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Flashcards in Basis of Gov Test Revision Deck (62)
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The Legislative Arm

The law-making arm. The people elect representatives to make laws on their behalf.
(Representative Gov)


The Executive Arm

The enforcement arm. Acts under responsible government and consists of ministers and government bodies, charged with administering and enforcing laws.
(Responsible Gov)


The Judicial Arm

Resolves disputes, and creates case law through precedents and interpretations of statues


Separation of powers

The separation of powers is a doctrine that divides the governance of a nation into distinct arms each with its own institutions and roles.


Why do we have SOP

This is done to prevent one branch from having absolute power, and therefore avoids corruption within government or abuse of power which leads to the infringement of rights.

Each arm reviews the other.


Rule of Law

The idea that all people are equal before the law and that government institutes may only be allowed to exercise power in line with constitution. 


What are the three main elements of ROL

- Supremacy of the constitution: Every person and organisation are bound by it.

- Equality before law: All people must be treated equally in regards to the law.

- Existence of Human rights; Power must be excised on this assumption, that individuals must retain their rights.


How is the ROL upheld

- Legal rights at trial

- High court for constitutional disputes

- Laws are enacted through a democratic process.


4 Main values of Australia

- Political values aka how law-makers are voted into office

- Social values aka voluntary marriage rather than forced

- Moral values aka a right to privacy 

- Religious values aka religious freedom.


Social Cohesion

In which members of society act lawfully and freely, whilst considering their impact on others, allowing society to function cohesively.

Gun laws, traffic laws, drug laws, tax laws.


Social Progress

Ensures social cohesion for future generations, ensuring laws adapt with time.

Laws involving children, education, the environment or healthcare.


What is VADER

An acronym for how we achieve social cohesion and progress



- Values (moral, political, economic and religious)
- Acceptable standards of behaviour
- Disputes which are resolved in the courts
- Evolution of laws
- Rights such as our legal and human rights


Page and Chapter for LEG

Chapter one, pages 1-60


Page and Chapter for EXE

Chapter two, pages 60-70


Page and Chapter for JUD

Chapter three, pages 71-80


Mechanisms to change laws

Amending/repealing acts
Departing from precedents

(Public pressure, protests, petitions, lobbying)


Constitutional Monarchy

A system of government which is bicameral, having the two houses, the House of Representative and the Senate.
- Where the head of state is the hereditary king or queen of Britain, whose executive functions are performed by the governor general. ​


Hierarchy of a CM

Gov Gen
Prime Minister
(HR (150) - Senate (76))


What is the primary function of the High Court

Constitutional Disputes


Where do criminal cases first appeal

Court of Criminal Appeal


Where do civil cases appeal

Up the hierarchy


Difference between a legal rule and a non-legal rule

A non-legal rule is not a law created by the parliament or courts, and therefore you cannot be sanctioned for breaking it.
(Lawful behaviour vs Acceptable behaviour)


Definition of a crime

An unlawful act or omission deemed by statute or case law to be a public wrong warranting a sanction


Why are crimes public wrongs?

Crime affect the general public because they go against social progress and cohesion


What is a civil wrong?

A wrongful act or omission which infringes on an individuals rights, for which they can seek compensation.


What is public law?

Public law deals with issues that affect the general public or state.

(regulates the relationship between people and the state)


What is private law?

Private Laws affects the rights and obligations of individuals, families, businesses and small groups and exists to assist citizens in disputes that involve private matter.

(regulates the relationship between private legal entities


Types of Public law (5)

- Admin law
- Constitutional Law
- Criminal law
- Municipal law
- International law


Admin law

Laws that govern government agencies or state