dunnettreader + elites-political_influence   11

Josiah Ober, Barry R. Weingast - Fortifications and Democracy in the Ancient Greek World :: SSRN - Oct 2017
In the modern world, access-limiting fortification walls are not typically regarded as promoting democracy. But in Greek antiquity, increased investment in fortifications was correlated with the prevalence and stability of democracy. This paper sketches the background conditions of the Greek city-state ecology, analyzes a passage in Aristotle’s Politics, and assesses the choices of Hellenistic kings, Greek citizens, and urban elites, as modeled in a simple game. The paper explains how city walls promoted democracy and helps to explain several other puzzles: why Hellenistic kings taxed Greek cities at lower than expected rates; why elites in Greek cities supported democracy; and why elites were not more heavily taxed by democratic majorities. The relationship between walls, democracy, and taxes promoted continued economic growth into the late classical and Hellenistic period (4th-2nd centuries BCE), and ultimately contributed to the survival of Greek culture into the Roman era, and thus modernity. We conclude with a consideration of whether the walls-democracy relationship holds in modernity.
Keywords: Democracy, Ancient Greece, Athens, Walls and Democracy, Taxation, War
elites-political_influence  Hellenistic_era  democracy  SSRN  taxes  paper  community  ancient_Greece  majoritarian  borders 
november 2017 by dunnettreader
Jeffrey Edward Green - Rawls and the Forgotten Figure of the Most Advantaged: In Defense of Reasonable Envy toward the Superrich (2013) | American Political Science Review on JSTOR
This article aims to correct the widespread imbalance in contemporary liberal thought, which makes explicit appeal to the "least advantaged" without parallel attention to the "most advantaged" as a distinct group in need of regulatory attention. Rawls's influential theory of justice is perhaps the paradigmatic instance of this imbalance, but I show how a Rawlsian framework nonetheless provides three justifications for why implementers of liberal justice—above all, legislators—should regulate the economic prospects of a polity's richest citizens: as a heuristic device for ensuring that a system of inequalities not reach a level at which inequalities cease being mutually advantageous, as protection against excessive inequalities threatening civic liberty, and as redress for a liberal society's inability to fully realize fair equality of opportunity with regard to education and politics. Against the objection that such arguments amount to a defense of envy, insofar as they support policies that in certain instances impose economic costs on the most advantaged with negative or neutral economic impact on the rest of society, I attend to Rawls's often overlooked distinction between irrational and reasonable forms of envy, showing that any envy involved in the proposed regulation of the most advantaged falls within this latter category. - downloaded via iphone to dbox
politics-and-money  political_participation  inequality-wealth  regulatory_capture  political_philosophy  political_culture  tax_havens  Early_Republic  inequality  estate_tax  intellectual_history  inheritance  republicanism  Plato-Republic  elites-political_influence  Jefferson  Harrington  crony_capitalism  Europe-Early_Modern  fairness  article  Aristotle  social_capital  social_theory  Rawls  social_democracy  Machiavelli  Plato  inequality-opportunity  jstor  bibliography  ancient_Rome  regulation  justice  liberalism  egalitarian  regulatory_avoidance  interest_groups  legitimacy  deliberative_democracy  political_history  class_conflict  downloaded  education-elites  social_order  elites-self-destructive  Roman_Republic  ancient_Greece  republics-Ancient_v_Modern 
july 2017 by dunnettreader
Blaydes
We document a divergence in the duration of rule for monarchs in Western Europe and the Islamic world beginning in the medieval period. While leadership tenures in the two regions were similar in the 8th century, Christian kings became increasingly long lived compared to Muslim sultans. We argue that forms of executive constraint that emerged under feudal institutions in Western Europe were associated with increased political stability and find empirical support for this argument. While feudal institutions served as the basis for military recruitment by European monarchs, Muslim sultans relied on mamlukism—or the use of military slaves imported from non-Muslim lands. Dependence on mamluk armies limited the bargaining strength of local notables vis-à-vis the sultan, hindering the development of a productively adversarial relationship between ruler and local elites. We argue that Muslim societies' reliance on mamluks, rather than local elites, as the basis for military leadership, may explain why the Glorious Revolution occurred in England, not Egypt. - downloaded via iphone to dbox
governance-participation  Sultans  Islamic_empires  Europe  military_history  medieval_history  political_participation  article  political_history  political_culture  feudalism  militarization-society  Mamluks  bibliography  Europe-Medieval  monarchy  Great_Divergence  governing_class  government-forms  elites-political_influence  downloaded  state-building  jstor 
july 2017 by dunnettreader
Thomas Palley » A Theory of Economic Policy - Lock-in and Lock-out via Hysterisis (WP October 2016)
A Theory of Economic Policy Lock-in and Lock-out via Hysterisis: Rethinking Economists’ Approach to Economic Policy
This paper explores lock-in and lock-out via economic policy. It argues policy decisions may near-irrevocably change the economy’s structure, thereby changing its performance. That causes changed economic outcomes concerning distribution of wealth, income and power, which in turn induces locked-in changes in political outcomes. That is a different way of thinking about policy compared to conventional macroeconomic stabilization theory. The latter treats policy as a dial which is dialed up or down, depending on the economy’s state. Lock-in policy is illustrated by the euro, globalization, and the neoliberal policy experiment. - downloaded via iPhone to DBOX
