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245 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Elite and Class Theory
argues society divided along class lines and that upper-class elite rules on the basis of its wealth
theory that too many strong influential groups cripple the gov'ts ability to make coherent policy by dividing gov't and its authority
belief that individual problems can be solved by individual, not governmental, solutions
Linkage institutions
provide a link between citizens and govnerment. Ex) parties, elections, interest groups, the media.
Policy agenda
list of subjects/problems to which people inside and outside gov't are paying serious attention to at any one time.
Policymaking system
institutions of gov't designed to respond to each other and the priorities of the people by gov'tl action. (its a continuous cycle)
determines whom we select as leaders for gov't and what policies they pursue; (who gets what, when, and how)
opposed new Constitution, feared it would erode fundamental liberties and was a class-based document for the economic elite
Connecticut Compromise
plan adopted at Constitutional Convention to provide for a bicameral legislature (one represents states equally--Senate; one is representative based on share of population--House)
Equal Rights Amendment
first proposed in 1923, passed in 1972 but not ratified by 3/4 of the states; mandated equality of rights under the law regardless of gender
Federalist Papers
articles written to convince others to support the new constitution
wanted ratification of the new Constitution by writing the Federalist Papers; incl. Madison, Hamilton, Jay
New Jersey Plan
plan by some delegates to Constitutional Convention by which each state would have = rep. in Congress (remember NJ is small!)
system based on consent of the governed where power is exercised by representatives of the public
Shays' Rebellion
series of armed attacks on courthouses to prevent judges from foreclosing on farms
VA Plan
plan by some delegates to Constitutional Convention by which each state had a share of Congressional seats based on its share of the population (remember VA is bigger than NJ)
Writ of habeas corpus
enables people who are detained by authorities to secure immediate inquiry and reasons why they have been detained
What were the weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation?
Congress had few powers outside maintaining an army and navy, had to request money from the states b/c it had no power to tax (states often refused); Congress couldn't regulate commerce (no trade); weak national gov't, all power to the states
What powers did the Constitution grant to Congress?
levy taxes; pay debts; borrow money; coin money adn regulate its value; regulate commerce; est. bankruptcy laws; punish piracy and counterfeiting; create standard weights and measures; est. post offices; protect copyrights and patents
What powers did the Constitution grant to the Courts?
determine constitutionality of acts/laws
Can Congress impeach and remove judges from office??
What powers did the Constitution grant to the Executive Branch?
veto Congressional legislation, nominate judges, commander-in-chief, direct gov't
What is the Madison Model?
based on: placing as much of the gov't as possible beyond direct control of majority; separation of powers; constructing system of checks and balances
Categorical grants
grants only to be used for spec. purposes or categories of state and local spending
Cooperative federalism
where state and the national government responsibilities are mingled and blurred like a marble cake (powers & policies shared)
Dual federalism
states & national gov't supreme within their own spheres of power (like a layer cake)
Elastic clause
statement in the Constitution which says that Congress has powers to make all laws "necessary and proper" for carrying out its duties
Enumerated powers
powers of Congress specifically granted in Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution
Constitution requires each state to return person charged w/ crime in another state to that state for trial/imprisonment
Full faith and credit
Article IV of the constitution req. states to provide reciprocity toward other states' public acts, records, and civil judicial proceedings
Gibbons v. Ogden
1824 case granted Congress power to regulate interstate commerce (broadened term commerce to mean every form of commercial activity)
McCulloch v. Maryland
1819 Supreme Court case; est. supremacy of national gov't over states incl. both enumerated & implied powers of Congress
Privileges and immunities
Constitution prohibits states from discriminating against citizens of other states.
Project grant
categorical grant award on basis of competitive applications; very political
Supremacy Clause
Article IV of Constitution states that supreme law of the land is the Constitution, the laws of national gov't and treaties
Tenth Amendment
specifies that powers not delegated to the nat'l gov't are reserved to the states or to the people
Unitary Government
one in which all power resides in the central gov't
Why do we have a federalism system?
