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Week 3 Notes

by: Konstantin Keller

Week 3 Notes POLS 1101

Konstantin Keller
GPA 3.75

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Notes from week 3 of POLS 1101 lectures & breakout sessions.
American Government
Class Notes
political science, american, Government, pols
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Konstantin Keller on Thursday January 28, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to POLS 1101 at University of Georgia taught by Haynes in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 23 views. For similar materials see American Government in Political Science at University of Georgia.


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Date Created: 01/28/16
Week 3 Tuesday, January 26, 2012:24 PM 1/26/2016 - So it's hard for everyoneto get along -- got it. We got problems. ○ But we can solve them with rules - and one way of doing this is creating a set of rules so we have a way to self-govern our community. ○ Governmentis our way to do this, but what are the costs of this collective effort?  Material Costs □ Tangible □ Need policing? □ A road? □ A school? □ A town hall? □ Money □ Paid for with taxes  Transaction Costs □ Intangible □ Time □ Effort □ Can be manipulated in terms of decision-making need. □ High vs Low Transaction Costs  Low ◊ Quick decisions; emergencies  State of emergency  War response  High ◊ Important decisions involving critical areas  Death penalty cases – Unanimous decision  Conformity Costs □ 300 students make decisions by majorityrule vote. □ Not all are part of the majority.  These are unhappy with the outcome. ◊ They have conformity costs: how much it bothers them to go along with the decision.  Transaction costs and conformity costs are INVERSELY RELATED. □ When one is high, the other is low. □ Costs in Different Types of Government  Dictatorships ◊ Low Transaction Cost ◊ High ConformityCost  Democracies ◊ High Transaction Cost ◊ Low ConformityCost  How might you alter transaction costs? □ Change the decision rule.  Plurality Rule - Congressional election(you just have to have the most votes)  MajorityRule - Electoralcollege (you have to have 50% of the votes + 1) SupermajorityRule - Overriding a veto  SupermajorityRule - Overriding a veto  Unanimity - Death penalty cases; changing the Articles of Confederation □ Command Power - Commanderin Chief (quick decision; very limited) □ Veto Power (strong power, but only negative) □ Agenda Control (Speaker of the House - setting choices for others - bills) □ Delegation (smaller group works on behalf of larger group; fewer coordination problems) Breakout 1/27/2016 - Each state has unitary power within its borders. - In a federal system,each governmenthas distinct powers which the other level of government cannot override. ○ Each level of governmentalso has shared powers. ○ The American election system works on this framework. - The American election system is one of the most complexin the world. ○ We have multi-year election cycles ○ The elections are conducted in phases ○ The campaigns are waged at the local, state, and national levels ○ American elections are expensive, and get more expensive every election cycle - Adding to this complexity,elections for all public offices in the US are conducted at the state level ○ Including presidential elections  This means there are no national elections in the US - The Constitution makes no mention of: ○ Political parties ○ How candidates should be selected ○ How elections should be run ○ The only requirements set forth for candidates are residency and age requirements. ○ The only system put in place is the Electoral College.  The role of the House is breaking ties. - During the Washington Administration parties formed. - After Washington retired, the party caucuses in Congress chose the party candidates for president. ○ This was the method for choosing nominees for roughly 20 years. - Travel and communicationwas difficult and this let national representativesand party leaders use a readily available venue for choosing candidates for a national office. - By the 1820's, as the first party system dissolved; this system was derisively called 'King Caucus'. - As the parties and system got larger, caucusing became more difficult. - The political parties had also expanded so they were no longer limited to Congress ○ In many states, Electorsnow chosen by public vote ○ Most states expanded the vote to white men ○ The party organization was not entrenched in local politics - Starting in 1832, the Democratsbowed to pressure and began using a nominating convention. - The Whig Party, formed in opposition to Andrew Jackson, followed suit in 1839. - The national conventionsbrought party representativestogether from across the country for the purposes of selecting the party candidate for presidency. ○ Took power away from the national Congress and gave it to the state parties, and state party elites. ○ The convention was autonomous(made all of its decisions internally). ○ Disbands after it concludes its