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POS 101                                                                                                                    
R. R. Pope

Citizens & Governance                                                                                           
Fall 2000



1.  Which of the following, if any, most clearly qualifies as "bureaucratic"?

a)   A "public service club" such as Rotary or Kiwanis.


b)  A youth organization such as the Boy or Girl Scouts.


c)   A large retail enterprise such as Wal-Mart.


d)  A special interest organization such as a garden or photography club.


e)   None of the above is "bureaucratic" to any significant extent.


2.   Which of the following, if any, is not  an explanation for the existence of bureaucracy?  (Keep in mind that an answer can be "correct" even if we didn"t discuss it in class.  You need to apply "logic.")

a)   The complexity of modern society requires large scale organization, and this, in turn, inevitably leads to "bureaucratic organization."


b)  We can"t survive outside of an organized society.


c)   When large numbers of people try to work together to perform reasonably complex tasks, organization is necessary.


d)  All of the above help to explain the existence of bureaucracy.


3.  Which of the following, if any, does not  help to explain "bureaucratic inefficiency"?

a)   The tendency bureaucrats have to go with the first minimally acceptable solution they find to a problem.


b)  The tendency bureaucratic organizations have to try to keep doing what they always have been doing.


c)   The fact that it is generally very difficult to demote or fire poor workers in large organizations.


d)  The need for "rules and regulations" on the one hand, coupled with the fact that they don"t always effectively "fit" the problem at hand.


e)   All of the above help to explain "bureaucratic inefficiency."


4.  Your supervisor seems to be out of his or her depth, that is, they clearly have problems dealing with their responsibilities.  This is most directly an example of

a)   Peter Principal.


b)  Parkinson"s Law.


c)   the Pope Problem.


d)  the Civil Service system.


e)   None of the above.


5.   Which of the following, if any, is not  compatible with the Pope Proposal?

a)   Encourage Congress to change the Civil Service law, so that it will be easier to demote or fire bureaucrats who are clearly doing a poor job.


b)  Help a group of newly hired government workers to learn how to present their ideas effectively to their superiors.


c)   Encourage a new bureaucrat to take a special course on "effective writing."


d)  Organize a course on "how bureaucracy functions" at ISU.


e)   All of the above are compatible with the Pope Proposal.



6.   In his chapter on bureaucracy, in what way does Shively apparently significantly disagree  with the instructor in this course?

a)   Shively believes that, all in all, government bureaucracy is about as efficient as private sector bureaucracy, whereas the instructor argued that government bureaucracy tends to be less efficient, in part because of a lack of "competitive pressure."


b)  The instructor believes that bureaucracy tends to be "inherently inefficient," whereas Shively believes that bureaucracy is almost always highly efficient.


c)   Shively believes that government bureaucrats exercise significant influence over how laws are implemented, whereas the instructor has argued that it is elected officials, and they alone, who make all the important decisions.


d)  Shilvely and the instructor disagree on all of the above issues.


7.  According to Fred Riggs in his article, "Bureaucracy and Constitutional Democracy,"

a)   there is a clear conflict between "democracy" and "bureaucracy," they are simply not compatible.


b)  bureaucracy is essential to democracy; without an efficient governmental apparatus, policies cannot be effectively implemented and democracy, in any form, can"t function.


c)   it is essential that elected officials exercise effective control over the bureaucracy, otherwise bureaucrats will tend to abuse power, and/or become lazy and inefficient.


d)  Riggs argues all of the above in his article.


8.  The article, "Big Government"Lack of Checks & Balances," claims which of the following?  The Post office

a)   is a government-mandated monopoly.


b)  provides a series of government-subsidized products.


c)   has a freewheeling bureaucracy with special legal powers.


d)  is the most dangerous type of monopoly because it is backed and favored by government sanction.


e)   All of the above.


9.  Parkinson"s Law includes which of the following assumptions?

a)   Bureaucrats tend to rise to the level of their incompetence.


b)  Bureaucrats tend to "satisfyce."


c)   Bureaucrats tend to generate a lot of internal paperwork.


d)  Bureaucrats prefer to keep doing what they always have been doing"even when that no longer makes any sense.


e)   Bureaucrats have to "follow the rules."


10. Which of the following, if any, cannot  reasonably be said about interest groups?

a)   They play a useful role in a democratic system in that they facilitate effective public input into the political process.


b)  While interest groups, in general, play a legitimate role in society, some groups can manage to exercise undue influence on decision making.


c)   The right to form an interest group is protected by the U.S. Constitution, even when what that group wants is contrary to the best interests of the society as a whole.


d)  All of the above can reasonably be said about interest groups.


