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Learning Objectives

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Introduction Learning Objectives Overview of government and its roles Overview of American Political Culture and how it compares to the rest of the world Introduction ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Learning Objectives


1
Introduction
2
Learning Objectives
  • Overview of government and its roles
  • Overview of American Political Culture and how it
    compares to the rest of the world
  • Introduction to key concepts in American
    government

3
Key Terms
  • Social Contract
  • Civic Participation
  • Political Ideology
  • Federalism

4
  • Introduction
  • The Social Contract
  • A. Democratic government is basically a simple
    concept it is a social contract in which people
    agree to join in partnership to carry out
    functions that as individuals they cannot
    otherwise accomplish.
  • B. Examples build and run schools, highways,
    criminal justice systems, create monetary and
    banking systems, insure national defense.
  • II. The Contract Restricts Independence
  • A. Even the most enlightened social contracts
    require citizens to give up some of their
    personal freedom, independence and wealth.
  • B. All of us must follow majority rules,
    although enlightened governments protect the
    fundamental rights of all citizens, and provide
    ways to influence and change the government.

5
Popular Consent
  • Social Contract Theory
  • People are source of power
  • People give consent to government to rule
  • Government provides protection of natural rights

6
The Theory of Democratic Government
  • Direct democracy
  • Indirect democracy
  • Republic

7
Direct Democracy
  • A system in which all come together
    periodically to discuss policy and abide by
    majority rule.
  • New England town meeting

8
Indirect Democracy
  • A system of government that allows citizens to
    vote for representatives who will work on their
    behalf.

9
Republic
  • A government rooted in the consent of the
    governed.

10
  • III. Involuntary
  • You and I have no choice about being a part of
    the social contract. We were born or perhaps
    immigrated into it. Short of moving to another
    country, we are obligated to obey its laws, but,
    since we live in a democracy, we can work to
    change them.
  • IV Impact
  • Government has a huge impact on all of us. As
    one measure of the impact of government on each
    of us, over our lifetime as workers, we will give
    governments about 1/3 of all the money we earn.

11
  • V. The Role of Civic Participation
  • A. Self-governance, or political participation,
    lies at the heart of a representative democracy.
  • B. That is why the Texas Legislature passed a
    law requiring you to take this course. The hope
    is that an informed citizen, will be an active
    citizen.
  • C. Unfortunately, for many of you, this required
    course comes at the wrong time in your life.
  • D. Studies show that young adults are the most
    politically apathetic age group in our society.
  • E. There are good reasons. Many of you are not
    yet homeowners, parents, and serious taxpayers.
    When you are, you will more clearly see the
    valve, role and impact of government.

12
  • VI. Who Does Participate?
  • A. Educated and higher-income Americans are the
    most politically informed and politically active
    members of our society.
  • B. In any community, you will find an educated
    and generally upper-income elite that plays a
    major role in the political process. A few
    hundred people have a great deal of political
    power in Houston.
  • C. Very busy people take the time to participate
    because they know how important a role government
    plays in society.
  • D. We have more elections than any other
    democracy.

13
Voting
  • Turnout by Age, 2000 (Figure 6.3)

14
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15
Americans Are Not Very Knowledgeable About the
Specifics of American Government
16
  • Governments around the World
  • Most governments on the earth today, and in the
    past, have been tragic failures.
  • Most governments on the earth today are not
    really based on any type of viable system of
    self-governance. Many do not even pretend to
    allow their citizens to play a role in their
    government.
  • Look at the modern world. There are about 190
    nations that are members of the United Nations.
  • Most are not real democracies.
  • Most are not very competent many are very badly
    run dictatorships.
  • China, most African nations, most of Central and
    Latin America, most of the Middle East nations
    are governmental failures of one type or another.

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19
Percentage of the Worlds Population, 2003
20
  • IX The Founding Fathers
  • A. The framers of the constitution of 1788 (the
    constitution our government is based on) had seen
    a lot of bad governments. They wanted to avoid
    what they thought of as the worst flaws.
  • B. One primary goal was to design a government
    that could not be seized by a small group of
    people.
  • C. As a precaution, they divided the government
    into three branches Executive, Legislative,
    Judiciary.
  • D. Additionally, they build checks and balances
    into the system. Each branch has some power over
    the other branches.
  • E. And, last, they created an independent
    judiciary to safe guard it from corrupting
    political forces.

