Saturday, October 29, 2011

Chapter 9 Blog Assigment

1. Which political party do you most identify with?  Why?  Are there things in the party platform with which you disagree?
I identify with the Republican party primarily. I am conservative and feel our government should take a more hands off approach.  I do not feel we should have a lot of the laws we have today. Also if our government took a step back and let people run and live their own daily lives, I do not believe we would be in the debt or economic worry we are in today. I feel we have a double standard in a lot of way, we fiddle in this because a politician thinks we should but we are going to let this business continue to do under handed things. At some point there has to be more of an equality to getting involved or staying out of it. I do not believe in the regulations on same sex marriage or death penalty.

2. Does America need political parties?  The founders originally hoped that American politics would operate without need of parties?  Would that work today?  Why?
I do agree that America needs political parties. Exactly what our text book pointed out, without them how would we hold our politicians accountable. I do not feel we would have the democracy we have today without the parties. Take out the parties and I believe we would go back to political bosses. The arena for elections would have to be controlled by someone and I do not think there would be the 'other' party checking to make sure things are done correctly.

3. Please research lesser known political parties - which one do you most identify with?  Why?
I researched the American First Party, established in 2002. The party is pro-life, opposes all gun control, seeks to end affirmative action, racial quotas, and illegal and unlimited immigration. They believe the 16th amendment was not ratified and should be removed. I do not agree with the fact that they support allowing mandated organized prayer in public places, especially in public schools. But I do agree with them allowing displays of religious icons (such as tablets of the Ten Commandments) by the government on public property. They want to take all federal funding from public schools and although I agree with their position that this allows to much federal control, I still feel funding with minimal regulation should occur. 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Chapter 8 Blog Assignment

 From figure 8.1 in the text, select one of the interest groups and do some research on their issues and beliefs.  What did you learn?  What did you find interesting?  Do you agree/disagree with their positions on issues? Why?
 I researched the APWU or American Postal Workers Union. It is a union that supports the postal workers. They have fought for dignity and respect for the workers they represent, as well as for decent pay and benefits and safe working conditions. They were formed after workers were not receiving raises. It is actually several unions that merged together. I could not find anything I did not agree with, I believe they are true to their mission statement.
Find an interest group with which you associate (positively).  What is the name of the group and what do you find persuasive about their position on issues?
I associate with the NRA. My husband and mother-in-law are concealed weapons carriers. They believe in information and training to be able to handle a weapon securely. The NRA helps train law enforcement, they have also started a program to teach children to "STOP. DON'T TOUCH. LEAVE THE AREA. TELL AN ADULT." Since guns will always be in our life I greatly appreciate all the NRA does to help train individuals. 
Do interest groups have enough/too much/the right amount of power in the political system?  Most believe it's a fine-line balance between freedom of speech for the groups and keeping unfair persuasion out of government.  Where is that line and when is it crossed?
I think there should be a more level playing field for interest groups. Important groups are often over looked due to lower membership or income. I do not feel they have to much power, yet I do feel they do not have enough laws governing them to make them fair. I think if the financial aspect was closer controlled we would see more fairness.  I also do not think that politicians should be able to serve or 'help' groups. Their should be more of a boundary.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Chapter7 Blog Assignment

1. Does objectivity still exist in the media's coverage of politics?  Of the major news outlets (CNN, FoxNews, MSNBC, NPR, NBC, etc.), which are the most objective and which seem to have the most bias?
I think as a whole news coverage is not objective. That being said I tend to give more abjectivity to those that allow guest speakers from both sides. I can not comment on which one is most objective , as to be honest I am unsure. that being said I know Fax to be very conservative as a whole and CNN very conservative. 

2. How does talk radio (Rush Limbaugh, Air America, etc.) affect your view of politics?  Why?
I can not give an opinion on this as I have NEVER listened to talk radio. Therefore I guess it has no affect on my view of politics.

3. Is media objectivity important?  Why or why not?
I am not sure media can ever truly be objective. The journalists are only human and EVERY human has an opinion on things in politics. I think it is important to showcase all ideals but I dont know we can ever achieve a truly objective media.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Chapter 6 Blog Assignment

Is American news media too dependent upon polls?  Is it appropriate for news agencies to create polls and then report on them?  Why or why not?
I believe that the media is too dependent upon polls. I do not feel they should create and report on them. There is no way to show the true scientific polling on their polls. This is what causes things like the Kerry/Bush fiasco. That being said I do not feel it would be okay to create laws against them.

2. How important is political party identification to you (e.g. as a Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, etc.)?  Was it more or less important to your parents & grandparents?  Does it seem voting. more or less important to your friends?  Why or why not?
 Political party identification is important to me. If asked I will always say I am a Republican; that being said it is not my ultimate decision when voting. I vote Republican unless there is a person that sticks out and hits home for me. I do feel party identification was a lot more important to previous generations. That being said I also feel the parties were more set on who and what they believed in and the lines were not as skewed between parties. I do not know where my friends stand on party lines as it has almost become taboo to talk about politics do to being "politically correct".

3. Do you feel that you opinion of politics is more influenced by economic issues or by social issues?  Why?
 I feel the opinion of politics in this day and age are influenced by economic issues. With the downturn of the economy there are so many people out of work or barely making it month to month. Important issues that people feel strongly about seem to not be as big when people are losing their homes, jobs, and not being able to provide for their family.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Chapter 5 Blog Assignment

1. The issue of race - does the government do too little or too much to reduce the instances of racial discrimination?  Why or how so?
It is my opinion the government does to much in the area of racial discrimination in so far as affirmative action.  Affirmative Action was a great thing that helped bring equality and a better life for ethnic people yet in my opinion, it is unneeded now. I would say after more than twenty years (closer to thirty or thirty five) since equality has been a mainstay it is time to get rid of it. I seen the races as in a competition as to who can be 'owed' more by our government. As a student I see Asian, African American, Hispanic loans/scholarships; yet where is the poor white fund? I am not say ethnic people do not need the help but instead of focusing on the color of our skin lets focus on things of importance.... deserving, need, background, etc. I have seen so many people act like they are owed something because the 'white' man did this or that. In reality this generation is not owed anything because they did not live through it, we are all equal and all deserve the same opportunities for our slice of the pie.... again regardless of the color of our skin.
2. The issue of gender - same question as #1.

I feel the same as question one in my answer. I do not see gender as something that should play a role in ANYTHING. I feel it should be based on skill, education, determination; if the best one is a female then so be it.... male then so be it. I would never want a job, role in society, or role in my own house to be from the fact I am a female. I want to EARN my way in life, not have it handed to me because my grandmother and great grandmother (etc) did not have the same equality in our society I do. I do not need their hand outs.

3. The issue of sexual orientation - same question as #1 and #2.
Wow, for me this week has been easy questions, or I am just really opinionated on these subjects. I feel the government needs to back off and out of peoples sexual orientation. What is it to any of us who someone calls a spouse, partner, bed mate? I am a Christian, therefore my religion teaches whats right and wrong, but I am also taught not to judge as that is my makers job. To love and respect and do unto others as I would have done unto me, ummmm well I was allowed to get married and was not told who to marry; therefore my gay friend Joe should be able to marry whomever he chooses regardless of gender. For a nation so bent on keeping church and state separate, I would honestly like to know where the Constitution grants the power of marriage. This to me is a religious issue not a government issue; especially one with no ties to religion. I am not condoning or condemning this act but I do think the government has not place governing it in any sense.