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6.8: Key Terms

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    carbon tax
    a fee imposed on the use of fossil fuels based on the amount of carbon dioxide that use emits into the atmosphere
    collective action
    the activities of a group as it makes and implements a decision regarding a group goal
    collective action problems
    the broad category of activities in which participating individuals have incentives to maximize their own self-interest in ways that harm the group interest
    collective dilemma
    any situation in which a group must make difficult choices
    conformity costs
    the difference between what an individual wants from a policy decision and what the individual actually receives
    coordination problems
    the challenges groups face when there is general agreement on goals but disagreement on the specific ways in which to achieve them
    elite culture
    those in a country who, by virtue of their wealth, education, and position, have the dominant influence over politics and policy
    free rider problem
    when individuals in groups have incentives not to contribute to the group’s goals because they will receive the same outcome whether they contribute or not
    majority rule
    a form of decision-making by voting, in which the proposition that receives more than 50 percent of the votes wins
    mass culture
    the most popular views, attitudes, preferences, and behaviors within a society
    minority cultures
    the views, attitudes, preferences, and behaviors of subsets of a society that produce group identity
    political culture
    the set of shared political attitudes, values, goals, and practices within a country
    political elites
    those within a society who, by virtue of their wealth, status, positions, and power, have the greatest influence over the country’s political agenda, its policy decisions, and its decision-making cadre
    political socialization
    the gradual development, from youth through adulthood, of a political personality
    prisoner’s dilemma
    a scenario in which two individuals would benefit from cooperating, but each has strong incentives to defect, leaving both individuals worse off than if they had cooperated
    the minimum number of the group that must be present for a vote to be held
    the gradual process through which a person develops the values and beliefs that determine who they will be as an adult
    status quo
    the current situation
    a voting rule in which more than a majority is needed for a measure to pass
    tragedy of the commons
    a situation in which individuals have incentives to take as much as they can from a public resource, thereby depleting the resource
    transaction costs
    the time, money, and effort required to make a group decision

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