Revolutionary America Ratification of The Constitution Paper

Revolutionary America Ratification of The Constitution PaperPOL 101 Exam 1 September 28, 2020 Instructions: Use the amount of time provided for class with any appropriate accommodation. You may consult your own notes and books but do not use the internet generally. If you have questions you can email me at vvecera@randolphcollege.edu. I will keep an eye on my email and respond during normal class time. The exam is due at 11:50 or later if an accommodation so allows. Email it as a .pdf (save as pdf) to vvecera@randolphcollege.edu. Answer a total of two questions, including one question from each section. A good answer can be completed in a couple of paragraphs per question part. Make sure to answer each part (a, b, etc.) of each of the two questions you choose to answer. You may attach .png or .jpg files if you like, or pdfs from excel. Please do NOT Section A: Rationality and Institutions 1. A tragedy of the commons can be modeled as a variation on a traditional prisoners’ dilemma. (a) Explain the difference between a prisoners’ dilemma and a tragedy of the commons and (b) describe an example of each that we have not previously discussed in class. (c) Create a payoff matrix for one of your examples with payoffs expressed as utility to each player. (d) Is there a good way for the players in your example of a tragedy of the commons to prevent a suboptimal (and non-sustainable) equilibrium? 2. Rational choice analysis is a way of modeling individual behavior under different conditions. Because political scientists are particularly interested in the effects of rules on individual behavior, one popular use of rational choice is to predict how behavior, and thus outcomes, can change when rules change. (a) Pick an institution charged with collective decision-making under generally-accepted rules, such as a student government, a house where friends agree to sets of rules, the United States Congress, or another comparable institution. (b) Describe an existing rule in the institution, explain its significance, and then suggest an alternative rule to replace it. (c) Using at least two payoff matrices, show how changing the rule might alter the behavior of at least one participant. Section B: Revolutionary America 3. One important contemporaneous objection to the ratification of the Constitution was that the United States would be a nation of much too diverse interests, with vast geographic distances separating wildly different economies and ways of life. (a) Describe this objection in greater detail, putting it in greater historical, political, and economic context. (b) Describe Madison’s response to these critics. (c) In light of our knowledge in 2020, do you believe Madison was correct, incorrect, or neither? 4. The Civil and Voting Rights Acts transformed American life and politics, finally expanding voting rights to nearly all Americans for the first time in the nation’s history. Describe the process by which the rights of citizenship were expanded in the United States. (a) Describe the original Constitution in terms of popular rule. Who had the power to vote and for what offices? What determined this? (b) How were other important offices filled, and why did Madison (and other Framers) oppose direct elections for most offices? (c) Roughly when and why were additional offices democratized? After answering a-c, choose either d or e: (d) What other rights and privileges of citizenship have been expanded and why? Alternately, (e) and identify the most important political consequences of the passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts. …