The United States boasts scores of organizations that offer crucial representation for groups that are marginalized in national politics, from women to racial minorities to the poor. Here, in the first systematic study of these organizations, Dara Z. Strolovitch explores the challenges and opportunities they face in the new millennium, as waning legal discrimination coincides with increasing political and economic inequalities within the populations they represent.
Drawing on rich new data from a survey of 286 organizations and interviews with forty officials, Strolovitch finds that groups too often prioritize the interests of their most advantaged members: male rather than female racial minorities, for example, or affluent rather than poor women. But Strolovitch also finds that many organizations try to remedy this inequity, and she concludes by distilling their best practices into a set of principles that she calls affirmative advocacy—a form of representation that aims to overcome the entrenched but often subtle biases against people at the intersection of more than one marginalized group. Intelligently combining political theory with sophisticated empirical methods, Affirmative Advocacy will be required reading for students and scholars of American politics.
A riveting narrative of the price of politics, money, and ambition, and an inspirational account of how ordinary people can prevail over powerful interests, Air Wars tells how a grassroots movement of concerned citizens at WQED in Pittsburgh was able to overcome enormous institutional influence in their quest for public accountability.
These citizens believed strongly in public television's unique mission to serve the diverse social and cultural needs of local communities. When their own station neglected this mission in the search for national prestige and bigger revenues, they felt profoundly betrayed.
Jerold Starr exposes the political and commercial pressures that made strange bedfellows of the top officials of public broadcasting, the Democratic Party establishment, Pat Robertson and the Christian Coalition, home-shopping and "infomall" king Lowell "Bud" Paxson, and billionaire right-wing publisher/philanthropist Richard Mellon Scaife.
What began as a bitterly contested local struggle that disturbed the serenity of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood later became front-page national news with revelations of presidential candidate John McCain's influence-peddling scandal on behalf of media mogul Paxson. This was followed by congressional resolutions attacking the FCC's authority to regulate noncommercial educational broadcast licenses. The "Pittsburgh case" promises to be in the news for some time to come.
Far beyond Pittsburgh, Starr looks at how the reform movement has spread to major cities like Chicago, Phoenix, Jacksonville, and San Francisco, where citizen activists have successfully challenged public stations to be more community responsive.
Finally, he outlines an innovative plan for restructuring the public broadcasting service as an independently funded public trust. Joining this vision with a practical strategy, Starr describes the formation of Citizens for Independent Public Broadcasting, a national membership organization with a grassroots approach to putting the public back into public broadcasting.
Most people believe that large corporations wield enormous political power when they lobby for policies as a cohesive bloc. With this controversial book, Mark A. Smith sets conventional wisdom on its head. In a systematic analysis of postwar lawmaking, Smith reveals that business loses in legislative battles unless it has public backing. This surprising conclusion holds because the types of issues that lead businesses to band together—such as tax rates, air pollution, and product liability—also receive the most media attention. The ensuing debates give citizens the information they need to hold their representatives accountable and make elections a choice between contrasting policy programs.
Rather than succumbing to corporate America, Smith argues, representatives paradoxically become more responsive to their constituents when facing a united corporate front. Corporations gain the most influence over legislation when they work with organizations such as think tanks to shape Americans' beliefs about what government should and should not do.
The Spanish Civil War created a conflict for Americans who preferred that the United States remain uninvolved in foreign affairs. Despite the country's isolationist tendencies, opposition to the rise of fascism across Europe convinced many Americans that they had to act in support of the Spanish Republic. While much has been written about the war itself and its international volunteers, little attention has been paid to those who coordinated these relief efforts at home.
American Relief Aid and the Spanish Civil War tells the story of the political campaigns to raise aid for the Spanish Republic as activists pushed the limits of isolationist thinking. Those concerned with Spain’s fate held a range of political convictions (including anarchists, socialists, liberals, and communists) with very different understandings of what fascism was. Yet they all agreed that fascism’s advance must be halted. With labor strikes, fund-raising parties, and ambulance tours, defenders of Spain in the United States sought to shift the political discussion away from isolation of Spain’s elected government and toward active assistance for the faltering Republic.
Examining the American political organizations affiliated with this relief effort and the political repression that resulted as many of Spain’s supporters faced the early incarnations of McCarthyism’s trials, Smith provides new understanding of American politics during the crucial years leading up to World War II. By also focusing on the impact the Spanish Civil War had on those of Spanish ethnicity in the United States, Smith shows how close to home the seemingly distant war really hit.
