Here are some of the topics and ideas you'll find in Part II, Chapter IV, of Gaudium et Spes.
Chapter IV – The Political Community
Modern Public Life
* Transformations in modern life have led to a greater concern for civil liberty and the common good.
* Modern people have a “keener awareness of human dignity,” and many seek to protect the rights of all people.
* Modern people also have a “growing desire” to participate in political life in order to better exercise their rights and to contribute to the common good.
* All political life must be based on humanity and promote justice, the common good, and true human development.
Nature and Purpose of the Political Community
* Human beings naturally tend toward involvement in a political community, which “exists for the common good.”
* “The common good embraces the sum total of all those conditions of social life which enable individuals, families, and organizations to achieve fulfillment more completely and more expeditiously.”
* Authority is necessary to guide a political community toward the common good, but this authority must always be a moral force that promotes both freedom and responsibility in its citizens.
* Citizens must obey political authority that is acting according to the moral order and the common good. Citizens do not, however, have to obey a corrupt, immoral authority and have the right to defend themselves against such according to the law of the Gospel.
* The ultimate purpose of the political community is to form “a human person who is cultured, peace-loving and well disposed towards his fellow men with a view, to the benefit of the whole human race.”
Participation by All in Public Life
* All citizens must have the opportunity to participate in the establishment and administration of the political community.
* Citizens have the right and duty to vote.
* The political community must protect citizens' rights and promote family, culture, and social organizations.
* Citizens must provide reasonable “material and personal services” to the political community and not abuse the system by “untimely and exaggerated demands for favors and subsidies.”
* The political community should strike a balance between individual freedom and the common good while citizens should strike a balance between patriotism and care for the “whole human family.”
* Christians must serve as an example of responsibility to the political community. Christians can model the complementary pairs of “personal initiative” and solidarity; freedom and authority; and unity and diversity.
* All citizens should receive a “civil and political education.”
* A true politician seeks the common good rather than his or her own interests. A true politician works “with integrity and wisdom” for the “welfare of all in a spirit of sincerity and fairness, of love and of courage...”
The Political Community and the Church
* The Church “is not identified with any political community nor bound by ties to any political system.” She illustrates “the transcendental dimension of the human person.”
* The goals of the Church and the political community overlap in that both seek justice and strive toward the common good, yet the Church and the political community remain autonomous.
* The Church respects “the political freedom and responsibility” of citizens.
* The Church has the right to preach and teach the faith, to “carry out its task,” and to “pass moral judgments even in matters relating to politics.”