Main reason: it decentralizes our politics; more opportunities for pol. participation; enhanced judicial power; decentralizes policies
What are state's obligations to each other?
full faith and credit, extradition, privileges and immunities
count of American population every 10 years
Civil disobedience
purposefully breaking a law thought to be unjust
the science of human populations
Gender gap
consistent attitudinal pattern where women are more likely than men to express liberal attitudes and support Democratic candidates
Political socialization
process by which citizens acquire knowledge, feelings, evaluations of political world
Random sampling
polling technique based on the principle that everyone has equal probability of being selected as part of the sample
reallocation of 435 seats in the House based on changes in residency and population found in the census
blanket primaries
nomination contests where voters are presented w/ list of candidates from all the parties and allows them to pick candidates from all parties
Coalition gov't
gov't where smaller parties combine with larger parties to control half the seats in the legislature
Critical election
one in which each party's coalition of support begins to break up and a new coalition of forces is formed for each party
national chairperson
person responsible for taking care of the day-to-day activities and daily duties of the party
national committee
coalition of reps from the states and territories charged w/ maintaining the party between elections
national convention
supreme power within each party; meets every 4 years, writes party platform, nominates candidates for pres. and VP
New Deal coalition
new coalition of forces (urban, unions, Catholics, Jews, poor, southerners, African Americans, and intellectuals) in D party that was forged due to nat'l economic crisis during great Depression
Party dealignment
when voters move away from both parties
party eras
eras when one party dominated for a long time
Party machine
party org. that depends on both spec. and material inducements for rewarding loyal party members
party realignment
process whereby major political parties form new support coalitions that endure for a long period
key inducement used by machines whereby jobs are given for pol. reasons rather than for merit or competence alone
Proportional representation
electoral system wehre legislative seats allocated on basis of each party's percentage of the national vote
rational-choice theory
theory that seeks to explain political processes and outcomes as consequences of purposive behavior, where political actors are assumed to have goals and who pursue these goals rationally
Responsible party model
ideal model of party org. recommending that parties provide distinct programs, encourage candidates to be committed to the party but have voters choose who they want themselves
Which parties dominated during the 1800s?
early 1800s: first party system was the Federalists/Democratic-Republicans;
then was the Jackson Democrats (vs. whigs)
then for later 1800s was the Republicans
Which parties dominated during 1900s?
early: Republicans; middle: (New Deal Democrats + FDR); recent: divided/dealigned (more people becoming independent)
specific locations where news frequently occurs
Broadcast Media
tv and radio
media conglomerates which control a large % of daily newspaper circulation and some tv and radio stations as well
Media event
event staged primarily for the purpose of being covered in the media.
strategy of some broadcase channels that appeal to a narrow, not broad, audience
Policy entrepreneurs
political activists who invest their political capital in an issue.
Print media
newspapers and magazines
sound bites
portion of speech aired on TV of 15 seconds or less
Talking Head
shot of a person's face talking directly into the camera.
Trial balloons
info leaked to the media to see what the political reaction will be
actual group
group composed of those in the potential group who are members of the interest group
Amicus curiae briefs
"friend of the court" briefs filed by interest groups to inform the court of their position and to state how their welfare would be affected by a ruling.
Class action lawsuits
technique used by interest groups which allows groups of people with similar complaints to combine their grievances into a single suit.
Collective good
something of value which cannot be withheld from individuals in the potential group
direct group involvement in the electoral process. Groups can help fund campaigns, provide testimony, and get members to work for candidates and some form PACs
free-rider problem
problem faced by unions and other groups when people don't join b/c they can benefit from the group's activities without joining.
Olson's law of large groups
suggests that the larger the group the more difficult it will be to secure collective good.
(political action committee): legal means for groups to participate in elections by contributing money
potential group
group composed of all people who share some common interest.
Right to work law
state law forbidding req.s that workers must join a union to hold their jobs. specifically permitted by the Taft-Hartley Act of 1947.
(aka iron triangle) exclusive relatoinships composed of interest groups leaders, gov't agency personnel, and members of congressional committees who perform mutual beneficial services for one another at the public's expense.
union shop
provision found in some collective bargaining agreements req. all employees of a business to join the union within a short period, usu. 30 days, and to remain members as a condition of employment.
Iron triangle
(aka subgovernment) Interactions between congress, the bureaucracy (government agencies), and interest groups. The interest groups try to guarantee re-election of Congressmen for supporting their programs. Congress support legislation that advances the interest group in exchange for public approval. Bureaucrats are also pressured by interest groups.
