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Please be aware that this is a student-generated wiki designed for review for my students' AP exams. Come in, look around, and enjoy yourself...just be aware of the nature of this wiki. Even though most everything is correct, I advise caution before citing this as an authoritative source.

  • Elitist View: Some people claim that big business, or top bureaucrats, or powerful interest groups decide everything.
  • The Marxist, the Weberian, and the pluralist views are only partially correct.
  • Certain oil companies were once able to persuade the government to restrict sharply the amount of foreign oil imported into the United States, to permit them to drill for new oil just above anywhere they liked.
  • Today the restrictions on foreign oil imports have ended, the tax breaks the oil companies enjoy have been reduced considerably.
  • An example of the power of American policy making would be with automobile manufacturers such as emission control or the safety of the driver and their passengers (Wilson, 469).
  • Regulations have often been for the better or worse for the corporation. Airlines have profited quite a bit from it. Railroads on the other hand have not been as fortunate (Wilson, 469).
  • Regulations, from an economic standpoint, also limit the ability of firms to create monopolies on the markets of certain goods, and if attempted, can be blocked by a number of enforcement acts and regulations.

Policy Making
Political agenda: Issue(s) that people believe are required for governmental action.

People tend to believe action is necessary if there is unrest or an issue is out of control.

Policy making basically has two stages: getting an issue onto the governmental agenda and then deciding what to do about that issue.

Setting the agenda is the most important part of the policy making process because putting an issue on the agenda is recognizing it as a problem that must be addressed, but it is also the least noticed one. Citizens, interest groups, the media, and other groups that have ties to the government bring issues to the political agenda. The political agenda is also influenced by popular attitudes, elite interests, critical events, and government actions; while popular attitudes change slowly, elite interests and government actions are much more volatile (Waples).
Until the 1930's the national political agenda was quite short, and even in the 1950's many people would have been astonished or upset to be told that the federal government was supposed to worry about the environment, consumerism, or civil rights.

The political agenda has been changing for a very long time. For example, some of the processes outlined in the Constitution were very unpopular under the Articles of Confederation.

For example: at one time it was unconstitutional for the federal government to levy income taxes. Even energy wasn't an important issue and civil rights use to be a matter of private choice. It is now on the federal government's agenda as a duty.

Nowadays, the political agenda is often set by the media, which covers certain events/interviews certain people/reports on certain issues. Since the average American citizen does not have immediate access to government, their main point of "entry" is through the news, radio talk shows, and internet sites that they come across.

According to the Princeton Review, policy making can have three purposes:
  • Solving a social problem, such as high crime rates, high employment, poverty among the aged, or teenage drinking, or drug abuse (like the war on drugs).
  • Countering threats, such as terrorism or war.
  • Pursuing an objective, such as building a highway or finding a cure for cancer or AIDS

Policy makers use incrementalism, the slow step by step process to making policy. Or the idea of inaction which is another form of policy making. (Levy and Meltzer)
    • The concept of inaction is the belief that, if left alone, a current policy will eventually change itself, rather than to go in and impose a change such as deregulation artificially and/or by force of the government.

The issue attention cycle requires that policy makers act quickly in the policy making before the public. (Levy and Meltzer)

Policy formation represents how the governments solves problems that make it to the political agenda. Sometimes alternative plans of action or proposals can lead to a solution. How the government acts on certain issues is determined by four factors:
    • Shared political values- For example, if many people believe that poverty is the result of individual failure rather than social forces, then there is no reason for a government program to combat poverty.
    • The weight of custom and tradition (people will generally continually accept what has been done in the past in government)
    • The impact of events (ex. wars will change our thoughts on the role of government) Ex. After the 9/11 terrorist attacks the government focused on tighter security checks by Homeland security and changes to other counterintelligence agencies
    • Change in the political elite's ideology

