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Using 1987 national sample survey data that included a large black oversample, we reexamine black-white differences in sociopolitical participation. We hypothesized that increases in black empowerment would affect the level of black sociopolitical participation and change the nature of black-white differences in political behavior. The results show that blacks in high-black-empowerment areas—as indicated by control of the mayor's office—are more active than either blacks living in low-empowerment areas or their white counterparts of comparable socioeconomic status. Furthermore, the results show that empowerment influences black participation by contributing to a more trusting and efficacious orientation to politics and by greatly increasing black attentiveness to political affairs. We discuss the results' implications for theoretical interpretations of when and why black sociopolitical behavior differs from that of whites.
Two pervasive beliefs have given nuclear weapons a bad name: that nuclear deterrence is highly problematic, and that a breakdown in deterrence would mean Armageddon. Both beliefs are misguided and suggest that nearly half a century after Hiroshima, scholars and policy makers have yet to grasp the full strategic implications of nuclear weaponry. I contrast the logic of conventional and nuclear weaponry to show how nuclear weapons are in fact a tremendous force for peace and afford nations that possess them the possibility of security at reasonable cost.
In accord with the office-seeking theory of parties, we explore the impact of the structure of electoral competition on French parties. We speculated that the Fifth Republic's electoral structure—dual-ballot elections in single-member districts—would produce a multiparty system consisting of parties tailored to the two-ballot mode of winning. To test our proposition we devised two measures of winning for the members of the national assembly's partisan groups: the percentage of members who won the absolute majority that was needed to win on the first ballot and the average shift in the electoral margin of the groups' remaining members from the first to the second ballot. The two measures revealed four distinct ways of winning, each of which fostered a prototypical party.
Political science is a discipline in constant danger of fragmentation because of the centrifugal pulls of our subfields and the contradictions in our scientific and humanistic traditions. We are, however, periodically brought together by the need to respond to major developments that are reshaping the political universe. We are today confronted with a unifying challenge in the crisis of authoritarianism that is undermining the legitimacy of all types of authoritarian systems throughout the world, including the Marxist-Leninist regimes. The crisis will not necessarily produce democracies, but rather a variety of part-free, part-authoritarian systems which do not conform to our classical typologies. Although the crisis of authoritarianism stems from profound social, economic, and cultural trends, the outcome in each case will be decided by political responses. Political science, therefore, has the responsibility to lead intellectually other social sciences in analyzing the fundamental change in political life that involves the clash between individual political cultures and the world culture of modernization.
Most applications of spatial modeling to the problem of electoral competition are pessimistic regarding the prospects for candidate equilibrium in more than one policy dimension. Probabilistic models of the vote, however, increase the likelihood of equilibrium. We expand the probabilistic model to include measured nonissue variables, thereby representing the general multivariate model of behavioral research. For this model we offer a general candidate equilibrium solution and illustrate with some simulations based on 1988 National Election Study data. The more complicated one's model of voters' motivations, the greater appears to be the chance of locating a candidate equilibrium position in policy space.
Domestic opposition to violent, escalatory national policies during international crises has long been considered an important factor influencing the foreign policy behavior of nations. Yet the explicit theoretical linkages between domestic opposition and crisis choices have not been investigated. To provide these linkages, we set out an extensive form game of sequential decisions leading to the various consequences of crises together with their attendant costs and benefits. Our findings indicate that an antagonist's beliefs about domestic opposition are not particularly effective levers to manipulate in crises when a peaceful resolution is the goal.
I analyze the governmental regulation of internationally traded goods produced by U.S. industries. General theories of regulation—most notably “capture” theories and the theory of “congressional dominance”—are used to analyze the decision-making behavior of the U.S. International Trade Commission, which plays a major role in approving and providing tariffs, quotas, and various types of nontariff trade barriers sought by these industries. Unlike previous studies, this one simultaneously accounts for both the supply and demand sides of trade regulation. This work seeks to predict, on a basis of domestic politics, the factors that affect the demand for, and supply of, trade protection for U.S. industries. The methodology consists of applying a nested logit framework to capture the decision behavior of the International Trade Commission and industries simultaneously. The analysis shows that industries do appear to self-select themselves in applying for protection from the International Trade Commission. In light of these findings, it appears that trade protection is subject to domestic political forces similar to those affecting other regulatory policy areas.