The contributors to Beyond Civil Society argue that the conventional distinction between civic and uncivic protest, and between activism in institutions and in the streets, does not accurately describe the complex interactions of forms and locations of activism characteristic of twenty-first-century Latin America. They show that most contemporary political activism in the region relies upon both confrontational collective action and civic participation at different moments. Operating within fluid, dynamic, and heterogeneous fields of contestation, activists have not been contained by governments or conventional political categories, but rather have overflowed their boundaries, opening new democratic spaces or extending existing ones in the process. These essays offer fresh insight into how the politics of activism, participation, and protest are manifest in Latin America today while providing a new conceptual language and an interpretive framework for examining issues that are critical for the future of the region and beyond.
Contributors. Sonia E. Alvarez, Kiran Asher, Leonardo Avritzer, Gianpaolo Baiocchi, Andrea Cornwall, Graciela DiMarco, Arturo Escobar, Raphael Hoetmer, Benjamin Junge, Luis E. Lander, Agustín Laó-Montes, Margarita López Maya, José Antonio Lucero, Graciela Monteagudo, Amalia Pallares, Jeffrey W. Rubin, Ana Claudia Teixeira, Millie Thayer
This book presents the first large-scale study of lobbying strategies and outcomes in the United States and the European Union, two of the most powerful political systems in the world. Every day, tens of thousands of lobbyists in Washington and Brussels are working to protect and promote their interests in the policymaking process. Policies emanating from these two spheres have global impacts—they set global standards, they influence global markets, and they determine global politics. Armed with extensive new data, Christine Mahoney challenges the conventional stereotypes that attribute any differences between the two systems to cultural ones—the American, a partisan and combative approach, and the European, a consensus-based one.
Mahoney draws from 149 interviews involving 47 issues to detail how institutional structures, the nature of specific issues, and characteristics of the interest groups combine to determine decisions about how to approach a political fight, what arguments to use, and how to frame an issue. She looks at how lobbyists choose lobbying tactics, public relations strategies, and networking and coalition activities. Her analysis demonstrates that advocacy can be better understood when we study the lobbying of interest groups in their institutional and issue context. This book offers new insights into how the process of lobbying works on both sides of the Atlantic.
By Invitation Only
Steven Schier University of Pittsburgh Press, 2000 Library of Congress JK1764.S36 2000 | Dewey Decimal 324097309049
Steven Schier examines the shift in U.S. politics to activation—the political variant of niche marketing. This method encourages only a strategically selected few to get involved, resulting in a decline of majority rule in American politics.
People passionately disagree about the nature of the globalization process. The failure of both the 1999 and 2003 World Trade Organization's (WTO) ministerial conferences in Seattle and Cancun, respectively, have highlighted the tensions among official, international organizations like the WTO, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, nongovernmental and private sector organizations, and some developing country governments. These tensions are commonly attributed to longstanding disagreements over such issues as labor rights, environmental standards, and tariff-cutting rules. In addition, developing countries are increasingly resentful of the burdens of adjustment placed on them that they argue are not matched by commensurate commitments from developed countries.
Challenges to Globalization evaluates the arguments of pro-globalists and anti-globalists regarding issues such as globalization's relationship to democracy, its impact on the environment and on labor markets including the brain drain, sweat shop labor, wage levels, and changes in production processes, and the associated expansion of trade and its effects on prices. Baldwin, Winters, and the contributors to this volume look at multinational firms, foreign investment, and mergers and acquisitions and present surprising findings that often run counter to the claim that multinational firms primarily seek countries with low wage labor. The book closes with papers on financial opening and on the relationship between international economic policies and national economic growth rates.
Choices and Changes is the most comprehensive examination to date of the impact of interest groups on recent American electoral politics. Richly informed, theoretically and empirically, it is the first book to explain the emergence of aggressive interest group electioneering tactics in the mid-1990s—including “soft money” contributions, issue ads, and “527s” (IRS-classified political organizations).
Michael Franz argues that changing political and legal contexts have clearly influenced the behavior of interest groups. To support his argument, he tracks in detail the evolution of campaign finance laws since the 1970s, examines all soft money contributions—nearly $1 billion in total—to parties by interest groups from 1991-2002, and analyzes political action committee (PAC) contributions to candidates and parties from 1983-2002. He also draws on his own interviews with campaign finance leaders.
Based on this rigorous data analysis and a formidable knowledge of its subject, Choices and Changes substantially advances our understanding of the significance of interest groups in U.S. politics.
Competitive Interests does more than simply challenge the long-held belief that a small set of interests control large domains of the public policy making landscape. It shows how the explosion in the sheer number of new groups, and the broad range of ideological demands they advocate, have created a form of group politics emphasizing compromise as much as conflict. Thomas T. Holyoke offers a model of strategic lobbying that shows why some group lobbyists feel compelled to fight stronger, wealthier groups even when they know they will lose.
