GOVT 2305 - Study Guide 1

GOVT 2305 - Study Guide 1 - GOVT 2305 FIRST EXAM Chapter 1...

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GOVT 2305 - FIRST EXAM Chapter 1 1. What is democracy’s central idea? Ordinary people want to rule themselves and are capable of doing so. 2. Define democracy. Where did this idea originate? A system of government in which the people rule; rule by many. Democracy is a way of making decisions in which each person has one, and only one, voice. The idea originated with the Ancient Greeks. 3. Compare and contrast direct and representative democracies. What are New England town meetings an example? Direct democracy - All citizens must be able to meet together regularly to debate and decide the issues of the day. Representative democracy – A system in which the people select others, called representatives, to act on their behalf. New England town meetings are an example of direct democracy. Citizens make decisions directly at town meetings. Direct Democracy – A form of political decision making in which policies are decided by the people themselves, rather than by their representatives, acting either in small face-to-face assemblies or through the electoral process as in initiatives and referenda in the American states. Representative Democracy – Indirect democracy, in which the people rule through elected representatives 4. Be able to thoroughly describe the fundamental principles of representative democracy. Liberal democracy - Popular sovereignty(sov-rin-tee), political equality, and political liberty. Popular Sovereignty means that people are the ultimate source of government authority and that what the government does is determined by what the people want. Autocracy is a general term that describes all forms of government characterized by rule by a single person or by a group with total power. 1. Government Leaders are Selected in Competitive Elections – contested election in which both existing and aspiring government leaders must periodically face the people for judgement 2. Elections are Free and Fair - no coercion of voters and virtually all citizens are able to run for office and vote in elections. Rules do not favor some over others. 3. People Participate in the Political Process – voting in elections, contacting public officials, working with others to bring matters to public attention, joining associations 4. High-Quality Information is Available – access to accurate political information, insightful interpretations, and vigorous debate 5. The Majority Rule - The government adopts the policy that the most people want 6. Government Polices Reflect the Wishes of the People – close correspondence between what government does and what the people want it to do 7. Government Policies are Effective – policies must be turned into government actions that work
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Political Equality is the idea that each person carries the same weight in voting and other political decision making. Involves what the 14 th amendment calls “equal protection,” meaning that everyone in a democracy is treated the same.
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