Study "Government / Politics" Essays 56-109

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American Government Course Journal

… American Government Course

American Government


Form a more perfect union: At birth, the forefathers thought of a united America one that was devoid of separation along any lines but a perfectly united USA. The preamble… [read more]

Ego in World Politics Essay

… IGOs in World Politics

Nonstate actors, including nongovernmental and intergovernmental organizations, have been seeking more influence in the global community (Kegley & Blanton, 2010). Intergovernmental organizations, or IGOs, have become increasingly commonplace in the past century. From 37 IGOs in… [read more]

Decentralized Government Essay

… Decentralized Government

The issue of decentralization represents a major aspect in the theory of government and organization of the state. From several points-of-view it can be considered to be a success story for the administrations throughout the world. This is… [read more]

U.S. Federal Government Recognizing the End Essay

… U.S. Federal Government

Recognizing the end of the American Civil War, then President Abraham Lincoln delivered his Second Inaugural Address (1865), talking about the social and political divide that is the South and the North, factions that support and oppose black slavery, respectively. In his inaugural address, Lincoln expresses his hope for a united America -- hope because of the still apparent divide and continued prevalence of the slavery system in the country even in the aftermath of the Civil War. Instead of condemning or supporting slavery, Lincoln left his audience thinking about slavery by simply leaving "judgment to the Lord." Two years after his inaugural address, abolitionist movement leader Frederick Douglass called "for including the negro in the body politic." This demand is a precursor to society's continuous struggle to achieve equality in a free country, albeit still weakened by social discrimination brought by the slavery system.

Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address and Douglass' Appeal to Congress for Impartial Suffrage are just examples of the kind of politic that America was gradually developing into, especially after the American Civil War. The creation and development of federalism in the United States made it possible for states and the country, as one, created "checks and balances" that aims to respond and answer to the interests of the majority, without discounting the rights of the minority. Indeed, one of the most important features of federalism as a form of government is that it provides the right balance between or among different socio-political groups, which are the states, in the case of the U.S. Lincoln and Douglass represent one side of…… [read more]

Is Democracy the Most Viable Form of Government? Essay

… ¶ … Democracy the Most Viable Form of Government?

There are numerous forms of government, especially when we consider our global population. There are dictatorships, socialists, communists, and then, those who follow the political bearing of democracy. The prosperity and of some governments are begging the question of whether or not democracy is the most viable form of government in today's world. In this analysis, the first section will argue that democracy is in fact the most viable form of government, attempting to reveal the key indicators that support this theory. It will then discuss the opposing view. In summary, the goal is to leave the reader processing, and pondering upon both perspectives. As democracy can vary within different contexts, for the purpose of this paper, we will take democracy as meaning, a government where constitutional rights guarantee basic personal and political freedoms, including free elections and a fair judicial system.

In order to establish consensus, democracy proves to be a viable form of government as the majority rule. "Democratic institutions, however, may be necessary…to produce a political consensus as well as an adequate policy performance at all times and under varying (social and economic) conditions," (Keman, 6). This form of government was not always accepted as a practicable source of rule. It wasn't until the past couple centuries was it evident that this form of government became sustainable, even though the structure has been around for quite some time in different contexts. The understanding of democracy as a representative system, instead of direct rule, helped it in becoming a valuable and acceptable approach. In democratic societies, people can have the right, the will, and the desire to be active members of the nation or organization. The freedom of choice, the power of representation, and the access to courts and justice are essential principles that make democracy the most viable form of government. There are few other forms of government or organizational structure that allow such access to these values. "In a democracy, people have the right to choose their leaders in regular, free, and fair elections," (Diamond 21). They are encouraged to represent themselves by voting, campaigning for, and supporting congressman, representatives, presidents and other leaders by a system of equal representative choice. Elected leaders by the citizens of a society, then are able to make decisions based on the will of the people. Democracy also ensures some inevitable freedoms that other forms of government do not emphasize. Citizens within a democratic state have the freedom of belief, opinion, speech, religious affiliations, legal representation, and the right to vote, to name a few. There is also a system of checks and balances within the legislative branches, thus disallowing select individuals from becoming overpowered. In both modern and classical democracy, this form of government allowed representation that was created to limit the abuse of power by governments. Because of this considerations raised here, democracy continues to be a viable form of government.

On the other side of the fence, there… [read more]

Hannah Arendt and Jews and Politics Essay

… Hannah Arendt, Jews, And Politics

Hannah Arendt, the Jewish Question, and Totalitarianism

Totalitarianism was never defined in the past because it could not exist. This is simply because totalitarianism implies total control, and in the past it was simply not… [read more]

Politics Modern Political Thought Term Paper

… Modern capitalism is far less restrictive than what they were used to. When society evolved to try to give everyone a small piece of the big pie, it eventually called it Capitalism. "Over a period of a few centuries the… [read more]

Non-Western Comparative Politics Essay

… Tanaka Kakuei Corruption

Chalmers Johnson, one of the U.S.'s foremost Japan experts, tells us the story of Tanaka Kakuei and the shocking extent of his corruption. But Johnson tells us this story so we can better understand the nature of Japanese politics and the role of the bureaucracy. What is Johnson trying to illuminate for us?

Chalmers Johnson has conducted a very thorough research into the political system of Japan and the role played by Tanaka Kakuei in revolutionizing the elitist political scene. Johnson doesn't try to downplay the corruption scandal associated with Tanaka but he looks at it in a more objective manner. Instead of accusing him of corruption per se, he goes deeper into the very heart of Japanese politics to understand why a man with very high ideals for Japan and its public would resort to accepting bribes. Johnson also fully understands the importance of Tanaka's role in resurrection of non-bureaucratic political system within a very strong and rather insulated bureaucracy.

Tanaka's case is unique not because of bribery involved but because it helps us understand just how much corruption has become a part of Japanese political system. In most cases, it usually goes unnoticed because public seems to accept it as a way politics work in Japan and there is not much that can be done against the bureaucracy that literally rules the country. With Tanaka, things however were different. Not only did his shady deal with Lockheed come to the limelight, what was more shocking was that he managed to emerge from this scandal without much damage to his popularity. This indicates one thing clearly: Tanaka was more than just a politician for the public. He was recognized for his various actions that had benefited the poor over the years. Tanaka had been one strong supporter of equality in all sections of society and all sectors of economy. He did not allow one sector to prosper on the expense of another. "Tanaka actually performed a vital function for the system, redistributing income from the rich sectors to the poor ones and ensuring that high speed growth did not benefit one group to the exclusion of others." (Johnson, p. 202). Thus Johnson illuminates some very important aspects of Tanaka's reign and the political system in Japan.

Junichiro Koizumi

Who was Junichiro Koizumi and what did his election and re-election as Prime Minister of Japan represent? Why did voters back him and why was the LDP -- his own party -- wary of him?

Junichiro Koizumi's victory in Japanese elections for prime minister came as a shock and surprise to many, including people of his own LDP party. The reason was simple. Koizumi enjoyed low support in his party and it became even greater surprise since many had predicted victory for former Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto who had a strong power base within LDP. How did Koizumi win then is a question that many pondered? Koizumi who came from a family of politicians was seen as a… [read more]

Ethical Principles in Government Policy in Modern Thesis

… Ethical Principles in Government Policy

In modern society, societal ethical values are codified in the formal rules, laws, and regulations administrated by local and national governments. However, different contemporary societies uphold very different standards of behavior and ethical definitions and… [read more]

Politics on War Research Proposal

… Politics of War - Kennedy and Nixon Administrations

The Kennedy administration decided in 1961 not to assist the Laotian government through military intervention, though President Eisenhower had advised him that Laos, and not Vietnam, was the hotspot in Southeast Asia.… [read more]

African Politics in Sub-Saharan Term Paper

… African politics in Sub-Saharan Africa

According to Thomson (215), one of the main obstacles to democracy in sub-Saharan Africa is the tendency of African governments towards a one-party structure. The author explains that this is largely a reaction to artificially… [read more]

Cuban Politics Term Paper

… Cuban Politics

Cuba is considered to be one of the most important countries in Latin America and one of the most interesting study cases for global politics. It represents a bastion of communist rule, on the one hand. However, taking… [read more]

Politics, 'Spin Doctors' and Media Specialists Term Paper

… ¶ … politics, 'spin doctors' and media specialists attempt to carefully craft the image of a candidate, much like they were selling soap, there is inevitably a certain amount of calculated rhetoric rather than real feeling in the persona projected by politicians.