Holyoke interviewed 83 lobbyists who have been advocates on several contentious issues, including Arctic oil drilling, environmental conservation, regulating genetically modified foods, money laundering, and bankruptcy reform. He offers answers about what kinds of policies are more likely to lead to intense competition and what kinds of interest groups have an advantage in protracted conflicts. He also discusses the negative consequences of group competition, such as legislative gridlock, and discusses what lawmakers can do to steer interest groups toward compromise. The book concludes with an exploration of greater group competition, conflict, and compromise and what consequences this could have for policymaking in a representation-based political system.
Skillfully blending historical data with microeconomic theory, Glenn Parker argues that the incentives for congressional service have declined over the years, and that with that decline has come a change in the kind of person who seeks to enter Congress. The decline in the attractiveness of Congress is a consequence of congressional careerists and of the growth in the rent-seeking society, a term which describes the efforts of special interests to obtain preferential treatment by using the machinery of government--legislation and regulations.
Parker provides a fresh and controversial perspective to the debate surrounding the relative merits of career or amateur politicians. He argues that driving career politicians from office can have pernicious effects on the political system: it places the running of Congress in the hands of amateur politicians, who stand to lose little if they are found engaging in illegal or quasi-legal practices. On the other hand, career legislators risk all they have invested in their long careers in public service if they engage in unsavory practices. As Parker develops this controversial argument, he provides a fresh perspective on the debate surrounding the value of career versus amateur politicians.
Little attention has been given to the long-term impact of a rent-seeking society on the evolution of political institutions. Parker examines empirically and finds support for hypotheses that reflect potential symptoms of adverse selection in the composition of Congress: (1) rent-seeking politicians are more inclined than others to manipulate institutional arrangements for financial gain; (2) the rent-seeking milieu of legislators are more likely to engage in rent-seeking activity than earlier generations; (3) and the growth of rent-seeking activity has hastened the departure of career legislators.
Glenn R. Parker is Distinguished Research Professor, Florida State University.
The contributors to this volume, economists and political scientists from academic institutions, the private sector, and the Ways and Means Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, came together to discuss an important topic in the formation of U.S. international trade policy: the representation of constituent interests. In the resulting volume they address the objectives of groups who participate in the policy process and examine how each group's interests are identified and promoted. They look at what means are used for these purposes, and the extent to which the groups' objectives and behavior conform to how the political economy of trade policy is treated in the economic and political science literature. Further, they discuss how effective each group has been.
Each of the book's five parts offers a coherent view of important components of the topic. Part I provides an overview of the normative and political economy approaches to the modeling of trade policies. Part 2 discusses the context of U.S. trade policies. Part 3 deals with the role of sectoral producing interests, including the relationship of trade policy to auto, steel, textile, semiconductor, aircraft, and financial services. Part 4 examines other constituent interests, including the environment, human rights, and the media. Part 5 provides commentary on such issues as the challenges that trade policy poses for the new administration and the 105th Congress.
The volume ultimately offers important and more finely articulated questions on how trade policy is formed and implemented.
Contributors are Robert E. Baldwin, Jagdish Bhagwati, Douglas A. Brook, Richard O. Cunningham, Jay Culbert, Alan V. Deardorff, I. M. Destler, Daniel Esty, Geza Feketekuty, Harry Freeman, John D. Greenwald, Gene Grossman, Richard L. Hall, Jutta Hennig, John H. Jackson, James A. Levinsohn, Mustafa Mohatarem, Robert Pahre, Richard C. Porter, Gary R. Saxonhouse, Robert E. Scott, T. N. Srinivasan, Robert M. Stern, Joe Stroud, John Sweetland, Raymond Waldmann, Marina v.N. Whitman, and Bruce Wilson.
Alan V. Deardorff and Robert M. Stern are Professors of Economics and Public Policy, University of Michigan.
America faces daunting problems—stagnant wages, high health care costs, neglected schools, deteriorating public services. Yet the government consistently ignores the needs of its citizens, paying attention instead to donors and organized interests. Real issues are held hostage to demagoguery, partisanship beats practicality, and trust in government withers along with the social safety net.
How did we get here? Through decades of dysfunctional government. In Democracy in America? veteran political observers Benjamin I. Page and Martin Gilens marshal an unprecedented array of evidence to show that while other countries have responded to a rapidly changing economy by helping people who’ve been left behind, the United States has failed to do so. Instead, we have actually exacerbated inequality, enriching corporations and the wealthy while leaving ordinary citizens to fend for themselves.
What’s the solution? More democracy. More opportunity for citizens to shape what their government does. To repair our democracy, Page and Gilens argue, we must change the way we choose candidates and conduct our elections, reform our governing institutions, and curb the power of money in politics. By doing so, we can reduce polarization and gridlock, address pressing challenges, and enact policies that truly reflect the interests of average Americans.
This book presents a damning indictment. But the situation is far from hopeless. With increased democratic participation as their guide, Page and Gilens lay out a set of proposals that would boost citizen participation, curb the power of money, and democratize the House and Senate. The only certainty is that inaction is not an option. Now is the time to act to restore and extend American democracy.
