Class Notes - What is Politics Wednesday 12:19 PM"Who gets...

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Unformatted text preview: What is Politics? Wednesday, September 04, 2013 12:19 PM "Who gets what; when, where, and how." - Harold Lasswell The politics of anything involve: Scarcity (paramount) -Where there is no scarcity, there is no politics, because there is no need to persuade, manipulate, lie, scheme, etc. because everyone gets what they want, when they want. -Politics can exist in families, classroom, between friends, businesses, high politics (U.N., Senate, etc)... Distribution -Institutions provide a system of preset rule to try answer the who gets what, when where and how before it devolves into petty political bickering Authority -the final decision must be made at some point, by some one. The Politics of Tea -Tea is a basic commodity subsidized in Egypt, but it still counts as a limited resource, and thereby induces the concept of Scarcity. -poverty: can't afford enough tea, poor quality of tea -variety: only have government tea, but demand is for Twinings -Agriculture: not enough land to grow tea -space/service: not enough teacups, teapot size -priority: who gets tea first, how fast you get the tea -control: he who controls the teapot controls the tea -uneven distribution: some people get more tea than others, greed -resources: how to create the hot water, can only make so much tea at once -The scarcity provides a need for an authority figure to take control and deal out the tea in whichever order s/he sees fit. -Old Aunty says: Elders get tea, then Guests, then Aunts and Uncles, then Cousins Who is Who? The process of assigning value and status to groups and individuals -who made Old Aunty in charge? -who made it traditional that Elders have tea priority? -what makes different groups (racial, ethnic, gender, familial) more important? Politics: A Working Definition Patterns of human interaction that delineate distinct groups and determine the distribution of material, spiritual, intellectual, and cultural goods within and between groups. Comparative Politics: Seeks to understand why different patterns of political interaction emerges in different locations. -why are some places democratic and others authoritarian? -why are some rich and some poor? -why are there revolutions? -why do ethnic groups fight? -why are some states strong and some weak? -if everybody wants peace and good governments with enduring prosperity, why does it not exist? Building Blocks of the Modern World CompPol Page 1 STATE Growth NATION MARKET CompPol Page 2 9/9/13 Discussion Monday, September 09, 2013 11:14 AM Interests, identities and institutions Interests: what draws it or repels it from, for instance, conflict? Identities: how does a nation view itself (individualistic, dependent, democratic, liberal, unified, warlike, violent, pacifistic, etc.) Institutions: what groups have influence in this matter? "Obama Tests Limits of Power in Syrian Conflict" by Charlie Savage, The New York Times What can we learn about the political system of the US from this article? ○ One person in charge of government (Executive) ○ Asks for permission from democratically elected representatives (Congress) ○ Written laws which can take different meanings\precedent is important to the system ○ The President can create precedent What are the INTERESTS/IDENTITIES/INSTITUTIONS that allow/prevent the US from going to war? ○ Interests: Regional stability (pro war) Humanitarian interests regarding chemical weapons use (pro) No allies (anti war) Violating international law (anti) ○ Institutions UN Congress NATO Constitution CompPol Page 3 Building Blocks: STATE Monday, September 09, 2013 12:08 PM Definition: Ideal Type The State "[A] Human community that (successfully) claims the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory." Weber 1919 Key Features of this definition Territory Not all political organizations need territory The state is the most dominant form of political organization today, but it was not always that way, and likely will not always be that way Implies borders Territory tells you WHO is within it, which is why nomadic tribes cause such problems Organization Most important feature of the modern state: bureaucracy Some system of organization keeps a state functioning and gives it continuity Continuity is unique to the modern society. What we do today is what we did yesterday and what we’ll do tomorrow Authority Monopolizes physical force: the state holds the guns, as it were It doesn't have to have all the guns, but it has to have the biggest, baddest, loudest guns, better than any internal competitors guns Origins of the State Began in 17th century Europe (early 1600s) Replaced Feudalism as the dominant form of polorg Feudalism: Network of reciprocal economic, military, and legal obligations Lord owns land, vassals work the land Personally networking was the basic equivalent of bureaucracy Key features No fixed borders (non-rigid) territory determined