Pluralism vs. Elitism


Pluralism vs. Elitism
John L. Payne
January 13, 2010
University of Phoenix
This paper will give my judgment on to which theory best describes wealth and power in the United States, pluralism or elitism?

Pluralism vs. Elitism
As described by Domhoff, an elitist is a person or group of people who use their influence to sway the opinion of those who make public policy.   The elite of our time serve as board of directors, CEOs and trustees of some of the biggest and most successful businesses in the world (Domhoff, 2006).   Pluralists believe that there should be a balance within government giving all a voice to express their opinion and then make public policy. Pluralists ideas were a key factor in setting up a check and balances system within our government.   James Madison was a key figure in the process. Although these checks and balances exist, it is my belief that the elitist method is the method used to make most of the major decisions in our nation today. Those that have power in America today can get what they want done.
Many of the decisions made by our government are based on the attitudes and wishes of those in power.   This includes big businesses, political action groups, special interest groups and lobbyist who persuade those in government to vote in favor or against issues which affect their certain group.   Even though our government is structured to encourage checks and balances between the Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches, this is not always the case.   The group with the most power, money and influence usually get what they want.
In November of 2007 I participated in an effort to pass Proposition 15 on the Texas voting ballot.   Proposition 15 would secure $3 billion over the next 10 years in cancer research and prevention programs in the state of Texas, and create the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas.   Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world’s largest private...