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Study for Chapter 1 quiz in AP Gov.

Linkage Institutions

Political channels through which people's concerns become political issues on the policy agenda

Policy Agenda

The issues that attract the serious attention of public officials and other people actually involved in politics at any given point in time. (List of Priorities)

5 corner stones of an ideal democratic society

Equality in voting
Effective participation
Enlightened understanding
Citizen control of the agenda

Pluralist Theory

Competing interest groups that organize efforts to influence the agenda

Elite and Class Theory

Society divided along class lines; the upper-elite pulls the strings of Gov't


Many competing groups are so strong that government has been brought to a standstill


A system of selecting policymakers and organizing gov't so that policy represents and responds to the public's preference

Challenges facing American democracy today

*Increased technical expertise (as the human knowledge has expanded, it has become increasingly difficult for individual citizen to make well-informed decisions)
*Limited participation in Gov't
*Escalating campaign cost
*Diverse political interest

Principle components of the policymaking system

Linkage Institutions
Policy Agenda
Policymaking Institutions

Gross-Domestic Product

Sum total of the value of all the goods and services produced in a nation

5 Elements of the American Creed

*Egalitarianism (political equality [equal voting rights for all American citizens])
*Individualism (belief that people can & should get ahead on their own)
*Laissez-faire (promote free markets & limited gov't)
*Populism (political philosophy supporting the rights of average citizens in their struggle against privileged elites)

4 Linkage Institutions

*Political Parties
*Interest Groups

Functions that Gov't performs

*Maintain National Defense
*Provide public services called "public goods"
*Preserve order
*Socialize the young
*Collect taxes


monarchy or dictatorship


A Group of Landowners, military rulers, wealthy elite, warlords, etc...

Harold D. Lasswell

"Who gets what, when and how"
1902-1978 one of the most original and productive political scientists and communication theorists of his time.

Michael Delli Carpini and Scott Keeter

Political knowledge, "1.Fosters civic virtues, such as political tolerance; 2.Helps citizens to identify what policies would truly benefit them and then incorporate this information in their voting behavior; 3.promotes active participation in politics."

Political Culture

An overall set of values widely shared within a society

What is the Nature of American political Culture?

Supportive of cultural values like liberty and egalitarianism, however divided onto different sides of the political field which have different political cultures.

Single-Issue Groups

Have narrow interest, tend to dislike compromise, cast votes based one issue, ignoring the politicians stand on everything else.

Policymaking Institutions

Branches of Gov't charged with taking action on political issues (Congress, The Presidency, and The Courts)

Public Policy

A choice that Gov't makes in response to a political issue

Minority Rights

Guarantees rights to those who do not belong to majorities and allows that they might join majorities through persuasion and reasoned argument.

Policy Gridlock

Occurs when each policy coalition (group) finds its way clocked by others; when no coalition is strong enough to form a majority and establish policy


Determine whom will be selected as governmental leaders and what policies the leaders pursue (a struggle for control)

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