GOV: Political Culture(ch 4) Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in GOV: Political Culture(ch 4) Deck (24):

american view of political system

liberty: gov has obligation to protect rights of people
equality: especially political, opportunity to vote, economic quality of opportunity, not of results
democracy: gov is accountable to the people
civic duty: we take community affair seriously and become involved
individual responsibility: opportunity to succeed, but you are responsible for your own actions and well being


conflict issues result it...

civil rights and expanding free discussion ie abortion, morality, religion, immigration, and affirmative action
-the gov roles in divide nation


defining good citizenship

-pay taxes, obey law, support military order,
-old generation: great depression, WWII
-middle age: skeptical of gov, join protest movements, boycott products


economic system

-free enterprise: although we see limits on marketplace freedom
-equality of opportunity
-economic individualism
-dislike preferential treatment for less fortunate


comparative government

we have pride in our country, individual initiative, god based morality, assert rights, emphasize individualism, competition, equality, following rules, treating others fairly


comparative economy

we have economic freedom over equality, hard work will reap rewards, gov is not responsible to guarantee standard of living


sources of american political culture

historical: american revolution--liberty, constitution--balance liberty with social control, adversarial spirit--distrust of authority
legal/sociological: widespread participation permitted, absence of national religion, protestant roots: work ethic, absence of class consciousness


culture war bw orthodox and progressives

clashes over values
-orthodox v progressives
--orthodox: religious, drives morality from god, morality is clear, unchanging, and independent
--progressives: no strong religion, personal freedom important, moral rules are complex


a culture war is different from political disputes because

money is not at stake, compromises are impossible, conflict is more profound


2 perspectives on importance of culture war

2 perspectives
-morris fioria: culture war is a myth, most americans take the middle of the road, politicians participate--not the public
-alan abramouvitz: war does have a role in choosing party affiliations, at very least--the clash of values gets people more politically engaged


mistrust of government

a trend that has been declining since the 1950s
-exceptions: increased during reagans administration and period following 9/11
-causes: vietnam credibility gap, pentagon papers, watergate scandal, clintons impeachment from lying under oath, war in iraq and nuclear weapons
-context: maybe 1950s approval was abnormally high and after it returned to normal, may have been only a few ways to express patriotism in the 60s and 70s which conveyed mistrust, 9/11 allowed for extraordinary outburst of patriotism


mistrust of government has led to

mistrust of congress, declining confidence in most public institutions except the military
-civil society: collection of private, voluntary groups that make human cooperation easier and provide ways of holding the government accountable for its actions
-effect: may help non incumbent candidates (vote in somebody new because they distrust who is there now)


civic duty and social capital

-americans are more likely to join voluntary groups
-social capital: invest in the people
-robert putnam: says social capital makes it easier to achieve common goals
-social capital may be decreasing in ethnically and racially diverse communities
-social capital may be increasing in group membership and informal human contact has increased as a measure of civic health


political tolerance

-for a democracy to exist there must be minimal levels of political tolerance
-most think that america is becoming too tolerant of behaviors that harm society
-most agree in freedom of speech, majority vote, right to petition
-most are becoming more tolerant
-most believe in a stronger defense of common morality( laws in line with) than making sure individuals rights are being protected
-office holders and activists are generally more tolerant


democracy has endured in the US because of

the geography, laws, and the manners and customs of the people
-De tocqueville


issues that divide americans

1. how to address the rapidly growing national debt
2. how to battle terrorists
3. how to determine the appropriate scope of responsibility and power for the federal gov
however, political parties share a common belief in preserving the principles of american constitutioanalism


major differences between countries

constitutional, demographic, and cultural


political culture

a patterned and sustained way of thinking about how political and economic life ought to be carried out


questions about american political culture

how do we know that the american people share these beliefs? kinds of books read, speeches, slogans
how can we explain existence of behavior that is inconsistent with societys values? people contrast their beliefs, self interest shapes
why has there been so much political conflict if there is agreement on political values? conflict occurs because of strong beliefs


american political culture

the individualist view of social policy is the most popular


civic competence

a belief that one can affect government agencies


political tolerance and acting upon it

most of us deny groups rights but usually cant agree which those are or we dont have the change to prevent someone from doing something


why might political conflict still occur among those who share common beliefs?

interpretations of beliefs may differ


difference between political ideology and political culture

ideology deals with what the government should do, a culture deals which how the gov should operate