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slides for Barbour and Wright texbook, chapter 1.

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  1. 1. Chapter 1
  2. 2. Goals/Themes of Chapter 1 <ul><li>Meaning of “politics” </li></ul><ul><li>Varieties of political systems and how each works for individuals (the rules) </li></ul><ul><li>Goals of founders </li></ul><ul><li>Citizenship </li></ul><ul><li>Critical Thinking (part of citizenship) </li></ul>
  3. 3. What is Politics? <ul><li>Politics: who gets what, when, and how—a process and struggle of determining how power and resources are distributed without recourse to violence. </li></ul><ul><li>Power: the ability to get others to do what you want </li></ul>
  4. 4. What is Politics ? <ul><li>Politics arranges our lives into some kind of social order. </li></ul><ul><li>Politics decides how power is managed and what is legitimate—therefore stopping any violence. </li></ul>
  5. 5. What is Politics? <ul><li>Government: a system or organization for exercising authority over a body of people </li></ul><ul><li>Authority: power that people recognize as legitimate </li></ul><ul><li>Social order : how we organize our collective lives </li></ul>
  6. 6. What is Politics? <ul><li>Rules: directives that specify how resources will be distributed or what procedures govern collective activity </li></ul><ul><li>Institutions: organizations in which government power is exercised </li></ul>
  7. 7. Rules <ul><li>Every game has rules—some rules are written down, other rules are worked out over time. </li></ul><ul><li>Government and politics are shaped by political rules. </li></ul><ul><li>RULES OF THE GAME —that’s what we will be examining this semester. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Rules <ul><li>Rules appeared in the Constitution and have been honed ever since. </li></ul><ul><li>The rules have changed over time. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Who Gets to Play? <ul><li>Everyone! The key issue is to know the rules. </li></ul><ul><li>We can all fight for what we want. While the playing field isn’t even, it is open. </li></ul><ul><li>Some get more, some know the rules better—but we all have a chance. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Politics and Economics <ul><li>Politics and economics are closely connected since both focus on the distribution of society’s resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Economics : production and distribution of a society’s material resources and services </li></ul><ul><li>Economics was meant to be private, whereas politics was meant to be public </li></ul>
  11. 11. Economic Systems <ul><li>Capitalism: market determines production, distribution, and price decisions </li></ul><ul><li>Regulated capitalism has government procedural guarantees, whereas laissez-faire capitalism doesn’t </li></ul>
  12. 12. Economic Systems <ul><li>socialist economy: the state determines production, distribution, and price decisions. Property is government owned </li></ul><ul><li>social democracy is a hybrid of capitalism and socialism </li></ul>
  13. 14. Political Systems <ul><li>Democracy </li></ul><ul><li>Republic </li></ul><ul><li>Authoritarian </li></ul><ul><li>Anarchy </li></ul><ul><li>Monarchy </li></ul><ul><li>Theocracy </li></ul><ul><li>Oligarchy </li></ul>
  14. 15. Non-authoritarian Systems <ul><li>anarchy: absence of government and laws </li></ul>
  15. 16. Democracy <ul><li>Democratic systems: power vesting in the people (with reservations) </li></ul><ul><li>Citizens: members of a political community having both rights and responsibilities, which include obeying laws, paying taxes, owning businesses, participating in government. </li></ul>
  16. 17. Authoritarian Systems <ul><li>Authoritarian systems: individuals are subjects of their state government </li></ul><ul><li>Subjects: individuals who are obliged to submit to a government authority against which they have no rights </li></ul>
  17. 18. Authoritarian Systems <ul><li>Fascist government : policy is made for the ultimate glory of the state (Nazi Germany) </li></ul><ul><li>Oligarchy : rule by a small group of elites </li></ul><ul><li>Totalitarian government : a system in which absolute control is exercised over every aspect of life (North Korea) </li></ul>
  18. 19. Authoritarian Systems <ul><li>Monarchy : government power vested in a king or queen (Saudi Arabia) </li></ul><ul><li>Theocracy : government claims to draw its power from divine or religious authority (Iran) </li></ul>
