A.A.A. See AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT ACT, AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT AGENCY.
abate. To bring to an end, as nuisances; to reduce, as taxes.
ABC powers. The three major states of South America: Argentina, Brazil, and Chile. In 1914 the United States accepted them as mediators when trouble threatened with Mexico. The ABC Treaty of May, 1915 provided for arbitration of disputes and set up a permanent mediation commission. The powers functioned jointly the same year in mediating a dispute between Colombia and Peru.
abdicate. To give up formally (a high office, throne, authority, etc.); surrender (a power or function). Despotic sovereigns may give up their powers at any time, but not so with a limited monarchy: for instance, the consent of both Houses of Parliament is necessary before the throne of Great Britain can be lawfully abdicated. Some famous abdications: Nicholas II ( Russia) March 15, 1917; William II ( Germany) November 9, 1918; Charles I ( Austria-Hungary) November 12, 1918; Edward VIII ( England) December 10, 1936.
ability theory. The theory that taxes for the general purposes and benefits of government should be levied on the taxpayer according to his ability to pay. No single index is adequate. One hundred fifty years ago the general property tax was considered the best tax for this theory. The problem of measuring ability today is more complex, but the income tax is the outstanding effort to meet the problem. See BENEFIT THEORY.
abolitionist. One who favored the abolition of slavery.
abrogate. To void or bring to an end, as treaties or contracts.
absent or absentee voting. Process of securing ballots and voting, usually considerably in advance, by a person who will not be able to vote in his own voting district on election day.
ABSIE. An abbreviation for the American Broadcasting Station in Europe, an American station set up in England which opened April 30, 1944 for sending propaganda in the form chiefly of news, comment, directions to the underground and instructions from Allied military commanders to the people of western continental Europe. It was a strong and complete station, transmitting its material in English, French, German, Norwegian, Danish and Dutch.
absolute majority. More than half the membership of a voting body. Sometimes such a majority is required to pass a measure although not all of the members may have voted.
absolute monarchy. A kingdom in which the king holds complete power.
absolutism. 1. The political doctrine that the rights and powers of the ruler