① Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States

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Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States

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How to Write a FRQ for AP GOVERNMENT (2019-2020): The Argumentative Essay

It also extends to the basic structure of government and how it operates. A survey found that only 42 percent can even name the three branches of the federal government: the executive, the legislative, and the judicial. There is also much ignorance and confusion about such matters as which government officials are responsible for which issues. I give many more examples of public ignorance in my book. Widespread ignorance is not a new phenomenon. Political knowledge has been at roughly the same low level for decades. But it is striking that knowledge levels have risen very little, if at all, despite rising educational attainment and the increased availability of information through the internet, cable news, and other modern technologies.

Some people react to data like the above by thinking that the voters must be stupid. But political ignorance is actually rational for most of the public, including most smart people. If your only reason to follow politics is to be a better voter, that turns out not be much of a reason at all. That is because there is very little chance that your vote will actually make a difference to the outcome of an election about 1 in 60 million in a presidential race, for example. Or if they do, it is with a sigh…. But they probably have an intuitive sense that the chances are very small, and act accordingly. In the book, I also consider why many rationally ignorant people often still bother to vote.

For many, it is rational to take the time to vote, but without learning much about the issues at stake. The Rational Irrationality of Political Fans. There are people who learn political information for reasons other than becoming better voters. Unfortunately, much like sports fans, political fans tend to evaluate new information in a highly biased way. They overvalue anything that supports their preexisting views, and to undervalue or ignore new data that cuts against them, even to the extent of misinterpreting simple data that they could easily interpret correctly in other contexts. Moreover, those most interested in politics are also particularly prone to discuss it only with others who agree with their views, and to follow politics only through like-minded media.

All of this makes little sense if the goal is truth-seeking. A truth-seeker should actively seek out defenders of views opposed to their own. Those are the people most likely to present you arguments and evidence of which you were previously unaware. But such bias makes perfect sense if the goal is not so much truth as enhancing the fan experience. The problems of political ignorance and irrationality are accentuated by the enormous size and scope of modern government.

Even if voters followed political issues more closely than they do, and even if they were more rational in their evaluation of political information, they still could not effectively monitor more than a fraction of the activities of the modern state. Increasing Knowledge through Education. The most obvious way to overcome political ignorance is by increasing knowledge through education. Unfortunately, political knowledge levels have increased very little over the last fifty to sixty years, even as educational attainment has risen enormously.

Rising IQ scores have also failed to increase political knowledge. This suggests that increasing political knowledge through education is a lot harder than it seems. Perhaps the solution is a better public school curriculum that puts more emphasis on civic education. The difficulty is that governments have very little incentive to ensure that public schools really do adopt curricula that increase knowledge. If the voters effectively monitored education policy and rewarded elected officials for using public schools to increase political knowledge, things might be different. Moreover, political leaders and influential interest groups often use public education to indoctrinate students in their own preferred ideology rather than increase knowledge.

Even if public schools did begin to do a better job of teaching political knowledge and minimized indoctrination, it is hard to see how students could learn enough to understand and monitor more than a small fraction of the many complex activities of modern government. Incremental improvements are probably possible. But if history is any guide, they are unlikely to be very large. Shortcomings of Information Shortcuts. Information shortcuts are small bits of information that we can use as proxies for larger bodies of knowledge of which we may be ignorant.

In Chapter 4 of my book, I discuss many different types of shortcuts and explain why they are usually not as effective as advocates suggest. Shortcuts can indeed be useful, and political ignorance would be an even more serious problem without them. But they also have serious limitations, and sometimes they make the problem of ignorance worse rather than better. So, by separating the amount of power throughout the government, it protects tyranny happenings in the.

There are other ways that the Court exerts influence in the political system other than promoting social change. There are three branches of government under the Constitution: 1 Executive, 2 Legislative, and 3 Judicial. The framers of the Constitution intended for the three branches to interact through a system of checks and balances, the mechanisms through which each branch is able to participate in and influence the activities of the other branches. The purpose of this essay is to discuss the meaning of democracy. We will do this by discussing the arguments made by three journal articles. We will discuss their particular definitions of democracy and the application there off. It is one of the five most common political systems used in the world. There are different variants of democracy.

