Chapter Eleven - Politics and the Economy

Chapter Eleven - Politics and the Economy - SOCL 151,...

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SOCL 151, PRINCIPLES OF SOCIOLOGY CHAPTER FOURTEEN – POLICITICS AND THE ECONOMY LEARNING OBJECTIVES 1. Define: politics, state, dehumanization, checks and balances, power elite, PAC, pluralism, capitalism, socialism, economy, welfare or state capitalism, democratic socialism, and multinational corporations 2. Differentiate between power, authority, and coercion. 3. Describe each of Weber's authority types and the circumstances under which they are most likely to be found. 4. Review the types of government: monarchies, democracies and dictatorship/oligatrchies. 5. Review the two major political parties in the U.S. government 6. Understand the patterns of voting in the U.S. 7. Review the roles of the lobbyists and special interest groups in the U.S. government. 8. Discuss the differences between the pluralist and the power-elite models of American government. 9. Understand how War and Terrorism plays a part of a governmental system. 10. Trace the evolution of the economic system. 11. Discuss the modem economic systems of capitalism and socialism. 12. What are the advantages/disadvantages of each type of economic system? 13. Review the convergence theory of capitalism and socialism. 14. Understand the informal economy. 15. Differentiate between primary, secondary, and tertiary production. 16. Describe and discuss the dual economy including the industrial core, the competitive sector, and the segmented labor market. Political and economic institutions are closely related structures. The state of the economy has a direct impact on government decisions regarding economic policies. You may note this by reviewing newspapers and news magazines. Many articles discuss political decisions that are designed to reduce inflation, reduce unemployment, bolster the market position of American companies, and reduce the government deficit. Consequently, governmental economic policies are typically reactions to economic trends and attempts to guide the future state of the economy. We often refer to this institutional relationship as the political economy. This lesson should help you to understand political and economic decisions and their impact on you as an individual. POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS Politics focuses on who makes decisions and how they are made. Politics itself has been defined as the authoritative allocation of values, in other words who gets what, when, and how. This means that the wealthy and the poor are affected by political decisions. Someone has to decide how values should be allocated (e.g., tax revenues), and we are interested in how a person achieves the power to make these decisions. Power is a central issue in politics. Without some degree of power, a person is not going to make many decisions stand. Power, itself, is defined as the ability to make decisions and to enforce these decisions even if someone objects to them.
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Students will take exams in college because the professor has the power to set an exam schedule and to fail a student if he or she does not complete the exams. Power may be subtle or obvious.
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Chapter Eleven - Politics and the Economy - SOCL 151,...

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