Economics, Politics, and Policymaking Budget: A policy document allocating burdens (taxes) and benefits (expenditures). Deficit: An excess of federal expenditures over federal revenues (i.e. spending more than youre bringing in). Expenditures: What the government spends money on. Revenues: Sources of money for the government. Income Tax: Shares of individual wages and corporate revenues that go to the government to implement programs. The 16th Amendment permitted Congress to levy an income tax. Individual taxes are the largest revenue source for the government. The income tax is progressive
meaning that those with more income pay a higher % rate of tax on their income. This progressive taxing policy has shrunk over the past 60 years, with the top rate for the super rich at 90% in the 1950s; the top rate today is about 36%. Social Insurance Taxes are taxes for specific funds such as Social Security and Medicare. Sources of Federal Revenue Other than taxing the public, the government also may borrow The Treasury Department sells bonds; this is how the government borrows money. Citizens buy bonds, businesses buy them, and foreign countries also buy them. Bonds are, simply put, debt slips promising to pay back the amount borrowed at a certain % rate of interest. Federal Debt: all money borrowed over the years and still outstanding. The
federal debt is the sum of all the borrowed money that is still outstanding. The government competes with other lenders. Sources of Federal Revenue Taxes and Public Policy Tax Loopholes: tax breaks or benefits for a few people or industries. Related are Tax Expenditures, or revenue losses that result from special exemptions, exclusions, or deductions on federal tax law. Tax Reduction: refers to the general call to lower taxes; most citizens love to hear the words cut taxes without understanding or caring much about what that means, which is a reduction in governmental programs, many of the programs designed to help, guess who, the citizens. Tax Reform: rewriting the taxes to change the rates and who pays them.
The Tax Reform Act of 1986 was an extensive tax reform law that changed the top tax rate from 50% to 28% while increasing the bottom rate from 11% to 15%. Obviously, this helped the wealthiest and hurt the poorest people, yet it was widely hailed as a great triumph. In the end, Reagan ran the federal debt up from 900 billion dollars to three trillion dollars, a 200% increase as revenues came way down and spending went up. Federal Expenditures Big Government = Big Budget A big government requires lots of money to operate. As the size of government increases, so does its budget. The Rise and Decline of the National Security State In the 1950s and 1960s the Department of Defense received more than
half the federal budget. Once the Cold War wound down in the early 1990s, the amount of money spent on defense dropped to about 1/6 of all federal expenditures. There has been a significant rise over the past 15 years as a result of terrorism, and with Republicans seizing control in 2016, we saw a 13% growth in military spending last year alone. One reason for growth of government has been the extra money laying around from the defense decreases. Gotta spend it right??? Federal Expenditures The Rise of the Social Service State The biggest part of federal spending is now for income security programs. Social Security is the largest of these types of programs, with Medicare, Medicaid also among the biggest. The main difference is that with SS, we contribute to the fund set aside for
us, therefore, it isnt truly an entitlement program, which are programs that give government aid to people who are in a certain category (old, poor, disabled, etc.) The other two are entitlement programs, which Republicans hate like poison. Social Security has been expanded since 1935 to include disability benefits and Medicare. Democrats want to expand Medicare and Social Security benefits while Republicans want to eliminate them. These benefit programs face future financial problems with more recipients living longer; Congress hates to appropriate more money to these entitlement programs, especially on the Republican side. As population grows and the population lives longer with each passing generation, these programs keep costing more and more. Both parties have solutions, so it is an ideological and moral battle. Federal Expenditures
Incrementalism: The idea that last years budget is the best predictor of this years budget, plus an incremental addition. Agencies can safely assume they will get at least what they got last year, though there are occasional surprises. Each agency/program etc. focus their research and debate on getting an increase over last year, as significant an increase as possible. Budgets tend to go up a little each year. Federal Expenditures Uncontrollable Expenditures Spending here is determined by the number of recipients, not a fixed dollar figure; therefore it can go radically up or down year to year. These are usually entitlement programs where the government pays known benefits to an unknown number of recipients, e.g., Social Security. Because these
programs cost so much, conservatives have been out to alter or abolish them for over 70 years, to no avail. When talk starts of lowering or getting rid of programs designed to provide a safety net for all citizens, like Social Security, Medicare and Unemployment Compensation, people get nervous because they are depending on Social Security for their retirement, and people also realize that they are all one bad life situation from needing to collect unemployment compensation, or using Medicare or Medicaid. Only the wealthy feel confident about removing these programs even middle and lower middle class Republicans are against messing with these programs. The Budgetary Process Budgetary Politics: Stakes and Strategies