by whatever you can hold onto with your armies Flexibility provided opportunities for princes to survive Multiple decentralized authorities Lots of princes vying for authority The Catholic Church is the largest overarching authority, and competes with the princes for revenue and land and whatnot Lack of bureaucratic system How/Why did the state emerge from Feudalism? Why not the Family? Why not extensive tribal networks? Why not a Theocratic Federation? For that matter, why did Feudalism not persist Components necessary to the emergence of the State Feudal system Scattered territories Multiple and overlapping authority Created significant and constant conflict Contrast to tribal system, which is similarly disorganized, but there are fewer opportunities for man-to-man conflict No systematic organization War-making and military revolution Charles Tilly Creates a condition of being constantly at war, and then forcing citizens to pay for it. "Organized crime" Evolution of war-making Military revolution = intensification of violence Armies became progressively more destructive and expensive to build Gunpowder introduced Standing armies (compared to calling up for soldiers after a war was declared) Standing armies act as a serious deterrent to conflict CompPol Page 4 Standing armies act as a serious deterrent to conflict Inefficient and expensive, granted Requires constant source of revenue (see below) Taxation Need to know how many people you have, how much they have and how much you can get from them Introduction of bureaucracy Protestant reformation (1444-1544 ish) Rejecting the claim of the Pope and Catholic church in favor of more local interpretations of the Bible Strengthen the claim of a secular authority (the claim of the princes rather than the claim of the church Amalgamation of territories based on language 1648: Treaty of Westphalia The "last princes standing" get together and decide that being constantly at war was far too expensive and too much effort, so they manage to agree on definite borders Agreement over who rules what Catholic church has sovereign authority over a very small area (currently down to merely Vatican City) Settles disputes between secular and religious authority (triumph of Prince over Pope) The bureaucracy is already in place, due to the necessary taxation caused by the military revolution What does the State do? Ends versus Means The states only wants compliance "If the state is to exist, the dominated must obey the authority claimed by the powers that be." Weber State has monopolized the ability to wage war All policies are built, and the state merely wants you to agree and be content with it Strong states have the compliance of their citizens, weak states do not. Government State Public Policymaking Implementation Enforcement Comply? Reject? Congress; politicians; lobbying groups; unions Police; military; NSA; courts; education (administration, teachers); Corruption: when agent of the state start making policy Ex. Policeman lets you go with a warning because you're the chief's kid Ex. Military coup d'etat in Egypt made them both state and government EXCEPTION: bureaucracy often requires agents of the state to make policies State only requires that you comply with their rules Mafias can replace a government institutes state Superheroes, in an oblique way, also kind of institute their own states Role of Violence States control "you" through the threat of violence: threat of a parking ticket, of jail, of pain, of hunger, of social ostracism… Without violence, there is no reason to comply, but that doesn't mean that violence is the only thing that incites compliance Carrot-and-stick In state making (Tilly) Intensity of violence>Standing armies>Taxation>Organization legitimacy ("legitimate use of physical force") A successful state combines threat of force and legitimacy so well, that theoretically you no longer know why you're complying Ex. A stop sign. Threat of force: ticket from cop. Legitimacy; sign is there in case a car comes by and hits you. Combined force and legitimacy make it such that you stop at a stop sign even at 3 in the morning, when neither really are in act. Sources of legitimacy Performance Identity CompPol Page 5 Building Blocks: NATION Wednesday, September 11, 2013 12:22 PM Definition: "a named human population sharing a historic territory, common myths and historical memories, a mass public culture, a common economy and common legal rights and duties for all members." Anthony D. Smith "An imagined political community--and imagined as both inherently limited and sovereign" Anderson: Imagined communities Imagined vs real communities "all communities larger that primordial villages of face to face contact (and perhaps even these) are imagined" p.6 Real communities: face to face contact, goods exchange, personal interaction Imagined communities: linked to people we know nothing about (are you american? So is some guy in Wisconsin, but you don't know him) All communities where you do not have face-to-face