Saturday, 15 October 2011

I have started a blog for my students in the School of Public Policy and Administration. I'm working on a 5th edition of my text Beyond Policy Analysis and thought that as I work through chapters, I will come across both academic and media connections that might be of interest.

I'm completely new to this, so please bear with me.

First items up. Theda Skocpol is publishing a book on the Tea Party in December (saw the story first in the Globe/NYT), but a preliminary article is in Perspectives (March 2011). Here's the abstract:

In the aftermath of a potentially demoralizing 2008 electoral defeat, when the Republican Party seemed widely discredited, the emergence of the Tea Party provided conservative activists with a new identity funded by Republican business elites and reinforced by a network of conservative media sources. Untethered from recent GOP baggage and policy specifics, the Tea Party energized disgruntled white middle-class conservatives and garnered widespread attention, despite stagnant or declining favorability ratings among the general public. As participant observation and interviews with Massachusetts activists reveal, Tea Partiers are not mono- lithically hostile toward government; they distinguish between programs perceived as going to hard-working contributors to US society like themselves and “handouts” perceived as going to unworthy or freeloading people. During 2010, Tea Party activism reshaped many GOP primaries and enhanced voter turnout, but achieved a mixed record in the November general election. Activ- ism may well continue to influence dynamics in Congress and GOP presidential primaries. Even if the Tea Party eventually subsides, it has undercut Obama’s presidency, revitalized conservatism, and pulled the national Republican Party toward the far right.

Alex Himmelfarb  had a piece in today's Globe on taxes. Interesting argument for the use of this instrument.

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