However, it is the duty of every citizen to try to penetrate the rhetoric and the crafted campaign message, and to make the most informed decision he or she can make, about who is the best candidate with the most character and integrity. Merely because this is difficult does not mean that we can shrug and refuse to participate in politics at all. Not exercising the right to vote that people in other countries fight and die for, and people in our own nation fought and died for in the past, is simply wrong.

I think this cynicism about the candidness of politicians is highlighted in the Republican primary race. The concern about integrity is partly why Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney became so unpopular -- he clearly flip-flopped on so many issues, going from a pro-gay rights, pro-Roe v. Wade fiscal conservative during his early years as a governor, to stylizing himself as a right-winger over the course of the presidential campaign. Everyone could see through the charade. Senator John McCain's popularity lies…… [read more]

Thaksin Shinawatra's Government Did Represent the Best Hope for Democratic Progress in Thailand Term Paper

… Politics

Thaksin Shinawatra's Thailand and the Promise of Democracy

In mid-September 2006, Thailand experienced its first military coup since 1991 (Kampf, 2007). With the approval of Thailand's kind, key figures in the Thailand military overthrew the democratically elected government of then Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. Though Shinawatra's government was far from ideal, it was nonetheless voted into power by the collective will of the people of Thailand. For the opponents of Shinawatra to oust the man's government outside the appropriate legal methods stands as an affront to the democratic process in the nation and a challenge to the possibility of a legitimate democratic government. Shinawatra's government represented Thailand's best hope for a stable democratic process, a hope that was dashed with the military coup that occurred last year.

Shinawatra's government was the first that was fully committed to the role of capitalism in government affairs (Tejapica, 2006). In fact, Shinawatra himself was a CEO of a major telecommunications corporation in Southeast Asia. His involvement in business provided him with the financial backing to successfully launch a bid for prime minister of Thailand. His business sense allowed him to capitalize on the political tension between urban and rural centers in the nation. Shinawatra chose to court the rural vote, and promise to shift public funding into the Thai countryside. For this action, Shinawatra was accused of buying the crucial rural vote in his election campaign, and widely criticized especially in Thailand's cities (Tejapica, 2006).

Nonetheless, Shinawatra's bid for prime minister was successful and he was the first major politician in the country to take a decidedly more corporate, or liberal, approach to politics in Thailand. He stressed deregulation of trade, greater value on human rights, and limited state intervention in private affairs (Tejapica, 2006). Obviously, those politicians who wanted to preserve the military-monarchy government -- as well as those pushing for more socialist reforms -- criticized these moves as being exceptionally self-serving. Regardless of Shinawatra's personal stake in pushing a liberal agenda in Thailand, we cannot ignore the reality that such principles form the foundation of democratic governments in North America and Europe. The importance of individual rights over collective ones, or over the authority of the government, is central to the successful operation of a democratic government. While critics may have called him corrupt or self-interested, it stands that the liberal principles Shinawatra stressed are at the heart of democracies throughout the world.

In fact, the collapse of Shinawatra's democratic government has only resulted in the limitations of freedoms in…… [read more]

Media and Politics Term Paper

… Media and Politics

The relationship between the media and politics is one that goes back to the early days of print. Today, the relationship has evolved to one that causes the public to sometimes question who is in charge; the… [read more]

Political Science -- Government Agencies Term Paper

… Political Science -- Government Agencies -- the CIA

Any agency which works in secret can behave in a scandalous manner, and the CIA is no exception to this rule." This paper will analyze this statement on two grounds: is it… [read more]

Western Civilization Aristotle and Government Term Paper

… Western Civilization

Aristotle and Government

The purpose of this paper is to introduce and analyze the topic of Aristotle's views on government. Specifically, it will discuss the three forms of government delineated by Aristotle, and which one he thinks is the most preferable. Aristotle discusses three forms of government, monarchy, aristocracy, and polity. A monarchy is a government where a few people (often royalty) rule. An aristocracy is ruled by a group of men who have the best interests of the state at heart, and a polity is when citizens rule for the best interests of the state.

Aristotle also notes that for each of the three forms, there are "perversions" of the basic types. For monarchy, the perversion is tyranny; for aristocracy it is oligarchy, and for polity it is democracy. Aristotle discusses each of these perversions and why they are not acceptable. He also spells out what he thinks is the most preferable, and that is polity, for a number of reasons, which he outlines throughout this short work.

Aristotle finds a polity the best form of government because a monarchy excludes all but one from power, and that ruler can become a tyrant in many cases. An aristocracy supports mostly the wealthy, and a polity can become democratic and only support the needy. However, the polity offers the best form of government because it gives all citizens, at least at one point or another, the ability to govern and be governed. Aristotle writes, "Equality consists in the same treatment of similar persons, and no government can stand which is not founded upon justice" (Aristotle). He also notes that a good government promotes more than just legislation; it promotes all facets of life, from recreation to marriage and even having children.

Ultimately, Aristotle believes any government must have the interests of the state ahead of anything or anyone else. A good government employs the will of the people to ensure…… [read more]

Politics Term Paper

… ¶ … Politics can be defined both as "the art or science concerned with winning and holding control over a government" and as "the process by which groups of people make decisions."

If we look at the first definition of politics, it is not a positive one for its applicability within an organization. Indeed, that type of definition emphasizes the conflicting characteristics of politics as a science or art: the necessity to fight over power, the strategies and tactics that need to be applied so as to remain in power and the relationships that need to be formed in this sense. It virtually presents the scenario where the organization is a battlefield between different factions who are fighting for power within the company.

On the other hand, the second definition has a positive nuance to it, because it emphasizes the fact that politics is about decision making and the decision making process. This means that politics is about working together with your colleagues, about interacting with them in order to reach an appropriate decision for the benefit of the organization and its shareholders.

From this perspective, we can indeed support the idea that politics is not inherently bad and that it is, in fact, a logical element of the decision making process without which a democratic solution cannot be reached. Politics implies, from this point-of-view, the idea that all important factors of decision within the organization are consulted before a mutually consented decision is reached. This supports the idea that politics encourages not only a democratic framework, but also widespread consultations with all departments that might be affected by the decision. This means that the decision is made in the mutual interest of all the departments involved.

2. First of all, workforce diversity implies different cultural backgrounds that encourage different approaches in tackling problems and issues that might arise in the organizational workplace. This…… [read more]

Government Effects Term Paper

… Government Effects

The Government in the United States, and indeed in any country, affects every aspect of life to a large extent. The Government is the main law making body in the country, and as such can determine the way of life of a large amount of people. This is particularly true of a despotic or any other non-democratic form of government. The laws that such governments impose can for example impact negatively upon persons or groups of people advocating a particular way of life in terms of religion or political ideology. Governments can and indeed have suppressed lifestyles relating not only to politics and religion, but also to personal choices such as sexual partners and choices of career.

