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American Government - Policy and Politics Ch.13


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Baby-Boom Generation
The exceptionally large number of Americans born during the late 1940's, 1950's, and 1960's.
Social Security
A federal pension and disability insurance program funded through a payroll tax on workers and their employees.
A federally funded health insurance program for the elderly.
A federal program designed to provide health insurance coverage to poor people, the disabled and elderly Americans who are impoverished.
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) (H)
A federal agency created to nurture cultural expression and promote appreciation of the arts. (H)
Welfare State
Government that takes responsibility for the welfare of it's citizens through programs in public health, public housing, old-age pensions, unemployment compensation, and the like.
A financial incentive given by government to an individual or a business interest to accomplish a public objective.
Income Redistribution
The government taking items of value, especially money, from some groups of Americans and then giving items of value, either in cash or services, to other groups of Americans.
A system of institutionalized racial discrimination.
A severe and prolonged economic slump characterized by decreased business activity and high unemployment.
An economic slowdown characterized by declining economic output and rising unemployment, less severe than a depression.
A decline in the purchasing power of the currency.
Laissez Faire
An economic philosophy holding that government intervention impedes the free market force that drives a healthy economy.
(H)Budget Year. (H)
Fiscal Year(FY)
Tax Preference
A tax deduction or exclusion that allows individuals to pay less tax than they would otherwise.
Tax Exemption
The Exclusion of some types of income from taxation.
Tax Deduction
An expenditure that can be subtracted from a taxpayer's gross income before figuring the tax owed.
Tax Credit
An expenditure that reduces an individual's tax liability by the amount of the credit.
Excise Tax
Levies assessed on the manufacture, transportation, sale, or consumption of a particular item or set of related items.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
The total value of goods and services produced by a nation's economy in a year, excluding transactions with foreign countries.
Tax Incidence
The point at which the actual cost of an item falls.
Progressive Tax
A levy that taxes people earning higher incomes at a higher rate than it does individuals making less money.
Proportional Tax
A levy that taxed all persons at the same percentage rate, regardless of income.
Regressive Tax
A levy whose burden falls more heavily on lower income groups than on wealthy tax payers.
Ability to Pay Theory of Taxation
The approach to government finance that holds that taxes should be based on an individual’s ability to pay.
Flat Tax
An income tax that assesses the same percentage tax rate on all income levels above a personal exemption while allowing few if any deductions.
Sales Tax
A levy assessed on the retail sale of taxable items.
Budget Deficit
The amount of money by which annual budget expenditures exceed annual budget receipts.
Budget Surplus
The amount of money by which annual budget receipts exceed annual budget expenditures.
Balanced Budget
When the budget receipts are equal to budget expenditures.
National Dept
The accumulated indebtedness of the federal government.
Consumer Price Index(CPI) (H)
A measure of inflation that is based on the changing cost of goods and services. (H)
Cost-of-Living Adjustment(COLA) (H)
A mechanism designed to regularly increase the size of a payment, to compensate for the effects of inflation. (H)
Means-Tested Program
A government program that benefits to recipients based on their financial need.
A process that involves the government contracting with private business to implement government programs.
Welfare Programs
Government programs that provide benefits to individuals based on their economic status.
Earned Income Tax Credit(EITC) (H)
A federal program designed to give cash assistance to low-income working families by refunding some or all of the taxes they pay and, if their wages are low, giving them an additional refund. (H)
Supplemental Security Income(SSI) (H)
A federal program that provides money to low-income people who are elderly, blind, or disabled who do not qualify for Social Security. (H)
Aid to Families with Dependent Children(AFDC) (H)
A federal welfare program that provides cash to the parents or guardians of children living in low-income families. (H)
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families(TANF) (H)
A federal program that provides temporary financial assistance and work opportunities to needy families.
Entitlement Program
Government program providing benefits to all persons qualified to receive them under law.
Fiscal Policy
The use of government spending and taxation for the purpose of achieving economic goals.
Mandatory Spending
Expenditures that are mandated by law, including entitlements and contractual comments made in previous years.
Discretionary Spending
Budgetary expenditures that are not mandated by law or contract, including annual funding for education, the Coast Guard, space exploration, highway construction, defense, foreign aid, and the FBI.
Appropriations Process
The procedure through which Congress legislatively allocates money for a particular purpose.
Authorization Process
The procedure through which Congress legislatively establishes a program , defines it’s general purpose, devises procedures for it’s operation , specifies an agency to implement the program, and indicates an approximate level of funding for the program but does not actually provide money.
Incremental Model of Budgeting
A theoretical effort to explain the budget process on the basis of small (incremental) changes in budget categories from one budget to the next.
Money paid for the use of money.
Monetary Policy
The control of the money supply for the purpose of achieving economic goals.
Capital Gains Tax
A tax on investment income.
Pork Barrel Spending
Expenditures to fund local projects that are not critically important from a national perspective.
Federal Reserve Board (FED)
An independent regulatory commission that makes monetary policy.
Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC)
A committee of the Federal Reserve that reviews the economy and adjusts monetary policy to achieve the goals of price stability and full employment.
American Association of Retired Persons (AARP)
An interest group representing the interests of older Americans; can purchase group health insurance, mutual funds, and prescription drugs at a discount.
Plea Bargain
A plea to a criminal case to reduce their sentence pnding that they confess to the crime.
Tort Case
A personal injury case
Laws in-acted by congress
-Chief Justice John Marshall
Marbury V. Madison
Doctrine of Implied Power
-Chief Justice John Marshall
McCulloch V. Maryland
Impairment of congress
-Chief Justice John Marshall
Dartmouth College V. Woodward
Congressional Power
-Chief Justice John Marshall
Gibbons V. Ogden
-Chief Justice Roger Taney
Dred Scott V. Sandford
Segregation/Seperate but equal/Citizenship
-Chief Justice Melville Fuller
Plessy V. Ferguson
Segregation/Seperate but equal/Citizenship
-Chief Justice Earl Warren
Brown V. Board of Education
Illegal Search and Seizure/Exclusionary Rule
-Chief Justice Earl Warren
Mapp V. Ohio
Self Incrimination
-Chief Justice Earl Warren
Miranda V. Arizona
Abortion/Due Process & Privacy
-Chief Justice Earl Warren
Roe V. Wade
Recounts of Presidential Elections
-Chief Justice William Rehnquist
Bush V. Gore

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