The two most popular once are direct democracy and representative democracy. In a direct democracy, every citizen has an equal say and directly participates in the governing process and the making of laws. In a representative democracy, citizens elect representatives who make the laws and handle the process of government. Diamond and Morlino state that political regimes need to be evaluated in order to improve their quality.

These regimes need to be looked at both as governments and democratic governments. They argue that there are eight dimensions according to which all democracies should operate and according to which the quality of the democracy can be measured. First, there is the rule of law. Under a rule …show more content… Each level rule of law, participation, competition, vertical and horizontal accountability, freedom, equality , responsiveness can be assessed on its own. But for a democracy to ultimately succeed as a whole, these dimensions need to be investigated as interacting with one another to ensure optimum functioning.

A high quality democracy does not rate high on every measure of democratic quality, but instead represents a balancing of virtues that lie in tension Diamond, Morlino. Show More. Advantages Of The Westminster System Of Government Words 5 Pages Question: Evaluate whether the Westminster model system of government adopted by English speaking Caribbean countries accommodates corruption as a way of governance.

Read More. Legislative System Vs United States Words 4 Pages The House of Representatives is elected for two years in the amount of deputies from single-mandate constituencies. Examples Of Democracy In Colonial America Words 3 Pages Holding elections for government officials is a democratic feature of government, but the requirements were not equal. Aristotle's Highest Good Words 3 Pages Where there is a higher good, there is a government striving to achieve those ambitions. The Ideology Of Democracy And Democracy Words 4 Pages As a form of government it often describes a process of voting, on elections or referendums, through which laws are passed, representing the entire populace Biorseth, Judicial Branch Words 3 Pages These officials are responsible for organizing the methods and ways in which their party intends to vote in order to perpetuate the goals of their party.

Madison states, "The latent causes of faction are thus sown in the nature of man", [21] so the cure is to control their effects. He makes an argument on how this is not possible in a pure democracy but possible in a republic. With pure democracy, he means a system in which every citizen votes directly for laws direct democracy , and, with republic, he intends a society in which citizens elect a small body of representatives who then vote for laws representative democracy.

He indicates that the voice of the people pronounced by a body of representatives is more conformable to the interest of the community, since, again, common people's decisions are affected by their self-interest. He then makes an argument in favor of a large republic against a small republic for the choice of "fit characters" [22] to represent the public's voice. In a large republic, where the number of voters and candidates is greater, the probability to elect competent representatives is broader. The voters have a wider option. In a small republic, it would also be easier for the candidates to fool the voters but more difficult in a large one.

The last argument Madison makes in favor of a large republic is that as, in a small republic, there will be a lower variety of interests and parties, a majority will more frequently be found. The number of participants of that majority will be lower, and, since they live in a more limited territory, it would be easier for them to agree and work together for the accomplishment of their ideas. While in a large republic the variety of interests will be greater so to make it harder to find a majority.

Even if there is a majority, it would be harder for them to work together because of the large number of people and the fact they are spread out in a wider territory. A republic, Madison writes, is different from a democracy because its government is placed in the hands of delegates, and, as a result of this, it can be extended over a larger area. The idea is that, in a large republic, there will be more "fit characters" to choose from for each delegate. Also, the fact that each representative is chosen from a larger constituency should make the "vicious arts" of electioneering [23] a reference to rhetoric less effective.

For instance, in a large republic, a corrupt delegate would need to bribe many more people in order to win an election than in a small republic. Also, in a republic, the delegates both filter and refine the many demands of the people so as to prevent the type of frivolous claims that impede purely democratic governments. Though Madison argued for a large and diverse republic, the writers of the Federalist Papers recognized the need for a balance. They wanted a republic diverse enough to prevent faction but with enough commonality to maintain cohesion among the states. In Federalist No. He notes that if constituencies are too large, the representatives will be "too little acquainted with all their local circumstances and lesser interests".

No matter how large the constituencies of federal representatives, local matters will be looked after by state and local officials with naturally smaller constituencies. The Anti-Federalists vigorously contested the notion that a republic of diverse interests could survive. The author Cato another pseudonym, most likely that of George Clinton [26] summarized the Anti-Federalist position in the article Cato no. Whoever seriously considers the immense extent of territory comprehended within the limits of the United States, with the variety of its climates, productions, and commerce, the difference of extent, and number of inhabitants in all; the dissimilitude of interest, morals, and policies, in almost every one, will receive it as an intuitive truth, that a consolidated republican form of government therein, can never form a perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to you and your posterity, for to these objects it must be directed: this unkindred legislature therefore, composed of interests opposite and dissimilar in their nature, will in its exercise, emphatically be, like a house divided against itself.

