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A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, often a state.

In the case of its broad associative definition, government normally consists of legislature, executive, and judiciary. Government is a means by which organizational policies are enforced, as well as a mechanism for determining policy. Each government has a kind of constitution, a statement of its governing principles and philosophy. Typically the philosophy chosen is some balance between the principle of individual freedom and the idea of absolute state authority (tyranny).

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Teens 16+ can join their local community board in NYC.

Contributed by Taylor Taglianetti

This article relates to many ideas, such as the purpose of government as viewed by John Locke and James Madison and the protection of unalienable rights and liberties. As defined by Locke, the purpose of government is to protect the interests of the people. In the state of nature, man protected himself while there was no one to protect him from a foreign being. One of the roles of government is to deal with foreign power. While the outcome of the counterterrorism program was not beneficial, the original idea behind the program was in the interest of the people. The result of the terrible attacks on September 11th, the Department of Homeland Security was born as well as these regional fusion centers of terrorist information. These programs had the intention of protecting the citizens of the United States from potential terrorist attacks. By gathering all this information and trying to ensure all the information is communicated between all the different channels, the counterterrorism program was supposed to predict and prevent terrorist attacks. The idea of unalienable and natural rights was also referred to in the article. Since the counterterrorism centers were sifting through all the information about American citizens in hope of finding a connection and viewing the private information of those individuals, the privacy of all those individuals were being violated. In the article, it was even mentioned that the workers sorting through all this information were not properly trained. The information collected through the centers was unfiltered and were not even reported correctly. The ideas of the bureaucratic view and checks and balances are also in the article. The Department of Homeland Security is part of the President’s cabinet, his bureaucracy, which means that its duty is to inform the president so that he can potentially make an informed decision about domestic safety. Because the centers’ information is so disorganized and incomplete, the information from these centers is the president would not give him an accurate picture of the safety of the US solely from the counterterrorism centers. The idea of checks and balances are also in the article in that the investigation of these programs of a department of the Cabinet, the executive branch, was actually done by the Senate. The legislative branch conducted an investigation and reported the results to check the department of the cabinet. This way the ineffectiveness and wastefulness is revealed and change can start to be implemented

Contributed by Jen Lee

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