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Poli Sci Notes - Chapter 1 The Logic Of Politics Politics...

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1. Chapter 1 The Logic Of Politics Politics arises from the need to choose among alternatives when differences make it impossible for all people to get what they want Politics is the process through which individuals and groups reach agreement on a course of common or collective action -- even as they continue to disagree on the goals that action is intended to achieve Successful politics almost always requires Bargaining Compromise The more people involved in the political process, and as issues become more complex and divisive, unstructured negotiation generally fails What can overcome this? Effective political institutions. Only when politics fails and societies collapse into anarchy and civil war do we grasp the significance of politics in sustaining our everyday lives as well as our plans for the future Constitutions and Governments Nations can be thought of as organizations. Most organizations require some form of rules or procedures to guide an it’s members in making essential political decisions. Political decisions are those in which the participants initially disagree about what they would like the organization to do. But nations have more difficulty making political decisions. A constitution of a nation establishes its governing institutions and the set of rules and procedures these institutions must (and must not) follow to reach and enforce collective agreements. A government consists of those institutions and the legally prescribed process for making and enforcing collective agreements. Power Verses Authority Government institutions consist of offices that confer on their occupants specific authority and responsibilities. Authority is the acknowledged right of the office to make a particular decision for all participants. Power refers to an officeholder’s actual influence with other officeholders, and subsequently over the government’s actions. Institutional Durability Institutions tend to be stable and resist change.
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