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What are the main sources of media
and which one reaches most Americans?
- Broadcast media, Print media, and the Internet.
- Television reaches most Americans
What is the relationship between the media and the US government?
Government is more concerned about the content than ownership.
What did the Telecommunications Act of 1996 do?
- loosened federal restrictions of media ownership, allow media companies to compete with
- each other, made it illegal to make indecent sexual materials accessible to
- minors on the Internet (later struck-down).
Whats the percentage of
media owned by large conglomerates in the US?
What is the consequences with media giants controlling too much of the media?
Not enough diversity and opinion
What is Agenda Setting?
Agenda setting is defined as the power of the media to bring public attention to particular issues and problems.
What is Priming?
Priming is defined as the process of preparing the public to take a particular view of an event or a political actor
What is Framing?
Framing is defined as the media’s power to influence how events and issues are interpreted by the public.
Why is a free media necessary?
- Voters need information to make informed choices at the polls.
- The Media informs citizens of the activity of the government
- The media provides information about government policies that otherwise only be known to insiders.
Define political ideology
Political Ideology is defined as a complex set of beliefs and values that, as a whole, form a general philosophy about the role of government.
Define public opinion?
Public Opinion is defined as the beliefs, values, and attitudes that masses have about issues, events, and personalities
Induction of individuals into the political culture; learning the underlying beliefs and values on which the political system is based
Define generational effects
significant events that can shape the political attitudes of an entire generation
Define life-style effects
life events that changed our individual opinions
What factors explain how and why public opinion shapes politics?
Intensity, Stability, and fluidity of opinion the more effect it shapes political policies
less than 2,000 surveyed
Define representative sample
every individual in the population has an equal probability of being selected as a respondent
Define Sampling Error
- occurs when there is a difference between the sample result and the true result.
- An acceptable sample error rate is between 3%-5%
Define purposive sampling
a method used by pollsters to select a representative sample in which every individual in the population has an equal probability of being selected as respondent
What factors influence the decisions of voters at the polls?
- Opinions and beliefs
- Partisan loyalty
- The issues
- The characteristics of the candidates
How does the US rank in regards to voter turnout in federal elections?
Voter turnout tends to be significantly lower in the US than other democracies.
What was the result of the Motor Voter Act?
Make registration more accessible.
What is the purpose of a primary?
- We have a frontloaded system
- This creates a “horserace”
- This forces candidates to raise large amounts of money to complete.
Define Soft Money
money contributed to a political candidate or party that is notsubject to federal regulations.
Define political action committees
Committees formed by interest groups to funnel donations topolitical candidates who are likely to support their position onvarious issues.
What is the purpose of an election in a democracy?
Holding elections for public office and ensuring competitive elections in the essence of democracy
What drives the need for money in presidential elections?
Front loaded primary system, the cost of advertising, counter the PAC attacks
What does a political party do?
Besides nominating candidates for office, parties, structure the vote choice, propose policy alternatives, and help coordinate the actions of elected officials
What is the dominant political structure in the US?
What are the periods that the Republicans first dominated American politics and then remerged to dominate
Civil War until 1932 and then reemerge in 1968 when Nixon gets elected
Define electoral realignment
massive shift to one party that has had dominate power for several years to another.
Define divided government
when the executive branch is controlled by one party and Congress is controlled by the other party.
What are third parties?
Third parties usually represent social and economic protests not given voice by the two-party system.
What is a interest group?
Interest groups are policy specialists who lobby the government to write or change existing policy that favors or benefits them.
What do the majority of interest groups represent?
The upper and professional class
If one enjoys the benefits of a group’s collective efforts but did not contribute to those efforts
What is the ideal pluralism?
The ideal pluralism allows interests to be free to compete with each other for governmental influence.
Why do people join Interest Groups?
- To get more information about an issue.
- To network with like-minded people.
- To serve individual interests.
What are the typical characteristics of interest group members?
Higher income and education, professional and members of the business class
Why have interest groups grown in size and importance in the US?
Response to the growth in government and spending
Why do interest groups favor the wealthy?
Because liberty is inconsistent with equality
How are Interest groups beneficial?
Interest groups enhance democracy by representing large numbers of people and it encourages political participation