American Government

Respond to 3 of the following 4 questions in 2-2.5 double-spaced pages each for a total of 6 to 7.5 double-spaced pages.

1) As a result of its struggle against a tyrannical monarch, The United States has been said to have been largely founded upon a political philosophy of states’ rights. The trend away from this emphasis in 1787 with the crafting of the US Constitution might have been seen then as a sharp deviation from those principles.

– What factor(s) led the framers to replace the Articles of Confederation with the US
Constitution?
– Do you agree with the Framers decision or would you have kept the document in its entirety? Why?
– Or would you have taken a middle ground and replaced certain provisions while keeping the basic framework of the document intact? If so, what provisions would you change in the Articles of Confederation?
– Answering this question requires you to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the US Constitution.

2) Brutus, the anti-federalist, argued against the passage of the United States Constitution and Madison argued on behalf of its adoption.

– What were Brutus’ main concerns about the Constitution and Madison’s primary arguments in favor of it?
– Which side do you find yourself most closely drawn to and why?

3) On what types of issues do the third political parties (Libertarians and Greens) deviate most from the two major political parties?

– Despite calls for their political inclusion by the public why do third parties fail to win votes during elections?
– What do you think can be done to decrease the dominance of the Republicans and Democrats and give more voice to the American people?

4) In his important work, Manufacturing Consent, Noam Chomsky argued that the mainstream media in the United States promotes the dual interests of the US Government and the nation’s largest corporations.

– Why and how (propaganda methods) do the media promote these interests in their coverage?
– Do you see any viable alternatives to the mainstream media?
– What threat(s) exist against the alternatives?

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