Assuming a democratic government, this rulership still has far-reaching effects upon economic, political, and religious life, as well as upon international relations. In terms of economics, for example, the government can dictate the well-being of its citizens in terms…… [read more]

Government Emergency Management Term Paper

… Government

Emergency Management and the Government

Both Nice and Grosse (2001) and Farazmand (2001) agree that the structural nature of the U.S. federal government results in very specific policy-making patterns when it comes to crisis. Nice and Grosse (2001) argue that crises are focusing events for legislators and that government policy is always a function of crisis. In other words, the emergence of a crisis is what will most likely spur on action at the federal level because it draws attention to an existing problem. Similarly, Farazmand (2001) points out that policy-making in the United States is fundamentally reactive instead of proactive, primarily because rapid changes in political power make consistent policy decisions all but impossible.

From an emergency response perspective, this reality of federal inconsistency and reactive qualities represents a major issue. Ultimately, if all policy decisions are based on reactions to crises only, then the problem of management will be significantly worsened because attention will only be…… [read more]

Politics in Postmodern America Term Paper

… Politics in Post-Modern America

The only real change that has ever happened in American politics is the advent of political parties that came about between the presidencies of George Washington and John Adams. Besides that, there has been a history of continuity rather than change in the United States' political life. Granted, the political landscape has changed greatly but, regardless of the landscape, the prevailing constant has always been party politics.

At his farewell address to the nation, a somber George Washington warned:

Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party, generally...It exists, under different shapes, in all governments, more of less stifled, controlled, or repressed; but, in those of the popular form, it is seen in its greatest rankness, and is truly their worst enemy

The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later, the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty." (Washington).

Unfortunately, President Washington's warning fell on deaf ears and instead become more of a prophesy of the future of American political life.

Clearly, party politics have dominated American political life throughout our history. Whether we were in a time of war or a time of peace, economic prosperity or economic disaster, the issues were always divided down the party line. Even during World War Two, a period when popular culture would lead one to believe the entire nation was united behind the war effort, the parties were clearly divided on such issues as Roosevelt's New Deal Programs, with the Republican's being staunchly against it. (Kennedy).

However, after the World War and during the Cold War, party politics did give way slightly to the common trend of fighting off the Communist threat. Regardless of which party was in office, they had the popular stance of being tough on…… [read more]

Women in Politics the Relationship Term Paper

… Women in Politics

The relationship of the citizen of a given country to political action depends on the social and political history of that country and the traditions that shape the political system. This is true for both men and women, though historically women have had less direct involvement with the political system because women have been socially marginalized in most countries for at least some period in history. The three countries involved in the North American Free Trade Agreement, have different political histories. The United States and Canada each derive from a British tradition, though Canada has remained more closely tied to that system, while the U.S. has diverged from it considerably. The Mexican tradition harks back to Spain and then to decades of one-party control that ha sonly recently been broken. The role of women in the political systems of each country differs accordingly.

The fact that Canada started as a colonial nation has defined the nation ever since. The region was settled by the French before it was settled by the British, but after the coming of the British, immigration from Britain would be the important source of new inhabitants. War came first to Canada and then to America to the south. The British defeated the French in Canada but were themselves defeated in the south. After this, immigration from what would become the United States increased as British subjects still loyal to the crown fled the southern colonies and became a dominant force in Canada as far as politics and trade were concerned. They retained their loyalties to Britain, and indeed those loyalties were hardened by their experience in the American Revolutionary War. They shunned the republican and democratic principles prevalent in the south and so developed institutions that were faithful to British models.

One of the primary forces pushing toward Confederation was fear of the United States. Americans continued to show a desire for territorial expansion that made Canadians believe there might be designs on their territories, and so in order to fight against the Manifest Destiny infusing American expansion, the Canadian colonies united in a Confederation to protect themselves. Canada thus fought against becoming a colony of the United States.

Canada continues to be faced by two seemingly opposite forces, though both derive from proximity to the United States. While the two societies were different in the past, they have been becoming more alike. A counter-force is seen among Canadians fighting to retain their own identity and to reject American influences as much as possible (Carroll paras. 3-5).

Both countries still face "fundamental issues relating to questions of 'national conformity' still animate the myriad political debates on language policy, bilingual education, the limits of tolerance toward the maintenance of a plural society, the reproduction of distinctive core 'American' and 'Canadian' values and the like" (Burnaby and Ricento 3).

The place of women in American politics has long been ambiguous. Women have participated in varying degrees since suffrage, but they have also tended to take… [read more]

Machine Politics Term Paper

… Origins of Machine Politics - by Amy Bridges

Arguments: Which do the book make? Are they successful? Author Amy Bridges makes several strong arguments in her book, and she makes them believable. She is a well-researched writer, and it comes across to the reader that she is not speculating about her subject, she is making assertions based on her research and scholarship. For one, she argues that in order to understand the dynamics of antebellum urban politics, one has to first understand how class enters into the picture. This is a different approach from other historical works that sought to explain how machine politics got started in America; Bridges mentions that the instability of national political parties (including the collapse of the Whigs) in the early 1850s really offered an opening for the working class to emerge and be courted by political bosses in New York City.

Bridges challenges previous theories that tended to focus on ethnic, religious, ideological and cultural reasons for the growth of machine politics. But she contends that those theories ignored a powerful new surge of class-consciousness among working class people. New York City was ripe for machine politics because the workers were gaining strength as a lobby, and they began to put pressure on the political structure in New York City; politicians were listening because they realized that workers could put them in power and keep them in power. A good politician, whether from the 19th Century or from New York City in 2007, knows which side of the bread to put the butter on; in other words, smart operators go where the votes are, whether those votes are ethnically or culturally based, or even based on economic levels.

Her basic argument is that assertive working class people joined with immigrant interests to become a political force - and that they were brought into power by the political forces smart enough to mobilize them. Also, local government was growing rapidly in the mid-1800s, and small shops were being pushed aside by manufacturing interests, so the stage was all set for machine politics and the resources were available and ripe for the picking by smart men who were opportunists.

For example, she argues (57) that the "artisan and his shop no longer dominated the scene," and that most of the workforce in the mid-1800s could be identified as "proletarian classes" that were employed by "larger manufactures, large-scale outwork," and some factories. Is her argument successful? Bridges points out - in order to bolster her theory that class, not ethnicity, pushed machine politicians into leadership positions - that in the fifteen years between 1840 and 1855, manufacturing firms grew dramatically in terms of numbers of employees. More than 90% of the labor force working in manufacturing in 1855 worked in firms that employed ten or more employees, and 70% of workers were employed in firms that had more than 25 employees. The manufacturing sector rapidly exceeded the merchants and the small independent shop craftsmen.

It's obvious that… [read more]

American Government the American Governing System Term Paper

… American Government

The American governing system is considered to be one of the best examples of democracy in the contemporary political system. This can be explained in a large part by the structure of the constitutional established governing structure, and by its federalist nature. However, there are some aspects of this system which continue to be the subject of heated debate. They tend to focus especially on the two party system, which many think of it as being an undemocratic representation solution, the influence and impact of financial matters in political decision making, and the controversial election process, that stands more and more in the spotlight whenever there is an electoral year.

The political stage is dominated for more than 140 years now by two major parties: the Republicans and the Democrats. According to Janda, Berry and Goldman the explanation stands in two important elements: the electoral system and the process of political socialization.

