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American Government and Politics - Essay Example

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Each chapter in the textbook has a number of Features for developing critical analysis. For each lesson you will a select a single feature from the assigned chapters and write a critical analysis response to the questions posed at the end of the feature.  Make sure you…
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American Government and Politics
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Assignment Each chapter in the textbook has a number of Features for developing critical analysis. For each lesson you will a select a single feature from the assigned chapters and write a critical analysis response to the questions posed at the end of the feature.  Make sure you read each feature in full and answer any questions attached to the feature. Your written response must be at least 100 words in support of your position on the questions. Be sure to note the chapter number and feature in your response. You will write one response for each of the eight Lessons in the course.
Follow these instructions to the assignments when you do this same type of work in the other lessons. The requirements will be the same and this introduction will not be repeated.
Chapter 10
1. What If ... Pork Were Banned? 
2. The Pork-Barrel legislation was a catalyst to add more jobs to the economy. This allowed congress to approve more than 13,000 earmarks worth about $67 billion. However if this was banned, earmarks could not converted into cash. Since Congress has limited time debating, it is critical, eliminating pork might reduce federal budgeting. Banning pork would indicate that budgets would have to go the traditional budget process. The unique thing about pork was the fact that it ranked the requests based upon the urgency of the bill. That eliminated the desire of Congress to pursue its own sel-interests that were never reviewed by bureaucrats. If “pork” was truly eliminated, congress would lose the legal understanding for the domestic spending that is needed in local projects such as public infrastructure, education, medicare, and etc. However, “pork” would also eliminate the unnecessary funding that goes to support federal prison. Currently, many lobbyists continue to propagate and being rewarded for their campaign contributions towards this agenda. Pork barreling allows an individual to extend the power. For example, a defense contributor might engage in pork barreling by re-electing his local elective.
2.  Beyond Our Borders:  The Exceptional Power of the U.S. Senate. 
3.  Which Side Are You On?:  Is It Time to Get Rid of the Filibuster? 
4.  The Politics of Boom and Bust:  Endless Federal Budget Deficits? 
Assignment 2 Select ONE of the following scenarios for the assigned chapters and complete the Critical Analysis questions.  Your written response must be at least 100 words in support of your position on the questions.  Be sure to note the chapter number and feature in your response.
Chapter 11 
1.  What If ... We Could Recall the President?
2.  Beyond Our Borders:  When the Chief Executive Answers To A Coalition.  
3.  Politics and ... Terrorism:  George W. Obama. 
4.  The Politics of Boom and Bust:  The Audacity of Barack Obama. 
5.  Politics and ... Social Networking:  When the President Tweets.  
The advent of social network without a doubt has made a critical impact towards enhancing or degrading the popularity of an individual. During the 2008 run, Obama became an expert at penetrating the social media networking resources and using it for his own benefits. Obama was successfully able to use twitter and post videos on youtube to gain momentum throughout the election. Twitter was essential to his campaign as it enabled him to spread his message with the facilitation of his “followers” on his page. The transition to social networking remains to be an enigma for most American citizens who utilize these resources for their own personal agenda, not for propagating for their campaign. Nonetheless, it was a powerful tool for the president himself. Although the account was under the President’s name, Obama’s staff was responsible to ensure that all the comments that were posted were by his staff and not him. To emphasize this issue even further, Obama cleverly states “I never used twitter..my thumbs are too clumsy” (Pg 389). It will be clearly interesting to see whether other politicians will adapt to this media. However, one must understanding that undertaking twitter is a risk that could either be advantageous and detrimental towards one’s reputation.
Chapter 12
1. What If ... Parts of the Federal Government Were Privatized? 
2. If part of government was privatized, that would mean several drastic changes. First and foremost is the fact that it would create employment at a higher level especially in the civilian sector. Undoubtedly, this makes the government more efficient as the state would have less “lag time.” In essence, most government workers have to spend monumental times on big project, which is a waste of taxpayer money. Privatizing government tasks such as technology is a great investment since it saves taxpayers money and rapid development of infrastructure. If some part of government could be privatized at this time, than the government would be the highest employer throughout the nation. It is detrimental for a country when government employees get higher pay ratio than the employees. That cannot occur as it will lead to waste and being a unproductive environment of capitalism
2.  The Politics of Boom and Bust:  Did the Stimulus Legislation Contain Too Much Pork?
3.  Politics and ... National Security:  Bureaucrats Cant Protect Us From Every Threat. 
4.  Which Side Are You On?:  Is Too Much Government Work Being Contracted Out? 
5.  Beyond Our Borders:  India, the Land of Bureaucratic Paperwork, Goes Online. 
Assignment 3
Complete the following Critical Analysis question.  Your written response must be at least 100 words in support of your position on the question.  