business. - States were allowed to choose their own rules for how delegates to the convention were chosen. ○ Some states left it up to local party caucuses ○ Some states left it to a committeeor party official. - The delegates reflected state party preferences. - Some states required that delegates follow a unit rule, where all of the state delegates vote as a - Some states required that delegates follow a unit rule, where all of the state delegates vote as a block. - This was the time of the 'smoke filled room'. - Internal bargaining was necessary because there were no external mechanisms for determining public support. - Candidates did not campaign pre-conventionso in many respects their strengths and weaknesses were unknown (aspiring candidates did not even attend the convention). - Nomination fights were also often intertwined with fights over the party platform. - During the ProgressiveEra, most states began using primaries to choose state level political candidates. - Very few states used primaries to choose presidential candidates ○ When they did the results were not binding (with the exception of a handful of states) - Many argued that primaries would be both expensiveand divisive. - After the 1912 election, many agreed. - Most states eliminated presidential primaries after WWI. - Until 1972, most candidates did not activelycampaign using the primaries. 1/28/2016 - Colonists had reasons for leaving their homes. ○ Religious persecution ○ Class or economictrap ○ This would shape the character of the New World's colonial nature and their thoughts on government. ○ They were also quite independent. ○ Colonists came to try to get a better life.  More opportunities  Better place to raise a family  Freedom  Etc. - Quakers = PA - Catholics = MD - Anti-Puritans = RI ○ Did not approve of mandatorychurch attendance. ○ RI was founded on religious liberty. - A balance emerged: ○ Great Britain controlled trade and international affairs  But colonies managed their local affairs (home rule). - What was home rule? ○ Colonies had a charter (written agreement between king and colony.)  The king appointed a governor to rule for him and colonists paid the governor's salary (purse strings!) □ Colonial legislatureselected by propertied males.  First legislature: VA House of Burgesses (1619) - Britain and France disputed Ohio territory ○ Which led to the global 7 Years War  Ended in 1763 with the Treaty of Paris □ Borders were agreed upon.  This was a problem because colonists ignored boundaries and conflicted with Indians  France got the Indians on their side by promising them British land  Colonists wanted military protection,however,the war left British colonies broke □ So they raised taxes and made colonists pay up. - A Decade of Taxation (1764-1774) The Sugar Act of 1764 ○ The Sugar Act of 1764  Reduced the rate of tax on molasses from six pence to three pence per gallon, and strictly enforced it.  The act also listed more foreign goods to be taxed (tariffs) including sugar, certain wines, coffee, pimiento, cambric and printed calico, and further, regulated the export of lumber and iron.  Results □ Molasses tax hurt rum industry in colonies. □ Resulted in reduced trade with other countries and thus colonists had less money to buy British goods. ○ The Stamp Act of 1765  The Stamp Act was a tax placed on the American colonies by the British in 1765on all printed materials such as newspapers, magazines, and legal documents  It was called the Stamp Act because the colonies were supposed to buy paper from Britain that had an official stamp on it that showed they had paid the tax.  Was paid in Britain but never enforced in colonies. ○ The Mutiny Act of 1765  The Quartering and Mutiny acts basically forced colonists to house and feed British soldiers.  "You want us to protect you; then you are going to have to feed us and give us shelter."  Colonial governmentswould not, so they passed these laws.  Does this sound a bit like free riding? ○ The Townshend Acts of 1767  Chancellor of the Exchequer Charles Townshend in 1767,the Townshend Acts imposed duties on glass, lead, paints, paper, and tea imported into the colonies.  Townshend hoped the acts would defray imperial expenses in the colonies,but many Americans viewed the taxation as an abuse of power, resulting in the passage of agreementsin colonial legislatures to limit imports from Britain.  In 1770,Parliament repealed all the Townshend duties except the tax on tea, leading to a temporarytruce between the two sides in the years before the American Revolution. ○ The Coercive acts of 1774  Colonists called them the Intolerable Acts  Punitive laws passed by the British Parliament in 1774 after the Boston Tea party.  They were meant to punish Massachusetts colonists for their defiance in throwing a large tea shipment into the Boston harbor.  Britain viewed the colonistsacts as blatant destruction of property and lawlessness.  342 crates of tea = $1 million today  Acts closed Boston Harbor until damages were paid.


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