Article: The American Way of Government: Plutocracy or Democracy?

Another insightful analysis of the current plutocratic tilt of the American regime. This would be a great counterpoint to discuss when covering the American Form of Government. It also covers themes relevant to sections on interest groups, lobbying, and the bureaucracy and Supreme Court as Countermajoritarian.

America Is Not a Democracy‘-The Atlantic

Link to US Civitas Facebook Discussion Thread

The Supreme Court and the Power of Federal Agencies: The implications of Kavanaugh’s nomination

This post by William Galston provides a nice summary of Chevron deference — which is the legal basis for much federal agency rule-making discretion — and a preview of an important (even if not publicly salient) impact on federal government lawmaking and policy making Kavanaugh could have as SCOTUS justice. This is also useful for understanding the divide between liberals and conservatives over the proper scope of administrative discretion in a system committed to separation of powers and checks and balances.

Under the radar: The Supreme Court decision Brett Kavanaugh is most likely to overrule‘-Brookings

Link to US Civitas Facebook Discussion Thread


Bowdoin College’s Civic Education Videos: “Founding Principles”

“Narrated by Bowdoin College Government Professor Andrew Rudalevige, [Founding Principles] provides an introductory overview and basic understanding to American government, but one that is crucial to building citizen-leaders, promoting civic engagement, and working toward the common good.”  The Founding Principles website is located here.

Here’s a Table of Contents:

  • Chapter 1: American Governance in Theory and Action
  • Chapter 2: Federalism
  • Chapter 3: Congress

Continue reading

50th Anniversary of Heart of Atlanta Motel v. U.S.

 Fifty years ago today, in Heart of Atlanta Motel v. U.S., the Supreme Court declared constitutional Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which forbade discrimination by privately owned businesses, such as motels, theatres and restaurants, that serve as public accommodations.

Continue reading