Policy making today tends to focus on:[1]
  • Economic policy, policies that affect our production (RGDP), which includes:
    • Fiscal policy
      • Involved with changing government spending and taxes.
    • Monetary policy
      • Involved with changing the supply of money, mainly this is the job of the federal reserve Board. This includes changing the required reserves of banks, buying or selling bonds (open market operations), and changing the discount rate.
  • Trade policy
    • Much involved with foreign relations and trading agreements and such.
    • Social welfare: money to those less fortunate
    • health care: providing care for those covered
    • Social Security
      • social security is one of those policies that some see as being a large part of policy for many year to come since removal of something like this could have major political consequences.
      • A new program that was put into place in the 1930's during FDR's first term.
      • A type of majoritarian politics; most of all people pay to support SS, and they inevitably end up having to use it. Although this seems ideal, there is a small portion who benefit without paying, creating a "free rider" problem in Social security, and some, although more so the case with Medicare, believe SS is not a sound system until it can fix these slight errors.

Legitimacy is affected by four things:
1.) How many people share the same political values
  • Ex: if many people believe that poverty is the result of individual failure rather than social forces, then there is no reason for a government program to combat poverty. (Wilson)
2.) How powerful the traditions and customs of the government are
  • People will usually accept what the government has customarily done, even if they are leery of what it proposes to do. (Wilson) This is why precedents in government usually stand.
3.) The impact of tragic events that change the roles of government (wars, depressions, etc.)
4.) Changes in the communications of political elites

The legitimacy scope of government actions is growing larger (Wilson). Since the 1940s, the U.S government has had an increasing role in the public that has stayed.
Political agenda is defined by Wilson to be issues that people believe require governmental action
Political agenda can be changed by shifts in popular attitudes, elite interest, critical events and government actions(Wilson)

  • Legitimacy as defined in this chapter (17 Wilson and Dilulio) is what is right or proper for the government to do.
    • The legitimacy of the legislation can change as described in the social welfare chapter when Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) was replaced with Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) because of dependence on the system and usage different from its intended purpose.

The scope of legitimate government action is always growing larger, especially since the public has developed certain expectations of the government (such as those adopted as the result of Roosevelt's New Deal) which are difficult for politicians to scale back. It is also unfair to blame the growth of government on any one political party.
  • The "big government" exists because of an expanded beliefs about legitimacy.
    • Nixon imposed peacetime wage and price controls and proposed a guaranteed annual income for every family, working or not working.
    • Dwight Eisenhower sent federal troops to Little Rock, Arkansas to enforce desegregation.
  • However, it is not easy to explain why the government adds new issues to its agenda and implements new programs when there is little demand for them.
    • It is even argued that it is because of the behavior of groups, the workings of institutions, the opinions of political elites, and the action of state governments.

5 steps in Making Policy
1. Defining the role of government
2. Agenda setting- recognition of an issue as a problem that must be addressed as part of the political agenda brought about by citizens, interest groups, the media, or governmental groups
3. Policy formulation and adoption- finding ways to solve the problem, considering alternative plans, and developing possible ways to solve the problem. Rules enacted by regulatory agencies or precedent-setting decisions by the Supreme Court are also sources of policy formulation and adoption.
4. Policy implementation- put s the policy into effect by enforcement through the appropriate government agency.
5. Policy evaluation (Does the policy work?)- the final step. This provides the feedback to the policy makers, so that modifications can be made to better solve the problems.

