistent set of values and beliefs about the proper purpose and scope of government

totalitarianism

a political philosophy that advocates unlimited power for the government to enable it to control all sectors of society

socialism

a form of rule in which the central government pays a strong role in regulating existing private industry and directing the economy, although it does allow some private ownership of productive capacity

democratic socialism

a socialist form of government that guarantees civil liberties such as freedom of speech and religion. citizens determine the extent of government activity through free elections and competitive political parties

capitalism

the system of government that favors free enterprise (privately owned businesses operating without the government regulation)

libertarianism

a political ideology that is opposed to all government action except as necessary to protect life and property

libertarians

those who are opposed to using government to promote either order or equality

laissez-faire

an economic doctrine that opposes any form of government intervention in business

anarchism

a political philosophy that opposes government in any form

conservatives

those who are willing to use government to promote order but not equality

liberals

those who are willing to use government to promote equality but not order

communitarian

those who are willing to use government to promote both order and equality

autocracy

a system of government in which the power to govern is concentrated in the hands of one individual

oligarchy

a system of government in which power is concentrated in the hands of a few people

democracy

a system of government in which in theory, the people rule, either directly or indirectly

procedural democratic theory

a view of democracy as being embodied in a decision-making process that involves universal participation, political equality, majority rule, and responsiveness

universal participation

the concept that everyone in a democracy should participate in governmental decision making

political equality

equality in political decision making: one vote per person, with all votes counted equally

majority rule

the principle, basic to procedural democracy, that the decision of a group must reflect the preference of more than half of those participating-a simple majority

participatory democracy

a system of government where rank-and-file citizens rule themselves rather than electing representatives to govern on their behalf

representative democracy

a system of government where citizens elect public officials to govern on their behalf

responsiveness

a decision-making principle, necessitated by representative government, that implies that elected reps should do what the majority of people wants

substantive democratic theory

the view that democracy is embodied in the substance of government policies rather than in the policy making procedure

minority rights

the benefits of government that cannot be denied to any citizen by majority decisions

majoritarian model of democracy

the classical theory of democracy in which government by the people is interpreted as government by the majority of the people

interest group

an organized group of individuals that seeks to influence public policy (synonym lobby)

pluralist model of democracy

an interpretation of democracy in which government by the people is taken to mean government by people operating through competing interest groups

elite theory

the view that a small group of people actually makes most of the important government decisions

democratization

a process of transition as a country attempts to move from an authoritarian form of government to a democratic one

Declaration of Independence

doc by Thomas Jefferson that proclaimed the right of colonies to separate from Great Britain.

social contract theory

the belief that the people agree to set up rulers for certain purposes and thus have the right to resist or remove rulers who act against those purposes

republic

a government without a monarch; a government rooted in the consent of the governed, whose power is exercised by elected reps responsible to the governed

confederation

a loose association of independent states that agree to cooperate on specified matters

Articles of Confederation

the compact among the 13 original states that established the first government of the US

Virginia Plan

A set of proposals for a new government, submitted to Constitutional Congress 1787; included separation of government into 3 branches, division of legislature into 2 houses, and proportional representation in legislature

legislative branch

law-making branch of government

executive branch

law-enforcing branch of government

judicial branch

law-interpreting branch of government

New Jersey Plan

Submitted by head of the NJ delegation to Constitutional Convention 1787, a set of 9 resolutions that would have, in effect, preserved the Articles of Confederation by amending rather than replacing them

Great Compromise/Connecticut Compromise

submitted by Connecticut delegation to Constitutional Convention 1787, a plan for bicameral legislature in which House of Reps would be apportioned according to pop. and the states would be represented equally in Senate

electoral college

a body of electors chosen by voters to cast ballots for president and VP

extraordinary majority

a majority greater than the minimum of 50 percent plus 1

republicanism

a form of government in which power resides in the people and is exercised by their elected reps

federalism

the division of power between a central government and regional governments

separation of powers

the assignment of lawmaking, law-enforcing, and law-interpreting functions to sep branches of gov't

checks and balances

a gov't structure that gives each branch some scrutiny of and control over the other branches

enumerated powers

the powers explicitly granted to Congress by the Constitution

necessary and proper clause

(elastic clause) gives Congress means to execute its enumerated powers=basis for Congress's implied powers

implied powers

those powers that Congress needs to execute its enumerated powers

judicial review

the power to declare congressional (and presidential) acts invalid because they violate the Constitution

supremacy clause

clause in Article VI of Constitution that asserts that national laws take precedence over state and local laws when they conflict

Bill of Rights

the 1st 10 amendments to the Constitution. They prevent the national gov't from tampering with fundamental rights and civil liberties, and emphasize the limited characters of national powers

sovereignty

the quality of being supreme in power or authority

federalism

the division of power between a central government and regional governments

dual federalism

a view that holds that the Constitution is a compact among sovereign states, so that the powers of the national gov't and the states are clearly differentiated

states' rights

the idea that all rights not specifically conferred on the national gov't by the US Constitution are reserved to the states

implied powers

those powers that Congress needs to execute its enumerated powers

cooperative federalism

a view that holds that the Constitution is an agreement among people who are citizens of both state and nation, so there is much overlap between state powers and national powers

elastic clause

the last clause of Sect 8 Art. I of the Constitution which gives Congress the means to execute its enumerated powers. This clause is the basis for Congress's implied powers. Also called the necessary and proper clause

commerce clause

the 3rd clause of Art I of the Constitution, which gives Congress the power to regulate commerce among the states

grant-in-aid

money provided by one level of gov't to another to be spent for a given purpose

categorical grants

grants-in-aid targeted for a specific purpose by either formula or project

formula grants

categorical grants distributed according to a particular set of rules, called a formula, that specify who is eligible for the grants and how much each eligible applicant will receive

project grants

categorical grants awarded on the basis of competitive applications submitted by prospective recipients to perform a specific task or function

block grants

grants-in-aid awarded for general purposes, allowing the recipient great discretion in spending the grant money

policy entrepreneurs

citizens, members of interest groups, or public officials who champion particular policy ideas

preemption

the power of Congress to enact laws by which the national gov't assumes total or partial responsibility for a state gov't function

mandate

a requirement that a state undertake an activity or provide a service, in keeping with minimum national standards

restraint

a requirement laid down by act of Congress, prohibiting a state or local gov't from exercising a certain power

coercive federalism

a view that the national gov't may impose its policy preferences on the states through regulations in the form of mandates and restraints

redistricting

the process of redrawing political boundaries to reflect changes in population

municipal governments

the gov't units that administer a city or a town

county governments

the gov't units that administer a county

school district

the gov't units that administer elementary and secondary school programs

special districts

gov't units created to perform particular functions, especially when those functions are best performed across jurisdictional boundaries

home rule

the right to enact and enforce legislation locally

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