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Welcome to American Government!

Welcome to American Government!

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Welcome to American Government!

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  1. Welcome to American Government! • Prof. Denise Scheberle • Steve Haskell

  2. big card, first name • little card:name, who you are, fun or interesting fact about you, what you want to learn from this class, xerox a picture and put it on the back • getting to know you

  3. Nature of the class • Civic engagement and political participation • Lecture, discussion and involvement • We’re learning together • What’s in the news • Levels of learning • Facts, opinions, evaluation

  4. More information… • Syllabus and books • Test and assignment dates will probably NOT change • Phoenix Forum April 7 (normal class time) • Reading schedule may vary • snow days

  5. Thursday, January 20 • Cards/ reflections on government • Inauguration, confirmation hearings for Rice, upcoming elections in Iraq, others?

  6. America is divided • 49% approval rating for President Bush (89% in September 2001) • 42% approve of foreign policy/ economy (75%; 64% in October 2001) • 44% approve of how Congress is doing its job (67% in October) • 28% have favorable opinion of Vice President Cheney, with 33% unfavorable, but 22% don’t know • More than half believe America will remain divided in the next four years

  7. Questions • What is government? • Why have it? • How do you feel about government?

  8. Government defined… • legitimate use of force to control behavior. • formal institutions through which a land and its people are ruled. • mechanisms that people use to protect themselves and to establish policies that provide favorable conditions for pursuing their lives.

  9. Policy • purposeful course of action to solve a problem • Private (business) v. public (government) policies • laws are the most common instruments of public policy

  10. Politics • Process of influencing government—results in a determination about whose values will prevail • Struggle over power within organizations or groups that can grant or withhold privileges or benefits • “who gets what, when, and how much.” • Harold Lasswell

  11. democracy • “people have authority” • direct or indirect • Republic: indirect democracy, a representative form of government with the consent of the governed

  12. How do we measure democracy? • Procedural: universal participation, political equality, majority rule • Substantive: people live free, civil liberties and rights are protected

  13. Challenges facing government?

  14. Values desired by citizens • Freedom • Order • Equality

  15. Freedom • to speak and write freely • practice own religion • have liberty to pursue our lives • Individuals

  16. Social order • To be protected from ourselves and external threats

  17. Equality • Political equality • one person, one vote • Social equality • equality of opportunity • equality of outcome

  18. Which value is the most important to you? Why?

  19. For Tuesday Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 Reactions to the inaugural address www.cspan.org How would you describe the U.S. constitution?

  20. Review • Government—what it is and how we feel about it; definitions • Three values (freedom, order, equality) • Today—inaugural address, values, philosophies of Locke and Hobbes, political ideologies

  21. Inaugural address • How would you describe the event? • What were some messages/themes you remember from the address? • What are your reactions? • freedom, order, equality

  22. Freedom v. Order • The original conflict of government is between freedom and order

  23. Thomas Hobbes • Leviathan (1651) • job of government is to protect individuals from each other • leave a state of nature to come into social community • single ruler to protect the weak against the strong

  24. John Locke • Second Treatise, of Civil Government (1690) • Government is necessary to protect property • Man in a state of nature is generally good • Government should be limited • Government can be dissolved if it breaks the social contract

  25. Freedom v. Equality • A more modern conflict is between freedom and equality.

  26. Reconciling the two dilemmas • Every citizen has a different opinion about how much freedom she/he is willing to give up to ensure social order or promote equality • Often, how we feel about these dilemmas helps establish our ideology

  27. Political Ideology • A consistent set of values and beliefs about the purpose and scope of government. • Usually thought of as a continuum with liberal on one end and conservative on the other.

  28. LIBERAL larger government, more intervention for social programs Doesn’t always want more government CONSERVATIVE smaller government, less intervention in economy Doesn’t always want less government Liberal vs. Conservative

  29. Typology of Ideologies • Instead of a continuum • created by trading levels of freedom, order and equality • Liberals • Libertarians • Conservatives • Communitarians

  30. Quick quiz • Who is Mr. Michael J. Badnarik?

  31. What is your ideology? • http://www.lp.org/

  32. Writing assignment option #1 • Take the quiz and discuss whether the quiz accurately reflects your ideology. Have someone else take the quiz. Do you have similar or different ideologies? Was your ideology reflected in your voting decision? Why or why not? • Due next Tuesday

  33. Let’s review • 1. Define political equality, ideology • 2. What did Locke say about the need for government? Did Hobbes agree? • 3. What is the original dilemma of government? • 4. What do liberals tend to believe about government?

  34. The founding of America How would you describe our constitution?

  35. Iraq election process (courtesy BBC news)

  36. An Empire of Reason • What were the failures of the Articles of Confederation? • what were the arguments in favor of ratification? • what were the arguments against ratification? • Shay’s rebellion

  37. For Tuesday… • Iraq elections • Chapter 2: What truths did Jefferson hold to be self-evident in the Declaration of Independence? • What is the structure of the Constitution? • Bring books—looking at the Declaration, Constitution and Federalist #51