Direct Mail
Use of targeted mailings to prospective supporters, usu. compiled from lists of those who have contributed to candidates and parties in the past.
Federal Election Campaign Act
1974 legislation that pcreated the FEC (fed. election commission), provided public financing for pres. primaries and gen. elections, limited pres. campaign spending, required disclosure (of how much $$ spent), and attempted to limit contributions
fed. election commision; bipartisan 6-member agency that administers and enforces campaign finance laws.
when states move primaries earlier for more media attention
matching funds
contributions of up to $250 are matched from the Presidential Election Campaign Fund (optional $3 to be voluntary donated during income tax returns) to candidates for pres. nomination who qualify and agree to meet various conditions such as limiting overall spending
McGovern-Fraser Commission
committee in D party charged w/ recommending changes in party rules to promote more representation of women and minorities in delegate selection process
National Primary
proposal in which electoral methods would be replaced with nationwide primary held early in election yr
Regional Primaries
proposal to replace electoral methods with series of primaries held in each geographic region
soft money
political contributions earmarked for party-building expenses @ grassroots level or for generic party advertising. Doesn't go to campaign of particular candidates and therefor not subject to contribution limits. Banned by McCain Feingold Act
McCain-Feingold act
banned all soft money, but doubled (hard money) individual can contribute to a federal candidate to $2,000 per election; also said within 60 days of elections, "issue ads" cannot be run if they refer to a fed. candidate and are not funded through a PAC (i.e. with funds regulated through the campaign finance system); passed in '02
delegates to D party's nat'l convention who obtain seats based on positions within party structure; 15% of D delegates!
Initiative Petition
process permitted in some states whereby voters may put proposed changes in state constitution to vote if sufficient signatures are obtained on petitions calling for such a referendum
characterization of elections by political scientists meaning that they are almost universally accepted as a fair and free method of selecting political leaders
Mandate theory of elections
belief that election winner has a mandate to implement policy promises
Motor voter act
legislation requiring states to let people register to vote at the same time they apply for a driver's license.
state-level method of direct legislation that gives voters a chance to approve or disapprove proposed legislation or a proposed constitutional amendment
Retrospective voting
theory that suggests that indiv. who feel that they are better off as a result of certain policies are likely to support candidates who pledge to cont. those policies, and those who feel worse off are inclined to support opp. cnadidates
Cons of the primaries and caucuses?
disproportionate attention goes only to the early caucuses and primaries; prominent politicans find it hard to take time away from duties to run; money plays too big a role; participation low; too much power to the media
pros of the primaries and caucuses?
attracts more educated voters, good indicators of public support early in the election period
15th Amendment
rights of citizens of the US to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the US or any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
19th amendment
gave women the right to vote
26th amendment
gave 18 year olds the right to vote! (yay)
activities of members of Congress that help constituents as individuals
committee chairs
most important influences on Congressional agenda; schedule hearings, hire staff, appoint subcommittees, and manage committee bills
Conference Committee
congressional committees formed when Senate and House pass particular bill in different forms; members of each house iron out differences and bring back single bill
unlimited debate, unique to Senate; can only be ended by vote for cloture by 60 members
House Rules Committee
unique to House, appointed by Speaker of the House; reviews most bills coming froma House commitee for a floor vote; "traffic cop"
Joint Committees
special committees composed of members of each house of Congress
Legislative oversight
process of monitoring the bureaucracy and its administration of policy
pork barrel
list of fed. projects, grants, and contracts available to cities, businesses, colleges and institutions
seniority system
system used until 1970s where majority party members who had served on their committees the longest were automatically appointed chair of the committee
Standing committees
separate subject-matter committees in each house of Congress that handle bills in diff. policy areas
Who are the members of Congress?
100 in Senate (1 from ea. state), 435 in the HoR; in the House members must be at least 25 and 7 yrs American citizens; senators must be at least 30 and 9 years american citizens; all Congressmen must be residents of the states from which they were elected
Who wins elections in Congress?
incumbents, money, harder for the Senate to win b/c more competittion; more media attention to senators
How is Congress organized to make policy?