Generally, it was their position that republics about the size of the individual states could survive, but that a republic on the size of the Union would fail. A particular point in support of this was that most of the states were focused on one industry—to generalize, commerce and shipping in the northern states and plantation farming in the southern. The Anti-Federalist belief that the wide disparity in the economic interests of the various states would lead to controversy was perhaps realized in the American Civil War , which some scholars attribute to this disparity.

The discussion of the ideal size for the republic was not limited to the options of individual states or encompassing union. In a letter to Richard Price , Benjamin Rush noted that "Some of our enlightened men who begin to despair of a more complete union of the States in Congress have secretly proposed an Eastern, Middle, and Southern Confederacy, to be united by an alliance offensive and defensive". In making their arguments, the Anti-Federalists appealed to both historical and theoretic evidence. On the theoretical side, they leaned heavily on the work of Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu.

The Anti-Federalists Brutus and Cato both quoted Montesquieu on the issue of the ideal size of a republic, citing his statement in The Spirit of the Laws that:. It is natural to a republic to have only a small territory, otherwise it cannot long subsist. In a large republic there are men of large fortunes, and consequently of less moderation; there are trusts too great to be placed in any single subject; he has interest of his own; he soon begins to think that he may be happy, great and glorious, by oppressing his fellow citizens; and that he may raise himself to grandeur on the ruins of his country. In a large republic, the public good is sacrificed to a thousand views; it is subordinate to exceptions, and depends on accidents. In a small one, the interest of the public is easier perceived, better understood, and more within the reach of every citizen; abuses are of less extent, and of course are less protected.

Greece and Rome were looked to as model republics throughout this debate, [33] and authors on both sides took Roman pseudonyms. Brutus points out that the Greek and Roman states were small, whereas the U. He also points out that the expansion of these republics resulted in a transition from free government to tyranny. In the first century of the American republic, No.

For example, in Democracy in America , Alexis de Tocqueville refers specifically to more than fifty of the essays, but No. News and World Report , No. The historian Charles A. Beard identified Federalist No. In his book An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution of the United States , Beard argued that Madison produced a detailed explanation of the economic factors that lay behind the creation of the Constitution. At the outset of his study, Beard writes that Madison provided "a masterly statement of the theory of economic determinism in politics" Beard , p. Later in his study, Beard repeated his point, providing more emphasis. Douglass Adair attributes the increased interest in the tenth number to Charles A.

Beard 's book An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution , published in Adair also contends that Beard's selective focus on the issue of class struggle , and his political progressivism , has colored modern scholarship on the essay. According to Adair, Beard reads No. Garry Wills is a noted critic of Madison's argument in Federalist No. In his book Explaining America , he adopts the position of Robert Dahl in arguing that Madison's framework does not necessarily enhance the protections of minorities or ensure the common good. Instead, Wills claims: "Minorities can make use of dispersed and staggered governmental machinery to clog, delay, slow down, hamper, and obstruct the majority.

But these weapons for delay are given to the minority irrespective of its factious or nonfactious character; and they can be used against the majority irrespective of its factious or nonfactious character. What Madison prevents is not faction, but action. What he protects is not the common good but delay as such". For instance, U. Supreme Court justice John Paul Stevens cites the paper for the statement that "Parties ranked high on the list of evils that the Constitution was designed to check".

Madison's argument that restraining liberty to limit faction is an unacceptable solution has been used by opponents of campaign finance limits.

She claimed self defense at her trial, but was found guilty of six murders and executed by the State of Florida Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States lethal injection on October 9, Madison saw the federal Constitution as providing for a "happy combination" Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States a republic and a purer democracy, with "the great and aggregate interests being referred to the national, the local and particular Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States the State legislatures" resulting in a Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States governmental structure. It was Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States for white enslavers to keep their half-black children in slavery. Now's the Argument Essay: Democracy In The United States to pick the side of the Personal Narrative: The Baltusrol Golf Tournament you feel you can support the best and summarize your main point into your thesis statement.

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