  • Groups are a motivating force in adding new issues to the political agenda
    • Can be organized (corporations and labor unions)
      • organized groups tend to work behind the scenes, their effects in the policy making process are only easily visible once a new policy is created, since these types of groups tend to be lobbyists.
    • Can be disorganized (urban minorities)
      • disorganized groups use more ostentatious forms of influence such as street protests.
    • Members of groups are sometimes motivated by the feeling that they are worse off than they should be ("relative deprivation")
      • example: Riots during the 1960s. For many rioting was a way of expressing anger at what they saw as an unresponsive and unfair society (Wilson and Dilulio).
      • A large portion of rioters were unemployed, uneducated etc.
      • example: creation of new commissions and laws
    • Groups can change the values and beliefs of others
Most policies are the result of small groups of people who enlarge the scope of government with their demands.
  • According to Wilson, Organized labor favored a tough federal safety law governing factories and other workplaces not because it was unaware that factory conditions had been improving but because the standards by which union leaders and members judged working conditions had risen even faster

  • Courts, bureaucracy, and Senate are major institutions that may add new issues to the political agenda.
  • The courts make decisions that force the other branches to act, as with desegregation/integration( the example of courts ruling for desegregation led the congress and executive office to join in when president Eisenhower had to send troops to Arkansas to protect the students)
  • Courts have become the generalized method of introducing issues that are not held by a majority of the population, this is because the courts can call for change even when there is no popular majority in favor of so (unlike Congress where this is much more difficult to do because congressman are elected in by constituents)
  • Courts have become the most popular way for average citizens to affect large-scale changes in policy.
  • Court cases can be “tripwires” for political issues and cause, meaning that as the government agenda expanded, the courts have become the favorite method for doing things for which there is no popular majority (Wilson).
  • The bureaucracy at one time reacted to events in society. It did not propose changes. Now the bureaucracy includes many experts and advocates, which has changed its role to a source of policy proposals.
  • Congress esp. the Senate produces potential presidential candidates who focus on activism
  • In the 1970s, after the fall of the Dixiecrats, liberals began to fill the Senate with new ideas. However, until recently, that group has become more conservative again with time.
  • Institutions have now become the superior group that process policy and implement the laws that are passed.

  • Publicizing issues helps shape the political agendas.The national press has the ability to either place emphasis on already existing issues in the world or to create new ones through their publications (Wilson 473).
  • Political Agenda can also change sometimes because of popular attitudes.
  • The media helps place issues on the political agenda and publicize issues raised by others.
  • The media also can bring issues that they may deem "worth being mentioned" to the attention of the public, since the public tends to get its knowledge of politics from the media.
  • The press must choose what it will cover and therefore the beliefs of the editors and reporters can greatly effects what is on the political agenda.
  • The press might stimulate congressional interesting in issues or just merely reporting the interest. (Wilson 473)
  • The press has low interest before an issue is placed on the agenda, and peak at about the time that a bill is passed. (Wilson 473)
    • The press does this through their power of gatekeeper, watchdog, and scorekeeper.
      • The gatekeeper power means the media influences what becomes national politics. Gatekeeping is a process by which information is filtered to the public by the media
        • Automobile safety, water pollution, and the quality of prescription drugs were not major political issues until the national press decided to focus on these issues (Wilson and Dilulio).
      • The watchdog role involves the media controlling and keeping the government in check by scrutinizing their activity.
        • they try to expose wrongdoings as to help inform the people of it, and letting them take action, but the media itself does not necessarily get "hands on" involved
          • For example, if the government is involved in some sort of scandal (Watergate Scandal), the media is quick to expose that scandal to the public, whether it be political or the violation of a social norm.
      • The scorekeeper role power involves the media keeping track of and creating political reputations.
        • "Once the scorekeeper decides that you are the person to watch, they adopt their watchdog role" (Wilson and Dilulio).
        • When something is brought up enough or followed, it influences the thoughts of those surrounding it.

Political agendas can change due to the following:
  • Shifts in popular attitudes slow changes, caused by important events)
  • government actions (change more quickly, usually in response to elite interests)
  • Critical events
  • Elite interest (change more quickly, usually in response to government actions)
  • national disasters-relief funds are great examples of how public pressure/support affect policy-making
  • The media also plays a role in altering the political agenda by bringing different issues to the forefront that may not have otherwise been of governmental concern.