Congressmen have personal staff (usu. between 20 and 40; committee staff; 3 staff agencies: the CRS (Congressional Research Service, which tracks major bills' progress and provides summaries); the GAO (Gov't Accountability Office, helps Congress perform its oversight function); the CBO (Congressional Budget Office, analyzes pres.'s budget and makes economic projections)
How does a bill become a law?
(starts in either House or Senate): bill intro, committee action (subcommittee-->commitee-->rules committee), floor action (full House or Senate), Conference action (conference commitees then back to full house or senate), pres. decision (has to go thru both houses!)
group of presidential advisors not mentioned in the Constitution, although every president has had one. Today is composed of 14 secretaries and one attorney gen.
Council of Economic Advisors (CEA)
3-member body appointed by the pres. to advice him/her on economic policy
National Security Council (NSC)
office created in 1947 to coordinate pres.'s foriegn and military policy advisors. Formal members incl.: pres., VP, secr. of state, and secr. of defense; managed by pres.'s nat'l security assistant
Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
responsible for preparing the president's budget and assessing the budgetary implications of legislative proposals
pocket veto
when Congress adjourns within 10 days after submitting a bill and the pres. takes no action to sign it or veto it
Presidential coattails
where voters cast their ballots for congressional candidates of the pres.'s party b/c those candidates support the pres.
25th Amendment
says VP becomes acting pres. if both vp and the pres's cabinet determine that the pres. is disabled. Also outlines how a recuperated pres. can reclaim the job.
22nd amendment
limits pres. to 2 terms
War Powers Resolution
passed in 1973; req. presidents to consult with Congress prior to using military force and mandates the withdrawal of forces after 60 days unless Congress declares war or grants an extension
Constitutional National Security Responsibilities of President?
commander in chief, make treaties (subject to agreement of 2/3 of the Senate), nominate ambassadors (with Senate majority agreement), receive ambassadors of other nations
Constitutional Legislative Responsibilities of President?
present info on the state of the union to Congress, recommend legislation to Congress, convene both houses on extraordinary occasions, adjourn Congress if 2 houses cannot agree on adjournment, veto legislation (Congress can override w/ 2/3 vote)
Constitutional Administrative Powers Responsibilities of President?
Make sure laws are faithfully executed, nominate officials w/ agreement of majority of Senate, request written opinions of administrative officials, fill administrative vacancies during congressional recesses
Constitutional Judicial Responsibilities of President?
grant reprieves and pardons for fed. offenses (except impeachment), nominate fed. judges (confirmed by majority of Senate)
Name the Cabinet Departments
State, Treasury, Defense, Justice, Interior, Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, Energy, Education, Veterans Affairs, Homeland Security
What was the original name for the Department of Health and Human Services?
The Department of Health, Education, and Welfare
Which department conducts the census?
Department of Commerce
Which department administers food stamp programs and aids farmers?
Department of Agriculture
Who is the head of the department of justice?
the attorney general
What does the state department do?
Makes foriegn policy, including treaty negotiations
Which president made the decision to drop atomic bombs on Japan to end WWII?
Which was the only president to be nominated as VP under the 25th amendment?
Who pardoned Nixon?
Which president brokered peace between Egypt and Israel?
Appropriations Bill
bill that actually funds authorized programs, usu. covers 1 year
Authorization bill
est. discretionary gov't program or an entitlement, or that continues or changes such program (doesn't provide the money though!)
Budget Resolution
bill setting limits on expenditures based on revenue projections, agreed to by both houses of Congress in April ea. yr.
Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974
act designed to reform budgeting process by making Congress less dependent on the pres.'s budget, est. fixed budget calendar, and a budget committee in ea. house
Congressional Budget Office (CBO)
research agency of Congress, responsible to it for providing analyses of budget proposals, revenue forecasts, and related info (counterweight to pres.'s OMB)
Continuing Resolutions
laws that allow agencies to spend at the previous year's level
occurs when gov't spends more than it receives in taxes the fiscal yr
expentidues for which the total amount spent is not by Congressional appropriation, but rather by rules of eligibility est. by Congress; e.g. Social Security
Federal Debt
all of the money borrowed by the gov't over the years that is still outstandign
House Ways and Means Committee
the HoR committee that, along with the Senate Finance Committee, writes the tax codes, subject tot he approval of Congress as a whole
best predictor of this yr's budget is last yr's plus a little more
in 1965, added to Social Security to provide hospital and physician coverage to the elderly
revisiosn of program authorizations to make the final budget meet the limits of the budget resolution, usu. occuring toward the end of the budgetary process (for savings)
Senate Finance Committee
writes the tax code
16th amendment
explicitly permitted Congress to levy an income tax; 1936
Social Security Act
passed in 1935 (during Great Depression) to provide minimal level of sustence to older Americans
Tax Expenditures
revenue losses due to special exemptions, exclusions, and deductions
Uncontrollable Expenditures
result from policies that make some group automatically eligible for benefits
Sources of Federal Gov't Revnue?
Income Tax, Social Insurance (Social Security) Taxes
Challenges facing the social security system in the future?
once there people tend to stay on the rolls because life expectancies are increasing
Who are the players in the budgetary process?
interest groups, agencies, OMB, pres., Tax committes in Congress, Budget Committees and BCO, subject matter committees, appropriations committees, Congress as a whole, GAO
When does the new fiscal yr begin?
Oct 1
When does Congress receive the pres.'s budget?
First Monday in Feb.
When is the budget worked on?
From First Monday in Feb. to Oct. 1 (monitored by the GAO after this too)
Were the 1974 budgetary reforms really successful in decreaing our deficits?
No, but they have allowed Congress to be more productive and see the deficits earlier..
hierarchical authoritative structure that uses task specialization, operates on merit principle, and behaves with impersonality
Civil service
promotes hiring on the bases of merit and est. a nonpartisan gov't service
Command-and-Control policy
regulatory srategy where gov't sets a requirement and then enforces individual and corporate actions to be consistent with meeting the requirement
withdrawal of the use of gov'tal authority to control or change some practice in the private sector
Governmental corporations
provide services that could be handled by the private sector and gen. charge cheaper rates than a private sector producer. e.g. USPS
GS (General Service) Rating
assigned to ea. job in fed. agencies, this rating helps to determine the salary associated w/ the position
Hatch Act
1940, prohibits gov't workers froma ctive participation in partisan politics
Incentive system
regulatory strategy that rewards individuals or corporations for desired types of behavior, usu. through the tax code. More efficient than command and control.
Independent Executive Agencies
Executive agencies which are not cabinet deparmtents, not regulatory commissions, and not gov't corporations. e.g NASA
Independent Regulatory Agency
has responsibility for sector of the economy to protect the public interest
Merit principle
using entrance exams and promotion ratings for hiring workers
(Office of Personal Management) responsible for hiring most agencies, elaborate rules.
a hiring and promotion system based on knowing the right people (bad!)
Pendleton Civil Sercies Act
passed in 1883, it created the federal Civil Service so hiring would be based on merit not patronage.
Senior Executive Service
the very top level of the bureaucracy
street level bureaucrats
those who are in constant contact with the public
What are some arguments for deregulation?
lowers prices (no expensive regulations), helps America's competitive position abroad (other nations have fewer regulations)
Class action suits
cases which permit a smal number of people to sue on behalf of all other people similarly affected.
Judicial Review
the power of the courts to hold acts of Congress and by implication the executive in violation of the Constiution
Justiciable Disputes
Cases that can be settled by legal methods.
statement of legal reasoning behind the decision in court.
Original Intent
theory that judges should determine the intent of the framers and decide in line with their intent
Political questions
conflicts between the president and Congress
Senatorial Courtesy
tradition in which nominations for federal judical positions are not confirmed when opposed by a senator of the president's party fromt he state in which the nominee is to serve or from the state of the nominee's residence
Solicitor general
presidential appointee who is in charge of the appellate court litigation of the federal government
Standing to sue
litigans must have serious interest (sustained serious and direct injury) from a party in a case.
Stare decisis
an earlier decision should hold for the case being considered
Statutory Construction
a procedure in which the legislature passes legislation that clarifies existing laws so that the clarification has the effect of overturning the court's decision
United States v. Nixon
1974 supreme court decision that required Pres. Nixon to turn White House tapes over the courts.
