9-9-09_P200_Notes

9-9-09_P200_Notes - PLSI 200: American Politics 9/9/09...

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PLSI 200: American Politics 9/9/09 Competing Images of American Democracy in Practice REVIEW: Madisonian vs. Participatory Democracy -More towards the protection of minority rights -More towards public accountability Notes: Three Competing Images of American Democracy in Practice -Stratificationist (elite theory) -Pluralism -Hyperpluralism Frame of reference: Madisonian Democracy -Madisonian Democracy is normative (how things out to be) -Three theories are explanative and critical (how things really are) We are going to analyze the institutions and processes of American politics using the three competing images Name Core Metaphor Power Tolerance of Minority Rights Government acountantable to the Public? Stratificationist Layer Cake Concentrated No No Pluralist *9/9/09 Bargaining among factions Dispersed Yes (forced by structural constraints) Yes (direct and indirect) Hyperpluralist Gridlock Too widely dispersed Yes. Too much sensitivity to minority interests No. Public gets lost in paralyzed system Stratificationist Theory -Metaphor: The Layer Cake -Elite-->Secondary Actors-->The Public! -Power is concentrated in the hands of some featured elite -Different ideas of who the elite may be -Secondary Actors -People who have some power (influence), but not fundamental basic decision-making power -The Public -Sometimes barred from participation
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-Sometimes just disengaged, passive, apathetic -Stratificationists view the public as unimportant Four Variants -Power Elite Theory -Iron Triangles -Public Choice Theory -Social Choice Theory (*) The two faces of Power -Three theories are concerned with correctly explaining who possess power in America -Elite theorists: Two faces of power
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9-9-09_P200_Notes - PLSI 200: American Politics 9/9/09...

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