contact with everyone in it are considered "imagined" Modern Nation: ability to communicate with strangers Communication of meaning, due to the same frame of reference (ex. George W jokes are famous nationwide) Origins in 18th century Europe Protestant Reformation "dethronement of Latin" : removal of Latin as the only 'official' language Elite class could communicate with each other, but even from village to village, dialects were so estranged from one another that the only people you could really communicate with were your village Makes it such that an identified "nation" was super small Allowed for the mass dissemination of ideas in particular vernaculars (local languages) Print Capitalism Increased production and availability of books via Gutenberg's printing press "the logic of capitalism thus meant that once the elite Latin market was saturated, the potentially huge markets of the monoglot masses would beckon" French Revolution: first massive expression of national identity Gellner: Nations and Nationalism Demands of the Market Demands of industrialization/industrial revolution Required ease of communication Needed a least common denominator of communication to spread meaning quickly Role of State Because of demands of the market, state instituted standardized education to create a viable workforce Trained to have a set of analytical skills in order to apply information from one situation to another States and Nations Sometimes, but do not always overlap Nations that have no state: Kurds, Basques, Tibetans, Palestinians, Quebecois States with several nations within them: Nigeria, India, USA, UK Note: Must have an aspiration toward sovereignty CompPol Page 6 9/16/13 Discussion Monday, September 16, 2013 12:24 PM The Nation: associated concepts are generally positive (flags, patriotism, USA…) The State: not generally positive, lots of focus on authority or police (FBI/CIA, police, hierarchy…) Primordialists: who Anderson et al are arguing against; people who believe the nation is a given aspect of human nature Invented Imagined Gellner Anderson You are aware that it is constructed You construct it for yourself, and thus believe it as though it was real Sounds "false" Is "real" because it hold meaning for people No face to face contact, so you imagine a comradery with people you have never met CONSTRUCTED CONSTRUCTED Emergence of "Nation" as an imagined community 1. Capitalism Emergence of capitalism over feudalism Emergence of middle/artisan class One monetary system 2. Protestant Reformation Undermines theological dominance Rise of secularism People question the authority of the church Desire to interpret bible for themselves in their own language 3. Invention of printing press Gutenberg Spread of vernacular Bible put into massive production 4. Spread of vernacular/power of language Legal documents, sermons, international relations, etc. all done in Latin Slow spread and eventual dominance of local languages 5. Print capital Latin market becomes saturate, so they turn to vernacular markets in order to make more money Publishing houses consolidate local vernacularisms, spreading certain languages throughout certain regions More people speak High Prussian than Bavarian Czech, so publishers print in High Prussian, and Bavarian Czech dies a slow death Latin dies out in favor of the monoglottal dominance of the masses' vernaculars CompPol Page 7 Building Blocks: MARKET Wednesday, September 11, 2013 12:23 PM The Industrial Revolution Definition: "A period of sustained and unprecedented economic growth starting in the mid-18th century and continuing through the present time" Malthusian Crisis Sir Thomas Robert Malthus - "Essay on Population" (1798) Population grows exponentially 2 people can have 5, 10, 20 children Food grows arithmetically There's only a little bit of land available upon which the grow food Production can never outpace consumption Once the food supply runs out, you're looking at a human crisis War Famine This "regulates" population growth to bring down the population to a sustainable level The Industrial Revolution has, so far, been able to avoid a Malthusian Crisis "By sustained economic growth, I mean that output has grown at a more rapid rate that population" North, Structure and Change Scarcity is still, of course, an issue, but our aggregate production has still outstripped out aggregate population growth NOTE: "State" usually refers to the government in actual country cases, rather than purely theoretical concepts Adam Smith: Spontaneous Growth Division of Labor Production is so much more efficient Specialization Difference between production through artisan (cobbler, cooper…), which requires one person to make the entirety of a product, rather than dividing labor into an assembly-line-type structure Production increases exponentially No longer producing for your own needs Producing labor Trade labor for wages, and wages for food Natural Inclination to Barter Now that you have such a surplus, you trade Example of Economic Liberalism