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Chapter One
Chapter One ACOS
1.) Identify origins and functions of government.
1.1 Foundations of Government
State and Nation:
Four Basic Components of a State:
Four Theories about the Origin of Government
The Four Purposes of Government
State and Nation:
A state is “a political community that occupies a
definite territory and has an organized
government with the power to make and
enforce laws without approval from any higher
 The
United States is a single state.
 Its name is plural because the thirteen colonies
originally viewed themselves as thirteen
independent countries.
State and Nation:
A nation is “any sizable group of people who are
united by common bonds of race, language,
custom, tradition, and sometimes, religion.”
nation does not necessarily refer to a country.
 For example, Cherokee Indians qualify as a nation
because of its common culture among its citizens even
though they do not occupy a single political territory.
If a nation and a state share common borders,
they are referred to as a single nation-state.
Four Basic Components of a State:
The state must obviously have a sizable
 The state must have established and
recognizable territory.
 Boundaries
are often effected by geography
 Border disputes occur at times.
 Boundaries may change as a result.
Four Basic Components of a State:
The most important component is arguably its
 Sovereignty
is defined as “the supreme and absolute
authority within territorial boundaries.”
 An independent state must exercise sovereignty within
its borders.
The fourth basic component is government, which is
defined as “the institution through which the state
maintains social order, provides social services, and
enforces decisions that are binding on all people
living within the state.”
Four Basic Components of a State:
What type of
government does the
Unites States have
Not a Democracy!!!
A Republic!!!
Four Theories about the Origin of
The Evolutionary Theory
states that government
became a natural
extension of the family.
 The
patriarch of the family
would normally assume the
powers of authority.
 For example, Abraham’s
descendents would
eventually grow to became
a nation of people.
Four Theories about the Origin of
The Force Theory states that government was
created when people were compelled to obey
a single source of authority.
 The Divine Right Theory states that a deity
(God or gods) chose the rulers of a government,
and to disobey the ruler was equal to
disobeying the deity.
Four Theories about the Origin of
The Social Contract Theory
was first articulated by
Thomas Hobbes.
 It
states that people willingly
joined together and submitted
to government in exchange
for its protection.
 Hobbes believed the people
could not violate the
agreement with the
Thomas Hobbes
Four Theories about the Origin of
 John
Locke believed citizens
had natural rights: life, liberty,
and property.
 If government failed to
protect the rights of its citizens,
then citizens were justified to
overthrow the oppressive
John Locke
The Four Purposes of Government
The first major purpose of
government is to maintain social
The second major purpose of
government is to provide public
Government acts when individual
citizens cannot provide basic services
like building roads, sewer systems,
and bridges.
 Government also enforces laws to
promote general safety. (Ex: EPA and
Excerpt from Federalist Papers No. 51
It may be a reflection on human nature,
that such devices should be necessary to
control the abuses of government. But
what is government itself, but the greatest
of all reflections on human nature?
If men were angels, no government
would be necessary. If angels were to
govern men, neither external nor internal
controls on government would be
In framing a government which is to be
administered by men over men, the
great difficulty lies in this: you must first
enable the government to control the
governed; and in the next place oblige it
to control itself.
The Four Purposes of Government
The third major purpose
of government is to
provide national security.
 Government
must protect
its citizens from other
countries and terrorists.
 Government is responsible
for its foreign relations.
The Four Purposes of Government
The fourth major purpose of
government is to make
economic decisions.
 It
is not government’s duty to
provide the basic needs of its
 It controls economic policies like
printing currency, establishing
interest rates, and taxes.
Assume you serve on your city council.
A group of citizens has petitioned the city to
change the speed limit on all nonresidential
streets from 35 mph to 50 mph.
Brainstorm the advantages and disadvantages
of each alternative and how it would impact
Recommend what speed limit should be in
effect and why.
1.2 The Development of Governments
Government Systems
National Constitutions
Three Major Purposes of Constitutions
Politics and Government
Chapter One ACOS
1.) Identify origins
and functions of
Government Systems
The unitary system gives most a state’s
authority to a strong, central government.
 The federal system (federalism) divides the
powers of government into different levels.
 The
U.S. has a federal system that divides
government authority between the federal and
state levels.
 Each level exercises its own sovereignty regarding
some issues.
Government Systems
The Confederate system (a
confederacy) provides for an
alliance of independent
 Under
the Articles of
Confederation, the original 13
colonies united in one confederacy.
 During the Civil War, the South
created the Confederate States of
America based on this same
National Constitutions
A Constitution is defined as “plan that provides rules
for government.”
constitution may or may not be written.
 The U.S. Constitution is the oldest written constitution.
Constitutional government refers to “a government
in which a constitution has authority to place clearly
recognized limits on the powers of those who govern.”
Constitutional government may also refer to limited
Three Major Purposes
of Constitutions
The first major purpose of a constitution is
to articulate the goals and purposes of
the government and is usually stated in a
The second major purpose of a
constitution is to determine and describe
the basic structure of the government.
The third major purpose of a constitution
establishes the constitution as the supreme
law of the land.
Politics and Government
Politics is defined as “the effort to
control or influence the conduct and
policies of government.”
 Countries decide what policies to
enact through the political process.
1.3 Types of Government
Two Basic Forms of
Characteristics of
Five Characteristics of
Free Elections
Five Factors that
Promote Democracy
Two Basic Forms of Government
Most governments are some
form of a dictatorship or a
An autocracy and oligarchy
are examples of
Barack Obama voting in the 2008
presidential election
Two Basic Forms of Government
single individual maintains
control in an autocracy.
