Gov unit1


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Gov unit1

  1. 1. Introduction to Comparative Politics
  2. 2.  Activities associated with the control of publicdecisions among a given people in a given territory→ decisions are authoritative and done with formalpower→ decisions are public, not privatePolitical science is the study of these decisions
  3. 3. Government: organization of individuals who are legally empoweredto make binding decisions on behalf of a particularcommunity group of institutions and people authorized by formaldocuments to have a set of powers
  4. 4. • Night Watchman State – government provides basiclaw & order, defense and property protection, but littleelse (limited government, 19th century)• Police State – seen in authoritarian government,especially communist & fascist• Welfare State – programs of social welfare,unemployment, insurance, pensions, etc.• Regulatory State – similar to welfare state but withstricter regulations
  5. 5. Condition if no government existed• Thomas Hobbes – felt state of nature was chaos &conflict; government provided order & control• Jean-Jacques Rousseau – felt state of nature was ideal;government corrupted society• John Locke – in the middle; felt government wasnecessary for protection, but favored a limitedgovernment
  6. 6. • Community & Nation Building – stability, peace, acommon culture• Need for security & order – protect from internal &external attacks• Protection – property and social & political rights• Promote economic efficiency & growth – public &private goods, limit market failures (monopolies, i.e.) Social Justice – redistribute wealth & resources, protectthe weakest members of society
  7. 7.  Destruction of community (economic or politicalreasons) Basic rights violations Economic Inefficiency – restrictions, governmentalmonopolies, etc. Private Gain – rent seekers are people who use politicalpursuit for private gain Critics of government – anarchists (want nogovernment) libertarians (want limited government)
  8. 8. • Set of institutions that formulate & implement thecollective goals of society or of groups in society(legislative bodies, interest groups, courts, etc.)• Shaped by domestic and international environment• A collection of related and interacting institutions andagencies• More successful with higher legitimacy
  9. 9.  A state is a political system that has sovereignty → theright to govern All individuals and institutions that make publicpolicy, whether they are in government or not (interestgroups, i.e.)
  10. 10.  Internal Sovereignty – deals with matters of citizens External Sovereignty – deals with matter of otherstates
  11. 11.  Country – distinct, politically defined territories thatencompass politicalinstitutions, cultures, economies, and ethnic andother social identitiesHistorically the most significant source of a peoplesidentity State – a cluster of powerful political institutions; keyinstitutions responsible formaking, implementing, and enforcing policiesOften synonymous with “government”
  12. 12.  Big and small states Vatican City - smallest legally independent entity ingeographic size and population Russia - largest landmass China and India - largest populations Political implications of geographic and populationsize? Big countries not always most important: Mongolia Small ones can be: Cuba, Israel Area and population do not determine a country’spolitical system. Geographic location can have strategic implications.
  13. 13.  Pressures from AboveA state loses some of its sovereignty fromsupranational entities NAFTA, EU, IMFTo get an IMF bail out Mexico had to privatize many of its1,155 state-owned enterprises Pressures from BelowA state cedes sovereignty to regional (sub-national)entities Devolution in the UK Regional Cleavages
  14. 14.  193 States are currently recognized by the United Nations States can be multinationalSoviet Union, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia Nations can be larger than statesGermanyChina Nations can be divided into distinct statesKoreaEast & West Germany Nations can have no stateThe KurdsThe BasquesThe Palestinians
  15. 15. • 1st world – capitalist democracy• 2nd world – communist (mainly Soviet)• 3rd world – remaining states that weren’t rich, westernor communist• 4th world – lack of resources, appear doomedThese terms are outdated → today we use…..– North States – rich, capitalist democracies– South States – developing states
  16. 16.  Gross National Product (GNP) – output per person thatis a citizen of a nation, regardless of where they live(most common) Gross Domestic Product (GDP) – output per person in anation, regardless of where they are from Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) – measures price levels ofnations; most accurate Also measure industrialization, income, education, lifeexpectancy, birth rates, access to health care in additionto GNP/GDP These are used to compare rich versus poor countries These are important because income inequality can leadto political instability
  17. 17.  Building community Fostering economic, social & political development Securing a democracy and civil liberties
  18. 18.  Nation – group of people with a common identity(language, history, race, culture) Most states are multi-national (can be culturally diverse orexplosive with conflict) Ethnicity- identification based on racial, cultural orhistorical characteristics• Religion plays a role– Christianity is largest religion, Islam is fastest growing– Religious fundamentalism is on the rise (reject moderntestaments/views) Language – approximately 5000 languages spoken today 8 world languages:English, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Portuguese, French, German & Chinese
  19. 19.  Political systems must have economic development tosatisfy citizens Rich & poor countries differ inhealth, education, media and industry Many states have internal economic inequality Environment has suffered fromindustrialization, economic development &population growth
  20. 20.  Nation-State is when the national identification & legalauthority coincide Old states (pre WWII) were mostly European New states (post WWII) are mainly African and post-SovietUnion Old & New68 states existed in 1945By 2005, 125 new countries had been created
  21. 21.  States – the organizations that control a territory Country – includes the territory and people livingwithin a state Government – the leadership or elite that administerthe stateThe Obama administration
  22. 22.  Regimes are the norms and rules regarding individualfreedoms and collective equality, the locus of power,and the use of that power“The rules of the game governing the exercise of power” Democratic Regimes Authoritarian Regimes Illiberal – partly free, some personal liberties anddemocratic rights are limited
  23. 23. Cleavage- deep and long-lasting political divisions Political cleavage is when national, ethnic, linguistic &religious divisions effect policy Cumulative cleavages are when the same peopleoppose one another on many issues Cross cutting cleavages are when groups with acommon interest on one issue are on opposite sides ofanother issue→ Cumulative cleavages are more destructive
  24. 24. • Democracy - leaders are elected in free and fairelections; citizens have basic rights & freedoms• Democratization - the process of developingdemocratic states
  25. 25. Samuel Huntington’s “3rd Wave of Democratization” 1st wave was after WWI 2nd wave was after WWII 3rd wave started in mid-1970’s Democracy is the fastest growing political system
  26. 26.  Environmental issues Economic inequality and instability Ethnic differences Religious differences