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Titles in Barron's Painless series are designed for middle school and high school students, helping them excel in subjects they might expect to be either hopelessly boring or excruciatingly difficult. The authors are all experienced teachers, adept at winning the hearts and minds of adolescents, and skillful in adding a light, humorous touch to even the heaviest and grimmest topics. This book opens with a general description of government and a comparison of democracy as practiced by the founding fathers and how it operates in today's America. The author goes on to discuss the Constitution as our basis of government, civil liberties and civil rights, the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the federal government, elections and political parties, how public policy is created and shaped, and how each citizen can become involved in the process of self-government. The book includes quizzes with answer keys.