11. Which of the following can a very wealthy individual probably manage to do about as effectively as a well funded large interest group?

a)   Get the attention of an elected or appointed official--and "get results""through a letter or an e-mail.


b)  Pursue an issue through the legal system.


c)   Stage a demonstration.


d)  Lobby.


12. Which of the following, if any, is not  a legitimate method (under U.S. law) an interest group can use to try to exert influence on the political process?

a)   Publish a full page statement in major newspapers.


b)  Organize and pay for a golf outing for government officials in Hawaii as a thank you for past support.


c)   Organize a "seminar" on the issue they are interested in and invite public officials to make presentations"and cover their travel expenses.


d)  Organize a very large demonstration in front of the U.S. Capitol"which makes security personnel very nervous.


e)   All of the above are legitimate means of exerting influence under U.S. law.


13. Which of the following, if any, is not  a legitimate method that can be used to keep interest group activity "under control"?

a)   Encourage "countervailing" interest groups.


b)  Encourage media scrutiny of interest group activity"on the assumption that exposure of "unfair" efforts to exert influence will undermine the effectiveness of those efforts.


c)   Pass laws that restrict the otherwise legitimate activities of specific unpopular interest groups that are clearly doing harm to the public interest.


d)  All of the above are legitimate.


14. According to Shively,

a)   the role of interest groups in a society can vary based on the degree to which the population is organized into groups.


b)  within the industrialized nations the public in some countries is much more organized into groups than in other countries.


c)   government officials often have to depend on interest groups for information and expertise.


d)  in some countries, interest group representatives are members of government committees.


e)   All of the above.


15.  Which of the following can we least  expect democratic elections to accomplish?

a)   Make it possible for the general public to have a significant say in who the political leaders will be.


b)  Provide a reasonable guarantee that those leaders will always do the best possible job for the country.


c)   Help to "legitimize" the political system and, therefore, help make it easier to enforce the laws.


d)  Help make it possible to change government policies by changing the political leadership.


16. Based on the lectures, which of the following, if any, cannot  reasonably be said about elections?

a)   It is possible for someone who knows very little about the candidates or the specific issues to still vote "responsibly."


b)  Low voter turnout can result in an unrepresentative minority winning an election, especially at the local level, and then imposing policies that do not have the support of the majority.


c)   Those in power when election districts need to be redrawn can be expected to try to draw the new district boundaries in a way that will unfairly benefit them.


d)  All of the above are reasonable statements"based on what was said in the lectures.


17. Gerrymandering refers to:

a)   the drawing of election district boundaries in a effort to be fair to all the groups in the community.


b)  an effort to find a way to avoid losing Congressional seats after the 2000 census.


c)   an aspect of the struggle for political power that we can all be proud of.


d)  None of the above.


18. In his article, "Freedom and Responsibility of the Media," Michael Emery argues all but  which of the following?

a)   Freedom of the press ultimately rests on public support.


b)  The press frequently deserves to be criticized.


c)   There are situations, even in peacetime, when it is appropriate for the government to substantially curtail press freedom"for the sake of national security.


d)  Public figures can try to "blame the press" when their actions or policies are criticized.


19. Based on what was said in the lecture, which of the following, if any, is it not  reasonable to say about the media?

a)   They play a very important role in providing the public with information and in fostering informed debate on the important issues.


b)  In the pursuit of profits, they can be guilty of emphasizing "soundbites" and the sensational"vs. the important issues, which can be relatively complicated and boring.


c)   Even if most people aren"t well informed on the important political issues, the media still provides a source of information and a forum for debate for "opinion leaders."


d)  All of the above are reasonable comments.


20. The two articles under the general title of "Drugstore Across the Border" in the October 16 issue of the Washington Post illustrate which of the following?

a)   The role that interest groups can play in bringing an issue such as cheaper drug prices in Canada and Mexico to the attention of political leaders and the general public.


b)  The value of "media attention" when it comes to encouraging people to focus on an important issue.


c)   With reference to the previous section in this course, the difference a "socialist approach" to healthcare can make.


d)  The fact that the "bad guys," in this case American drug companies, can in fact have a decent argument on their side.  (The drug companies" "interest group" pointed out in one of the articles that Canadian drug manufacturers are developing fewer new drugs than American companies because the Canadian government"s price controls make the sale of drugs significantly less profitable than in the U.S.)


e)   All of the above.



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