Action by the States
State governments are increasingly making national policy.
  • This occurs when the national government decides to adopt ideas first originated in the states.
For example, Congress passed a "Do Not Call" law to reduce the number of phone calls one would get from salespeople while trying to eat at the table. According to Wilson, the states had taken the lead in this.
  • It can also happen when the attorneys general of a state sues a corporation and settles the suit with an agreement that binds the industry throughout the country. An example is: In 1998 Tobacco industries agreed to raise prices and pay more than $250 billion to state governments
State governments, according to Wilson and Dilulio, can make national policy without going to Congress directly by having the attorney general of the state "sue a business or firm and settle the suit with an agreement that binds the industry throughout the country." (pg.473)

The Decision making process of policy making:
The Nature of the Issue:
- how it affects politics and causes intensity of political conflict
- According to Wilson some issues provoke intense interest group conflict and others allow one group to prevail unchallenged

The 3 Kinds of legislative actions taken by Congress
Distributive Legislation: distribution of goods and/or services to the general population
Redistributive Legislation: taking money from one segment of the population and giving it[ back to another. (An example of this would be programs that are set up to help the poor and funded by the progressive Personal income tax.)
Regulatory Legislation: sets limits on groups and individuals.

Cost and Benefits are also proposed during the decision making process
Cost: any burden taken on by people (either monetary or non-monetary costs); the cost of a policy can affect political power.
  • Costs are often non-monetary items such as requiring formal reports, restricting activities, and performing functions for the government.
Benefits: anything that is to gain from the policy; benefits are often intangible, such as coordinating actions by government agencies.
Cost-Benefit Analysis:
  • If Cost > Benefit, do not do it. The resulting burden from this action is greater than the gains (or satisfaction) that will occur.
  • If Cost < Benefit, do it. The resulting gains (or satisfaction) will be greater than the burdens that will occur.
  • If Cost = Benefit, do it. The resulting gains are the same as the resulting losses.
Caveats to Cost-Benefit Analysis:
  • Costs and benefits included in analysis are those perceived.
    • This may fail to capture the true cost or benefit of policy decisions.
    • The full cost or benefit of a decision may only become apparent ex post facto, in hindsight.
  • Many people are only concerned with the here-and-now and not with the long-term costs or benefits of policy.
    • For example, in the long run, electric cars may be better but the change is not acceptable for those living in the here-and-now. The cost is far too great and the benefit is years away.
  • People take into account not only who benefits, but whether it is legitimate for that group to benefit (Wilson),
  • According to Wilson, politics is a process of raising and settling disputes over who will benefit or pay for a program and who ought to benefit or pay.
  • In recent years, ideas such as abortion, school prayer, and racial desegregation, all have with intangible consequences. These issues make it very difficult to determine what people will be affected in what ways.

Perception, Beliefs, and Values
-The perception of costs and benefits is what affects politics, they are not completely defined in monetary terms
-Policy making is not just through the discussion of costs and benefits due to he fact that what constitutes a cost or benefit is a matter of opinion, and opinions change.
- Values also affect policy making decisions, and what Americans want for the country varies; it often times depends on whether the near future or distant future is considered, this is known as the short-term/long-term disconnect.
- A political conflict is mostly a struggle to make some beliefs about costs and benefits dominate others
- Beliefs are also in conflict. A political conflict is a struggle to change perceptions and beliefs.
  • Material interests do play a part here: the more you stand to gain or lose in hard cash from a proposal, the harder it will be for someone else to change your mind about your position.
-The here-and-now argument basically describes that what happens now or in the future is more important to most people than what happens in the distant future.
  • Economists refer to this as the human tendency to discount the future (Wilson 487)."
  • Ex: Majority of natural gas users tend to care more about present prices than future shortages, thus favoring price regulation today.
-The cost argument describes how people react more sharply to what they will lose if a policy is adopted than to what they may gain.