Until the New Deal, most groups seeking protection from imports were successful in obtaining relief from Congress. In general the cost of paying the tariffs for consumers was less than the cost of mounting collective action to stop the tariffs. In 1934, with the passage of the Reciprocal Trade Agreements Act, all of this changed. The six decades that followed have produced a remarkable liberalization of trade policy in the United States. This occurred despite the fact that domestic politics, according to some of the best developed theories, should have prevented this liberalization.
Michael Gilligan argues that liberalization has succeeded because it has been reciprocal with liberalization in other countries. Our trade barriers have been reduced as an explicit quid pro quo for reduction of trade barriers in other countries. Reciprocity, Gilligan argues, gives exporters the incentive to support free trade policies because it gives them a clear gain from free trade and thus enables the exporters to overcome collective action problems. The lobbying by exporters, balancing the interests of groups seeking protection, changes the preferences of political leaders in favor of more liberalization.
Gilligan tests his theory in a detailed exploration of the history of American trade policy and in a quantitative analysis showing increases in the demand for liberalization as the result of reciprocity in trade legislation from 1890 to the present. This book should appeal to political scientists, economists, and those who want to understand the political underpinnings of American trade policy.
Michael J. Gilligan is Assistant Professor of Politics, New York University.
Lobbyists in Washington aren’t a new phenomenon. Since the early days of the republic, citizens and groups alike have hired professionals to press their interests with lawmakers. However, recent examples of misconduct—like that seen in the Abramoff scandal—highlight the unique ethical challenges this industry faces in the twenty-first century.
Though major scandals happen less frequently than popularly believed, the more pervasive ethics problem is that members of the profession often cut deals that go against their clients' interests. They sacrifice the interests of those they represent in order to curry favor with lawmakers. In The Ethical Lobbyist, Thomas T. Holyoke exposes how current industry regulations fall short of ensuring principled behaviors and may actually incentivize unethical behavior.
Holyoke presents the provocative argument that, in addition to welcoming stronger regulations, lobbyists need to borrow a page from the legal profession and adopt ironclad guarantees of principled representation.
The Ethical Lobbyist puts forth a set of principles and a workable program for implementing reform. The result is a road map to reform that will transform “ethical lobbyist” from an oxymoron to an expectation—and change the industry and our government for the better.
In one case a local judge declared a five-year-old sexual assault victim
a "particularly promiscuous young lady." In another, an innocent
black man died in police custody. In these cases and two others, outraged
citizens banded together to protest and seek redress for the injustices.
Through in-depth interviews with activists, Laura Woliver examines these
community actions, studying the groups involved and linking her conclusions
to larger questions of political power and the impact of social movements.
Her findings will make fascinating reading for those interested in the
rise and fall of grass-roots interest groups, the nature of dissent, and
the reasons why people volunteer countless hours, sometimes in the face
of community opposition and isolation, to dedicate themselves to a cause.
The ad hoc interest groups studied are the Committee to Recall Judge
Archie Simonson (Madison), the Coalition for Justice for Ernest Lacy (Milwaukee),
Concerned Citizens for Children (Grant County, Wisconsin), and Citizens
Taking Action (Madison). Woliver relates the community responses in these
cases to those in the Jeffrey Dahmer mass murder case and the beating
by Los Angeles police of Rodney King.
"A pioneering investigation of local, ad hoc interest groups that
are launched by a blatant injustice. . . . Explores the impressive defensive
capabilities against change of established social groups and portrays
the complex consequences of 'sputtering interests' for attitudes (such
as consciousness raising), for action, and for future policy. An important
and innovative contribution."
-- Mary Edelman, author of The Symbolic Uses of Politics
"A truly humanistic piece of social science research, offering fascinating
insights on grassroots participants, their feelings, and their fates."
-- Janet K. Boles, author of American Feminism: New Issues for a Mature Movement
Germany serves as a case study of when and how members of intersectional groups—individuals belonging to two or more disadvantaged social categories—capture the attention of policymakers, and what happens when they do. This edited volume identifies three venues through which intersectional groups are able to form alliances and generate policy discussions regarding their concerns. Original empirical case studies focus on a wide range of timely subjects, including the intersexed, gender and disability rights, lesbian parenting, women working in STEM fields, workers’ rights in feminized sectors, women in combat, and Muslim women and girls.
Today, approximately half of all American states have lobbying offices in Washington, DC, where governors are also represented by their own national, partisan, and regional associations. Jennifer M. Jensen’s The Governors’ Lobbyists draws on quantitative data, archival research, and more than 100 in-depth interviews to detail the political development of this constellation of advocacy organizations since the early 20th century and investigate the current role of the governors’ lobbyists in the U.S. federal system.