  19. 22. Theories of Democracy <ul><li>Elite democracy : limits the citizens’ role to choosing among competing leaders </li></ul><ul><li>Pluralist democracy : citizen membership in groups is the key to political power </li></ul><ul><li>Participatory democracy : citizens should actively and directly control all aspects of their lives </li></ul>
  20. 23. Theories of Democracy <ul><li>Social contract theory : the notion that society is based on an agreement between government and the governed in which people agree to give up some rights in exchange for the protection of others </li></ul>
  21. 24. Citizenship/Role of the People <ul><li>What does it mean? </li></ul><ul><li>Citizens have both obligations and responsibilities </li></ul><ul><li>Too many citizens see government as just a one-way-street. They want…..but do not wish to contribute or give back. </li></ul>
  22. 25. Citizenship/Role of the People <ul><li>Obligations: obey the law, jury duty, pay taxes….. </li></ul><ul><li>Responsibilities: vote, knowledge, activism, participation….. </li></ul>
  23. 26. Citizenship <ul><li>Madison did not trust average Americans to act beyond their own interests </li></ul><ul><li>Madison’s view contrasted with the idea of “republican virtue” (citizens can put interests of community ahead of their own) </li></ul><ul><li>American citizenship today illustrates elements of both views of citizenship </li></ul>
  24. 27. Citizenship <ul><li>Madison feared “pure democracy” because people may create “factions” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Factions: groups that might pursue only their self-interest </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Madison preferred a republic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Republic: a government in which decisions are made through representatives of the people </li></ul></ul>
  25. 28. Citizenship <ul><li>What is our role? (people/citizens) </li></ul><ul><li>What do the “rules” allow us to do? </li></ul><ul><li>What can’t we do? </li></ul><ul><li>Do citizens take advantage of the opportunities? </li></ul><ul><li>Has the role of the citizen changed over time? How and why? </li></ul>
  26. 29. Citizenship <ul><li>How can we become informed citizens? </li></ul><ul><li>Do political leaders actually want informed citizens? Something to think about. </li></ul>
  27. 30. Informed Citizenship <ul><li>Read the news </li></ul><ul><li>Speak up </li></ul><ul><li>Demand leadership—but not perfection </li></ul><ul><li>Understand pluralism and politics </li></ul><ul><li>Know the rules </li></ul><ul><li>Participate </li></ul>
  28. 31. Thinking about Politics <ul><li>Who are the parties involved? </li></ul><ul><li>What resources, powers, and rights do they bring to the struggle? </li></ul>
  29. 32. Thinking about Politics <ul><li>What is at stake? What does each party stand to win or lose? </li></ul>
  30. 33. Thinking about Politics <ul><li>How do the rules shape the outcome? Where do these particular rules come from? And what strategies and tactics are used by these political actors to make the rules work for them? </li></ul>
  31. 35. Critical Thinking <ul><li>Challenging the conclusions of others </li></ul><ul><li>Challenging “popular” notions </li></ul><ul><li>Challenging conventional wisdom </li></ul><ul><li>Exploring alternative opinions </li></ul><ul><li>Asking why or why not </li></ul>
  32. 36. Critical Thinking <ul><li>Considering sources of information </li></ul><ul><li>Looking for independent evidence and logical reasoning </li></ul><ul><li>Challenging experts or authorities—leaders and so-called elders </li></ul><ul><li>Not believing it simply because it’s always what you have been told </li></ul>
  33. 37. Critical Thinking <ul><li>It is often uncomfortable </li></ul><ul><li>It is often difficult </li></ul>
  34. 38. Critical Thinking/Benefits <ul><li>Learn to be an informed citizen </li></ul><ul><li>Leads to awareness </li></ul><ul><li>Can develop our own opinions </li></ul><ul><li>It is an enjoyable activity </li></ul><ul><li>Not just one of the crowd </li></ul>
  35. 39. Critical Thinking/Arguments <ul><li>Consider the source and audience </li></ul><ul><li>Who wrote the arguments? </li></ul><ul><li>Where did the item appear? </li></ul><ul><li>What audience was it directed? </li></ul>
  36. 40. Critical Thinking/Arguments <ul><li>Lay out the arguments, underlying values, and assumptions </li></ul><ul><li>What argument is being made? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the author’s assumptions? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the author’s values? </li></ul><ul><li>Is the thinking clear and logical? </li></ul>
