Social studies, Grades 9-12 – 154 Words

advice and consent

a legal expression in the United States Constitution that allows the Senate to constrain the President’s powers of appointment and treaty-making

affirmative action

a policy designed to redress past discrimination


a state of lawlessness and disorder


giving authoritative judgment

Articles of Confederation

a written agreement ratified in 1781 by the thirteen original states; it provided a legal symbol of their union by giving the central government no coercive power over the states or their citizens

balanced budget

a budget is balanced when current expenditures are equal to receipts

body politic

a politically organized body of people under a single government


refusal to have commercial dealings with some organization


the practice of offering something (usually money) in order to gain an illicit advantage

budget deficit

an excess of expenditures over revenues


a government administered primarily by nonelective officials

business deduction

tax write-off for expenses of doing business

capital stock

the maximum number of shares authorized under the terms of a corporation’s articles of incorporation


an economic system based on private ownership of assets

caste system

social structure in which classes are determined by heredity


fanatical patriotism

Chinese Revolution

the republican revolution against the Manchu dynasty in China; 1911-1912


the body of citizens of a state or country

civil disobedience

refusal to obey a law because it is believed to be immoral

civil law

the legal code of ancient Rome


the act of showing regard for others

Cold War

a state of political hostility that existed from 1945 until 1990 between countries led by the Soviet Union and countries led by the United States

collective bargaining

negotiation between an employer and trade union


secret agreement

common law

a law established by following earlier judicial decisions


a theory favoring collectivism in a classless society

congressional district

a territorial division of a state


resistant to change


the body of voters who elect a representative for their area


advocacy of government according to founding principles

consumer price index

an index of the cost of all goods and services to a typical consumer


involving the joint activity of two or more


the exclusive right to sell a work

cruel and unusual punishment

punishment prohibited by the 8th amendment to the U.S. Constitution; includes torture or degradation or punishment too severe for the crime committed


the property of being less than expected or required


the act of letting the air out of something

demand-pull inflation

inflation caused by an increase in demand or in the supply of money

Democratic Party

the older of two major political parties in the United States


a sunken or lowered geological formation


the act of freeing from rules

discount rate

interest on an annual basis deducted in advance on a loan

disposable income

income that is available to you for saving or spending

divine law

a law that is believed to come directly from God

divine right

the doctrine that kings derive their right to rule directly from God and are not accountable to their subjects; rebellion is the worst of political crimes

double jeopardy

the prosecution of a defendant for a criminal offense for which he has already been tried; prohibited in the fifth amendment to the United States Constitution

Dow Jones

an indicator of stock market prices

durable goods

consumer goods that are not destroyed by use

economic theory

a theory of commercial activities


science dealing with the circulation of goods and services


the tendency of a body to return to its original shape

electoral system

a legal system for making democratic choices

eminent domain

a right of the state to take private property for public use


a movement in Europe from about 1650 until 1800 that advocated the use of reason and individualism instead of tradition and established doctrine

estate tax

a tax on the estate of the deceased person


an affiliation resulting from racial or cultural ties

European Union

an international organization of European countries formed after World War II to reduce trade barriers and increase cooperation among its members

excise tax

a tax that is measured by the amount of business done

exclusionary rule

a rule that provides that otherwise admissible evidence cannot be used in a criminal trial if it was the result of illegal police conduct


the act of spending money for goods or services

Federal Communications Commission

an independent government agency that regulates interstate and international communications by radio and television and wire and cable and satellite

Federal Reserve

the central bank of the United States

Federal Reserve System

the central bank of the United States


government divided between central and regional powers


a member of a former political party in the United States that favored a strong centralized federal government

financial institution

an institution (public or private) that collects funds (from the public or other institutions) and invests them in financial assets

fiscal policy

a government policy for dealing with the budget

Food and Drug Administration

a federal agency in the Department of Health and Human Services established to regulate the release of new foods and health-related products

Fourteenth Amendment

an amendment to the Constitution of the United States adopted in 1868; extends the guarantees of the Bill of Rights to the states as well as to the federal government


a statutory right or privilege granted by a government

free enterprise

an economy relying on market forces to allocate resources


a United Nations agency created by a multinational treaty to promote trade by the reduction of tariffs and import quotas

government security

a security issued by United States government agencies or the Farm Credit System

head start

the advantage gained by beginning early, as in a race

home office

(usually plural) the office that serves as the administrative center of an enterprise