Newer Consumer and Environmental Protection Agencies
According to Wilson, there are five main reasons as to why newer consumer and environmental protection agencies are not as vulnerable to capture as many critics contends
  • Agencies often tend to enforce laws that cause them to have little discretion (example, The Environmental Protection Agency)
    • The EPA is required by law to reduce a certain pollutants according to a fixed percentage in a particular number of years (Wilson).
  • Newer agencies tend to regulate many different agencies so they do not end up having to conform to a single opponent (example, The Occupational Safety and Health Administration)
    • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration deals with multiple industries.
  • The existence of these agencies has brought about and contributed to the strength "public interest" lobbies
  • The lobbies can use the media to attack agencies with a pro-business bias
  • It gives groups an extra advantage in using the federal courts to enforce pressure on regulatory agencies

Perceived Costs

Perceived Benefits
Majoritarian Politics
Entrepreneurial Politics

Client Politics
Interest Group Politics

Different classifications of policies are based on cost and benefit perception.

Majoritarian Politics
  • Majoritarian politics are policies in which almost everybody benefits and almost everybody pays, and are usually settled by public debate and vote.
  • They are controversial because of cost and ideology rather than because of rival interest groups.
  • Majoritarian Politics try to appeal to large blocs of voters and their representatives in hopes of finding a majority.
  • Interest groups are not so important in this because of the free-rider problem: Citizens have little to no incentive to even join an interest group even if their policy benefits everyone, including those not in the interest groups.
  • "Usually resolved in public debates or public votes on bills" (Benson and Waples)
  • Examples of majoritarian politics:
    • When Congress passed three laws to reduce drug use, this was a majoritarian issue (since no interest groups were active on behalf of drug dealers). According to Wilson, the arguments were over matters such as desirability of the death penalty for big traffickers.
      • The Sherman Antitrust Act didn't focus on the restriction of trusts and there was no single industry that was targeted.
      • As with most majoritarian politics, antitrust regulations tended to reflect broad philosophies of governance rather than interest group activity (Wilson 481).
      • The antitrust acts helped the consumers and hurt the big businesses. The big businesses could no longer monopolize in industries.
      • Laws were strengthened in 1914 by bills that created the Federal Trade Commission and made price discrimination illegal (Wilson 480)
        • The Federal Trade Commission aims to control and get rid of laws and regulations that prevent businesses from freely competing. In other words the FTC is designed to prevent the monopolizing of industries
    • Social security, where everyone pays and later in life everyone benefits.
    • Medicare, where the federal government pays from the people for part of the cost of medical care for retired or disabled people covered by social security where everyone benefits.
      an example where everyone pays and almost everyone benefits
    • Military defense where everyone pays and everyone benefits from the increased defense.
    • The Grange, an alliance of farmers is an example of majoritarian politics as the farmers attempted to prevent the monopolizing of the railroad business because it would not only hurt the farmers themselves, but also other industries