First, Jensen analyzes the critical ways in which state offices and governors’ associations promote their interests and, thus, complement other political safeguards of federalism. Next, she considers why, given their apparent power, governors engage lobbyists to serve as advocates and why governors have created both individual state offices and several associations for this advocacy work. Finally, using interest group theory to analyze both material and political costs and benefits, Jensen addresses the question of interest group variation: why, given the fairly clear material benefit a state draws from having a lobbying office in Washington, doesn’t every state have one?
This assessment of lobbying efforts by state governments and governors reveals much about role and relative power of states within the U.S. federal system.
Synthesizing theory, personal research, and prior studies on interest groups and other lobbies, William P. Browne offers a new, insightful overview of organized political interests and explains how and why they affect public policy.
Drawing on his extensive experience researching interest groups, Browne assesses the impact that special interests have long had in shaping policy. He explains how they fit into the policymaking process and into society, how they exercise their influence, and how they adapt to changing circumstances.
Browne describes the diversity of existing interests-associations, businesses, foundations, churches, and others-and explores the multidimensional tasks of lobbying, from disseminating information through making financial contributions to cultivating the media. He shows how organized interests target not just the public and policymakers but even other interest groups, and how they create policy niches as a survival strategy. He also looks at winnable issues, contrasts them with more difficult ones, and explains what makes the difference.
Groups, Interests, and U.S. Public Policy is a serious study written in a lighthearted tone. It offers political scientists a new theory of how and why interest groups influence public policy while it enlightens students and general readers about how policy is actually shaped in America.
Why is there still so much dissatisfaction with the role of special interest groups in financing American election campaigns, even though no aspect of interest group politics has been so thoroughly regu-lated and constrained? This book argues that part of the answer lies in the laws themselves, which prevent many hard-to-organize citizen groups from forming effective political action committees (PACs), while actually helping business groups organize PACs.
Thomas L. Gais points out that many laws that regulate group involvement in elections ignore the real difficulties of political mobilization, and he concludes that PACs and the campaign finance laws reflect a fundamental discrepancy between grassroots ideals and the ways in which broadly based groups actually get organized.
". . . . of fundamental scholarly and practical importance. The implications for 'reform' are controversial, flatly contradicting other recent reform proposals . . . . I fully expect that Improper Influence will be one of the most significant books on campaign finance to be published in the 1990s." --Michael Munger, Public Choice
"It is rare to find a book that affords a truly fresh perspective on the role of special interest groups in the financing of U.S. elections. It is also uncommon to find a theoretically rigorous essay confronting a topic usually grounded in empirical terms. . . . Improper Influence scores high on both counts and deserves close attention from students of collective action, campaign finance law, and the U.S. political process more generally." --American Political Science Review
Thomas L. Gais is Senior Fellow, The Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government, State University of New York.
If all parties need votes to get elected, why do some parties court voters more ardently than others? To answer this question, the book analyzes how political institutions determine the degree to which parties behave as entrepreneurial agents of voters or as inert, bureaucratic behemoths and how different levels of party responsiveness affect democratic consolidation.
Institutions and Innovations analyzes the troubled history of French and German parties between 1870 and 1939 to develop a general explanation of how the development of responsive parties constitutes a key element for the consolidation of democracies, past and present. It explains why French parties responded more swiftly than German ones to very similar changes in their economic and political environments. The book demonstrates that the national differences in party responsiveness played a key role in the collapse of the German Weimar Republic (1918ñ1933) and in the survival of the French Third Republic (1870ñ1939). It addresses the general fates of French and German democracy by asking three specific questions: Why did German socialists reject Keynesianism while their French counterparts swiftly embraced it? Why did German liberals, compared to French ones, fail to modernize their logistical infrastructure and electioneering methods? Why were German conservatives less effective than French ones in fending off the challenge posed by fascist and peasant insurgent movements that arose in the 1920s and 1930s?
In answering these questions, the book engages new institutional theories and longstanding party literature to demonstrate that the electoral conduct of parties is structured in equal parts by socioeconomic and institutional constraints. The book's interdisciplinary focus sheds a critical light on the exceptionalism of purely historical accounts and reductionist and universal claims of ahistorical political science theories.
Marcus Kreuzer is Assistant Professor of Political Science, Villanova University.
This is the first volume comprehensively to explore the dynamics of political interest groups in the twelve southern states – the types of group, lobbyists and lobbying tactics, state regulation of lobbying activity, and the power they exert in the individual states. The authors bring a new dimension to the study of southern politics, which traditionally has emphasized electoral politics and the politics of race, and their work underscores the pivotal, and at times controlling, role played by interest groups.