The electoral system is different from most other democracies. As opposed to the proportional representation method adopted in most western countries, the majority representation present in America favors this two party system because in the end there is just one winner elected and he is chosen by simple plurality of votes. Janda, Berry and Goldman state that majority representation in this case "forces groups in society to work within one of the only two parties with any realistic chance of winning the election." (Janda, Berry and Goldman 250) The question then arises on the identity of these two parties and their long presence on the American political scene. The answer may be that there is an increase need for different groups to join their forces in the race for the presidency; therefore, the candidate with most votes eventually wins. Thus, rallying support is an important incentive for the coagulation of forces.

The second reason for the monopole of the two parties over the political scene is the socialization that goes around on and off the record. Basically, party leaders have structured their electorate in such a manner that they most often discourage challenges from other smaller parties. There is also the question of political and historical tradition which plays a major role in maintaining the influence over the Congress.

A force that is truly important when considering the Congress and in general the political parties in the U.S. is the interest groups.

There must be a differentiation between the two types. On the one hand, according to Janda, Berry and Goldman, "a political party is an organization that sponsors candidates for political office under the organization's name. These political parties nominate candidates for election to public office, by designating individuals as official candidates for the party." (Janda, Berry and Goldman 263)At the same time, an interest group is "an organization who share common attitudes and interests and who attempt to influence the decisions made within the political system" (Volkomer 256). The political parties are set in place to nominate candidates, structure the voting choice, proposing alternative… [read more]

Politics Term Paper

… From 1979 through 1988, Ecuador staggered through a succession of executive-legislative confrontations that created a near permanent crisis atmosphere in the polity. In 1984, President Leon Febres-Cordero tried to physically bar new Congressionally-appointed Supreme Court appointees from taking their seats.… [read more]

Political Machines: Politics Term Paper

… They called their workings patronage democracy, an 'I'll scratch your back if you vote for me, a form of what Riordan's composite creation Plunkett called honest graft. Plunkitt and his constituency shared common class and ethnic origins and even while political bosses were lining his own pockets the machinery men did seem to feel and express sympathy for those whom they served, and seemed to genuinely care for those who elected them to office. In fact, constituents often expressed local pride at a man who had made good on his humble beginnings through his quick wit.

Some machine politicians held themselves up as moral templates to the community, evidence that 'anyone' could make it in America. Plunkitt claimed that he did not drink alcohol. However, this was more due to the fact that saloons were social and political centers in working-class neighborhoods and prohibition advocates tended to associate the evils of alcohol with immigrant city dwellers. Plunkitt positioned himself between these two groups, allowing alcoholic indulgences to take place covertly, while profiting off of their illegality, thus ensuring both prohibitionists and owners would support his rise to office.

Yet despite such two-faced-ness, Plunkitt enfranchised the disenfranchised and did what many less corrupt leaders have been unable to do -- he brought common people into common participation with government, and convinced them that government in a participatory American democracy could help 'the little guy.' The patchwork quilt of ethnicities and constituencies of New York City seems reminiscent of California's plurality of ethnicities today. As noted by Judd and Swanstrom, immigrants and the political machine's growth went virtually hand in hand, as did immigrant assimilation and the political machine's development. (I.3) Although a modern politician would never wish to embody Tweed-style hypocrisy, the stress upon local government, local concern, and local responsiveness to situations and needs of incoming immigrant groups is something that modern politicians could learn from.

Alas, machine politics also gave birth to a great deal of waste and corruption, in the form of 'pork barrel' politics. The ubiquity of the modern media, and the sprawling expanse of expensive electoral campaigns across an ever-widening electorate have created obstacles to such responsive politics as well as formed important watchdog organizations to keep an eye upon the financial corruption modern political elite. But while the Tweed-style corruption must end, this does not mean that local organizations can and should not be involved in citywide urban politics. The Tweed-era politician knew the name of every man and woman on his or her street. So should the modern politician strive for the same level of common involvement, and knowledge of minute affairs of local governance.

Works Cited

Judd. Dennis & Todd Swanstrom, City Politics: Private Power and Public Policy. New York: Pearson Longman, 2002.

Judd. Dennis & Todd Swanstrom, The Politics of Urban America: A Reader. New York: Pearson Longman, 2002.

Riordan, William L. Plunkitt of Tammany Hall / Edited with an Introduction by Terrence J. McDonald. New York: Bedsford St. Martins. Originally Published… [read more]

American Politics Term Paper

… American Politics

When a successful capitalist republic engages in popular elections to determine the leadership of its governing body, the administrating rules regulating it are the nuts and bolts to which systematic legitimacy is inextricably tied. American history is wrought… [read more]

New Leaders of Iraq Term Paper

… Question 2

What are the most important forces promoting and hindering democracy in the contemporary world? Choose 2-3 in both categories (aids and obstacles) and explain how they affect democracy. Focus on the causal mechanisms. Then tell me what the… [read more]

Local NY gov. The Local Government Practices Term Paper

… Local NY Gov.

The Local Government Practices of Oyster Bay, New York

In order to have a better community in which to live and work, I believe it is important to have an understanding of how the government works at… [read more]

Defending Government Term Paper

… ¶ … Defending Government: Why Big Government Works" by Max Neiman

Defending Government" by Max Neiman offers a critical view of the Big Government's (of America) critics -- that is, the book discusses in detail how, in spite of the growing sentiment against the government, the author considers it as essential and beneficial for society, particularly in the context of American society.

In discussing this important point in the book, Neiman presents historical evidence of the development of anti-government sentiment of the public for its government. However, at the center of his discussion and analysis, he makes it clear that these anti-government sentiments are simply propaganda geared at discrediting the government for the benefits that it has given to American civil society.

Neiman discusses anti-government propaganda using the example of Bill Clinton's term as president, trying to overcome the controversy of his sexual harassment case. The author believes that the controversy is a perfect example of how anti-government feelings surfaced not only from the civil society, but from government members as well, wherein there is apparent attempt to divert people's attention from the more important social issues concerning them at the moment to the latest scandal surrounding Clinton's presidency.

American history for the 20th century offers sufficient background to understand why the anti-government propaganda has not only survived over the years, but has become a prevalent occurrence in American politics as well. Citing in particular American government's ineffective decisions during the Cold War and its failure to win the Vietnam and Korean Wars, Neiman states, " recent decades the expression of antigovernment [sic] sentiment has escalated to very high levels,…… [read more]

American Politics Introduction to Kevin Term Paper

… However, although it was supposed to get rid of tax preferences for "the rich and powerful" - there were "650 special provisions" in the bill which were called "transition rules" and "technical corrections" which actually didn't hurt the rich but harmed the middle class.

On page 414, Phillips calls a section of his Afterward "The Democratic Deficit and the Rise of the Unelected." During the winter of 2000-2001, Phillips recalls, "when Americans watched the U.S. Supreme Court determine the outcome of the November presidential election..." And the Federal Reserve Board made "its critical judgments on the fate of the U.S. economy," the "migration of political authority" was thrown into "bold relief." For thinking Americans, these past few years have brought about radical and almost unbelievable events: first, Bush is elected on a 5-4 vote of the Supreme Court, five Republicans and four Democrats. And that happens notwithstanding the fact that Al Gore won the popular vote, and even won the Florida popular vote - once a coalition of news organizations hired lawyers and counters to count all the "disputed ballots" with "hanging chads" and the other flaws in the Florida balloting.

So, we have a president elected by a 5-4 vote by a judiciary that does not run for election or re-election, and a Federal Reserve Board, that is not beholding to the public, that does not run for election or re-election, making monumental decisions affecting millions of Americans.

And today, we see the enormous influence of giant corporations like Halliburton, formerly run by Vice President Dick Cheney, which, we now know, received billion-dollar no-bid contracts before the attacks on Iraq even begun, contracts to "rebuild" Iraq.