Interest Group Politics
  • Gives benefits to relatively small groups
  • Interest Group Politics are policies that will confer benefits on some small identifiable group and impose costs on another small equally identifiable group.
  • Interest group politics mostly involve the struggle between interest groups (hence the name "interest group politics") and do not directly involve the public; the public are not aware of the struggle during the policy-making process, but experience the results later.
  • winners and losers of the struggles were highly publicized, according to Wilson
    • Labor-management conflict where the labor unions wanted "government protection for their rights to strike and engage in other forms of collective actions. Business firms opposed labor vigorously". The side of labor won with the formation of the National Labor Relations Board in the 1930's, but management had two victories of their own in the 1940's and 50's with the creation of the Taft-Hartley Act and the Landrum-Griffin Act.
      • The NLRB was formed after the passage of the Wagner Act in 1935. The NLRB functioned to address grievances the workers held against the business ownership. The NLRB also arranged organized the labor unions to some extent.
      • The passage of the Taft Hartley Act would restrict closed shop—a union practice under which the business ownership solely hires members of a certain union. Secondary boycotts would also be disallowed.
      • The Landrum-Griffin Act altered the internal operations of the unions in order to reduce corruption. Limitations were also placed on specific types of strikes.
      • The NLRB would have to base its decision on the passage of these laws, but its decisions would depend upon the five officials appointed by the president. Democratic presidents, who favored labor, would appoint members that also favored labor, while Republican presidents, who favored business, would appoint members that favored business. The members on the Board are appointed every five years.[2]
      • The losing side also often took the decision of the NLRB to the appeals court. Therefore, there existed a constant toil between labor interest groups and businesses.
    • The situation regarding the passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act marks a major struggle between the interests of labor unions and those of business organizations
        • Similarly, there existed a struggle regarding OSHA as well. Businesses favored a commission that would multiple administrators with some proportion of these administrators coming from those that supported businesses, such that the decisions of the commission would be lenient, while labor unions wanted one administrator who would manage decisions.
        • The work of the OSHA is complicated, because it must take intoaccount the working conditions of jobs across the country. It must also have knowledge of how harmful substances affect the body, in order to determine whether or not the working conditions of an employee are safe. [3]
    • Nobody pays attention to the debate between broadcasters and cable companies and who may send what kind of signals to which homes. The public will not start to care until a law is passed and people begin to be directly affected in the form of their cable bill changing.
    • Environmentalist policy: a debate between regions of states that fight over which states receive the brunt of the smog produced in the United States.

Client Politics
  • Policies where one group benefits, but everyone pays the costs.
    • Since the benefits are concentrated, the group that is to receive those benefits has an incentive to organize and work together to get them.
    • Since the costs are widely distributed, affecting many people only slightly, those who pay the costs may be either unaware of any costs or indifferent to them, because per capita they are so small.
  • Not every group that wants something from government at little cost to the average citizen will get it. Welfare is only a small cost to the typical taxpayer each year and yet there had been much resistance to increase those benefits.
  • Not all clients are economic interest. Localities can also benefit as clients.
  • It has become harder to practice client politics in this country, since it is much more difficult to be considered deserving of benefits.
    • Importance of popular views concerning the legitimacy of client claims determines the success or failure of client politics.
      • For example, the AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) which was a client policy in effect from 1935 to 1996, was abolished due to changing views about who deserved benefits.
    • It is hard to justify welfare program's legitimacy in the public eye - hard to gain Congressional support to receive more welfare benefits.
    • Farmers using pesticides is an example of client politics because it benefits the farmers (most of the time), while it affects the environment which in turn affects the population of the planet.
    • Farmers benefit greatly from agricultural price supports, but consumers are unaware of the total cost of high prices food prices and taxes (Wilson and Dilulio).
    • Client politics can be seen at the local government level with regulation of various occupations, such as lawyers and doctors, which help to ensure there is no fraud or malpractice, but in turn also makes these fields difficult to enter, thus allowing members already in the field to charge higher prices for their service. Generally, citizens don't object this regulation since they believe that the regulations protect them and that the higher prices are spread out over a plethora of customers to be noticed.
    • Airlines benefited from the higher prices that they were able to charge on certain routes due to government regulations that restricted competition, leaving the average passenger to be unaware of the increasing costs (Wilson).
    • As an example of a locality participating in client politics, a city or county can obtain new dams, a better harbor, or other benefits to the community.
    • Hurricane or flood victims may be given assistance since it is believed that these natural disasters are not their fault.
    • One case would be that sugar quotas help out sugar producers, but they would be the ones requesting such action.
    • logrolling: a legislator supports a proposal favored by another in return for support of his or hers. Logrolling is exchanging favors, especially when dealing with politics and voting for one another.
      • Some bills have various clauses added to them to satisfy all the parties that are involved. Some bills are extremely large as well
      • Example: Obamacare or Affordable Care Act. This is a large bill that requires in depth knowledge. At first it may be opposed but later supported because of special benefit clauses.
        pork-barrel legislation: legislation that gives tangible benefits to constituents in several districts or states in the hope of winning their votes or campaign contributions in return
    • For example, in 2008, Alaskan congressmen pushed for federal funding for a Gravina Island Bride, projected to cost $398 million and would connect the island's 50 residents to another Alaskan island. This "bridge to nowhere" encountered fierce opposition as a prime example of wasteful pork-barrel legislation.
  • Beware of agency capture, when a "regulating" agency is created to serve the desires of a small group!
  • One example of client politics is the subsidies that the government offers to certain industries, such as the milk industry, so they continue to produce products that are needed by consumers.

