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Public Policy Spring 2014

Public Policy Spring 2014 - San Jos State University...

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1 San José State University Department of Political Science Political Science 130: Making Public Policy Spring 2014 Professor: Garrick’L.’Percival ’ Office Location: Clark’Hall’406L ’ Telephone: (408)-924-5553’ Email: [email protected] ’ (preferred’contact) ’ Office Hours: Monday’and’Wednesday’ 10:30-12,’ and’by’appt. ’ Class Days/Time: Monday,’Wednesday’12 -1:15pm’ Classroom: Dudley’Moorhead’Hall’149A ’ CANVAS Website: http://sjsu.instructure.com Course Description This’course’ provides’a’study’of’the’public’policymaking’process’in’the’American’political’ system.’ The’past’decade’has’been’a’fascinating’time’to’ witness.’The’nation’has’involved’ itself’in’two’long’ and’c ostly’ wars.’We±ve’been’through’the’worst’financial’crisis’since’the Great’Depression’that’has’left’in’its’wake’millions’of’people’still’unemployed’or’ underemployed.’ There’have’been’questions’about’w hat’do’to,’if’anything,’about’ rising’ health’care’costs’an d’ the’fact’that’ millions’of’Americans’ go’without’health’insurance’each’ year.’ Moreover,’ debate’ about’how’to’fix’our’broken’ immigration’ system’ and’ how’to’ rebuild’and’retool’our’ educational’apparatus’for’the’21 st ’ century’has ’ risen’and’fallen’from’ the’top’of’the’go verning’agenda’any’number’of’times.’And’this’ is’to’name’just’a’few’issues .’ There’are’plenty’more.’ What±s’important’to’recognize’is’that’this’has’ all’unfolded’in’a’period’in’our’politic al’ history’of’nearly’unparalleled’ political’polarization’in’Washing ton’defined’as’its’been,’by’a’ deeply’fractured’ideological’batt le’over’the’size’and’scope’of’government’in’peoples±’lives,’ it±s’role’in’the’economy,’redistribution’of’wealth,’and’how’to’create’opportu nity’and’ economic’security’in’American’life.’ Our’syst em’of’governance’ is’ often’criticized’for’being’ slow,’ wasteful,’ and’inefficient.’ ’ It’is’ perhaps’not’a’surprise,’then,’that’we’ are’also’living’in’a’period’time’ defined’by’ historically’
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2 low’level s’ of’trust’in’government.’ ’ As’we’will’see,’t his’has’important’imp lications’about ’ who’participates’in’the’policy making’process,’the’kinds’of’decisions’that’are’made,’and’ who’benefits’and’who’loses.’ ’ It±s’easy’(and’some’would’say’convenient)’for’citizens’to’put’ blame’for ’ all’of ’ this’on’pusillanimous’politicians’who’gover n’out’of’their’own’self -interest.’
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