to sample exams
101 R. R. Pope
& Governance Summer 2000
of the following, if any, definitely qualifies as a bureaucratic organization?
- A large
group of students that meets regularly to study for their political
- An auto
repair shop with two partners and three employees.
- A chess
staff in a relatively large library.
of the above qualifies as a bureaucratic organization.
of the following, if any, is not a reasonable
statement to make with reference to bureaucracy?
- A significant
degree of "inefficiency" is for all practical purposes built into the
society cannot function without bureaucratic organizations.
and "anarchy," as discussed in this class, are not compatible.
tend to make work for each other.
of the above are reasonable statements.
3. In general,
administrators in bureaucratic organizations are probably not
going to be significantly concerned with which, if any,
of the following?
- The efficiency
of their organization-to the extent that they will decline to add additional
staff if this will undermine the ability of the organization to do the
most cost effective possible job.
the best possible solution to each problem that arises-vs. going with
the first minimally acceptable solution that turns up, so that they
can "get on with the job."
someone as quickly as possible who can't effectively perform the tasks
required by a position to which they have recently been promoted-before
they undermine the organization's reputation for efficiency.
exploring innovative ways to increase the effectiveness of their organization-vs.
sticking with the "tried and true."
administrator in a bureaucratic organization is probably not generally
going to be significantly concerned with any of the above.
to Shively, which of the following, if any, is not
true of American bureaucracy?
- The fact
that there are so many bureaucrats, and because the responsibilities
of each individual bureaucrat are generally relatively unimportant,
it is not possible to keep them completely under control.
generally do a good job of making the behavior of government predictable.
the general absence of competition, overall, government manages to be
roughly as efficient as private enterprise.
all is said and done, American bureaucracy has managed to avoid major
shortcomings more often than bureaucracy in other democratic countries.
to Shively, all of the above are true.
law states, at least in part, that
- in a
bureaucratic organization people will be promoted until they reach a
position where they cannot handle their responsibilities adequately-and
they will then stay in that position.
- a bureaucrat
who needs some assistance can easily be persuaded to accept a single
subordinate after he or she understands that the department's budget
can't cover the cost of hiring two assistants-something is better than
bureaucrats can readily be persuaded to cut back on unnecessary paperwork,
especially in an election year.
of the above is a part of Parkinson's Law.
to the Peter Principle,
make work for each other.
- a bureaucrat
who needs assistance will want to hire at least two people.
are inclined to implement the first minimally acceptable solution to
a problem that they can come up with, rather than continuing the search
for the best possible solution.
want to keep doing what they have always been doing, rather than change
with the times.
of the above.
to the Pope Proposal, one way to improve the efficiency of bureaucratic
organizations would be to
the media, for example 60 Minutes, to expose unnecessary inefficiency.
the Civil Service laws, so that it is easier to demote or fire bureaucrats
who aren't doing their jobs properly.
top administrators to write clearer, more effective memos.
of the above.
to the article, "Bureaucracy and Constitutional Democracy" by Fred W.
cannot be internally democratic-effective officials cannot decide what
to do based on a majority vote.
- the more
powerful officials are, the more important it is that they are checked
by effective institutions of representative government.
- a political
system that is not effectively administered runs the serious risk of
losing its legitimacy with the general public-and collapsing.
of the above.
to the article, "Big Government-Lack of Checks and Balances," the US Postal
Service has an unfair monopoly because it doesn't
have to do which, if any of the following?
with state and federal antitrust and fair trade laws.
- Pay local,
state, or federal taxes.
to the licensing and regulatory requirements that govern private industry.
of the above.
of the following, if any, doesn't qualify as
an "interest group"?
- The "Greek
system" at ISU (i.e., the organization representing fraternities and
- The student
government at ISU.
- The group
of faculty at ISU that before the recent vote on unionization organized
meetings, sent out information, etc.
staff at ISU-which has formed a union.
of the above qualify as "interest groups."
of the following, if any, is it in general not accurate
to say about interest groups? (In other words, of the following statements,
which one, if any, is at least a serious exaggeration?)
groups play a key role in the "real world" of democracy.
groups are inevitably going to be in a position to facilitate the influence
of small groups that in fact do not represent the "best interests" of
society as a whole.