Two types of explanations of state government innovation have been proposed: internal determinants models (which posit that the factors causing a state government to innovate are political, economic, and social characteristics of a state) and regional diffusion models (which point toward the role of policy adoptions by neighboring states in prompting a state to adopt). We show that the two are conceptually compatible, relying on Mohr's theory of organizational innovation. Then we develop and test a unified explanation of state lottery adoptions reflecting both internal and regional influences. The empirical results provide a great degree of support for Mohr's theory. For the empirical analysis, we rely on event history analysis, a form of pooled cross-sectional time series analysis, which we believe may be useful in a wide variety of subfields of political science. Event history analysis may be able to explain important forms of political behavior (by individuals, organizations, or governments) even if they occur only rarely.
Using borders and alliances as indicators of opportunity and willingness, respectively, we test the relationship between these and the diffusion of war during the 1816–1965 period. The impact of borders and alliances, individually and in combination, on the growth of ongoing war through “infectious” diffusion is shown through the comparison of baseline cases to cases where states at peace were exposed to various “treatments” comprised of warring border nations or warring alliance partners. The findings indicate that the probability of war diffusion is substantially increased as opportunities and willingness increase, particularly when such geographic and political factors are combined. The applicability of the opportunity and willingness framework to the study of war and diffusion is expanded and confirmed.
Lobbying efforts and campaign contributions from coalitions of groups are used to explain representatives' voting decisions within the U.S. House Ways and Means and Agriculture Committees. Information about which groups worked together on two controversial issues and which representatives they lobbied was obtained through personal interviews and a mail survey of professional lobbyists. The analysis reveals that committee-level voting, particularly in the Ways and Means Committee, is best explained by the total number of lobbying contacts representatives received from groups on each side of the issue. Campaign contributions proved somewhat useful for explaining groups' lobbying patterns; but it appears to be lobbying, not money, that shapes and reinforces representatives' policy decisions.
Conventional wisdom and some research indicate that macroeconomic policies follow cycles corresponding to political, as well as economic, forces. Using vector autoregression analysis, I test three models of monetary policy determination for the United States, 1953–1984: the electoral cycle model (that reelection motivations on the part of presidents create a policy cycle), the party differences model (that policy changes reflect revolving presidential party administrations), and the referendum model (that changes in presidential approval create, in effect, a continuing referendum, allowing presidents to monitor their success and change macroeconomic policies when necessary). Analysis shows that monetary policies, as measured by the monetary base and short-term interest rates, respond to the election cycle and presidential approval (although the effect on macroeconomic outcomes is ambiguous). Party differences are found in real income but are not very significant in other variables.
I investigate from an egalitarian welfarist standpoint the issue of whether state-guaranteed employment should be offered as a matter of right to able-bodied poor citizens who suffer chronic or persistent unemployment. An affirmative answer is defended. One consideration supporting this right to work is that provision of transfer aid in the form of jobs rather than cash screens “nonneedy bohemians” from the class of beneficiaries. The main conclusion of the essay is defended from one objection based on efficiency wage models of the labor market and from another based on the alleged impossibility of maintaining the self-respect and self-esteem of able-bodied individuals who fail to earn their own keep independently in a market economy.
The significance of legitimacy to regime maintenance has been much neglected in recent investigations of the Third World, particularly by behavioralists and rational choice theorists. I define legitimacy, discuss factors that may have contributed to this neglect, and explore the significance of nationalism and religion as major sources of legitimacy in the Middle East. Both a misunderstanding of the role of higher values and rationality in individuals' relationship to social systems and a faulty projection applied to the mainsprings of behavior in other cultures have distorted the perceptions of a number of Western analysts. The relationship between religion and nationalism is complex. Contrary to the common assumption in the West, Islam in general has generated fairly sophisticated constitutional theories. Islamic fundamentalism in particular has been a major source of innovation and adaptation—as well as of spiritual gratification—for the Muslim masses.
We examine the “progressivity” of Bruce Bueno de Mesquita's theory of conflict as originally developed in The War Trap and as extended later. Bueno de Mesquita offers the progressivity of the expected utility theory relative to other theories and approaches to conflict as his major defense in responding to critics. Bueno de Mesquita essentially relies on Imre Lakatos' definition of theoretical progress in presenting his argument. A review of the literature addressing the concept of theoretical progress indicates that Bueno de Mesquita's application of Lakatosian criteria is incomplete and that Lakatos' criteria are themselves flawed. We review the philosophy of science literature dealing with theoretical progress or rational criteria for theory choice and evaluate the progressivity of the expected utility theory of conflict in light of criteria other than Lakatos'. While we do recommend further elaboration of Bueno de Mesquita's theory, we do not find it more progressive than its rivals.