 All
dictatorships are
authoritarian, or they exercise
absolute power over the people.
 Some dictatorships are
totalitarian, or they exercise
complete power of every aspect
of the state (politics, culture,
technology, economics, language,
religion, population, etc.).
Adolf Hitler was a totalitarian
dictator of Germany.
Examples of Dictators
Benito Mussolini was a totalitarian
dictator of Italy.
Joseph Stalin was a totalitarian
dictator of the Soviet Union.
Two Basic Forms of Government
monarchy is another example of
autocratic government where a king,
queen, or emperor usually inherits is
or her position and then exercises
ultimate authority.
 An
absolute monarch
exercises total control.
 A constitutional monarch has
limitations on his or her power
and often shares powers with
elected officials.
King George III
Two Basic Forms of Government
A small group of
people maintain
control in an
Two Basic Forms of Government
There are two forms of
democracy: direct
democracy and
 In
a direct democracy,
the people personally
make policy decisions.
John McCain campaigns
at a town Hall meeting
Two Basic Forms of Government
representative democracy is “a form of
democracy in which the people elect
representatives and give them the responsibility
and power to make laws and conduct
 The most basic form of a representative
government is a republic, “a government in
which voters hold sovereign power; elected
representatives, responsible to the people,
exercise that power.”
Types of
Types of
Characteristics of Democracy
Democracies promote
individual liberty to all citizens
until one’s freedom interferes
with another’s general
In a democracy, laws are
created with the approval of
the majority as long as they
do not violate the rights if the
minority. (majority rule with
minority rights)
Patrick Henry
Characteristics of Democracy
Democracies have free and
open elections.
Political parties give voters
different choices.
Patrick Henry
Five Characteristics of Free Elections
Every vote is equal. “one
person, one vote”
Candidates may express
their views freely.
Citizens may help and
support the candidates of
their choice.
The legal requirements to
vote are kept to a minimum.
Citizens may vote by secret
ballot without fear of
Elbridge Gerry
Five Factors that Promote Democracy
Active Citizen Participation: Citizens need to participate
A Favorable Economy: Democracies are more successful in
countries with a strong economy that promotes free enterprise.
Widespread Education: Citizens who are better informed
make better choices.
Strong Civil Society: Citizens who form groups to address
social and political needs assist the government in identifying
what causes are most important to the people.
A Social Consensus: Citizens share some general beliefs
about individual freedoms and government authority.
Participating in Government
Activity Pg 22
Agree or Disagree?
Everyone should be given an opportunity for a free public
Burning the American flag as a symbol of protest should be
made unconstitutional.
Freedom of speech includes the right to lie on your income
tax form.
Wealthy people should pay a higher percentage of taxes
than low-income people.
Anyone who dumps trash on public property should be fined.
Scientists should not be permitted to use animals for
1.4 Economic Theories
Adam Smith
Chapter One ACOS
1.) Identify origins
and functions of
Economics is defined as “the study of human efforts
to satisfy seemingly unlimited wants through the use
of limited resources.”
 Because resources are scarce, societies must choose
what economic system works best.
The economic systems must
answer the following questions:
What and how much should be
 How should goods and services be
 Who gets the goods and services
Three major economic systems
address this issue:
 Socialism
 Communism
Capitalism is “an economic system providing free
choice and individual incentive for workers,
investors, consumers, and business enterprises.”
 Pure Capitalism is marked by 5 characteristics:
 Private
ownership and control of property and economic
 Free enterprise
 Competition among businesses
 Freedom of choice
 Possibility of Profit
Capitalism evolved as European
nations developed and shifted away
from feudalism.
Adam Smith was a Scottish
philosopher who wrote The Wealth of
 He
described capitalism in this landmark
 He advocated the idea of Laissez-faire.
 Laissez-faire is a French word that means
“to let alone.”
 Government should mostly leave the
economy alone..
No country has a pure capitalist system.
The American government has a mixed-market
economy, in which the economy is based on
capitalism but some socialist principles are
Socialism is an economic system in which “the
government owns the basic means of
production, determines the use of resources,
distributes the products and wages, and
provides social services.”
Socialism has three goals:
 Redistribution
of wealth to
ensure equality
 Government makes major
decisions about production
 Public ownership of most land
and other means of productions.
Critics of the Obama
Administration accuse him of
being a socialist.
Democratic socialism allows
the citizens some influence on
government’s decisions through
free elections.
 Critics of socialism have several
main complaints:
 It
hinders individual initiative.
 Higher taxes hinder economic
 It creates big government and
may lead to a dictatorship.
Critics of the Obama
Administration accuse him of
being a socialist.
Karl Marx wrote The Communist
Manifesto in 1848.
 He
divided people into two
 bourgeoisie,
or the people who own
the means of production
 proletariat, or the workers
 He
interpreted history as a class
 He believed the workers would
eventually rebel and create a
communist government
Karl Marx
 The
new government would
own the means of production
and determine what will be
done with the products.
 All property would be
communal, or belong to the
Karl Marx
Communist nations have a command
 The
government leaders dictate what
will be produced and who will receive
the products.
 They can even tell people where to live
in order to receive the products like
housing, clothes, and even newspapers.
Most communist nations struggle to
provide an adequate standard of
living for its citizens.
Mao Zedung established
communism in China.