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The Government Taketh Away

Author: Leslie A. Pal
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 9781589014459
Size: 14.20 MB
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Democratic government is about making choices. Sometimes those choices involve the distribution of benefits. At other times they involve the imposition of some type of loss—a program cut, increased taxes, or new regulatory standards. Citizens will resist such impositions if they can, or will try to punish governments at election time. The dynamics of loss imposition are therefore a universal—if unpleasant—element of democratic governance. The Government Taketh Away examines the repercussions of unpopular government decisions in Canada and the United States, the two great democratic nations of North America. Pal, Weaver, and their contributors compare the capacities of the U.S. presidential system and the Canadian Westminster system to impose different types of losses: symbolic losses (gun control and abortion), geographically concentrated losses (military base closings and nuclear waste disposal), geographically dispersed losses (cuts to pensions and to health care), and losses imposed on business (telecommunications deregulation and tobacco control). Theory holds that Westminster-style systems should, all things being equal, have a comparative advantage in loss imposition because they concentrate power and authority, though this can make it easier to pin blame on politicians too. The empirical findings of the cases in this book paint a more complex picture. Westminster systems do appear to have some robust abilities to impose losses, and US institutions provide more opportunities for loss-avoiders to resist government policy in some sectors. But in most sectors, outcomes in the two countries are strikingly similar. The Government Taketh Away is essential for the scholar and students of public policy or comparative policy. It is also an important book for the average citizen who wants to know more about the complexities of living in a democratic society where the government can give-but how it can also, sometimes painfully, "taketh away."

The Government Giveth And The Government Taketh Away

Author: Peter Saunders
Publisher:
ISBN: 9781864321654
Size: 50.99 MB
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Australians are more prosperous than ever before, so the number of people needing government assistance should be falling. Yet the welfare state keeps getting bigger. This book explores this paradox. It asks why the government is spending more than ever on the welfare state when increasing numbers of people are earning enough to take care of themselves. Saunders contends the answer lies in the growth of 'tax-welfare churning'. In the past, he argues, the welfare state operated like Robin Hood, taking money from the rich and giving it to those who needed help, but today it operates more like a giant 'piggy bank', taxing everybody but then giving most of the money back to the same people who paid it in. Saunders maintains it would make more sense to leave Australian citizens with their own money to spend themselves rather than forcing them to hand over responsibility for key areas of their lives to politicians. Saunders suggests three ways Australians could be given back more control over their lives. Government should stop taxing low income earners. Workers should put money aside to cover temporary periods of joblessness rather than relying on benefits. And those who want to provide for themselves should be allowed to reduce their tax payments in return for accepting full responsibility for their own health care and retirement savings. He argues that these reforms would result in a welfare state that would still help those who need assistance, but would no longer undermine the self-reliance of those who do not.

Transatlantic Policymaking In An Age Of Austerity

Author: Martin A. Levin
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 9781589014763
Size: 15.48 MB
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Transatlantic Policymaking in an Age of Austerity integrates the study of politics and public policy across a broad spectrum of regulatory and social welfare policies in the United States and several nations of Western Europe. The editors and a sterling list of contributors look at policymaking in the 1990s through the present—providing a comparative politics framework—stressing both parallel development and the differences between and among the nations. Similar prevailing ideas and political factors can be identified and transatlantic comparisons made—providing for a clearer understanding of the policymaking process. Faith in regulated markets and the burden of rising welfare costs are concerns found on both sides of the Atlantic. Western democracies also share political climates colored by economic austerity; low trust in government, pressures from interest groups, and a sharply divided electorate. Because of differing political processes and differing policy starting points, a variety of disparate policy decisions have resulted. Real world policymaking in the areas of welfare, health, labor, immigration reform, disability rights, consumer and environmental regulation, administrative reforms, and corporate governance are compared. Ultimately, the last decade is best characterized as one of "drift," sluggish changes with little real innovation and much default to the private sector. In general, policymakers on both sides of the ocean, constrained by economic necessity, have been unable to produce policy outcomes that satisfy the key segments of the electorate. The contributors examine the United States, Great Britain, France, and Germany, as well as a number of other European countries, and study the European Union itself as a policymaking institution. Transatlantic Policymaking in an Age of Austerity distills the prominent issues, politics, and roles played by governmental institutions into a new understanding of the dynamics of policymaking in and among transatlantic nations.

Ambiguity And Choice In Public Policy

Author: Nikolaos Zahariadis
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
ISBN: 9781589012363
Size: 57.85 MB
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Zahariadis offers a theory that explains policymaking when "ambiguity" is present—a state in which there are many ways, often irreconcilable, of thinking about an issue. Expanding and extending John Kingdon's influential "multiple streams" model that explains agenda setting, Zahariadis argues that manipulation, the bending of ideas, process, and beliefs to get what you want out of the policy process, is the key to understanding the dynamics of policymaking in conditions of ambiguity. He takes one of the major theories of public policy to the next step in three different ways: he extends it to a different form of government (parliamentary democracies, where Kingdon looked only at what he called the United States's presidential "organized anarchy" form of government); he examines the entire policy formation process, not just agenda setting; and he applies it to foreign as well as domestic policy. This book combines theory with cases to illuminate policymaking in a variety of modern democracies. The cases cover economic policymaking in Britain, France, and Germany, foreign policymaking in Greece, all compared to the U.S. (where the model was first developed), and an innovative computer simulation of the policy process.