Over the last two decades institutional critics have increasingly charged that moneyed interests dominate the legislative process in Congress. Systematic research on campaign contributions and members' floor voting, however, provides little supporting evidence. We develop a view of the member-donor relationship that questions the theoretical underpinnings of the vote-buying hypothesis itself and suggests two alternative claims: (1) the effects of group expenditures are more likely to appear in committee than on the floor; and (2) the behavior most likely to be affected is members' legislative involvement, not their votes. In order to test this account, we specify a model of committee participation and estimate it using data from three House committees. In contrast to the substantial literature on contributions and roll calls, our analysis provides solid support for the importance of moneyed interests in the legislative process. We also find evidence that members are more responsive to organized business interests within their districts than to unorganized voters even when voters have strong preferences and the issue at stake is salient. Such findings suggest several important implications for our understanding of political money, interest groups, and the representativeness of legislative deliberations.
The view that congressional committees tend to be biased subsets of their parent chambers provides the foundations for a substantial body of theoretical literature on distributive politics and legislative structure. More recent revisionist work suggests that committees composed of preference outliers are in fact rare. We reject the categorical account of preference outliers a priori and elaborate conditions under which committees should be unrepresentative of their parent chambers. We argue that the most widely available and frequently used data—floor roll call votes—are inappropriate to the task of assessing outlier predictions in any form. Finally, we conduct a differentiated set of hypothesis tests within one policy jurisdiction to illustrate the characteristics of evidence and analysis necessary to evaluate alternative theoretical accounts of legislative organization. The appearance of policy-relevant biases in congressional work groups, we conclude, is not so much rare as it is conditional, and we suggest several conditions on which future models of legislative organization should build.
I employ a simple game to suggest the effects of information and expectations on bargaining strategies and responses. I make use of members' predispositions in order to identify actors likely to be bargaining. Using administration headcounts, I show that while very few members misrepresent their preferences during the coalition-building process, those who do represent a large proportion of the administration's core supporters, make their misrepresentations unsystematic to avoid a costly reputation, and convert more readily than those who are not. Strategic considerations drive conversion among bluffing members, while identification with the administration determines conversion among other members. Compromise generates few conversions. A conservative estimate of bluffing suggests that the conversion of bluffers decided more than half the administration's critical votes. I speculate about a model to account for the observed bluffing.
Using Habermas' theory of communicative action and his remarks on the legitimacy of the state under modern social conditions as a starting point, I combine normative democratic theory with the critique of ideology. I first outline four necessary-but-not-sufficient conditions of communication for democratic decision making: such agreements must (1) be formally and procedurally correct, (2) be cognitively adequate, (3) concern issues on which consensus or compromise can be reached, and (4) be free of ideology. The first three conditions form the core of a normative democratic theory, one that is not purely procedural, as many have argued it is. I then discuss the fourth condition and establish the relation between ideology and democracy. Taken together, these conditions not only provide an answer to troubling questions for democratic theory but also delineate the extent to which politics is rational and political claims are “truthlike.”
We examine in a laboratory setting how direct participation in choosing a principle of distributive justice and a tax system impinges on subjects' attitudes and subsequent productivity when they participate in a task, produce income, and then experience losses or gains according to the tax system. Experience with a redistributive principle and its associated taxation system in a production environment does not detract from overall acceptance of the distributive principle, particularly for subjects who participate in choosing the principle. Participation in discussion, choice, and production increases subjects' convictions regarding their preferences. For these subjects (especially recipients of transfers) productivity rises significantly over the course of the experiments. No such effect is evident for subjects who do not participate in setting the regime under which they are to labor. The results' implications for questions of democratic participation and the stability of income support programs are drawn.
We reassess the debate over Soviet citizen politics in the USSR during the Brezhnev era. We argue the need for a more complex model of citizen participation in the USSR before Gorbachev if we are to have an accurate baseline for evaluating changes in regime-society relations. We examine the connections between individual attitudes and individual behavior and show that political participation under the “old regime” was not nearly as one-dimensional and devoid of effect as many previous researchers (and current Soviet leaders) have described it. Many forms of political participation in the Soviet Union before Gorbachev did not fit the stereotype of a psychologically disengaged citizenry driven to participate only by coercion, a desire to conform, or a quest for particularized benefits from public officials.