Entrepreneurial Politics
  • Policies where almost everyone benefits, but only a small, identifiable group pays the costs.
  • Entrepreneurial Politics often regulate businesses.
  • It is interesting that these policies are ever adopted seeing as the American political system is such that it is possible for a determined minority to prevent the passage of a bill that will harm it, as in Entrepreneurial politics.
  • Most of these policies are brought forth and passed by Policy Entrepreneurs, those in and out of government determined to pull together a political majority on the behalf of the unorganized and/or indifferent majority.
    • Policy entrepreneurs seeking to regulate an industry often adopt a moralistic tone, with their opponents portrayed as devils, their allies viewed with suspicion, and compromises fiercely resisted.
    • According to Wilson, Entrepreneurial politics can happen even when there is no leadership of a policy entrepreneur, just as long as a vast majority of voters or legislators care enough about the costs to do something as what happened in.
      • A political scandal is sometimes enough to get enough support to pass through policies (Wilson and Dilulio).
      • Example: General Motors attempted to manufacture harmful gossip against Ralph Nader's (Ralph Nader is a policy entrepreneur who readily associates himself with many customer and environmental interests) book on the lack of safety in GM cars. The scandal created more support for the auto safety act in 1965-1966 which was intended to reduce highway fatalities (Wilson and Dilulio).
  • One problem with entrepreneurial politics is that the agencies created to regulate industries can become too much a part of the industries that they will become ineffective. However, agencies are less vulnerable to this because they usually regulate more than one industry and are held to specific standards and strict timetables as well as the watchful eyes of lobbies that demanded their creation.
    • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which was supposed to regulate pharmaceutical industry, became very uncritical of the pharmacies after public attention had been drawn away from it. The FDA was revitalized after gaining congressional and White House attention (Wilson).
    • The 1980 Superfund program was begun to force industries to more properly dispose of industrial waste.
      • Wilson and DiIulio suggest that this was a direct result of the 1977 Love Canal incident and later Times Beach waste leakage (p. 479).
      • On the other hand, "researchers have yet to find any conclusive evidence of health damage at either site" (ibid.).
    • Anti-trust legislation of the late 19th century and early 20th century, such as the Sherman Act of 1890 and the Federal Trade Commission Act and Clayton Act of 1914, as many people benefit from lower prices, but the big businesses bore the burden of legislation.
    • process social regulations:rules governing commercial activities designed to improve consumer, worker, or environmental conditions
      • The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire led to the death of 146 garment workers in 1911. Many could not escape the burning building because the doors to the stairs and exits were locked to keep workers from taking cigarette breaks during their shifts; many others died from taking the fatal jump from the ninth and tenth floors. This incident led to legislation requiring improved factory safety standards and forced government to institute laws protecting workers where, earlier, government had largely stayed away from regulating businesses.
      • Antipollution and Safety requirements for automobiles were ways of improving the health and well-being of all people but at the expense of automobile manufacturers (Wilsion and Dilulio 205).
        • Clean Air Act
        • Water Quality Improvement Act: happened as a result of the oil spills in Santa Barbra, which was Legislation that expanded the federal government's authority over water quality standards and water polluters.
        • Toxic Substance Control Act
      • According to Wilson and Dilulio, The Jungle by Upton Sinclair was an example of entrepreneurial politics since it helped bring about the Meat Inspection Act of 1906, and act that benefits a large group and places the costs on a much smaller group. (p.485)
      • In the progressive era, the 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act represented a movement to improve the quality of food distributed to everyone at the expense of manufacturers - they had to comply to more regulation and bear more cost to this mandate.
-Ever since the mid 1970s the president tried centralizing government regulation of industry (Wilson 489).
-Beginning in the 1980s, many rates and prices monopolies and oligopolies charged were no longer set by the government
-This created competition and lowered their profits
-Airline companies, phone companies, and trucking companies are all examples of such industries whose fares were no longer set by a board
-According to Wilson, some who favor deregulating prices oppose deregulating processes.
-The iron triangle in politics has been ended. Academic economists agreed that regulated prices in competitive industries kept prices artificially high, which hurt consumers. Key political leaders acted on this information.
-The public does not necessarily support deregulation, primarily because of the effect of deregulation on consumer prices.
-The industries that have been deregulated are not popular industries, which folded without allies under political criticism.
-Process regulation: rules governing commercial activities designed to improve consumer, worker, or environmental conditions (social regulation)
-The enactment of deregulation caused the weakening of client politics and the power of ideas in policy-making (Benson and Waples 206).
-Sometimes the lack of rules makes the public suffer more so then if policy was in effect.
-Deregulation is opposed by groups that benefit from it
-Controversy in deregulation:
    • Some members of the public do not like the results (world becomes more complicated as a result of relying on the market)
    • Some people who favor deregulating pricesexternal image arrow-10x10.png oppose deregulating processes (processes which may involve worker safety or reducing environmental damages)
    • Most of the dispute in regulation concerns the question of means, not ends

