Lecture 12 by maclaren1


									         Part Four – The Bureaucracy & Judiciary (Cassi Franklin, Chris McKinnon, Patrick Torio, Teisha Sturman)

                                           LGS -- Chapter 7, the Bureaucracy
Bureaucracy is simply known as the actual offices, tasks, and principles of organization that re employed in the most
formal and sustained administration. Bureaucracies implement laws, make and enforce rules, and settle disputes. The
executive branch can be divided into 4 categories: 1) cabinet departments, 2) independent agencies, 3) government
corporations, and 4) independent commissions. Congress exercises oversight through hearings, investigations, and other
techniques, to exercise control over the activities of executive agencies. Many people believe that bureaucracy in America
needs to be lessened, there are 2 ways to do this: 1) devolution and 2) privatization. Devolution is the movement of a
program from one level or government by passing it down to a lower level, and privatization is the removal of all or part of
a program from the public sector to the private sector.

                                                 LGS -- Chapter 8, the Judiciary
           The power of judicial review makes the Supreme Court more than a judicial agency; it also makes the Court a
            major lawmaking body.
           The dominant influences shaping Supreme Court decisions are the philosophies and attitudes of the members of
            the Court and the solicitor general’s control over cases involving the government.
           The role and power of the federal courts, particularly the Supreme Court, have been significantly strengthened
            and expanded over the last 50 years.
           3 types of laws: criminal, civil, and public law.
                 o     Cases of criminal law are those arising out of actions that violate laws protecting health, safety, and
                       morals of the community. The government is ALWAYS the plaintiff.
                 o     Cases of civil law (“private law”) are those involving disputes between citizens or between government
                       and citizen where no crime is alleged. There are 2 general types—contract and tort. Contract cases are
                       disputes that arise over voluntary actions. Tort cases are disputes that arise out of obligations
                       inherent in social life (i.e. negligence and slander).
                 o     Cases of public law are all cases where the powers of government or the rights of citizens are involved.
                       Government is the defendant. Constitutional law involves judicial review of the basis of a
                       government’s action in relation to specific clauses of the Constitution as interpreted in Supreme Court
                       cases. Administrative law involves disputes of the statutory authority, jurisdiction, or procedures of
                       administrative agencies.
           Cases are heard at the state level before 3 types of courts: trial court the court of appeals the (state) supreme
           Federal Jurisdiction: fed. trial courts fed. appellate courtsThe Supreme Court (chief justice)
                 o     Appellate courts admit no new evidence; their rulings are solely based on the records of the court
                       proceedings or agency hearings that led to the original decision.
                 o     Federal judges are appointed by the president.
           Judicial review is the power of the courts to declare actions of the legislative and executive branches invalid or
                 o     The Supreme Court asserted this power in Marbury vs. Madison
           The judiciary as a whole is subject to 2 major influences: (1) the individual members of the Supreme Court, who
            have lifetime tenure; and (2) the Justice Department—particularly the solicitor general, who regulates the flow
            of cases.
           How do cases make it to the Supreme court?
                 o     Cases between the US and one of the 50 states
                 o     Cases between 2 or more states
                 o     Cases involving foreign ambassadors or other ministers
                 o     Cases brought by one state against citizens of another state or against a foreign country
           Major job of the Supreme court is to review lower court decisions involving substantial issues of public law.

                                   Online Reader -- Bureaucracy: James Q. Wilson
In this article, Wilson presented his explanation for why bureaucracies are often seen to inefficient. The most pressing
problem is the rules and regulations that agencies are bound to because it prevents, or makes it very difficult, for agencies
to move beyond the status quo. There are no incentives for agencies to take new courses of actions. Wilson suggests that a
system that would encourage lower levels of agencies to follow a clear mission set out by the executive official,
experimentation, and an emphasis on results would make the bureaucracies more efficient. He acknowledges, however,
that in today’s political environment, such changes would be very difficult, if not impossible to implement. Separation of
power, checks and balance, and public pressure make it increasingly difficult for the bureaucracy to escape the constraints
placed on them.

                      Online Reader – Supreme Court in American Politics: Ronald Kahn
For many years political scientists studied the different aspects of the Supreme Court and how they have adopted
behavioral approaches and focused on narrow questions on how the justice policy preference influence their voting
behavior. This has brought up many important aspect of the Supreme Court politics but has left many unanswered
questions about the institution. Drawing on the topic of “The new institutionalism”, contributors have attempted to fill in
the gap by exploring a wide range of topics. Some topics that they covered includes the Supreme Courts institutional
development and its relationship to broader political contexts such as party regimes, electoral system, social movement,
social change and political identities. The reader examines the nature of the Supreme Court and the development of its
powers and practices.

                                              Lecture 12 – February 2, 2009

      Part Four – The Bureaucracy & Judiciary (Cassi Franklin, Chris McKinnon, Patrick Torio, Teisha Sturman)

In this lecture, Professor Bimber addressed the issue of the bureaucracy. Sanctioned by Article II, Section 2 of the
Constitution, the bureaucracy sits between the executive and legislative branches. Comprised of the fifteen cabinet
departments, independent agencies, independent commissions, and government corporations, the bureaucracy is often
misunderstood by the public. Whereas the public sees bureaucracy as constantly growing, it has in fact, either remained
steady or declined in modern times in relation to both the population and the economy. The power of the bureaucracy
varies because of its dual responsibilities. On the one hand, the White House appoints the leaders of much of the
bureaucracy, gives the various agencies executive orders, and tries to persuade them to cooperate with the executive
branch. On the other hand, the agencies feel pressure from Congress who creates the agencies, appropriates funding for
them, and can hold public hearings and investigations. It is when the two branches are in disagreement, interestingly, that
the bureaucracy holds the most power. Although misunderstood and often resented by the public, it is important to
remember that the bureaucracy is important in a democracy. Without a bureaucracy, it would be impossible for the
government to carry out any of its functions, especially in the welfare state we occupy today.

                                       Lectures 13, 14, 15 held AFTER section


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