- A group
with a combination of money, size, and prestige will generally be in
a better position to get what it wants in opposition to a group that
has only one of these three factors on its side.
- The AARP
(American Association of Retired People) has considerable "political
None of the above is a significant exaggeration.
of the following, if any, is not a positive
contribution that can be made to society by interest groups.
valuable information to both the general public and government officials.
- Act as
a check on the behavior of other interest groups-and the government.
an effective means for minorities to present their views to the public
of the above qualify as positive contributions.
of the above is a positive contribution.
of the following, if any, is something that interest groups do not
to get their own members elected to public office.
to persuade both elected and appointed government officials to do what
is good for them, even when what they want isn't good for the general
to convince the general public at they are right and their critics are
wrong-even when the opposite is true.
to influence the outcome of elections in their favor-sometimes by unfair
and even illegal means.
groups attempt to do all of the above.
of the following, if any, does Shively not say
about interest groups?
generally do a better job of clearly presenting specific interests to
government officials and the public than do political parties.
tend to not be terribly democratic in their internal organization.
interest groups have special advantages over others and, as a result,
all interests do not receive "equal representation."
tend to "get their way" to a degree that puts democracy at serious risk.
to Shively, all of the above are true of interest groups.
of the following, if any, can reasonably be
said about elections?
- If a system
holds regular elections it can be assumed to be democratic.
elections can be depended on to consistently provide the best realistically
there is effective media oversight, misleading election campaigns can
are the best possible way to make complex decisions-because the public
has had a direct say in the decision, the results will be accepted and
therefore the policy will be workable.
of the above is a reasonable statement about elections.
16. The concept
of "responsible electorate" suggests which, if any, of the following?
isn't necessary for all voters to be equally well informed for democracy
to be workable.
to the existence of "opinion leaders," we can be sure that the majority
of the public will vote responsibly in essentially all elections.
relatively few people vote in most elections, it is reasonable to assume
that those who do vote will be well informed-and therefore will vote
of the above is suggested by the concept of "responsible electorate."
the problems that are associated with even truly democratic elections
is/are which, if any, of the following?
- It is
possible for election campaigns to distract voters from the central
issues facing the society.
- The side
that wins an election cannot always be trusted to "do the right thing."
in local elections, so few people can end up voting that the result
doesn't truly reflect the desires of the community. This can then undermine
the legitimacy of the system.
- It can
be so costly to run an effective campaign that potentially good candidates
can decide that they can't afford to go into politics.
of the above can reasonably be considered problems with elections.
18. The existence
of "gerrymandering" illustrates or suggests
- the difficulty
we can expect to have when we try to make any aspect of our political
system "completely fair."
- the fact
that despite the Supreme Court's best efforts to make sure elections
in the U.S. are fair, politicians can find ways to gain unfair advantages
over their opponents.
there will be substantial political controversy when election district
boundaries are being redrawn over the next couple of years in response
to the latest census results.
of the above are illustrated or suggested by the existence of "gerrymandering."
to the article, "Freedom and Responsibility of Media," among the important
considerations connected with the media in a democracy is/are
need for the media to retain its credibility with the public-otherwise
it risks having its freedom curtailed.
- the desirability
of calling a Constitutional Convention to reexamine, among other things,
the role of the media in modern society.
- the fact
that, despite all the efforts that have been made over the years to
curtail the media, the concept of "freedom of the press" has proven
to be so well entrenched in American society that we don't have to overly
concern ourselves about trying to maintain this essential element of
- All of
of the following, if any, is a theme expressed in all three
of the articles on the media in the Pope reader?
- As important
as maintaining a free flow of information is in making democracy possible,
we can expect significant problems ranging from self censorship, to
the abuse of the tremendous communications potential of the Internet,
to the influence of "outside forces" that can bias coverage.
are so many problems with the media's coverage of important issues today
that it is reasonable for the public to demand that the government step
and do something to improve the situation.
- The bias
inherent in the need for the commercial media to make a profit makes
it unreasonable for us to expect to press to report completely accurately
and fairly on political issues.
of the above are a part of a theme that is expressed in the three articles.
to sample exams