Examples of Deregulation
  • airline fares were once regulated by the Civil Aeronautics Board, but now they are set by the market which means that prices are lower and competition is higher
  • previously AT&T had a monopoly over long distance telephone services but today there are several telephone systems and prices are influenced by competition
  • the number of trucking companies and their prices were regulated by the Interstate Commerce Commission. Trucking companies liked this because competition was low and price were up, but in 1996 Congress got rid of the ICC

Obstacles to Policy Making
-Since there are multiple access points to government, due to separation of powers and the federal system of government, this causes policy fragmentation: this is when "many pieces of legislation deal with parts of policy problems, but never deal with the entire problem" (Princeton Review). Basically, when there are so many competing interests, it is difficult for those in charge of policy-making to appease everyone.
-Policy making can be difficult because of political conflict, which is defined by Wilson as a struggle to make one definition of the costs and benefits of a proposal to prevail others. In essence this chapter defines how the material interests of certain individuals play a role in conducting policy making.

Limits of Ideas
  • While ideas hold a certain amount of power, there are strict limits. In client politics, this often depends on if there are reasonable conditions to challenge the client.
  • Its generally harder to main client politics free of challenge today than once was the case. (Wilsion 489)
  • For example, challenges were made to airline and trucking companies when they wanted to increase their prices, but when oceangoing freighters wanted to increase their prices there was no such challenge made.
  • It is still unclear why it is more difficult to challenge some areas of client politics than others.

Action by the States-
  • A state has the ability to influence major national corporations by filing a lawsuit against them within their states and then if they win they can implement their restrictions nationwide.
    • More difficult to monitor the industries out of the state, but has strong effect on those in the state.
  • The national government may also use the ideas of the states for example the "do not call" law which reduced the number of phone calls received during dinner was originally adopted in the states(Wilson 473)

  1. ^ The Princeton Review
  2. ^ Wilson, James Q., and John J. Dilulio. American Government: Institutions and Policies. Tenth ed. Boston, MA: Charles Hartford, 1986. Print.
  3. ^ Wilson, James Q., and John J. Dilulio. American Government: Institutions and Policies. Tenth ed. Boston, MA: Charles Hartford, 1986. Print.