By James Q. Wilson
James Q. Wilson is one in all America's preeminent public coverage students. for many years, he has analyzed the altering political and cultural panorama with readability and honesty, bringing his knowledge to endure on all elements of yankee executive and society. it is a selection of fifteen of Wilson's such a lot insightful essays-drawing on thirty years of his observations on faith, crime, the media, terrorism and extremism, and the old school idea of "character." Readers of each political persuasion will come clear of this quantity with a brand new realizing of the way American politics and tradition have advanced during the last half-century. those essays will not be "the grumpy phrases of a conservative who cannot be reconciled to the realities of latest American life," Wilson writes. fairly, they're immediately speak from a painstaking empiricist and consummate social scientist who believes in American exceptionalism. American Politics, Then & now's a compelling portrait of a liked kingdom.
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Extra info for American politics, then and now and other essays
Parents, of course, acted as if the Coleman Report had never been written. They sought, often at great expense, communities that had good schools, never doubting for a moment that they could tell the difference between good ones and bad ones or that this difference in school quality would make a difference in their child’s education. The search for good schools in the face of evidence that there was no objective basis for that search seemed paradoxical, even irrational. 38 AMERICAN POLITICS, THEN & NOW In 1979, however, Michael Rutter and his colleagues in England published a study that provided support for parental intuition by building on the neglected insights of the Coleman Report.
Not too long ago it was still possible, albeit only with some major simplification, to explain to students that macroeconomic policy was either Keynesian or monetarist. Now there is a third (and possibly a fourth or fifth) contender. Political conservatives, who once knew only that they disliked that feature of Keynesian economics that led to rising government expenditures, now discover that they must choose between several competing remedies for this problem: cutting taxes (and cutting expenditures on the side, at least a little bit) or cutting expenditures (and maybe leaving taxes where 34 AMERICAN POLITICS, THEN & NOW they are), or possibly controlling the money supply and forgetting about the budget.
In John Fischer’s day, scholars studied big business, labor unions, medical societies, and farm groups. When I first studied politics in the 1950s, I learned that there were only six important interest groups: the AFL, the CIO, the American Medical Association, the American Legion, the Chamber of Commerce, and the National Association of Manufacturers. Today, no student could pass a political science exam by giving an answer such as that. Groups have multiplied astronomically; what counts now are ideas more than interests.
American politics, then and now and other essays by James Q. Wilson