Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Forms of Government Notes

Ginny life lesson (will kids catch analogy?)

Questions about government – how to make it.
Founders used reason.
4 questions to answer.

One:
Where is power located?
Unitary-Federal-Confederate CONTINUUM

Left-right continuum: Should government be used to change society? If so, move left: National power needed to overcome local resistance.
Happy with status quo? Oppose shift to national power.

Under Britain: Unitary
Swing of Pendulum to Confederate after revolution (explains why they did something we see as transparently stupid today – Carlos Mencia do-de-doo)
Doesn’t work – swing back to middle and federal

Continuums are not discrete points – sliding.

American history: (All listed are toward unitary unless otherwise noted)
Washington (Hamilton)
TOWARD CONFEDERATE: Jefferson (VK Resolutions, reduce size of gov)
Jackson (IMPERIAL PRESIDENT) said he was the opposite
Lincoln (Abolition – You can’t own no slaves no more. Habeas Corpus. Wins Civil War)
TR (Progressivism) (Square Deal) (FDA)
Wilson (WW I)
FDR (New Deal, SS, AFDC, WW II) Biggest jump – highlight alphabet agencies linked to bailouts today.
Johnson (War on Poverty, Medicare)
Nixon (Big government conservatism) (Political dirty tricks)
SMALLER: Reagan (New Federalism, Devolution) “Government is not the solution. Government is the problem” ALL Republican primary hopefuls cast themselves as the reincarnation of the Gipper, but the true heir of Reagan was:
Clinton (“Era of big government over”, welfare reform – Rahm Emmanuel) I used to teach that Reagan was a turning point in this trend in American history, but:
Bush II (War on terror, No child left behind, Drug entitlement, bailout)
Obama Expansion of health coverage (Continues FDR, Johnson, Bush II)

Two:
How is power organized?

Have students list three powers
Legislative
Executive
Judicial

Be careful with this terminology. Use it narrowly.

Presidential

Parliamentary

England
U.S.S.R.
Many “Presidents” in third world


Three:
Who can participate?

Continuum
True democracy impossible

Dictatorship/Autocracy
Monarchy is a vague term not a good basis for this continuum – how much actual power is wielded? (Britain)
Oligarchy
Aristocracy
Republic – filters on democracy
Democracy
A Republic is a FORM of Democracy – they are not mutually exlucsive

American trends:
Live up to words, not intent of the Declaration of Independence

Expansion of the suffrage dance (boom-chikka-boom-boom)

Jacksonian Democracy: Let poor (white) men vote
Civil War: Add Black men to participation (legally if not in reality)
Progressives: Add women
Civil Rights: Add Blacks for real
Vietnam: Lower age to 18
California today? W/16 year olds (why add?)
Expand to felons?

Where to stop?
Should Bonnie vote?

Four: Econ (Two axis)

Property/Planning - individual or central?

Socialism
Communism
Fascism
Laissez-Faire Capitalism (dotted line: unattainable)
Why unattainable?
Examples of limits: Zoning, regulation, etc.
Mixed Economy (Keynesian triumph)

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