Perpetuating the Pork Barrel: Policy Subsystems and American Democracy

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November 2010



Stein and Bickers explore the policy subsystems--links among members of Congress, interest groups, government agencies--that blanket the American political landscape. They employ a new data base detailing federal outlays to Congressional districts for each federal program to examine four myths about the impact of policy subsystems on American government: that policy subsystems are a major contributor to the federal deficit, that federal programs grow and rarely die, that subsystem actors seek to universalize the scope of program benefits, and that the flow of program benefits to constituencies ensures legislators' reelection.


Part I: 1. Policy subsystems and the pork barrel; Part II: 2. The Programmatic expansion of US domestic spending; 3. The geographic scope of domestic spending: a test of the universalism thesis; Part III: 4. A portfolio theory of policy subsystems; 5. PAC contributions and the distribution of domestic assistance programs; 6. Policy subsystem adaptability and resilience in the Reagan period; 7. Congressional elections and the pork barrel; Part IV: 8. Policy subsystems in practice and democratic theory; Appendices.


'This book devotes needed attention to the linkages between members of Congress, beneficiaries of federal programs (both constituents and interest groups), and intergovernmental agencies. Robert M. Stein and Kenneth N. Bickers have marshalled an impressive array of data to test several hypothesis that question long-held beliefs related to the distribution of federal benefits. Readers of this book will be impressed by the frequency with which the authors' findings call into question conventional wisdom and suggest alternative, yet reasonable interpretations for the existance of federal programs.' Journal of Politics
EAN: 9780521595841
ISBN: 0521595843
Untertitel: 'Policy Subsystems and American'. Revised. Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: November 2010
Seitenanzahl: 250 Seiten
Format: kartoniert
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