  37. 41. Critical Thinking/Arguments <ul><li>Uncover the evidence </li></ul><ul><li>Is the research done well? </li></ul><ul><li>Is the evidence demonstrated well? </li></ul><ul><li>Were reputable sources used? </li></ul>
  38. 42. Critical Thinking/Arguments <ul><li>Evaluate the Conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>Is the argument successful? </li></ul><ul><li>Is it convincing? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it change your mind? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it make you think? </li></ul><ul><li>Is it logical? </li></ul>
  39. 43. Critical Thinking/Arguments <ul><li>Sort out the political implications </li></ul><ul><li>What is the political significance of the arguments? </li></ul><ul><li>What does it say about who get what and why? </li></ul>
  40. 44. Critical Thinking/Causation <ul><li>Correlation: relationship between 2 or more factors such that change in one is accompanied by change(s) in the other(s) </li></ul><ul><li>Causation: direct responsibility for a change </li></ul><ul><li>Spurious relationship: no relationship! </li></ul>
  41. 45. Causation <ul><li>When ice cream sales go up, so do residential burglaries. When ice-cream sales decrease, burglaries have also gone down. </li></ul><ul><li>There is correlation. Is there causation? </li></ul>
  42. 46. Causation <ul><li>The purpose here is to show you that policies is complicated and complex. </li></ul><ul><li>Politicians, interest groups, and TV often give you simple explanations. </li></ul><ul><li>Hopefully, we will do it differently in this class. </li></ul>
  43. 47. STUDY QUESTIONS
  44. 48. Study Questions <ul><li>When, if ever, should individuals be asked to sacrifice their own good for the good of the country? </li></ul><ul><li>What would be an example of this? Why should decide? </li></ul>
  45. 49. Study Questions <ul><li>What words, ideas, images, thoughts, and/or opinions come to mind when you hear the word &quot;politics&quot;?  </li></ul>
  46. 50. Study Questions <ul><li>Why does politics seem like such a dirty and corrupt business to Americans? Whose fault is that? Is it true, or just a perception? </li></ul>
  47. 51. Study Questions <ul><li>There was an old 1960s adage that said &quot;If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.&quot; In terms of American politics in our day-to-day lives, what can each of us do to effect change or ease the severity of problems like poverty, war, pollution, crime, corruption, unemployment, etc.? List specific things each of us can do as citizens. Must individual citizens be concerned with these problems or should we just leave the solutions to our leaders? </li></ul>
  48. 52. Study Questions <ul><li>What are some of specific things about government and politics that you would like to learn more about in this class? </li></ul>
  49. 53. Study Questions <ul><li>Is the United States a real democracy? In other words, how democratic is this nation? Do the people actually rule? Do we really live in a democracy?    </li></ul>
  50. 54. Study Questions <ul><li>Who are the people ? Are you concerned that so many of our leaders are wealthy? Are the people represented in the Founder’s government? If not, does it matter? </li></ul>
  51. 55. Study Questions <ul><li>Is it important to study politics? Make a case both for an against? Maybe paying no attention is okay! </li></ul>
  52. 56. Study Questions <ul><li>Why do young people like yourselves (your age group) know and/or care so little about politics? Where do these attitudes come from? What might be the consequences of these attitudes? </li></ul>
  53. 57. Study Questions <ul><li>How should our political representatives vote? Should they solely consider what their constituents want? Or should they take a broader view and consider the best interests of the nation/world as a whole? </li></ul>
  54. 58. Study Questions <ul><li>Is the American government the best in the world? How would address the question analytically and/or intellectually? Literacy rates? Income? Come up with some criteria to answer this question. </li></ul>
  55. 59. Study Questions <ul><li>Are there times when democracies are dangerous? Explain if you can have too much democracy? </li></ul>
  56. 60. Study Questions <ul><li>Why does critical thinking feel like more work than regular thinking? </li></ul>

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