american politics study guide

american politics study guide - Chapter 1 1. Politics the...

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Chapter 1 1. Politics – the process through which individuals and groups reach agreement on a course of common, or collective, action—even as they disagree on the intended goals of that action a. Requires bargaining and compromise 2. A stable community endures by establishing rules and procedures for promoting successful collective action 3. Constitution – the set of rules and procedures these institutions must follow to reach and enforce collective agreements 4. Authority – the acknowledged right to make a particular decision a. Power – actual influence with other officeholders 5. Institutions are stable and resist change a. Institutions persist way longer than the occupying individuals b. People plan on the expectation that the current norms will remain 6. Collective Action –the efforts of a group to reach and implement agreements a. Coordination – what they want, what they will contribute to the cause, and how to coordinate their efforts with those of others b. Prisoner’s Dilemma – individuals decide they are personally better off pursuing activity that rewards them individually, undermines others i. In order to reach a mutually profitable exchange, participants in a collective decision must be able to trust each other to abide by their commitments c. Zero sum issues – do not offer mutual gains through cooperation 7. Free-Rider Problem – members are tempted to defect from the agreement by withholding a contribution to the group’s undertaking while enjoying the benefits of the collective effort a. Arises whenever citizens recognize that their small contribution to the collective enterprise will not affect its success or failure 8. Tragedy of the Commons – A situation in which group members overexploit a common resource, causing its destruction a. Common solution: Privatize the collective good 9. Transaction costs – the time, effort, and resources required to make collective decisions a. More people involved = more transaction costs 10. Conformity costs – what you must do as part of the collective, your duty 11. Command authority gives its holder comprehensive control of those within the scope of its authority 12. Veto – embodies the right of an official or institution to say “no” to a proposal from another official or institution 13. Agenda control involves both positive and negative authority a. The agenda controller limits the choices available to the collective 14. Majority rule – simple majority or one-half plus one. 15. Plurality rule – the candidate receiving the most votes, regardless whether the plurality reaches a majority
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16. Passage of ordinary bills and amendments – simple majority of the senate 17. Rule 22 (cloture to set time limit on debate) – 3/5 of the full Senate; 60 votes 18. Veto override – two thirds of the senate 19. Delegation – when individuals or groups authorize someone to make and implement decisions for them 20. Principals – those who possess decision-making authority
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american politics study guide - Chapter 1 1. Politics the...

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