In the early 2000s, the United States and Canada implemented new campaign finance laws restricting the ability of interest groups to make political contributions and to engage in political advertising. Whereas both nations' legislative reforms sought to reduce the role of interest groups in campaigns, these laws have had opposite results in the two nations. In the United States, interest groups remained influential by developing broad coalitions aimed at mobilizing individual voters and contributors. In Canada, interest groups largely withdrew from election campaigns, and, thus, important voices in elections have gone silent. Robert G. Boatright explains such disparate results by placing campaign finance reforms in the context of ongoing political and technological changes.
Robert G. Boatright is Associate Professor of Political Science at Clark University.
Interest and Institutions is a collection of essays written by distinguished political scientist Robert Salsibury, a leading analyst of interest group politics. He offers his theories on the workings and influence of groups, organizations, and individuals in many different areas of American politics.
Today organized interests fight most of their major battles within coalitions. Whether joining forces to address tobacco legislation or proposed air safety regulations, Washington lobbyists with seemingly little in common are combining their clout to get results.
Kevin Hula here examines why coalition strategies have emerged as a dominant lobbying technique, when lobbyists use them, and how these strategies affect their activities. His is the first book to focus on the formation and use of coalitions by lobbyists, examining the broader scope of interest group coalitions and explaining their roles as institutions of collective leadership, bargaining, and strategy for member organizations.
Combining collective action theory with data gleaned from 130 interviews with lobbyists and interest group leaders in the fields of transportation, education, and civil rights, Hula explores how the use of coalitions differs at various stages of the policy process and with different activities. In the course of his study, he also shows how the communications revolution is changing interest group tactics.
The single most detailed work available on this subject, Lobbying Together offers scholars and students alike a fresh and accessible look at this increasingly important factor in the policy process.
Are you getting the real news on environmental issues? Or are the reports you are hearing slanted to meet the special interests of the reporters? The government? A lobbying group? How are our views on the Torrey Canyon oil spill, the demise of Brazilian rain forests, or the Chernobyl disaster shaped by individuals or organizations that know how to use the media to best deliver their message?
Media, Culture and the Environment provides an accessible introduction to key issues and debates surrounding the media politics of risk assessment and the environment. Anderson looks at nature as contested terrain and reveals how news sources use it to compete for our emotions and attention. She shows how framings of risk in relation to the environment are influenced by social, political, and cultural factors, but she also rejects extreme versions of social constructionism.
The book moves beyond traditional disciplinary boundaries by synthesizing recent debates in cultural theory and media studies with key developments in human geography. It offers an in-depth analysis of pressure politics and environmental lobbying groups, while examining the production, transmission and negotiation language of news discourse. The examples, drawn from both Europe and North America, include the tremendous headline controversies over oil spills and killing of baby seals. Difficult issues, clearly surveyed and incisively presented, make this book essential reading for anyone interested in how and why journalists handle environmental news in the ways they do.
Media accounts of Congress emphasize conflict and the failure of Congress to enact legislation. Rarely do we see accounts of the successful efforts of members of Congress and outside advocacy groups to pass legislation dealing with important and controversial issues.
In Networks of Champions Christine A. DeGregorio identifies who in the U.S. House of Representatives took the lead in shepherding six major bills, dealing with welfare reform, drug control, international trade, farm policy, nuclear weapons testing, and assistance to the Contras, through Congress and how these champions of legislation worked with outside advocacy groups. DeGregorio finds that the champions of this legislation were drawn from a diverse group that included individuals both within and outside the formal hierarchy of leadership. The champions, who were not necessarily the prominent holders of important positions, are characterized by having knowledge of the subject matter, experience in the House, a facility for bargaining and compromise, the right committee assignments, and a commitment to hard work.
DeGregorio traces how these groups become influential and how the groups affect the policy-making process. She finds a reciprocal process in which advocacy groups use champions to express their views while champions use the resources of advocacy groups to gain influence in the House.
Based on extensive interviews with key congressional staff members and the leaders of advocacy groups, DeGregorio provides critical new insights into the legislative process. This book will be of interest to those who study the legislative process and the role of interest groups in making American policy.
". . . a substantial contribution to our understanding of advocacy in Congress." --Barbara Sinclair, University of California, Los Angeles
Christine A. DeGregorio is Associate Professor, Department of Government, School of Public Affairs, American University.
The advent of gaming on Indian reservations has created a new kind of tribal politics over the past three decades. Now armed with often substantial financial resources, Indigenous peoples have adjusted their political strategies from a focus on the judicial system and the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) to one that directly lobbies state and federal governments and non-Indigenous voters. These tactics allow tribes to play an influential role in shaping state and national policies that affect their particular interests. Using case studies of major Indian gaming states, the contributing authors analyze the interplay of tribal governance, state politics, and federalism, and illustrate the emergence of reservation governments as political power brokers.
