Government is the institution through which a society makes and enforces its public policies.
The State can be defined as having these four characteristics
A state must have
People the number of which does not directly relate to its existence Territory
A state must be comprised of land- territory with known and recognized boundaries.
Every state is Sovereign. It has supreme and absolute power within and decides its own foreign and domestic policies. Government
Every state has a government _ that is, it is politically organized.
Origins of the State
The Forces Theory
• The force theory states that one person or small group took control of an area and forced all within it on submit to that person or group rule.
The Evolutionary Theory
• The evolutionary theory argues that the state evolved naturally out of the early family.
The Divine Right Theory
• The theory of divine right holds that God created the state and that God gives those of royal birth a “divine right” to rule.
The social Contract Theory
• The social contract theory argues that the state arose out of a voluntary act of free people.
The Purpose of Government
The main purpose of government are described in the Preamble of the Constitution of the United States:
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
Section 1 Review
- A government is
(a) The institution through which a society makes and enforce its public policies.
(b) A collection of people.
(c) Always democratic.
(d) The organization representing farms and industries.
- A state has the following four characteristics:
(a) Population, territory, sovereignty, and government.
(b) Sovereignty, a perfect union, welfare, and territory.
(c) People, places, force, and divine right.
(d) Justice, defense, liberty, and domestic tranquility.
Forms if Government
• How can we classify governments?
• How are systems of government defined in terms of who can participate?
• How is power distributed within a state?
• How are governments defined by the relationship between the legislative and executive branches?
Government can be classified by three different standards:
(1) Who can participate in the governing process.
(2) The geographic distribution of the governmental power within the state.
(3) The relationship between the legislative (lawmaking) and the executive (law-executing) branches of the government.
Classification by Who Can Participate:
• In a democracy, supreme political authority rests with the people. Dictatorship
• A dictatorship exists where those who rule cannot be held responsible to the will of the people.
• A direct democracy exists where the will of the people is translated into law directly by the people themselves. • An autocracy is a government in which a single person holds unlimited political power.
• In an direct democracy, a small group of persons, chosen by the people to act as their representatives, expresses the popular will. • An oligarchy is a government in which the power to rule is held by a small, usually self-appointed elite.
Classification by Geographic Distribution of Power
• A unitary government has all powers held by a single, central agency.
• A confederation is an alliance of independent states.
• A federal government is one in which the powers of government are divided between a central government and several local governments.
• An authority superior to both the central and local governments makes this division of power on a geographic basis.
Classification by the Relationship Between Legislative and Executive Branches
Presidential and Parliamentary Government:
The Presidential Relationship voters elect the Legislature and the Chief Executive who is part of executive are independent and coequal. The Parliamentary Relationship voters elect the legislature. The Chief Executive is drawn from the Legislature.
Section 2 Review
- In a democracy,
(a) Independent states form an alliance.
(b) Supreme political authority rests with the people.
(c) Those who rule cannot be held responsible to the will of the people.
(d) The rule by a few, select individuals regulates the will of the people.
- The United States government has the following characteristics:
(a) Confederate, parliamentary, and dictatorship.
(b) Unitary, presidential, and democracy.
(c) Federal, presidential, and democracy.
(d) Unitary, parliamentary, and dictatorship.
Basic Concepts of Democracy
• What are the foundations of democracy?
• What are the connections between democracy and the free enterprise system?
• How has the Internet affected democracy?
The American concept of democracy rests on these basic notions:
(1) A recognition of the fundamental worth and dignity of every person;
(2) A respect for the equality of all persons;
(3) A faith in majority rule and an insistence upon minority rights;
(4) An acceptance of the necessity of compromise; and
(5) An insistence upon the widest possible degree of individual freedom.
Democracy and the Free Enterprise System
• The free enterprise system is an economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods; investments that are determined by private decision rather than by state control; and determined in a free market.
• Decision in a free enterprise systems are determined by the Law of supply and demand.
• An economy in which private enterprise exists in combination with a considerable amount of government regulation and promotion is called a mixed economy.
Democracy and the Internet
• Democracy demands that the people be widely informed about their government.
• Theoretically, the Internet makes Knowledgeable participation in democratic process easier than ever before.
• However, all date on the World Wide Web is not necessarily true, and the long-term effects of the Internet on democracy has yet to be determined.
Section 3 Review
- All of the following are basic notions found in the American concepts of democracy EXCEPT
(a) A recognition of the fundamental worth and dignity of ever person.
(b) A respect for the equality of all person.
(c) The rule of government by a single individual.
(d) An acceptance of the necessity of compromise.
- In a free enterprise system, the means of capital are owned
**(a) By private and corporate entities.
(b) By government agenices.
(c) By only the agricultural sector.
(d) Equally by the collective citizenry.