Why Welfare States Persist

Author: Clem Brooks
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226075958
Format: PDF, ePub
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The world’s richer democracies all provide such public benefits as pensions and health care, but why are some far more generous than others? And why, in the face of globalization and fiscal pressures, has the welfare state not been replaced by another model? Reconsidering the myriad issues raised by such pressing questions, Clem Brooks and Jeff Manza contend here that public opinion has been an important, yet neglected, factor in shaping welfare states in recent decades. Analyzing data on sixteen countries, Brooks and Manza find that the preferences of citizens profoundly influence the welfare policies of their governments and the behavior of politicians in office. Shaped by slow-moving forces such as social institutions and collective memories, these preferences have counteracted global pressures that many commentators assumed would lead to the welfare state’s demise. Moreover, Brooks and Manza show that cross-national differences in popular support help explain why Scandinavian social democracies offer so much more than liberal democracies such as the United States and the United Kingdom. Significantly expanding our understanding of both public opinion and social policy in the world’s most developed countries, this landmark study will be essential reading for scholars of political economy, public opinion, and democratic theory.

Globalization and Mass Politics

Author: Timothy Hellwig
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1316062643
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book analyzes how increases in international trade, finance, and production have altered voter decisions, political party positions, and the types of public issues that parties focus on in postindustrial democracies. Although many studies interrogate whether internationalization matters in regard to policy outcomes and how globalization relates to mass protest, few examine globalization and mass politics more generally. This book argues that by reducing the room in which to maneuver in policy making, globalization reduces the importance of economic-based issues while increasing the electoral importance of non-economic issues. The argument is tested on original and existing data sources.

European Politics

Author: Tim Bale
Publisher: Macmillan International Higher Education
ISBN: 1137105860
Format: PDF, Mobi
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This popular and highly praised text provides a lively and accessible introduction to the governance and politics of Europe. Thematically structured to address the key institutions and issues, it is genuinely pan-European in scope. Although no country is ignored, a range of representative countries (the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the UK) as well as the European Union itself, are used as key examples throughout the book and each of them is the subject of an in-depth double-page country profiles. The text is supported by a range of features, including: - Double-page country profiles with coverage of key issues - Debate boxes which give the pros and cons of contested issues - Key Point boxes to reinforce learning and aid revision - Further Reading, Web Links and Discussion Questions for each chapter The third edition has been fully revised and updated to take account of the latest developments and now includes coverage of the Eurozone crisis, governments' austerity measures and recent legislation affecting privacy and human rights.

The Social Legitimacy of Targeted Welfare

Author: Wim van Oorschot
Publisher: Edward Elgar Publishing
ISBN: 1785367218
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book addresses new perspectives on the perceived popular deservingness of target groups of social services and benefits, offering new insights and analysis to this quickly developing field of welfare attitudes research. It provides an up-to-date state of the art in terms of concepts, theories, research methods and data. The book offers a multi-disciplinary view on deservingness attitudes, with contributions from sociology, political science, media studies and social psychology. It links up with central welfare state debates about the allocation of collective resources between groups with particular needs, and wider categories of need.

Mediated Politics

Author: W. Lance Bennett
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521789769
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Mediated Politics explores the changing media environments in contemporary democracy: the internet, the decline of network news and the daily newspaper; the growing tendency to treat election campaigns as competing product advertisements; the blurring lines between news, ads, and entertainment. By combining new developments in political communication with core questions about politics and policy, a distinguished roster of international scholars offers new perspectives and directions for further study. Several broad questions emerge from the book: with ever-increasing media outlets creating more specialized segments, what happens to broader issues? Are there implications for a sense of community? Should media give people only what they want, or also what they need to be good citizens? These and other tensions created by the changing nature of political communication are covered in sections on the changing public sphere; shifts in the nature of political communication; the new shape of public opinion; transformations of political campaigns; and alterations in citizens' needs and involvement.

Accountability through Public Opinion

Author: Sina Odugbemi
Publisher: World Bank Publications
ISBN: 0821385569
Format: PDF, ePub
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This books analyses the role of public opinion for generating genuine citizen demand for accountability, providing case studies from around the world to illustrate how public opinion forces governments to be accountable.

The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere

Author: J?rgen Habermas
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 0745692338
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This major work retraces the emergence and development of the Bourgeois public sphere - that is, a sphere which was distinct from the state and in which citizens could discuss issues of general interest. In analysing the historical transformations of this sphere, Habermas recovers a concept which is of crucial significance for current debates in social and political theory. Habermas focuses on the liberal notion of the bourgeois public sphere as it emerged in Europe in the early modern period. He examines both the writings of political theorists, including Marx, Mill and de Tocqueville, and the specific institutions and social forms in which the public sphere was realized. This brilliant and influential work has been widely recognized for many years as a classic of contemporary social and political thought, of interest to students and scholars throughout the social sciences and humanities.

The Moral Neoliberal

Author: Andrea Muehlebach
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226545415
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Morality is often imagined to be at odds with capitalism and its focus on the bottom line, but in The Moral Neoliberal morality is shown as the opposite: an indispensible tool for capitalist transformation. Set within the shifting landscape of neoliberal welfare reform in the Lombardy region of Italy, Andrea Muehlebach tracks the phenomenal rise of voluntarism in the wake of the state’s withdrawal of social service programs. Using anthropological tools, she shows how socialist volunteers are interpreting their unwaged labor as an expression of social solidarity, with Catholic volunteers thinking of theirs as an expression of charity and love. Such interpretations pave the way for a mass mobilization of an ethical citizenry that is put to work by the state. Visiting several sites across the region, from Milanese high schools to the offices of state social workers to the homes of the needy, Muehlebach mounts a powerful argument that the neoliberal state nurtures selflessness in order to cement some of its most controversial reforms. At the same time, she also shows how the insertion of such an anticapitalist narrative into the heart of neoliberalization can have unintended consequences.

The Rational Public

Author: Benjamin I. Page
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226644806
Format: PDF
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This monumental study is a comprehensive critical survey of the policy preferences of the American public, and will be the definitive work on American public opinion for some time to come. Drawing on an enormous body of public opinion data, Benjamin I. Page and Robert Y. Shapiro provide the richest available portrait of the political views of Americans, from the 1930's to 1990. They not only cover all types of domestic and foreign policy issues, but also consider how opinions vary by age, gender, race, region, and the like. The authors unequivocally demonstrate that, notwithstanding fluctuations in the opinions of individuals, collective public opinion is remarkably coherent: it reflects a stable system of values shared by the majority of Americans and it responds sensitively to new events, arguments, and information reported in the mass media. While documenting some alarming case of manipulation, Page and Shapiro solidly establish the soundness and value of collective political opinion. The Rational Public provides a wealth of information about what we as a nation have wanted from government, how we have changed our minds over the years, and why. For anyone interested in the short- and long-term trends in Americans' policy preferences, or eager to learn what Americans have thought about issues ranging from racial equality to the MX missile, welfare to abortion, this book offers by far the most sophisticated and detailed treatment available.

Introducing Democracy

Author: David Beetham
Publisher: Polity
ISBN: 9780745615196
Format: PDF
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This textbook, specially commissioned by UNESCO, addresses eighty of the most pressing questions about democracy today.