After reading this book by Kevin Phillips, the rebuilding should take place not in Iraq, but in America. And what should be rebuilt is not just the power grids, the schools, the roads and the other key infrastructures that are rotting away (things Bush wants to rebuild in Iraq), but the whole system of how taxes and the economy always benefit the rich few, rather than the struggling middle and lower classes.


Moyers,…… [read more]

Aristotle's Politics According Term Paper

… In such a system of politics, the majority elects the ruling and the ruling that lays a system that establishes laws for the governance. In this way the freedom of the citizens is ensured as the governance is in the… [read more]

Politics of Administrative Law Term Paper

… Early on, the party had genuine electoral strength as an alternative to the two-party system. Women, African-Americans, and a variety of ethnic groups were devoted readers of its press, and Jewish and African-American voters often gave the party great electoral strength in the industrialized, urban North.

In contrast, James Q. Wilson argues that the shift to the current conception of the state did not come in a seismic, revolutionary shift from autonomy to a more socialist point-of-view, but through various interactions of disparate political organizations. Weinstein's argument is founded upon the idea that America was subject to a paradigmatic and revolutionary shift in philosophy, as a result of a failed social organization and political party. Wilson argues, however, that one cannot separate the success of the organization of the social organization, nor the way it was founded, from its subsequent impact. Wilson's Political Organizations does not focus on one organization, rather he stresses that political parties, as well as business groups, labor unions, and civil rights associations cannot automatically be assumed to represent the interests of all of its presumed founders, rather the way they are created and maintained significantly affects the opinions they represent and the tactics they use. Rather than having a significant impact upon American political philosophy and law, at best such organizations can only influence government regulation through the use incremental policy-making directed toward servicing the public interest. However, the impact of many of these organizations has been genuine, although perhaps overstated by historians like Weinstein.

In contrast to both Weinstein and Wilson, however, the international legal scholar Ronen Shamir has argued that organized lawyers, such as the leadership of American Bar Association, struggled against regulatory developments in the 1920s-1930s. Shamir agrees with Wilson's pluralist, or factionalist approach in that he emphasizes the role of organized group entities, beyond the explicitly political influence of organizations such as the Socialist Part. However, he notes that, rather than pressing for an administrative shift in regulatory policy, organizations such as the ABA, wished for an "ad judicatory" or judicial procedure of reforming the American political climate and way of life during the beginning of the century. Furthermore, Shamir's philosophy suggests that neither political activism upon the legislature, through the use of political interest groups (as Wilson might suggest) nor by dominating legislatures through electoral politics and issue-specific agendas (as Weinstein might say) was the best way to shift the American political ethos. Rather, the best methodology is to approach the laws themselves, and attempt to change them through the judicial system, as these attempts tend to be more concrete and permanent in nature.

All three perspectives on regulation grant that there was a need and continues to be a need, for the American conception of individual and collective rights to be in constant dialogue with society. However, regulation does not, in Shamir's vision, necessarily require an ideological paradigm shift on the part of the nation, as advocated by Weinstein, on a grassroots level, but can be accomplished through judicial… [read more]

Cass Sustein's Politics Term Paper

… He describes journalism as a continuing course in adult education.

Moyers was one of the journalists to uncover the Iran/contra scandal, and also the Democrats unbridled and illegal fundraising in 1996. He argues that he lost underwriters through his covering… [read more]

American Mistrust of Centralized Government Term Paper

… Further, the Federalists pointed out that the Constitution did not allow the federal government to do anything that was not specifically mentioned in the Constitution; since the Constitution did not state that the government could take away the rights of… [read more]

Australian Federal Politics Term Paper

…, in the case under examination here, there does indeed appear to have been ample reason for the government to be secretive about its actions and for the people to feel that they have been betrayed by Howard's administration (

While the population has generally been supportive of turning away refugees (as evidenced by the Howard government's showing at the polls in 2001), there are limits to what even an anti-immigration public will put up with, and the intentional abandonment of children who may drown is one of them. The intentional lying to the public is another thing that that public is unlikely to support. One of these two things happened on Oct. 7, 2001. At that time a SIEV (suspected illegal entry vessel) entered Australian waters. The Howard government - as a part of its reelection campaign - claimed that at least one child had been thrown overboard from the vessel in an attempt to bolster its hard-line claims that refugee seekers were barbarians who would do anything to ensure that they were given asylum in Australia, even risk the death of innocent children.

However, while Howard and his government might have believed that this was a productive claim to make, the fact that there was photographic evidence denying that any children were thrown overboard damaged the government's credibility. An innocent mistake on the part of the government would have been one thing, but it was clear relatively quickly that the government was not simply mistaken, it was lying:

Both Howard's and Reith's departments knew the poll campaign slur of asylum seekers was false. The following article by Andrew Clennell and Tom Allard shows how John Howard's own department and the Defence department were both told just days after the government's explosive claims that children were thrown off an asylum-seeker's boat that the allegations were false (

Sydney Morning Herald article on 15 February 2002 summarized the fact that the claim of innocent children begin endangered by rapacious asylum seekers was a political ploy on the part of Howard and others in his government, some of whom lied intentionally, others of whom simply did not bother the check the details of a story that seemed heaven-sent:

During an election campaign fought on the issue of asylum-seekers, John Howard, Philip Ruddock and Peter Reith peddled falsehoods about boatpeople, then failed to correct their slurs, even when public servants at the highest levels knew the truth (

Few people are shocked to learn that governments - even democratically elected ones - lie to their own people. But sometimes those lies are so egregious and so despicable that they can topple governments. Howard and his administration accused the asylum seekers of victimizing innocent children. It turns out to be the case that it was the Australian government that was guilty of such an indecency.

References /… [read more]

War and Occupation: The Effects Term Paper

… Since agriculture was still the major industry in Japan, the implication of the reform cannot be underestimated. In fact its implication extended far beyond the economic -- it served to change many ancient and severely entrenched attitudes in the Japanese… [read more]

Factions: Help or Hindrance James Term Paper

… Among the causes, Madison argued that, "the most common and durable source of factions has been the unequal distribution of property. Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society" (Rossiter, 1961). He considered these divisions to be responsible for social and political problems, such as discrimination, class conflict, and even violence. Madison argued that these causes of factions could not be removed, therefore an important role of government is to ensure effective control and regulation of the effects. This does not involve the use of 'pure' democracy, which would result in the majority putting down minorities, but by means of the republican Constitution, which allows the different interests to negotiate their differences in order to reach a solution in which the majority would rule, but which would also show due care and regard to minorities.

Even although Madison believed that factions pose a problem to the institution of a free and democratic form of government, he was also aware that they have a positive role to play. He emphasized that it meant, sometimes, "the public good is disregarded in the conflicts of rival parties," and that voters, politicians, and even governments could potentially be coerced into adopting policies based upon a faction's selfish agenda, at the expense of, "the public good and the rights of other citizens" (Rossiter, 1961). However, he astutely recognized that, by their very number and diversity, competing factions perform a 'checks and balances' role, ensuring that no single group is able to exercise tyrannical control over the rest.

In the late eighteenth century, James Madison was widely recognized as a man of immense intellect and political guile. It is to his credit that the ideas and arguments that he put forward in The Federalist Paper Number 10 - in regard to the relationship between factions, liberty, property, and government - remain at the foundations of the pluralistic democracy that governs and protects much of the Western world today.

