INTRO: For your first class assignment #1, you will need to do some additional readings.  I will provide you with all the readings you need, but you can of course read more sources if you want to.  This assignment is worth 100 points, so please spend some time working on it and submit it on time.  This assignment is a combination of the material covered in weeks 2 and 3, so make sure you have read through both modules before starting the assignment.  
INSTRUCTIONS: For these questions, you can either answer them directly into Canvas or you can attach a document with your responses. This does not have to be essay-style answers, you can simply type #1 and then the answer.  It is important that your answers reflect that you have read and understood the articles that are required for this assignment, and you MUST answer ALL parts of these questions.   
*For questions #1-#3, please read the following two articles: Democracy 1 (Links to an external site.) and Democracy 2 (Links to an external site.).  Feel free to read other articles to respond to all these questions.*  The United States is commonly called a “democracy.”  There definitely are many reasons for this categorization, but there are people who question the quality of the democracy in the US.  For this question, please answer each of the following:

Some of the authors presented in these articles make the argument that the United States is NOT a democracy; please summarize AND explain the arguments for why the United States is NOT a democracy. Be sure to explain which groups the authors claim actually have an impact on policy and on what government does.
The articles also present arguments that claim that the United States IS a democracy and that it is a mistake to call the US an oligarchy. What are the rebuttals that are made that argue that the US is a not an oligarchy but rather an imperfect democracy?
What do YOU think about the arguments presented in these articles? Which arguments do you agree with? Do you believe the US is an imperfect democracy or an oligarchy?  Explain your arguments. 

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For questions #4-#8, please read the following 3 articles: Ideologies 1 (Links to an external site.), Ideologies 2 (Links to an external site.), and Ideologies 3 (Links to an external site.). Feel free to read other articles to respond to all these questions.* Liberalism and Conservatism are the two most dominant political ideologies in the United States.  However, Democratic Socialism and Socialism are two very interesting and thought-provoking ideologies we don’t normally read a lot about (although Democratic Socialism is surging in popularity).  For this question, please answer each of the following:   
4. Citing examples and arguments presented by the author of “Ideologies 1,” what do you believe are the major components of democratic socialism and what is it that democratic socialists want their government to do for the people?
5. How is democratic socialism different from liberalism?
6. According to what you read in “Ideologies 1” and Ideologies 2,” why isn’t democratic socialism more popular or well known; meaning, what are some of the challenges faced by democratic socialists in our country?
7. According to what you read in “Ideologies 3,” how would you describe socialism and how is it different from capitalism?
8. Lastly, what do YOU think about democratic socialism and socialism? What, if anything, do you like about what these ideologies have to say?  Would you like to see more political candidates that identify as democratic socialists run for office?  Explain your answers. 
TURNING IT IN: Be sure to answer ALL the questions and fully explain your answers.  You CANNOT copy and paste things directly from the internet into your assignment.  You need to put what you read into your own words.  The response to each question should be approximately 100 words long (800 words in total).  This would be roughly 3 pages long, double-spaced if you were using a word processor.   You can either type your responses directly into Canvas or you can attach a file with your answers.  
GRADING:  This is out of 100 points.  Please see the grading criteria document for information on what I am looking for in grading your work.  

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