What is the road to becoming a Supreme Court justice?
president nominates, nominee goes through confirmation hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee; senators usually don't appeal nominations because it's not in their jurisdiction
What are the three most recent Supreme Courts and what were their ideologies?
1) Warren Court (1953-69): desegregated schools, expanded criminal rights and protections against unreasonable search and seizure (liberal); 2) Burger Court (1969-1986): conservative, narrowed defendants' rights but also wrote abortion decision in Roe v. Wade; 3) Rehnquist Court: 1990s, conservative, decided Bush v. Gore, limited rights of defendants and abortion
8th amendment
no cruel and unusual punishment (though doesn't define this phrase)
Establishment Clause
1st amendment prohibits gov't from est. a religion (basis for sep. of church and state)
Exclusionary rule
prohibits gov't from including illegally obtained evidnece ina trial
Fifth Amendment
grand juries, no double jeopardy (2 prosecutions for 1 crime), no self-incrimination, due process, eminent domain
First Amendment
est. freedoms of religion, press, speech, and assembly
14th amendment
prohibits states from denying equal protection of the laws; due process
Free Exercise Clause
gov't is prohibited in the 1st amend. from interfering in the practice of religion
Incorporation Doctrine
legal concept under which the Supreme Court has nationalized the Billo f Rights by makign most of its provisions applicable to the states thru the 14th amendment
publication of false or malicious statements that damage someone's reputation
plea bargaining
defendent will plead guilty to lesser crime in exchange for state's promsie not to prosecute defendant for more serious crime
prior restraint
gov't instrument to prevent material from being published
right to privacy
contrived right from unstated liberties in the Bill of Rights
self incrimination
testifying against oneself
Americans with Disabilities act of 1990
strengthened protections of individuals with disabilities by req. employers and public facilities to make "reasonable accommodations" and prohibitng employment discrimination against people w/ disabilities
Civil Rights Act of 1964
forbids discrimination in public accommodtions and facilities
comparable worth
= pay for = worth
15th amendment
provides right to vote for blacks
13th amendment
banned slavery and involuntary servitude
24th amendment
prohibited poll taxes
Voting Rights Act of 1965
policy designed to reduce barriers to voting for those suffering discrimination
2nd amendment
right to bear arms
3rd amendment
quartering of soldiers
4th amendment
no unreasonable searches and seizures
6th amendment
criminal court procedures; right to speedy and public trial, impartial jury, informed of nature of the accusation, compulsory witnesses, right to councel
7th amendment
trial by jury in common law cases (cases where value in controversy exceeds 20$)
9th amendment
rights retained by people
10th amendment
rights reserved to the States
securities and exchance commission, regulates stock fraud
collective bargaining
negotiations between labor unions and management
consumer price index; key measure of inflation that relates the rise in prices over time
principle that gov't shoudln't meddle in the economy
Federal Reserve System
main instrument for monetary policy in the US. regulates lending practices of fed. banks and thus the money supply
Keynesian economic theory
theory emphasizing that gov't spending and deficits can help the economy weather its normal ups and downs. proponants like gov't stimulation of the economy when it is lagging
supply side economics
theory advocated by Reagan that too much income goes to taxes so too little money is available for purchasing and the solution is to cut taxes and return purchasing power to consumers
National Labor Relatoins Act
aka the Wagner Act; 1935 law that guarantees workers right of collective bargianing, sets down rules to protect unions and organizers,a dn created the Nat'l Labor Relatoins Board
means-tested programs
gov't programs available only to individuals below a poverty line
progressive tax
when gov't takes more from the rich than the poor
regressive tax
when gov't takes more from poor than rich
proportional tax
when gov't takes same share of income from poor and rich
earned income tax credit; "negative income tax" that provides income to very poor indviduals in lieu of charging them fed. income taxes
health maintanance org.; org. contracted by individuals or insurance companies to provide health care for a yearly fee; 60% of Americans, or so, are enrolled
program added in 1965 to the Social Security System that provides hospitalization insurance for the elderl and permits older Americans to purchase inexpensive coverage for dr. fees and other medical expenses
public assistance program designed to provide health care for poor Americans; funded by both states and fed. govt.
fund created by Congress in 1980 to clean up hazardous waste sites; money comes from taxing chemical products