Works Cited

Rossiter, C.…… [read more]

Thoreau's Resistance to Civil Government Research Paper

… Thoreau in the beginning of the his essay argue that the American government is necessary only because "the people must have some complicated machinery or other, and hear its din, to satisfy that idea of government which they have." However according to Thoreau the only times when the government has been useful, is the time when it has stood aside. In addition Thoreau argues that the government does not achieve what we credit it, the government does not make us free, settle the West, or educate us. On the contrary these are achieved by the incredible character of the individual Americans and they would have been even more successful in these endeavors had government been less involved. Thoreau then argues that we must be men first and subject afterwards, what he means by this is that right and wrong should be decided not by majority but by conscience. Conscience if man is superior to the legislator. He asserts that it is most important that we develop a respect for right, rather than the respect for law, for people's obligation are to do what is right [Alicia 2002]

The question arises as to what must an individual do and how he should behave toward the government. Here we can see Thoreau propagating the most radical of his ideas and extreme individualism. Thoreau's answer to the question of how an individual should behave towards the government is to avoid associating with it altogether. He declares. "I cannot for an instant recognize that political organization as may government which is the slave's government also." Thoreau says that we have not only the right, but indeed the duty, to rebel. Thoreau criticizes the attitude that civil obligation should be maintained for the sake of expediency, he argues that expediency does not take precedence over justice. People must do what is right and just and not what government and the law tells them.

It can be rightly said that Thoreau's essay is an abstract work of political theory, Thoreau argues in a purely philosophical way on the nature of government and that it should be based on conscience. Thus the work should be considered as political philosophy invoking ideas and making claims about the relationship between people and the government. If we look closely we can see that Thoreau in his abstract work is presenting the ideas of anarchism, of individual cooperation and liberty. The fact that Thoreau gives priority to individual conscience to any law and legislation and believes that individual is in the best position to decide the right and wrong and do not need any government. The most important themes throughout the work and which asserts his anarchist theories is the notion of individualism. Deeply skeptic of the government, Thoreau rejects the view that a person must sacrifice or marginalize her values out of loyalty to her government [Beck 1986].

Thoreau believed in a society where people are not governed by any body of representatives and legislations, but by there own conscience,… [read more]

Open Elections Term Paper

… Canadian Government: Party and Politics

An increasing number of citizens of the major western democracies have become disenchanted with the electoral process: they believe that it does not represent them or their interests. Canada is no different and one attempt… [read more]

Amending the Constitution to Make Government Work Essay

… Specifically, note that the combined tax rate for Social Security and Medicare is 7.65%, paid by both employers and employees, and 15.3% paid by the self-employed. For 2014, covered wage Social Security tax rate is 6.2% on earnings to $117,000, and for self-employed people, the Social Security tax rate is 12.4% on earnings to $117. While people earning more than $200,000 ($250,000 for married couples filing joint income taxes) pay only an additional 0.9% in Medicare taxes. An amendment to the Constitution is needed to eliminate the taxation caps on income so that the burden of income taxes is not disproportionately on those who earn less than the cap. This amendment aligns with the 16th Amendment that dealt with income tax as an indirect tax, therefore exempting income tax from the previous apportionment clause related to direct taxes.

Constitutional Change #3

The Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2014 (sponsored by Sensenbrenner, Conyers, and Leahy) would strengthen the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA) in response to the Supreme Court decision last June that invalidated a critical section of the VRA. In the Shelby County v. Holder ruling on June 25, 2013, the conservative majority of the Supreme Court struck down Section 4 of the VRA. This section served as a protection against voting discrimination, in that it compelled certain states with a well-documented history of voting discrimination to clear any proposed changes to voting practices or regulations with the federal government under Section 5 of the VRA. That the sections provided necessary protections is evidenced by the fact that since the Shelby decision, eight states previously covered under Section 4 have passed or implemented new voting restrictions, like the new draconian laws recently enacted in North Carolina and Texas. The Sensenbrenner-Conyers-Leahy bill would strengthen the VRA. However, an Amendment to the constitution is needed to prevent the conservative Supreme Court from playing loose with voter protection laws, and to prevent the states from restricting the rights of citizens, as in Amendment 14.

resurrecting Glass-Steagall, like breaking up the big banks, like making sure that taxes are increased on the very wealthy and the earned income tax credit

States. A short list would include: stagnant wages; and economy making the rich richer, and ignoring most of the rest; the problem of climate change or global warming; the declining middle class; immigrant reform; entitlement reform (Medicare social security); the undermining of healthcare reform; tax reform and making the tax code fairer.

This may be an excellent time to consider whether there are any constitutional changes that could be made? Your task:…… [read more]

Politics in "The New War Research Paper

… " Invoking Reagan is a definite sign of the fiscally conservative stance embraced in this article. Similarly, the author states, "even cities with liberal leadership benefit from statewide policies that increase incentives for job creation." Thus, the primary area of concern for Fund (2014) is not social conservativism but fiscal conservativism. Fund (2014) makes a point to pick on labor unions and corresponding political support for them, linking unions to liberalism. The core political issue in the article is economic policy, with the conservative platform of small government and little to no taxes being championed over the typically liberal platform of higher taxes that are theoretically channeled into public infrastructure. Interestingly, the author makes no mention of how public infrastructure, including services related to transportation and education, would be paid for in areas with no taxes and uses logical fallacies and untenable assumptions typical of the conservative point-of-view.

Therefore, this article is clearly conservative in that it suggests that a business-friendly environment will magically create the quality of life and infrastructure Americans need. The author's diction likewise reflects a conservative stance, with disparaging phrases like "Obama model of wealth redistribution," which has no basis in fact. Likewise, the term "European welfare-state economics" reflects the author's opinion that somehow Europe is a terrible place, especially when compared to hotbeds of culture like Phoenix and Orlando.


Fund, J. (2014). The new war between the states. National Review Online. May 30, 2014.…… [read more]

Dilemmas and Issues of Contemporary Public Administration Research Paper

… The tendency to deceive the public so as to hide such improprieties comes into play here (Starling, 2007). Public officials lie either to hide underperformance and incompetence, or out of the mere feeling of superiority (Starling, 2007). Acts such as these, which are aimed at avoiding negative publicity, would be viewed by the public as being unethical. Public officials are expected to make public any conflicts of interest and be ready to deal with the challenges in the public eye (Starling, 2007).

The First Lady Mitchell Obama's healthy living initiative, in which she seeks to get American youth as healthy as her family clears the path for healthy eating and increased physical activity and gives the public the image of a public officer who seeks to fulfill her ethical obligations, especially now that obesity is recording alarming prevalence rates in the U.S.

Sexual misconduct brings about a whole new idea of dilemmas of contemporary public administration. Former President Bill Clinton's scandal perfectly illustrates the 'utmost decency' concept advanced by former Senator Paul Douglas, and demonstrates the extent to which the concept of ethical responsibility shapes the public's decisions, and a public officer's career.

The Privatization of Government Functions and the Public Interest Dilemma It Poses

Nowadays, the government-private sector relationship is in a state of flux; more government functions are being delegated to the hands of the private sector, and the federal civilian bureaucracy is shrinking at substantially high rates (Holland, et al., 2007). The number of private contractors carrying out government functions today exceeds, by far, that of federal employees supervising them (Holland, et al., 2007). Both the deregulation and privatization movements come into play here.

Of concern, however, is the dilemma posed by this delegation on the attainment of public interest. As the government delegates regulation to the private sector, what happens to accountability and fair deliberation standards of public interest (Holland, et al. 2007)? Are these transferred together with other government functions (Holland, et al., 2007)? If so, then what is the likelihood of their continuance (Holland, et al., 2007? These concerns arise because the private sector is known to pursue profit maximization before any other business goals, and would, naturally, work towards eradicating anything that poses as a hindrance for profit maximization, including welfare-maximization (Holland, et al., 2007).


Public officials have an obligation to serve the public, and are expected to carry out this obligation in the best possible way. The concerns surrounding the recent trend in privatizing government functions come about because the private sector is not subject to the above regulations, and, with the greater proportion of government functions now in its hands, the future of the concepts of public interest and administrative responsibility remains highly uncertain.


