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Pols Week 3 Day 2 Notes

by: Shelby Kolb

Pols Week 3 Day 2 Notes 112

Shelby Kolb
Cal Poly
GPA 3.6

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About this Document

Elites in America notes day 2 of week 3.
Political Science 112
Kathryn Logan
Class Notes
pols, political science, pols 112, Logan, notes, week 3
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Shelby Kolb on Wednesday April 13, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 112 at California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo taught by Kathryn Logan in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 19 views. For similar materials see Political Science 112 in Political Science at California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo.


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Date Created: 04/13/16
POLS NOTES DAY 5 : Elites in America and Political Power  Elites = individuals who have access to major private and governmental institutions within U.S. society o Anyone who participates in decisions that allocate resources for society o Governmental elites interact closely with non- governmental elites  Evolution of the elite system: o Elite system is open and depends on a slow and continuous “circulation of elites.” o Elite membership requires a consensus of values o Policy changes and innovations result from elite preferences; changes in national policy have been incremental rather than revolutionary o Elite membership has evolved slowly, with relatively few changes in ideas or values about our political and economic systems.  New elites who accept the national consensus about private enterprise, limited government, and individualism are welcomed into elite membership.  think tanks = policy planning organizations.  Elite theory= economic elites are distinctly powerful in shaping government policy and making key economic decisions that directly affect all of us.  Pluralist theory= the power of economic elites is relative and depends on many factors; corporations are just another interest group trying to influence public policy.  Corporation = organization of people whose interests are creating long term, sustainable returns for the corporation.  Industrial Corporations : o U.S. Corporate Tax Returns : 6 million tax returns/yr. 25,000 are from corporations that receive over $50 million in annual revenues (3/4 of total corporate revenues in U.S.) o Fortune 500 : collectively took in $15.7 trillion in revenues (2013). More than ½ of all corporate revenue in nation.  Industrial corporations : o Top 6= Walmart, Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Conoco Phillips, Berkshire Hathaway, and Apple (2013) o Great influence on the nation’s economic life (jobs, salary/wages, job benefits) o Corporate mergers have created great concentration of power and influence among these instituions.  Financial Corporations = o More consolidated in wealth than industrial elites o Make up the nation’s larget commercial banks, investment firms, and insurance companies o Giant banking mergers have created greater concentration of banking assets than at any time in recent history o Influence consumer purchasing power via interest rates and credit cards  Corporate Instituions  Models of Power : o Interlocking directorates o Revolving doors= between government and corporate elites  Proxy votes = top managers use these to select board of directors 


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