House of Commons

the lower house of the British parliament

House of Lords

the upper house of the British parliament


an orientation that characterizes the thinking of a group


the consolidation two or more things

interest rate

the percentage of a sum of money charged for its use

International Monetary Fund

a United Nations agency to promote trade by increasing the exchange stability of the major currencies


fanatical patriotism

judicial review

review by a court of law of actions of a government official or entity or of some other legally appointed person or body or the review by an appellate court of the decision of a trial court


a group of officers who rule a country after seizing power


the territory within which power can be exercised


the act of making or enacting laws


lawfulness by virtue of being authorized


a false and malicious publication


showing or characterized by broad-mindedness


a political orientation favoring social progress by reform


a legal proceeding in a court


the branch of economics that studies the overall working of a national economy

Magna Carta

the royal charter of political rights given to rebellious English barons by King John in 1215

marginal cost

the increase or decrease in costs as a result of one more or one less unit of output

market economy

an economy that relies on market forces to determine prices


an area in a town where a public mercantile establishment is set up

Marshall Plan

a United States program of economic aid for the reconstruction of Europe (1948-1952); named after George Marshall


the branch of economics that studies the economy of consumers or households or individual firms


autocracy governed by a ruler who usually inherits authority

money supply

the total stock of money in the economy


a market in which there are many buyers but only one seller

Monroe Doctrine

an American foreign policy opposing interference in the western hemisphere from outside powers

moral obligation

an obligation arising out of considerations of right and wrong


an agreement for free trade between the United States and Canada and Mexico; became effective in 1994 for ten years

national debt

the debt of the national government


the doctrine that your country’s interests are superior

natural law

a rule or body of rules of conduct inherent in human nature and essential to or binding upon human society


a market in which a few producers control a commodity

Organization of American States

an association including most countries in the western hemisphere; created in 1948 to promote military and economic and social and cultural cooperation

organized crime

underworld organizations

organized labor

employees who are represented by a labor union


a document granting an inventor sole rights to an invention


criminal offense of making false statements under oath

personal income

the income received by a single individual

price control

restriction on maximum prices that is established and maintained by the government (as during periods of war or inflation)

price floor

floor below which prices are not allowed to fall

primary election

a preliminary election where delegates or nominees are chosen

production cost

combined costs of raw material and labor incurred in producing goods

property tax

a capital tax on property imposed by municipalities

Protestant Reformation

a religious movement of the 16th century that began as an attempt to reform the Roman Catholic Church and resulted in the creation of Protestant churches

public works

structures constructed at government expense for public use


the act of returning control


a legislative act referred for approval to a popular vote


the act of bringing to uniformity

rental income

income received from rental properties


a form of government whose head of state is not a monarch

Republican Party

the younger of two major political parties in the United States; GOP is an acronym for grand old party

return on investment

(corporate finance) the amount, expressed as a percentage, that is earned on a company’s total capital calculated by dividing the total capital into earnings before interest, taxes, or dividends are paid

right to life

the right to live


determination of one’s own fate or course of action without compulsion

service charge

a percentage of a bill added in payment for service

sexual harassment

unwelcome sexual behavior by a supervisor toward an employee


someone who holds shares of stock in a corporation

social contract

an agreement that results in the organization of society

social welfare

governmental provision of economic assistance to persons in need


a political theory advocating state ownership of industry


continuous contemplation on a subject of a deep nature

statute law

law enacted by a legislative body


a supply of something available for future use

stock market

an exchange where security trading is conducted by professional stockbrokers


someone who holds shares of stock in a corporation


a grant paid by a government to an enterprise

tax revenue

government income due to taxation


employment at home while communicating with the workplace by phone or fax or modem

third party

someone other than the principals who are involved in a transaction

transfer payment

a public expenditure that is not for goods and services


an agency of the United Nations responsible for programs to aid education and the health of children and mothers in developing countries


the actions of a vigilance committee in trying to enforce the laws

Wall Street

a street in lower Manhattan where the New York Stock Exchange is located; symbol of American finance


formal and explicit approval


written assurance that a product or service will be provided

World Bank

a United Nations agency created to assist developing nations by loans guaranteed by member governments

World War I

a war between the allies (Russia, France, British Empire, Italy, United States, Japan, Rumania, Serbia, Belgium, Greece, Portugal, Montenegro) and the Central Powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, Turkey, Bulgaria) from 1914 to 1918

World War II

a war between the Allies and the Axis from 1939 to 1945


dividing an area into zones or sections reserved for different purposes such as residence and business and manufacturing etc
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