CAPAM Featured Report. (2010). Ethical Dilemmas in the Public Service. CAPAM. Retrieved from

Holland, D., Nonini, D.M., Lutz, C., Bartlett, L. & Frederick-McGlathery, M., Guldbrandsen, T. & Murillo, E. (2007). Local Democracy under Siege: Activism, Public Interests, and Private Politics. New York: New York… [read more]

US Role as "Policeman of the World Term Paper

… " clearly marking the U.S. As a global policeman. Furthermore, he went on to say "Even a limited strike will send a message to Assad that no other nation can deliver." (Federal News Service, 2013)

Another example of the way in which the U.S. intervenes as a global policeman is through diplomatic and political means. The Tunisian situation is relevant in this sense. In 2011, Tunisia was the first country to break away as part of the Arab Spring revolution and, despite the fact that there are reports of the U.S. having supported the previous regime of Ben Ali, the American government was among the first ones to encourage the democratic transition for Tunisia (Shahshahani and Mullin, 2012). This was a result of certain fears of a revolution that would not be able to be contained and stirred towards a democratic resolution and the fear of countries in the Middle East succumbing to extremists was sufficient enough to engage the U.S. diplomatically and politically in all Arab Spring revolutions. Both the military intervention in Syria and the diplomatic intervention in Tunisia are clear reminiscences of the post Civil War tailored foreign policy that somewhat entitles the U.S. To consider international conflicts as threats to its own national security and act accordingly.

There are several driving forces that determined in time a foreign policy based on an interventionist approach. One of the most important and historically defined is the need for security that the U.S. felt since it broke free from the British Empire. Once liberated from British Crown it was up to the states to determine their own national security. At the same time, the constant European and Southern threat determined an expansion of the security areal the U.S. started to build for itself in time. Secondly, the pure nature of the democratic process and exercise has become a symbol of good practices and there has been a tendency since the beginning of the 20th century but especially after the elaboration of the 14 Points made by President Wilson in 1917 during the First World War in which democracy and human rights were the cornerstone of future international politics. Another driving force that determined this foreign policy approach is the actual ability of the U.S. To influence, politically and economically. The U.S. is currently the strongest economy of the world and with the most impressive political influence. Under these circumstances, it can enforce a preference and thus act as a policeman. Finally, the actual necessity to enforce democracy was another driving force for the actions undergone in recent decades and years. The threats the U.S. are subject to demand an increased control over the security environment particularly because of the global nature of the threats and the enemies. The fight against terror is a constant strive to dismiss global connections and threats, and this would not be possible if the U.S. would not be full front engaged in managing the international security environment.

Overall, the United States can rightfully be… [read more]

Political Issues in Modern Society Book Report

… Acknowledging that can help people who are struggling to feel validated in their concerns. That may not allow them to correct the problem, but will show them they are not the only people with the issue.

Personally, I both enjoyed and disliked the book. It was well-written, and the dislike did not come from the quality of the book, but just from the understanding that Huffington was right about the issues and problems being faced. It is honestly depressing to see how far America has sunk from what it was supposed to be and what it was created to be. That is not to say that it is not still a great country, but there are many more problems with and in it than politicians are willing to recognize. Until they are more willing to say that there are serious problems and that they are helping to create and perpetuate those problems, and until true change is actually being made, there is very little that the public can do. The argument is to vote out the politicians that are not doing a good job so new ones can do something different. That makes sense, but it does not actually work.

When politicians are voted out and replaced by others, the same cycles are just repeated. All politicians seem to be essentially the same anymore. They may have some different views on issues based on party lines, but I have not seen any of them that are not rich and powerful, and I have not seen any of them that really do make a large difference by affecting change that makes a large, long-term difference for the American people. Part of the reason for that, though, is that the system itself is fundamentally broken. It will not provide what is needed for real change that will make a significant difference in the lives of the American people without major adjustments. Since politicians are getting what they want and need, there is no incentive to make those adjustments. That is a large part of the reason why reform and change of the political system in the United States has been unsuccessful. However, it is clear that the system is far from what was originally envisioned.… [read more]

European Union - Politics, Policies Term Paper

… European Union - Politics, Policies, and Governance

The European Union: Cohesion and Complexity

When it comes to the governance of the EU, a lack of coherence is one of the issues that has to be addressed. This is seen throughout… [read more]

Minority Representation in U.S. Politics Essay

… Similarly, by targeting early voting, same-day registration and voting, and Sunday voting, new restrictions in that regard were clearly intended to disenfranchise black voters who traditionally vote on Sunday after church services. New restrictions on the types of ID that can be used for voting include elimination of student IDs, obviously meant to disenfranchise students. New requirement for voter ID cards overwhelmingly affect the poorest voters, a disproportionate number of whom are minorities, because the only possible process for obtaining the necessary ID cards require state drivers licenses, or credit cards, or other forms of identification that may poor people simply do not have (Bouie, 20132). Even when they posses the necessary identification to obtain a voter ID card, poor people are much more heavily burdened by the obligation to take off from work during business hours and travel to the facilities where the IDs are issued (Bouie, 20132). Unfortunately, all of these transparent measures will be remembered by future historians as the Jim Crow laws of the early 21st century because they serve the same basic function as their namesake from the late 18th and early 19th centuries.


Bouie, J. "Virginia Republicans move forward with mass disenfranchisement

A Senate subcommittee has recommended a bill to rig the state's electoral vote allocation." The American Prospect (January 23, 2013).


Bouie, J. "Republicans Admit Voter-ID Laws Are Aimed at Democratic Voters."

Politics Beast (August 28, 2013).… [read more]

Government Shutdown a Shutdown Furlough Article Review

… For this situation to be avoided and its repeat, it is important that at the time of high-stakes negotiations regarding appropriation measures, the Congress and the President are left with different options:

Applying a single or several interim continuing resolutions (CRs) in extending temporary funding beyond the start of a fiscal year, in anticipation of negotiators making final decisions over funding levels of full year.

Reaching to an agreement pertaining regular appropriations acts prior to October 1, which is in the beginning of a new fiscal year.

Failing to agree on full year or interim appropriations acts, leading to a funding gap as well as a corresponding shutdown of federal activities.

In case the President and the Congress pursue the first or third option, an agreement can be reached on full year appropriations after the start of the fiscal year. Such agreements can adopt a full year CR or the usual regular appropriation acts, in single or omnibus legislation. The President and the Congress have always agreed on full year or interim funding facing impasse. While in other occasions like the one we are in, President and the Congress may fail to reach accommodation in time to avoid any likelihood of fund gap.


Even though conflict may exist between the President and the Congress, it is important to remember that the life of people who are affected by the furlough depends on their decision, therefore any decision should be a well thought one to stop unnecessary…… [read more]

Louisiana: Race Relations During Reconstruction Term Paper

… On September 14, 1974, the White League, a coalition of citizen club members, took control of the Louisiana government by force in New Orleans and replaced the Republican governor with their own (Steedman, 2009). The White League was a White Supremacist organization with ties to the Democratic Party. According to the Ouachita Telegraph, the raid on the capital was triggered by the New Orleans Police attempting to seize an arms shipment making its way to the White League. The police raid was led by the former Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard, which suggests that not all Southern white conservatives agreed with the use of violence to reestablish white rule (Steedman, 2009). Fifty white and black leaders formed the Louisiana Unification Movement for the purpose of drawing freedmen away from the Republican Party, in the spirit of compromise, but this effort failed.


