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Alejandra Lopez
6 articles
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  • herefore, the pattern of diffusion on which the original theory rests may no longer be accurate, because people are moving around in more, and often unpredictable, directions.
  • In addition, advances in technology and transportation have made it easier for citizens to travel across state lines and to relocate.
  • Today’s immigrants are less likely to come from European countries and are more likely to originate in Latin American and Asian countries.
  • The original theory rested on the assumption that new cultures could arise with the influx of settlers from different parts of the world; however, since immigration patterns have changed over time, it could be argued that the three cultures no longer match the country’s current reality.
  • Elazar’s Theory claims that Texas is a mixture of traditional and individualistic political cultures. As a result, the voter turnout in Texas is lower than most other American states, with the argument that Texans view political participation as an economic perk versus the value of contributing to society.
  • Finally, under a traditionalistic political culture, Elazar argues that party competition will tend to occur between factions within a dominant party.
  • s a result, voter participation will generally be lower in a traditionalistic culture, and there will be more barriers to participation
  • Conservatives argue that these laws reduce or eliminate fraud on the part of voters, while liberals believe they disproportionally disenfranchise the poor and minorities and constitute a modern-day poll tax.
  • While moralistic cultures expect and encourage political participation by all citizens, traditionalistic cultures are more likely to see it as a privilege reserved for only those who meet the qualifications.
  • When elected officials do not prioritize public policies that benefit them, those on the social and economic fringes of society can be plagued by poverty and pervasive health problems.
  • But instead of profiting from corporate ventures, settlers in traditionalistic states tied their economic fortunes to the necessity of slavery on plantations throughout the South.
  • . Like the individualistic culture, the traditionalistic culture believes in the importance of the individual.
  • Only elites belong in the political enterprise, and as a result, new public policies will be advanced only if they reinforce the beliefs and interests of those in power.
  • a traditionalistic political culture, in Elazar’s argument, sees the government as necessary to maintaining the existing social order, the status quo.
  • , Elazar argues that in individualistic states, electoral competition does not seek to identify the candidate with the best ideas. Instead it pits against each other political parties that are well organized and compete directly for votes.
  • voters do not pay much attention to the personalities of the candidates when deciding how to vote and are less tolerant of third-party candidates.
  • They will tend to remain involved if they get enjoyment from their participation or rewards in the form of patronage appointments or financial compensation.
  • As a result of these personal motivations, citizens in individualistic states will tend to be more tolerant of corruption among their political leaders and less likely to see politics as a noble profession in which all citizens should engage.
  • Elazar argues that individuals are motivated to become engaged in politics only if they have a personal interest in this area or wish to be in charge of the provision of government benefits.
  • Given their focus on pursuing individual objectives, states with an individualistic mindset will tend to advance tax breaks as a way of trying to boost a state’s economy or as a mechanism for promoting individual initiative and entrepreneurship.
  • According to Elazar, the individualist political culture originated with settlers from non-Puritan England and Germany.
  • The focus is on meeting individual needs and private goals rather than on serving the best interests of everyone in the community.
  • They expect the government to provide goods and services they see as essential, and the public officials and bureaucrats who provide them expect to be compensated for their efforts.
  • States that align with Elazar’s individualistic political culture see the government as a mechanism for addressing issues that matter to individual citizens and for pursuing individual goals.
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