"Criticisms of Mancur Olson's theory of group membership and organizational behavior and discussions of the limits of his formulations are not new, but Terry Moe has set them forth in thoroughgoing fashion, has elaborated and extended them, and has made positive new contributions. The result is a book that is valuable and constructive, one that may well revive interest in the systematic study of political groups."—David B. Truman, American Political Science Review
"The Organization of Interests is a valuable addition to the literature. It reminds us that the interior life of groups has political significance and gives us a conceptual framework for exploring that life. It balances nicely between the pluralists—who tend to interpret interest group behaviour entirely in political terms—and Olson—who has no satisfactory explanation for behaviour that is not attributable to economic self-interest. In the concept of the entrepreneur Moe gives us a useful analytical device which deserves operationalization. The book is well worth study."—A. Paul Pross, Canadian Journal of Political Science
The Federal Government in the United States is a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” Presidents are elected by popular vote in the nation (filtered through the electoral college), Senators are elected by popular vote in their states, and Representatives are elected by popular vote in their Congressional districts. Cabinet members and agency heads are appointed by the elected president, as are members of the Supreme Court.
But this says nothing about politics. Professor Lauman and Knoke have asked, in this book, how policies were made, in the period 1977-1980, in the areas of energy and health. The question is a very different one from the question of how the positions of president and Congress are filled.
In this pathbreaking work, Elisabeth S. Clemens recovers the social origins of interest group politics in the United States. Between 1890 and 1925, a system centered on elections and party organizations was partially transformed by increasingly prominent legislative and administrative policy-making as well as the insistent participation of non-partisan organizations.
Clemens sheds new light on how farmers, workers, and women invented strategies to circumvent the parties. Voters learned to monitor legislative processes, to hold their representatives accountable at the polls, and to institutionalize their ongoing participation in shaping policy. Closely analyzing the organizational politics in three states—California, Washington, and Wisconsin—she demonstrates how the political opportunity structure of federalism allowed regional innovations to exert leverage on national political institutions.
An authoritative statement on the changes in American politics during the Progressive Era, this book will interest political scientists, sociologists, and American historians.
The Political Economy of Expertise is a carefully argued examination of how legislatures use expert research and testimony. Kevin Esterling demonstrates that interest groups can actually help the legislative process by encouraging Congress to assess research and implement well-informed policies.
More than mere touts for the interests of Washington insiders, these groups encourage Congress to enact policies that are likely to succeed while avoiding those that have too great of a risk of failure. The surprising result is greater legislative efficiency. The Political Economy of Expertise illustrates that this system actually favors effective and informed decision making, thereby increasing the likelihood that new policies will benefit the American public.
Kevin M. Esterling is Assistant Professor at the University of California, Riverside.
With evidence drawn from Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Great Britain, and Hungary, Re-forming the State examines the processes leading to, and the political effects of, market reform experiments and focuses specifically on the patterns of collective action and coalition building that drive privatization. The author's argument calls into question established approaches in the discipline of economics and in the fields of comparative and international political economy.
The experience of privatization shows that the public and the private are neither contradictory nor mutually exclusive spheres, and that power relations between them are not necessarily zero-sum. To stress the point, the author borrows from the literature on state formation, which has extensively examined the historical processes of key private groups. The evidence presented shows why and how, by restructuring coalitional and institutional arenas, the state uses marketization to generate political order and to distribute political power. Thus, the author specifies the conditions under which political change is conceived in terms of and channeled through economic policy; in other words, how the state is "re-formed" through privatization. Re-forming the State thus highlights how privatization is simultaneously a movement from public to private, but also a movement from non-state to state, as the reduction of state assets leads to institutional changes that increase state capacities for defining and enforcing property rights, extracting revenue, and centralizing administrative and political resources.
Hector E. Schamis is Assistant Professor of Government, Cornell University.
Roots of Reform offers a sweeping revision of our understanding of the rise of the regulatory state in the late nineteenth century. Sanders argues that politically mobilized farmers were the driving force behind most of the legislation that increased national control over private economic power. She demonstrates that farmers from the South, Midwest, and West reached out to the urban laborers who shared their class position and their principal antagonist—northeastern monopolistic industrial and financial capital—despite weak electoral support from organized labor.
Based on new evidence from legislative records and other sources, Sanders shows that this tenuous alliance of "producers versus plutocrats" shaped early regulatory legislation, remained powerful through the populist and progressive eras, and developed a characteristic method of democratic state expansion with continued relevance for subsequent reform movements.
Roots of Reform is essential reading for anyone interested in this crucial period of American political development.
Unbroken Ties examines the relationship between the state and economic interest groups representing labor, capital, and agriculture in Ukraine. The author argues that the absence of "civil society" helps to explain why, in Ukraine, the much-anticipated transition to democracy and the market has not yet been achieved.