21
  • F. One result is a rather conservative
    government. One that makes fundamental changes
    carefully and usually slowly.
  • G. Over the course of the semester, we will
    examine how our government is designed, how our
    government has evolved over time to become a more
    viable democracy, how the basic institutions
    function, and how public policies are made.

22
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23
Americans Have Grown Increasingly Skeptical of
the National Government
24
The Public Thinks There Is a Lot of Waste In
Government
25
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26
The American People
  • Population Growth, Demographics, Cultural Values

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29
U.S. Population by Race and Ethnicity, 2000 and
2025
30
Population of Nations
  • China 1.3 billion
  • India 1.1 billion
  • USA 300 million
  • Indonesia 219 million
  • Nigeria 160 million
  • Russia 144 million
  • Japan 130 million
  • Mexico 105 million
  • Germany 82 million
  • Iran 68 million
  • France 60 million
  • Sweden 9 million
  • Norway 4.5 million

31
Graying of America
  • In 2011, the baby boom generation will begin to
    turn 65, and by 2030, it is projected that one in
    five people will be age 65 or older.
  • The growth of the population age 65 and older
    will affect every aspect of our society,
    presenting challenges as well as opportunities to
    policymakers, families, businesses, and health
    care providers.

32
Texas Age 65 Percentages
1990 2000 2030
Anglo 12.7 13.3 23.7
Black 7.8 7.4 13.6
Hispanic 5.3 5.6 10.4
Other 3.7 5.8 27.7
33
Texas Race Ethnicity Percentages
1990 2000 2030
Anglo 60.7 54.6 36.4
Black 11.7 11.4 9.5
Hispanic 25.5 31.0 46.2
Other 2.1 3.1 7.9
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36
Americans Are Far More Involved with Religion
Than People Elsewhere
37
Americans Emphasize Individual Responsibility
Much More Than People Elsewhere
38
Americans Are Far Less Supportive Than People
Elsewhere of Government Actions to Reduce
Economic Inequality
39
Income Inequality in U.S. vs. Other Countries
40
Americans Are Much More Optimistic About Their
Chances of Getting Ahead Than People Elsewhere
41
Even Racial and Ethnic Minorities Share the
Individualist Values of the Larger Society
42
Even Less Affluent Americans Share the
Individualist Values of the Larger Society
43
What Americans Value Political Ideologies
  • Political Ideology
  • A coherent set of beliefs about politics, public
    policy, and public purpose.
  • Who Are the Liberals and Conservatives?
  • Views change over time

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46
What Americans Value Political Ideologies
47
What Americans Value Political Ideologies
48
U.S. Tax Burden vs. Other Democracies
49
U.S. Debt vs. Other Countries
50
Summary
  • Our government is a social contract that we are
    born or immigrated into that restricts our
    independence in order to provide safety and basic
    services.
  • Participation in the system has been declining.
  • Democracy and Self-Governance are relatively new
    ideas that are spreading, but there are still
    many countries that are not free.
  • Our government was the first democracy.
  • The founding fathers designed the government very
    carefully to guard against tyranny with
    separation of powers, checks and balances, and an
    independent judiciary.

51
Summary
  • The United States is an immigrant society with an
    increasing number of minorities.
  • There are two major ideologies liberal and
    conservative. Moderates are those in the middle.
  • The Federal Budget is an important part of the
    government because it is composed of various
    types of taxes and pays for all the services our
    government provides.
  • We have a system of federalism where power is
    distributed between the national, state, and
    local governments.

52
Discussion Questions
  • Given this information about declining turnout,
    lack of knowledge, and who actually participates,
    what are the implications for our government and
    the social contract?
  • Is the spread of Democracy inevitable? How and
    why does it spread?

53
Discussion Questions
  • Is there a relationship between the fact that the
    US is an immigrant society and the values of
    individualism we discussed? If so what?
  • Why do you think the tax burden is less here than
    in other countries? What are the implications
    does this have?

54
Supplemental
55
Federalism
  • The Relationship Between the Federal and State
    Governments

56
The Bureaucrats
  • Growth in Civilian Government Employees (Figure
    15.1)

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64
Where Are the Key Buildings in Washington?
65
Party Eras in American History
  • Party Coalitions Today (Figure 8.3)

66
The Party in the Electorate
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