inequality-wealth  political_economy  inequality  neoliberalism  downloaded  economic_policy  elites-political_influence  distribution-wealth  macroeconomics  paper  path-dependency  business_cycles 
october 2016 by dunnettreader
Judith Herrin - Unrivalled Influence: Women and Empire in Byzantium. (eBook, Paperback 2015 and Hardcover 2013)
2nd volume of 2 collecting her work across her career - Unrivalled Influence explores the exceptional roles that women played in the vibrant cultural and political life of medieval Byzantium. Written by one of the world's foremost historians of the Byzantine millennium, this landmark book evokes the complex and exotic world of Byzantium's women, from empresses and saints to uneducated rural widows. Drawing on a diverse range of sources, Herrin sheds light on the importance of marriage in imperial statecraft, the tense coexistence of empresses in the imperial court, and the critical relationships of mothers and daughters. She looks at women's interactions with eunuchs, the in-between gender in Byzantine society, and shows how women defended their rights to hold land. Herrin describes how they controlled their inheritances, participated in urban crowds demanding the dismissal of corrupt officials, followed the processions of holy icons and relics, and marked religious feasts with liturgical celebrations, market activity, and holiday pleasures. The vivid portraits that emerge here reveal how women exerted an unrivalled influence on the patriarchal society of Byzantium, and remained active participants in the many changes that occurred throughout the empire's millennial history. Unrivalled Influence brings together Herrin's finest essays on women and gender written throughout the long span of her esteemed career. This volume includes three new essays published here for the very first time and a new general introduction - Herrin. She also provides a concise introduction to each essay that describes how it came to be written and how it fits into her broader views about women and Byzantium. -- Intro downloaded to Tab S2
books  kindle-available  downloaded  Byzantium  Roman_Empire  medieval_history  elite_culture  religious_history  religious_culture  women-intellectuals  women-in-politics  empires-governance  property_rights  women-property  court_culture  eunuchs  inheritance  gender_history  gender-and-religion  marriage  diplomatic_history  elites-political_influence  political_culture  popular_culture  popular_politics  ritual  Early_Christian  church_history  religious_imagery  religious_practices  religious_art  women-education  education-women  education-elites  Orthodox_Christianity  women-rulers 
august 2016 by dunnettreader
Ezra Klein - The Republican Party is broken | VOX - Feb 2016
Photo by David Calvert/Getty Images Could the Republican Party have stopped Donald Trump? The theory goes like this: The Republican Party had the chance to off…
Instapaper  elections-2016  GOP  US_politics  political_culture  political_discourse  parties-transmission_belts  elites-self-destructive  elites-political_influence  politics-and-religion  from instapaper
february 2016 by dunnettreader
John Dunn, ed. - The Economic Limits to Modern Politics (1992) | Cambridge University Press
The central problem of modern government and political action is how to choose and implement effective economic policies. For this reason, the economic considerations of public policy have assumed a more prominent place in contemporary political thought. Despite efforts among political scientists, economists, and sociologists to fathom the complexities of this added dimension, none of these solid sciences offers a satisfying approach to the problem. This volume attempts to display the historical novelty and intellectual importance of this dilemma, to uncover its origins, and to procure a remedy through a clearer and steadier focus. The book's contributors range from historians of ideas to economic theorists, who bring the approach of their own intellectual discipline to bear upon the issue. **--** Introduction, John Dunn *-* 1. The economic limits to modern politics, John Dunn *-* 2. The wealth of one nation and the dynamics of international competition, Istvan Hont *-* 3. The political limits to pre-modern politics, J. G. A. Pocock *-* 4. The economic constraints on political programs, Frank H. Hahn *-* 5. International liberalism reconsidered, Robert O. Keohane *-* 6. Capitalism, socialism, and democracy: compatibilities and contradictions John Dunn. -- ebook Adobe Reader - not clear whether in kindle format -- excerpt (10 ogs Intro) downloaded pdf to Note
books  kindle-available  17thC  18thC  19thC  20thC  intellectual_history  economic_history  political_history  political_philosophy  political_economy  judgment-political  public_policy  capitalism  competition-interstate  economic_growth  development  raison-d'-état  British_history  British_politics  British_Empire  trade  trade-policy  Great_Divergence  economic_theory  political_culture  economic_culture  macroeconomic_policy  Innovation  innovation-government_policy  collective_action  property_rights  Labor_markets  redistribution  fiscal_policy  fiscal-military_state  Davenant  Smith  social_order  social_democracy  liberalism  elites-political_influence  IR_theory  globalization  international_political_economy  public_finance  public_goods  class_conflict  downloaded 
august 2015 by dunnettreader
Listening to Ta-Nehisi Coates Whilst Snuggled Deep Within My Butthole | Jezebel - July 2015
Dear Ta-Nehisi Coates—how do you pronounce that, by the way? Lately, it has become more difficult to see in here. My intellectual wings have been chafing my… She picks up every piece of passive-aggressive discomfort, weaseling self-justification, feeble attempts to reassert cultural and moral authority without appearing to (wouldn't "do" for the Yale professor of humility to be seen to pull rank), and general intellectual, moral and rhetorical disaster in David Brooks' column. He's given his readers an excuse not to take Ta-Nehisi seriously, since Brooks has publicly performed the discomfort of white privilege for them and has shared with them what he's "learned" from Black Lives Matter and Ta-Nehisi's book, which is that he still believes in fairy tales, and so his readers are encouraged to as well.
