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Flashcards in AP Gov. Ch.8 Viridian Leal Deck (29):

federal bureaucracy

The thousands of federal government agencies and institutions that implement and administer federal laws and programs.

The federal bureaucracy performs three primary tasks in government are implementation, administration, and regulation.


Max Weber

German sociologist active in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries who articulated the hierarchical structure and near-mechanical functioning of bureaucracies in complex societies.

Max Weber is considered one of the founders of sociology.


spoils system

The firing of public-office holders of a defeated political party to replace them with loyalists of the newly elected party.

Some argue that President Trump has a spoils system in place because all of the open political offices are given to his unqualified friends.



Jobs, grants, and other special favors that are given as rewards to friends and political allies for their support.

Patronage can involve exchanging money for helping campaign.


merit system

A system of employment based on qualifications, test scores, and ability, rather than party loyalty.

The early introduction of merit systems deprived them of patronage, and nominations for public office were outside their control.


Pendleton Act

Reform measure that established the principle of federal employment on the basis of open, competitive exams and created the Civil Service Commission.

The Pendleton Act was created in order to stop federal employment positions being filled based upon affiliation.


civil service system

The merit system by which many federal bureaucrats are selected.

The civil service system is set up in the process of fighting against the favoritism and the "pork barrel" system.


Sixteenth Amendment

Amendment to the Constitution that authorized Congress to enact a national income tax.

The 16th amendment has given greater power to the federal government instead of the states.


World War 1

A global military conflict that took place from 1914-1918 across Europe and its overseas territories. The U.S. military intervened fro 1917-1918.

World War I began in 1914, after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand from Austria.


Great Depression

A severe global economic downturn marked by mass unemployment and poverty that began in the U.S. in 1929 and persisted to some degree until the end of the 1930s.

The great depression occurred after the stock market had a crash in 1929.


World War 2

A global military conflict that took place from 1939-1945 in Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific region.

Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor marked the U.S' entry into WW2.


G.I. (Government Issue) Bill

Federal legislation enacted in 1944 that provided college loans for returning veterans and reduced mortgage rates to enable them to buy homes.

Nearly 9 million veterans received close to $4 billion from the G.I. Bill in unemployment compensation.


Great Society

Reform program begun in 1964 by President Lyndon B. Johnson that was a broad attempt to combat poverty and discrimination through urban renewal, education reform, and unemployment relief.

President Lyndon B. Johnson's Great Society became overlooked by the Vietnam War.


Department of Homeland Security

Cabinet department created after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to coordinate domestic security efforts.

Department of homeland security agents work to secure U.S. ports, borders, and skies.


Cabinet Departments

Major administrative units with responsibility for a broad area of government operations. Departmental status usually indicates a permanent national interest in such a particular governmental function, such as defense, commerce, and agriculture.

Established in Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution, the Cabinet’s role is to advise the President on any subject he may require relating to the duties of each member’s respective office.


independent executive agencies

Governmental units that closely resemble a Cabinet department but have narrower areas of responsibility and perform services rather than regulatory functions.

A major independent executive agency includes the Central Intelligence Agency.


independent regulatory commission

An entity created by Congress outside a major executive department that regulates a specified interest or economic activity.

The Food and Drug Administration is an independent regulatory commission.


government corporations

Businesses established by Congress to perform functions that private businesses could provide, such as the U.S. Postal Service and Amtrak. Often established when the financial incentives for private industry to provide services are minimal.

Ferguson Enterprises is a U.S. government owned corporation.


Hatch Act

The 1939 act to prohibit civil servants from taking activists roles in partisan campaigns. This act prohibited federal employees from making political contributions, working for a particular party, or campaigning for a particular candidate.

The Hatch Act protected the integrity of the government while imposing constitutional-questionable restrictions on those employees.



The process by which a law or policy is put into operation.

Every year, new laws are implemented into society


iron triangles

The relatively ironclad relationships and patterns of interaction that occur among agencies, interest groups, and congressional committees or subcommittees.

The iron triangle is a mutually beneficial, three-way relationship between Congress, government bureaucrats, and special interest lobby groups


issue networks

The loose and informal relationships that exist among a large number of actors who work in broad policy areas.

Issue networks are an alliance of many interest groups with common interests who try to influence the government.


inter agency councils

Working groups created to facilitate coordination of policy making and implementation across a host of governmental agencies.

Some inter agency councils include child abuse and neglect, homelessness, and developmental disabilities.


policy coordinating committees (PCCs)

Committees created at the sub-Cabinet level to facilitate interactions between agencies and departments to handle complex policy problems.

The National Security Council is a policy coordinating committee used by the President in consideration for national security.


administrative discretion

The ability of bureaucrats to make choices concerning the best way to implement congressional or executive intentions.

There's a need for administrative discretion because the public’s interest could be at risk if several agencies were not following laws and regulations.


rule making

A quasi-legislative process resulting in regulations that have the characteristics of a legislative act.

Rule making has helped some of the most far reaching government regulations.



Rules governing the operation of all government programs that have the force law.

The two main types of government regulations are social and economic.


Federal Register

The official journal of the U.S. government, including all federal rules and public notices so that citizens and organization can follow proposed changes and comply with rule changes.

The Federal Register contains proposed regulations from agencies, finalized rules, notices, corrections, and presidential documents.


administration adjudication

A quasi-judicial process in which a bureaucratic agency settles disputes between two parties similar to the way courts resolve disputes.

While in adjudication process, the agency's policies are applied to the past actions of a particular party, and it results in an order for or against that party.