We Are Data

Author: John Cheney-Lippold
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 1479802441
Size: 18.24 MB
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What identity means in an algorithmic age: how it works, how our lives are controlled by it, and how we can resist it Algorithms are everywhere, organizing the near limitless data that exists in our world. Derived from our every search, like, click, and purchase, algorithms determine the news we get, the ads we see, the information accessible to us and even who our friends are. These complex configurations not only form knowledge and social relationships in the digital and physical world, but also determine who we are and who we can be, both on and offline. Algorithms create and recreate us, using our data to assign and reassign our gender, race, sexuality, and citizenship status. They can recognize us as celebrities or mark us as terrorists. In this era of ubiquitous surveillance, contemporary data collection entails more than gathering information about us. Entities like Google, Facebook, and the NSA also decide what that information means, constructing our worlds and the identities we inhabit in the process. We have little control over who we algorithmically are. Our identities are made useful not for us—but for someone else. Through a series of entertaining and engaging examples, John Cheney-Lippold draws on the social constructions of identity to advance a new understanding of our algorithmic identities. We Are Data will educate and inspire readers who want to wrest back some freedom in our increasingly surveilled and algorithmically-constructed world.

Democracy As Discussion

Author: William M. Keith
Publisher: Lexington Books
ISBN: 9780739115077
Size: 33.39 MB
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Using primary sources from archives around the country, Democracy as Discussion traces the early history of the Speech field, the development of discussion as an alternative to debate, and the Deweyan, Progressive philosophy of discussion that swept the United States in the early twentieth century.

Lost In Mongolia

Author: Colin Angus
Publisher: Anchor Canada
ISBN: 030737484X
Size: 64.41 MB
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From the Yenisey’s headwaters in the wild heart of central Asia to its mouth on the Arctic Ocean, Colin Angus and his fellow adventurers travel 5,500 kilometres of one of the world’s most dangerous rivers through remotest Mongolia and Siberia, and live to tell about it. Exploration is Colin Angus’ calling. It is not only the tug of excitement and challenge that keeps sending him on death-defying journeys down some of the world’s most powerful waterways, it is a desire to know a place more intimately than you could from the window of a train, to feel the soul of a place. Angus emphasizes that rivers have always been key to the development of complex societies and the rise of civilizations, offering as they do irrigation, transportation, hydroelectric power, and food. But, as Lost in Mongolia captures with breathtaking detail, while they giveth plenty, the great rivers also taketh away in an instant. In Lost in Mongolia, Colin Angus takes readers through never-before-seen territory and his wonderful sense of adventure and humour come through on every page. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Little Book Of Economics

Author: Greg Ip
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118417534
Size: 65.41 MB
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An accessible, thoroughly engaging look at how the economy really works and its role in your everyday life Not surprisingly, regular people suddenly are paying a lot closer attention to the economy than ever before. But economics, with its weird technical jargon and knotty concepts and formulas can be a very difficult subject to get to grips with on your own. Enter Greg Ip and his Little Book of Economics. Like a patient, good-natured tutor, Greg, one of today's most respected economics journalists, walks you through everything you need to know about how the economy works. Short on technical jargon and long on clear, concise, plain-English explanations of important terms, concepts, events, historical figures and major players, this revised and updated edition of Greg's bestselling guide clues you in on what's really going on, what it means to you and what we should be demanding our policymakers do about the economy going forward. From inflation to the Federal Reserve, taxes to the budget deficit, you get indispensible insights into everything that really matters about economics and its impact on everyday life Special sections featuring additional resources of every subject discussed and where to find additional information to help you learn more about an issue and keep track of ongoing developments Offers priceless insights into the roots of America's economic crisis and its aftermath, especially the role played by excessive greed and risk-taking, and what can be done to avoid another economic cataclysm Digs into globalization, the roots of the Euro crisis, the sources of China's spectacular growth, and why the gap between the economy's winners and losers keeps widening

Conscience Of A Conservative

Author: Barry M. Goldwater
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1625587260
Size: 63.82 MB
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The Conscience of a Conservative reignited the American conservative movement and made Barry Goldwater a political star. It influenced countless conservatives in the United States, and helped lay the foundation for the Reagan Revolution in 1980. It covers topics such as education, labor unions and policies, civil rights, agricultural policy and farm subsidies, social welfare programs, and income taxation. This significant book lays out the conservative position both politically and economically that would come to dominate the Conservative Movement in America.

Rethinking Political Institutions

Author: Ian Shapiro
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 0814740561
Size: 23.44 MB
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Institutions shape every dimension of politics. This volume collects original essays on how such institutions are formed, operated, and changed, both in theory and in practice. Ranging across formal institutions of government such as legislatures, courts, and bureaucracies and intermediary institutions such as labor unions and party systems, the contributors show how these instruments of control give shape to the state, articulate its relationships, and express its legitimacy. Rethinking Political Institutions captures the state of the art in the study of the art of the state. Drawing on some of the leading scholars in the field, this volume includes essays on issues of social power, public policy and programs, judicial review, and cross-national institutions. Rethinking Political Institutions is an essential addition to the debate on the significance of political institutions, in light of democracy, social change and power. Contributors: Elisabeth S. Clemens, Jon Elster, John Ferejohn, Terry M. Moe, Claus Offe, Paul Pierson, Ulrich K. Preuss, Rogers M. Smith, Kathleen Thelen, Mark Tushnet, R. Kent Weaver, Margaret Weir, Keith E. Whittington