Instapaper  US_society  political_culture  racism  pundits  books  elites-political_influence  conservatism  satire  rhetoric-political  rhetoric-moral_basis  American_exceptionalism  racism-structural  identity_politics  from instapaper
july 2015 by dunnettreader
Must-Read: Sharun Mukand and Dani Rodrik: The Political Economy of Liberal Democracy - Washington Center for Equitable Growth
We distinguish between… property rights, political rights, and civil rights… …Liberal democracy is that it protects civil rights (equality before the law for minorities) in addition to the other two. Democratic transitions are typically the product of a settlement between the elite (who care mostly about property rights) and the majority (who care mostly about political rights). Such settlements rarely produce liberal democracy, as the minority has neither the resources nor the numbers to make a contribution at the bargaining table. We develop a formal model to sharpen the contrast between electoral and liberal democracies…. We discuss… the difference between social mobilizations sparked by industrialization and decolonization. Since the latter revolve around identity cleavages rather than class cleavages, they are less conducive to liberal politics. -- downloaded pdf to Note
paper  democracy  liberal_democracy  civil_liberties  rights-legal  rights-political  human_rights  democratization  transition_economies  elites-political_influence  property_rights  property-confiscations  identity_politics  decolonization  post-colonial  industrialization  LDCs  emerging_markets  development  economic_growth  political_economy  political_culture  majoritarian  minorities  class_conflict  downloaded 
july 2015 by dunnettreader
Heather K. Gerken and Joseph Fishkin - Whose party is it anyway? | Balkinization - June 2015
Description of key portion of paper published *downloaded from SSRN to Note) we imagine three models of who should control a party: 1. The equality model: On this model, each party member should have equal influence over the direction of the party. 2. The elite-driven model: On this model, the parties are not democracies; they are more like firms, competing in the broader democratic arena. In this analogy, party elites are the executives; the donors are the shareholders; and ordinary voters are like consumers who can accept or reject what the elites are selling. This model has its roots in a Schumpeterian conception of democracy. -- Neither of these models, we think, is adequate—either positively or normatively. (..) So we propose 3. The pluralist model: This hybrid model takes into account the party’s multi-layered role in our politics. On this model, the party stands in part for ordinary voters who make up the base of the party, in part for the party elites who run it, and in part for the activists in between—the party faithful, who knock on doors and show up at rallies and caucuses and provide much of the party’s energy. The party faithful are much more heavily involved in the party than ordinary voters, but much less influential than the Koch brothers. One major worry we have about the shift from official parties to shadow parties is that the party faithful may get squeezed out, leaving us with a politics that is more centralized and broadcast-like.
Instapaper  paper  SSRN  US_politics  parties  shadow_parties  political_participation  pluralism  voting  elections  democracy  democracy-direct  elites-political_influence  oligarchy  politics-and-money  partisanship  parties-transmission_belts  public_sphere  public_opinion  competition-political  from instapaper
june 2015 by dunnettreader
David Glaser - Paul Krugman on Tricky Urban Economics | Uneasy Money - May 2015
Paul Krugman has a post about a New Yorker piece by Tim Wu discussing the surprising and disturbing increase in vacant storefronts in the very prosperous and… Thinks Krugman should have stressed more the active damage governments can do (and did) when he highlighted the interstate highway system and middle class white flight. Some great quotes from studies of the impact on racially and ethnically marginalized communities -- destroying the "social capital" infrastructure that African-Americans had relied on, thereby reinforcing the impact of discriminatory private and public policies of both Jim Crow and residentia and workforce segregation in the Northern cities. And excellent examples of how the upper end of the wealth spectrum was repeatedly able to protect their urban communities in the freeway wars -- e.g. Cambridge and Georgetown.
US_history  20thC  post-WWII  political_economy  US_politics  urban_development  urban_politics  urban_elites  NIMBY  suburbs  white_flight  governmentality  transport  infrastructure  racism  African-Americans  lower_orders  community  segregation  housing  highways  public_policy  elites-political_influence  policymaking  links  from instapaper
may 2015 by dunnettreader

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