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Employing a unique nuts-and-bolts approach, CALIFORNIA POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT gives insight into real-life politics as it vividly illustrates the complex principles at work in state government. Current examples and clear explanations give readers a solid understanding of the ins and outs of California government. Thoroughly updated, the thirteenth edition addresses many complex economic, social, education, and immigration issues and their impact on state politics. It includes discussion of new court cases, the state's new spending plan, the 2014 elections, changes in government regulations, and more. In addition, public policy coverage is thoroughly integrated throughout the book, helping readers make connections and see firsthand the impact and practical applications of government and legislation in their own lives.Whereas our nation was once united in purpose, today it is bitterly divided. Why? Racial discrimination, diminishing educational opportunities, poor economic mobility, greedy corporations, and an unresponsive federal government have combined to create two Americas. Presented in Gerston’s characteristic, no-holds-barred style of wit and candor, Reviving Citizen Engagement: Policies to Renew National Community casts a harsh light on the current state of American public policy. The book begins with an assessment of the extent to which America has become a fractured society and the residual damage from the social implosion. It then examines the fragile condition of the 21st century electorate and a political system where private power too often has overcome values intended to protect the public good. The author argues it isn’t American entitlement run amok, but suggests there really is a powerful disconnect. The large number of Americans who have been left out of the system are no longer engaged citizens. This development represents a monumental threat to American democracy, for our democracy can succeed only if its people believe they have the opportunity to succeed. This book not only provides evidence of our frayed society but also includes recommendations for strengthening America’s social fabric. It details the steps we can―and must―take to repair, rebuild, and renew American society. Gerston contends they are within our reach if we are willing to make the sacrifices long overdue in what historically has been recognized as the world’s most powerful and successful nation.Ever wonder what it is really like to be a kid in a candy store? Go to a nearby Costco and you will find out. The Costco Experience Revised and Updated Edition: An Unofficial Survivor’s Guide takes you to, in, through, and out of this amazing center of shopping frenzy. The book provides keen insight, valuable shortcuts, and common sense thinking on how to make warehouse shopping a successful endeavor. But there’s more! Beyond helping you conquer Costco, The Costco Experience Revised and Updated Edition: An Unofficial Survivor’s Guide provides organizational skills and techniques that you can use everywhere. Decision-making, prioritizing, negotiating, self-discipline, and other important attributes are applied to shopping at Costco in ways that help you live your life on your own terms. And the best part is that you transfer these skills to other parts of your daily routines. Costco is more than a warehouse store. Shopping at Costco is more than a purchasing exercise. Read the book and you will see why the Costco experience can be fun and profitable. It is almost therapy on the cheap, but a lot more entertaining.This brief text identifies the issues, resources, actors, and institutions involved in public policy making and traces the dynamics of the policymaking process, including the triggering of issue awareness, the emergence of an issue on the public agenda, the formation of a policy commitment, and the implementation process that translates policy into practice. Throughout the text, which has been revised and updated, Gerston brings his analysis to life with abundant examples from the most recent and emblematic cases of public policy making. At the same time, with well-chosen references, he places policy analysis in the context of political science and deftly orients readers to the classics of public policy studies. Each chapter ends with discussion questions and suggestions for further reading.Quality public education, modern highway systems, and reasonably priced housing—these are just some of the qualities that once made California one of the most desirable places to live. Just a few decades later, the state finds itself with an education system that is failing its citizens, one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation, and a quickly evaporating dream of home ownership. Illustrating each step of the breakdown that led to its current state of dysfunction, Not So Golden After All: The Rise and Fall of California provides insight into a system gone amuck. It addresses complicated topics in an engaging manner to help the public and leaders alike understand how to make policies that balance expectations with outcomes. Key political themes covered include disconnected institutions, perpetually unbalanced budgets, immigration, voter ignorance, interest group influence, and dysfunctional institutions. Investigating the gridlock that has become all too common within the state’s legislature, the book:
While people profess a disdain for politics, in a democracy politics is the primary vehicle for citizens to influence the decisions and decision makers that shape public policy at every level. This widely acclaimed work provides an overview of public policymaking in all its aspects along with basic information, tools, and examples that will equip citizens to participate more effectively in the policymaking process. It is intended for use in internships and service-learning programs, but will serve equally as a resource for any organized effort to involve citizens in community service and the exercise of civic responsibility. This updated edition includes an all-new case study on the issue of immigration, and all other case studies have been revised.Understanding federalism - the form of political organization that unites separate polities within an overarching political system so that all maintain their political integrity - is central to the study of democratic government in the United States. Yet, many political scientists treat federalism as a set of abstract principles or a maze of budgetary transfers with little connection to real political life. This concise and engaging book boils the discussion down to its essence: federalism is about power, specifically the tug for power among and within the various levels of government. Author Larry N. Gerston examines the historical and philosophical underpinnings of federalism; the various "change events" that have been involved in defining America's unique set of federal principles over time; and the vertical, horizontal, and international dimensions of federalism in the United States today. The result is a book examining the ways in which institutional political power is both diffused and concentrated in the United States.$17.00“Are we there yet?” How often we’ve heard those words, begging for finality to an outing. Yet, the adventure along the way can be a road to many discoveries. The Road to Hana shows how the journey can be a much more valuable experience than simply reaching a destination. In this story, the child is the wise one who yearns to explore nature’s wonders along the route, while the adults who take her are too caught up in completing a task instead of appreciating the activity. In the end, the child helps the elders appreciate the beauty of the journey.
- Demonstrates the impact of the state’s inability to generate sufficient revenue, particularly for public education and an under-trained workforce
- Highlights the problems created by poor land use planning —from suburban sprawl and government waste to inefficient use of agricultural land
- Examines how interest groups have been able to wrest control of the processes that were created to keep them in line
- Identifies the duplication of efforts and other inefficiencies at the state and local levels
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