Political Science 101 Chapter 2 Who are we? The United States is diverse and constantly changing. Population trends include: rising percentages of senior citizens, ethnic minorities, immigrants, and non-english speakers in the American population. ***See who are we charts*** Where do we come from? You are an American citizen if you are: Born in the United States, whether or not your parents are citizens (jus soli?the right of the soil) Born to American citizens abroad (jus sanguinis?the right by blood) Immigrant: citizens or subjects of one country who move to another country to live or work Naturalization: the legal process of acquiring citizenship for someone who has not acquired it by birth Who elects the President?: Electoral College Who said ?Give me liberty, or give me death.?: Patrick Henry What year was the Constitution written?: 1787 In what month is the new President inaugurated? January Non-Immigrants: Those seeking asylum Asylum: protection or sanctuary, especially from political persecution Refugees: individuals who flee and area or country because of persecution on the basis of race, nationality, religion, group membership, or political opinion Non-permanent resident students, workers, visitors Illegal immigrants avoid US citizenship and immigration services regulations The often obey laws, but strain some states. U.S. Immigration Policy: We control immigration because: We prefer to admit those able to help the United States. We historically have limited immigration of some groups Immigration law today is controlled by Department of Homeland Security Post September 11 worries. Illegal immigration through Mexican border. What we believe: The ideas that unite us Political Culture: the broad pattern of ideas, beliefs, and values about citizens and government held by a population. Values: central ideas, principles, or standards that most people agree are important Often take it for granted or aren?t aware of it. Shared and Handed down Competing American Subcultures: Individualistic: Skeptical of authority. Government?s role is limited. Free market Moralistic: Public virtue. Virtue is necessary for government. Traditionalistic: Ambivalent towards government. Leaders to come from society?s elite. Faith in Rules and Individuals: Focus on fair rules and processes rather than results, and on individuals being responsible for their own success. Procedural Guarantees: government assurance that the rules will work smoothly and treat everyone fairly, with no promise of particular outcomes. Other democracies concentrate on substantive guarantees: assuring outcomes are fair Individualism: belief that what is good for society is based on what is good for individuals. Individuals, not government, are responsible for their own well being. Puritan Ethnic: ?what one sows, one reaps? American Frontier Mentality Economic Freedom (think Adam Smith and his concept of the Invisible Hand) ***See figure 2.1 Core American Values: Democracy: representative democracy is a fair way to make decisions. Freedom: procedural view that no unfair restrictions will be placed on you. Equality: Americans believe in equality of treatment, access, and opportunity but not equality of result. More Core American Values: Majority rule Minority rights Limited Government Individualism Diversity Rule of Law (lex rex) Dissent: freedom of press, speech, religion, to petition the government What we believe: The ideologies that divide us Ideologies: set of beliefs about politics and society that help people make sense of their world. Our shared political culture means the range of ideological debate is narrow compared to other democracies. Conservatives: people who generally favor limited government and are cautious about change. Liberals: people who generally favor government action and view change as progress. Ideological Dimensions: The economic dimension Conservatives prefer little government involvement in economy Liberals see a positive government role The social order dimension Economic security has led Americans to become more concerned with quality-of-life and moral issues Division over limited versus more active government control of individual lives Relationship between the ideological dimensions: The two dimensions do not dovetail neatly Leaves different mixes of ideological groups: Economic liberals Social liberals Economic conservatives Social conservatives Libertarians Communitarians ***See Figure 2.3*** The citizens and American political beliefs The United States has grown more democratic since Madison?s time. More groups may vote and assert political rights. Participation is not high, however. Is low turnout a concern? Is there a civic crisis in American democracy? Decline in Voter Turnout? Suspension of civil liberties to protect national security? Disproportionate influence of money and wealth on politics? Negative politics? Red State/Blue State Divide? The Political System: American politics and government are imbedded within the international system of nation states and a domestic political system- politics and government do not occur in a vacuum. ***International System of Nation-States (MUST KNOW) on ppt Political System: complex and dynamic process through which interrelated sets of actors, groups, and institutions authoritatively allocate values for a society. Political System: Conclusion American government and politics do not exist in a vacuum?they affect and are affected by the national and international systems in which they are embedded. The political system operates within formal and informal boundaries that define and channel its operation. The political system is dynamic?as other systems change and as the boundaries shift, the system must adjust if it is to be effective Vocab: Immigrants: citizens or subjects of one country who move to another country to live or work Naturalization: the legal process of acquiring citizenship for someone who has not acquired it by birth Asylum: protection or sanctuary especially from political persecution Refugees: individuals who flee an area or country because of persecution on the basis of race, nationality, religion, group membership, or political opinion. Political Culture: the broad pattern of ideas, beliefs, and values about citizens and government held by a population Values: central ideas, principles, or standards that most people agree are important Normative: describes beliefs or values about how things should be or what people ought to do rather than what actually is. Procedural Guarantees: government assurance that the rules will work smoothly and treat everyone fairly, with no promise of particular outcomes. Individualism: belief that what is good for society is based on what is good for individuals. Ideologies: sets of beliefs about politics and society that help people make sense of their world Conservatives: people who generally favor limited government and are cutions about change Liberals: people who generally favor government action and view change as progress Economic Liberals: those who favor an expanded government role in the economy but a limited role in the social order. Economic Conservatives: those who favor a strictly procedural government role in the economy and the social order. Libertarians: those who favor a minimal government role in any sphere Social Liberals: those who favor greater control of the economy and the social order to bring about greater equality and to regulate the effects of progress Communitarians: those who favor a strong substantive government role in the economy and the social order in order to realize their vision of a community of equals Social Conservatives: those who endorse limited government control of the economy but considerable government intervention to realize a traditional social order; based on religious values and hierarchy rather than equality. PAGE 1
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