Racist Democrats in Louisiana used a number of methods to control the social and political status of freedmen, including issuing work permits based on political affiliation, enacting Black Codes, engaging in election fraud, and the use of violence. Freedmen responded by running for office, joining the Republican Party, and revising the Louisiana Constitution to outlaw slavery in the state, while the U.S. Congress and the President enacted supportive legislation and occupied the state with military forces. Despite the strong response by the federal government and the courageous actions of former slaves, the political and social atmosphere during Reconstruction in Louisiana, especially the racially-motivated violence, made it clear that freedmen did not enjoy full citizenship.

Second class citizenship for freedmen was enforced by Black Codes enacted throughout the South. These Codes were designed to keep freedmen tied to and working on plantations (Stewart, 1998). Black Codes were passed at the local level throughout the South and were effectively vagrancies laws. Gary Stewart describes the Black Codes as one variation, in a long history of vagrancy laws, designed to keep second class citizens in their place. Based on Stewart's analysis, the Black Codes eventually led to passage of contemporary anti-gang legislation. For example, the Broken Windows policing strategy gives wide discretion to police officers to maintain social order, similar to the wording in Black Codes. One of the more famous examples is the now defunct "Stop-and-Frisk" policing policy used by the New York Police Department, which was recently held to be racially biased and therefore unconstitutional (Goldstein, 2013).

Second class citizenship was also institutionalized within at least one federal agency, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) (Johnson, 2011). The South and the rest of the country needed to restore its economy and supporting farmers was integral to this effort. When it came time to allocate federal money to Southern states, however, the USDA ceded control to local governments. The Morrill Act of 1890 included a separate but equal clause reminiscent of the Jim Crow laws that had been enacted across the South when formal Reconstruction ended in 1877. Formal segregation was not ended within the USDA until the Civil Rights Act… [read more]

Nations and Nationalism Exist: Comparison Essay

… This is true most clearly in nations located in the Middle East. Language is held in the work of Laitin and Geertz to be of primary importance in the determination of a nation however, the national language is reported in the work of Hobsbawn to be a "pragmatic matter and still less a dispassionate one, as is show by the reluctance to recognize them as constructs, by historicizing, and inventing traditions for them." (1990) It is noted however, that language for some is viewed as the nation's soul and in some cases is a prerequisite for nationality.

Geertz writes that in new nation states that the new states

"are abnormally susceptible to serious disaffection based on primordial attachments. By a primordial attachment is meant one that stems from the "givens" -- or, more precisely, as culture is inevitably involved in such matters, the assumed "givens" -- of social existence: immediate contiguity and kin connection mainly, but beyond them the givenness that stems from being born into a particular religious community, speaking a particular language, or even a dialect of a language, and following particular social practices." (Geertz, nd, p. 4)

These blood, speech, cultural and other such ties are held to be strong and in some cases coercive for when the individual is effectively bound by kinsmanship and so forth the outcome is not just affection on a personal basis or necessitated practicality or even common interest or some obligation that has been incurred. The varying strength of these ties is varied from one to another individual and from one society to another.


It is difficult to discern whose notion of how a nation is best defined is between the authors reviewed in this study however, from the viewpoint of this writer it appears that Anderson has the most rational view of what constitutes a nation at least from the view of an American citizen. The nation cannot be defined solely on the basis of the territory in which that nation is situated or even upon the language which is predominantly spoken by the people comprising the nation. Moreover, the nation cannot be defined solely by its cultural, religious or political beliefs since just as in the United States of America, in other nations too exist a great diversity of individuals and belief systems as well as political parties.

Summary and Conclusion

The nation is best defined by the individuals that comprise that nation with the nation's definition fitting to the characteristics of its citizenry than attempting to mold the citizenry to 'fit' into the definition of the nation. This is because where no growth exists stagnation becomes dominant and with growth comes change evidenced in the 'tips' and 'cascades' that occur within society and the nation-at-lager. Of course there are some things that one cannot imaging changing since it is unlikely that Israel will ever become a Muslim nation and just as unlikely that the United States will assume a communist stance in politics. With that being said,… [read more]

Tudor Dynasty Essay

… ¶ … Tudor dynasty was arguably one of the most eventful and consequential in the history of England. It spanned from the final decades of the 15th century to the first couple years of the 17th century. During this time… [read more]

Power in America Who Holds Term Paper

… Power in America

Who Holds the Power in America?

With the ratification of the Constitution, the United States of America was established as a Federal Republic. A Republic is a Democratic form of government in the people elect representatives to create government policy that reflects their will. Because the United States contains several independent territories, called "States," which retain a certain amount number of individual rights, there is a system of power sharing between the states and the national government called Federalism. In this way America is a Federal Republic where the power to elect those who would make public policy lies with the electorate. If one considers the policies that the federal government establishes, and the ability to pass legislation that would establish those policies, then the real power in America lies with those who are best able to organize political organizations that can bring about electoral success for those who will implement the policies favored by those organizations.

In the United States, one effect of the system of Federalism is that individual states can implement public policy that is supported by the majority of its citizens. However, the system of Federalism also guarantees that that majority cannot impose its will upon the minority by reserving powers to decide constitutionality within the federal apparatus. That means that the Federal Government ultimately can decide what is legal and what is not within a state. And even though the Constitution also guarantees certain powers to the states, the power to decide constitutionality tips the balance of power in the system in favor of the federal government. Therefore if one truly wants to influence public policy, then using the federal government is best means because its decisions must be implemented throughout the nation and not just in individual states.

Because the people's will is supposed to be implemented as governmental policy, there must be some sort of process by which the will of the people can be transmitted to those holding governmental offices. This policy making system is dependent upon a number of linkage institutions, such as "parties, elections, interest groups, and the media-[which] transmit Americans' preferences to the policymakers in government. " (Edwards, 2010, p 10) These organizations influence the policy making institutions created by the Constitution and in place to implement the various types of policies. But the relationship between the various linkage institutions, which is important in the implementation of public policy, is very complex.

There are three main theories on how the electorate can influence government policy: pluralism, elitism, hyper-pluralism. While…… [read more]

Campaign Finance Spending You Decide Research Paper

… The Court decision flies in the face of common sense: "If the court believes that the government may limit a $3,000 contribution to a candidate because of its corruptive potential, how could it not believe that the government has a similar anticorruption interest in limiting $3 million spent in an independent effort to elect that candidate? Would a federal candidate not feel much more beholden to the big spender than the more modest contributor?" (Hasen 2011). In other words, the decision merely serves to empower shadowy organizations not specifically affiliated with the candidate that may be even more ideologically rigid than the person they are trying to elect.

The Citizens United decision immediately fueled the creation of what became known as 'Super PACs' or political action committees that were specifically created to donate unlimited funds to outside groups not specifically affiliated with a candidate (Cordes 2011). This means that a Super PAC can donate unlimited funds to a group known as 'Citizens for the American Way' to lobby against a Democratic incumbent, while the incumbent's supporters can donate unlimited funds to a group known as 'Friends of Senator X.' Thus, Citizens United seems to place a substantial legal roadblock in the way of creating meaningful campaign finance reform. In a relatively short span of time, it changed the American political landscape of financing and its effects are likely to grow in magnitude in coming years.


Cordes, N. (20). Colbert gets a Super PAC. CBS. Retrieved:

Gitell, S. (2003). Making sense of McCain-Feingold. The Atlantic. Retrieved:

Hasen, R. (2010). Super-soft money. Slate. Retrieved:

Sullivan, K & Terrance, A. (2010).Summary of Citizen's United.

Retrieved:… [read more]

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… ¶ … agents, elected officials usually try to represent the people (as their primary principle) through models of trustee and/or delegate representation. However, the task of balancing the two models of representation is very challenging because they are competing visions… [read more]

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