Minimal/no role for the state "no regulation of commerce can increase the quantity of industry in any society..." No economic role for the state Has a role in the common defense, in the infrastructure, etc, but should not be making any economic decision "Invisible hand" of the market Belief in the power of markets to spontaneously produce economic growth Just stand back and watch it go Commercial regulation is NOT okay Douglas North State-promoted growth Role of the State in creating the market Markets do create themselves naturally Markets versus "The Market" Markets "The Market" Production Subsistence Commercial Purpose Based on personal exchange of goods (barter/trade) Based on impersonal exchange and capital accumulation Scope Local and immediate Transnational and long-term Location Exists within a dense social network Exists on a broader social spectrum, involving non-face-to- face transactions ("imagined communities") Enforcement of contracts easily enforced personally and for low cost (round Transaction costs prohibitive to enforce personally up your buddies and knock on a door) (necessitates the involvement of state) Makes the law Enforces the law CompPol Page 8 Enforces the law Example of Economic Institutionalism The Market cannot exist without the state State has an economic role Role of the Sate Enforce Contract (ex. Making sure you pay your grocery bill) Establish Legal framework (ex. Shape property rights/patent laws) Karl Polanyi State-regulated growth Critique of Economic Liberalism Criticism of Douglas North Markets are something created by humans, for humans, and must be regulated by humans Has no self-regulating mechanism Has a tendency to self-destruct State needs to adjust the market, to regulate it (tell it when to speed up, when to slow down…) Role of the State Regulates the rate and direction of change Promotes market activity (similar to North) Undermines market activity (hinders inherent destructive tendency) Allow for "sustained...economic growth" (from the definition of industrial revolution above) Destructive Tendencies of the Market The commodity fiction Land, labor and money are fictitious commodities It is critical that these things are treated as commodities Land Was not something created to be placed on the market Only becomes a commodity once you parcel it out and put a price on it Labor Not a natural commodity Life was not created for sale on the market Take hours of our day and sell them for a wage Commodification is necessary for the modern function of the market Perishable Commodities The human factor The market can't tell the difference between the "real" commodities (ex. A table) or a fictitious commodity (ex. Life) The issue is that when there is a surplus of tables, they can be put in a warehouse until the market is better, but labor can't be withheld because people will die Example: The United Kingdom Stage 1: Destructive Tendencies- The enclosure movement Movement to make the "commons," areas where everybody used the land for pasture individually owned Enclosures came up as fences or hedges to separate land Idea that "this area of land is MINE" Crown starts parceling out land to lords in high standing Famine; the people who were using the land for subsistence are forced out and begin to starve Reversal of enclosures (return to the commons because people were starving) "...used the power of the crown to slow the rate of progress until it became socially bearable…" Significance of enclosures Makes land a commodity (i.e. property rights) Promotes market activity State regulation Ability to slow down Forced people off the land and into cities Stage 2: Destructive Tendencies Industrial Production Division of labor/assembly line As people flow into the cities, they enter the labor market Turns labor into a commodity People divide up their time and sell it Competition for work So many people flowed into the cities, there was no longer enough work Price of labor falls Issue with human time as a commodity; you can't put humans in a warehouse because they'll starve State Regulation Speenhamland Scale CompPol Page 9 Speenhamland Scale Part of the "poor laws" Made sure the price of wages did not drop below the point where you could not eat Linked to the price of bread "minimum wage" 1st modern welfare system Links wages to the price of bread Undermines market activity Temporarily stifled market growth which PISSED OFF a lot of people But allowed for sustained economic growth State stepped in and Success of England came not only in idea of Speenhamland scale, but also the fact that they successfully implemented and enforced it. Repeal of the Poor Laws End of the Welfare System Created a (free) labor market Restored market activity after a period of adjustment Time and Sequencing: 1. Enclosure Movement a. Poor Laws b. Repeal of Poor Laws 2. Labor Market 3. Growth CompPol Page 10 Economic Development Monday, September 23, 2013 12:26 PM STATE Economic Growth NATION...
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