Chapter 21
A. What If...  The Texas Legislature Were a Full-Time Legislature?
Complete the following Critical Analysis question.  Your written response must be at least 100 words in support of your position on the question.  
Chapter 22
1. What If ... Texas Used Private Contractors to Administer State Government?(chapter 26) 
Undoubtedly, that is a controversial topic that continues to be debated among many social scientists. In essence, conservatives insist that a more efficient government and save money. However, liberals insist that saving money would lead to corruption that would plague the system imposed upon by the legal infrastructure. In addition, liberals insist that in a system such as this, companies would just find out loopholes to penetrate. Liberals continue to portray the examples of Texas prisons, which is a disaster itself since public service has been disillusioned as a profit motive. Private companies take advantage of government contracts because government cannot identify fraud and abuse in a rapid manner. In order to counter that, conservatives argue that competition in private sector would diminish cost and improve quality. The emphasis is on the fact that when government workers are not motivated, they quality of work will lack. Consequently, if private companies don’t have any incentive, they will lose their contract.
Choose ONE of the following questions to answer: 
1. Why did the Framers of the Constitution create a bicameral legislature? Was part of the reason for a two-house legislature the idea that it would be more difficult to pass legislation, therefore serving as a check on a runaway legislature? What impact does this have today? Is it easy for Congress to agree on legislation?
In order to gain a broader view of the bicameral legislature, one must understand that the whole objective behind two-house legislation was to solidify the foundation of the legislative branch. Roger Sherman in his initiative to strengthen the governing body put this idea is his plan the Great Compromise. One aspect of this plan would enable states to send its representatives based upon its population. The other part of this plan would limit the state’s population with a fixed number of representations from the other state. The foundation laid by Sherman allocates power and balance and resolves both sides according. It also creates a strong threshold of a two house legislature that comprises between both ideologies and resolves the problem of states with little or big population. Undoubtedly, it was implemented in order to ensure that legislation would be pass to difficult. It minimizes the enactment of abusive laws passing through the senate, which was a major concern for the framers for the Constitution. No it is not easy for congress to agree on legislation since administrators have different perspectives on legislations. Legislation must pass . through various steps in order to be approved which can be lengthy and hard.
2. Do different rules for each chamber, like the filibuster in the Senate, help to balance power?  Is it possible for a minority idea to prevent a majority idea from being enacted?  Although the problems have changed since 1789, have the basic ideas of representation changed?
1 1 1 Discussion 2
Choose ONE of the following questions to answer: 
 How necessary is bureaucracy? If we can agree that individuals need rules and regulations to live together, then there must also be a bureaucracy. Rules and regulations are meaningless unless they are administered; the bureaucracy is necessary for the administration
Even though many Americans dislike bureaucracy, the system continues to be implemented today. Most Americans like working with a system that has aspects of Bureaucracy. Whether Americans like it or not, they must live in a system where Bureaucracy is strictly implemented. Bureaucracy is essential as it’s a central governing body that attempts to keep the system in place. Bureaucracy is needed in order to maintain security and peace within local government agencies. Removing bureaucracy results in anarchy, which is chaotic and does not suppresses the individuals’ power to obtain their desires. It leads to a state of dictatorship and totalitarianism With the facilitation of bureaucracy, laws and legislations are implemented and protect the freedom of individuals. However, balance of power is vital towards achieving a normal system in which checks and balances are applied. For example, FDA is one of the most notorious forms of bureaucracy in which public safety is taken at a high level.
What could be done to eliminate iron triangles? Prohibit agencies from testifying before Congress? Where does Congress receive important information on how a program is functioning? (the agencies) Eliminate subcommittees in Congress? Why does Congress have subcommittees? (specialization.) Eliminate interest groups? How is that possible in a democracy?
Works Cited
Schmidt, Steffen W., Mack C. Shelley, and Barbara A. Bardes. Handbook of selected court cases to accompany American government and politics today and American government and politics today: the essentials . Minneapolis/St. Paul: West Pub. Co., 1995. Print. Read More
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