Since the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, there has been a spate of books--optimistic at first--highlighting the transitions to democracy in these countries and the leading role of "civil society" in pushing forward political and economic reform. This study explains why this transition did not take place as anticipated. In essence, organized labor in Ukraine is weak and has been co-opted by the state; in the meantime, leading groups of industrialists and agricultural collectives have strong political influence and shape policies in accordance with their interests. This is very similar to the situation in Russia.
In contrast to works that implicitly assume a pluralist model of development for state-society relations, Unbroken Ties employs corporatism as the basic organizing structure for the study of state-interest group relations in post-Soviet Ukraine. Finding that much of the Soviet "residue" still functions in Ukraine, it argues that a form of state corporatism, which envisions a major role for the state in structuring and controlling interest associations, captures much of the post-Soviet Ukrainian reality. Old groups persist and prosper due to a variety of ties with state elites, whereas new and independent groups find themselves marginalized.
This book will appeal to political scientists, economists, and sociologists studying the transformation of post-communist societies, as well as those interested in the broader, more comparative aspects of democratization and economic reform.
Paul Kubicek is Kenneth Boulding Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of Colorado, Boulder.
Decision makers matching wits with an adversary want intelligence—good, relevant information to help them win. Intelligence can gain these advantages through directed research and analysis, agile collection, and the timely use of guile and theft. Counterintelligence is the art and practice of defeating these endeavors. Its purpose is the same as that of positive intelligence—to gain advantage—but it does so by exploiting, disrupting, denying, or manipulating the intelligence activities of others. The tools of counterintelligence include security systems, deception, and disguise: vaults, mirrors, and masks.
In one indispensable volume, top practitioners and scholars in the field explain the importance of counterintelligence today and explore the causes of—and practical solutions for—U.S. counterintelligence weaknesses. These experts stress the importance of developing a sound strategic vision in order to improve U.S. counterintelligence and emphasize the challenges posed by technological change, confused purposes, political culture, and bureaucratic rigidity. Vaults, Mirrors, and Masks skillfully reveals that robust counterintelligence is vital to ensuring America's security.
Published in cooperation with the Center for Peace and Security Studies and the George T. Kalaris Memorial Fund, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University.
This is the first comprehensive history of the Women's Joint Congressional Committee (WJCC), a large umbrella organization founded by former suffrage leaders in 1920 in order to coordinate organized women's reform. Encompassing nearly every major national women's organization of its time, the WJCC evolved into a powerful lobbying force for the legislative agendas of twelve million women, and was recognized by critics and supporters alike as "the most powerful lobby in Washington."
Through a close examination of the WJCC's most consequential and contentious campaigns, Jan Doolittle Wilson demonstrates organized women's strategies and initial success in generating congressional and grassroots support for their far-reaching, progressive reforms. By using the WJCC as a lens through which to analyze women's political culture during the 1920s, the book also sheds new light on the initially successful ways women lobbied for social legislation, the inherent limitations of that process for pursuing class-based reforms, and the enormous difficulties faced by women trying to expand public responsibility for social welfare in the years following the Nineteenth Amendment's passage.
A volume in the series Women in American History, edited by Anne Firor Scott, Susan Armitage, Susan K. Cahn, and Deborah Gray White
Those who do not have their heads buried too deeply in partisan sands will know that there is something awry with the American form of electoral democracy. Florida's continuing ability to misplace votes recently and in the 2000 Presidential election is only part of the iceberg we have been made privy to-and Steven Schier takes a good, hard, evaluative look not only at what is there in plain sight, but that which lurks below the surface (and not only in Florida and not only with the electoral college). He further proposes practical improvements that will make our surprisingly peculiar democratic processes healthy, whole, and responsive again.
Identifying four essential evaluative criteria for a democracy that genuinely works, Schier asks us to examine the degree to which our system promotes political stability, the degree to which our elected officials are held accountable, what the problems are with voter turnout and how to improve it, and asks for a meaningful scrutiny of governmental policy.
No look at our peculiar democracy would be complete without an examination of other established democracies, nor a look at how special interests warp political parties and the concept of majority rule. The solution to many of our electoral problems, Schier argues, lies in enhancing the roles and influence of political parties. Schier proposes reforms that include broadening voter registration; giving parties large blocks of free TV time; adopting one-punch partisan ballots, making it easier for voters to cast a straight-party vote; abandoning initiatives which clutter up the ballot; and utilizing party-based financing to boost voter turnout. With these proposals, he encourages the creative consideration of election reform, and shows how the Florida 2000 race may have played out had these suggestions been in place.
Schier's book appeals to any and every citizen interested in our electoral system and its role in governmental politics. It is invaluable for professionals in political science and ideal for students in American government, political parties, elections, and political behavior courses, as well for political scientists. Any citizens concerned about the conduct of American elections will discover here a fresh and focused analysis of our problems at the ballot box.