All political stakeholders need the budget to work for them. Much of the time, they will try and tie their budget needs to national or political needs in order to help persuade Congress and the President to increase their appropriation. There are lots of players, with the president and Congress playing important roles in deciding who gets what. Almost all Congressional committees are involved in the budget and budget making process. The Budgetary Process The Presidents Budget Presidents originally played a limited role in the budget. Today its much different. The President is expected to annually deliver a
budget to Congress to consider. They rarely get everything they want, but if Congress is controlled by the Presidents party, they will get most of their budget passed, usually. Budget requests are directed through the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and President before going to Congress. The budget process is time consuming; as soon as one is done, work begins on next years budget. The OMB, the President, and the various agencies negotiate budget requests. The Budgetary Process The Budgetary Process Congress and the Budget
The Congressional Budget Act of 1974: an act designed to reform the congressional budgetary process by establishing the following: A fixed budget calendar A budget committee in each House of Congress Created the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), which advises Congress on the probable consequences of its decisions, forecasts revenues, and acts as the check and balance counterweight to the Presidents OMB. The Budgetary Process Congress and the Budget The Success of the 1974 Budget Reforms As previously stated, the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 created the
Congressional Budget Office, lays down the procedures by which Congress annually adopts a budget resolution (a concurrent resolution that is not signed by the President which sets fiscal policy for the Congress), sets budget resolution limits on revenues and spending that may be enforced in Congress through procedural objections called points of order. The original 1974 legislation, however, remains the basic blueprint for budget procedures today. Between 1974 and 1998, every budget was a deficit budget, meaning we were spending more than we were bringing in revenue wise. Congress misses most of its own deadlines on passing a budget sometimes they dont pass one! When that happens, Congress passes continuing resolutions to keep the government going until it passes a budget. In 2015, Congress passed its first budget in 6 years!!! Omnibus budget bills often contain policies that cannot pass on their own.
The Budgetary Process Congress and the Budget Budget is to be considered as a whole. A budget resolution binds Congress to a bottom line (max amount to be spent) for the budget before Congress considers appropriations. The current budget is then reconciledprogram authorizations are revised to achieve required savings goals. The new budget is authorized and appropriated. Authorization bill: establishes a discretionary government program to be budgeted for; sets goals and maximum expenditures. Appropriations bill: bill that would fund programs within the limits established by authorization bill.
The Budgetary Process The Budgetary Process The Budgetary Process Congress and the Budget In the 1980s Congress passed bills to try and control deficits, but deep tax cuts which decreased government revenue combined with out of control Congressional spending led to our national debt climbing from $900 million to $3 trillion in Reagans 8 years in office. With Bill Clinton in charge, by 1997-98 we had our first budget surplus in
decades. When Clinton left office in 2000, the USA actually had extra money that hadnt been spent paying off debts. Not surprisingly, both parties claimed victory for the budget surpluses that began in 1997-98, yet when GWB won the Presidency in 2000, he returned all the extra money to the taxpayers, drastically cut taxes (especially on the wealthiest Americans), and started two quagmire wars we still aren't truly out of, all while watching the economy spin out of control under his watch. So once again, decreased revenue and greater spending = DEFICIT. Weve all seen that ugly debt clock enough, havent we? Understanding Budgeting Democracy and Budgeting With so many interest groups and powerful people asking for
government assistance, the budgets get bigger as politicians attempt to placate them. Some politicians compete by trying not to spend money or tax the people, staying away from the special interest buffet table and representing a vision of a more libertarian America, where the government asks less and does less. People like government programs, especially ones they may need to access one day, but they really do not want to pay for them, thus there are deficits and federal debt because elected officials want to provide their citizens with what they want, even if it isnt smart. Government, Politics, and the Economy Capitalism: An economic system in which individuals and corporations, not
the government, own the principal means of productions and seek profits. Mixed Economy: An economic system in which the government is deeply involved in economic decisions through its role as regulator, consumer, subsidizer, taxer, employer and borrower. Securities and Exchange Commission: regulates stock, bond, and options fraud. Minimum wage: the legal minimum hourly wage for large employers. Labor union: an organization of workers intended to engage in collective bargaining to secure better pay and working conditions for laborers. Collective bargaining: negotiations between labor unions and management to determine pay and working conditions for all members of the trade/profession in question.
Government, Politics, and the Economy Its the Economy, Stupid: Voters, Politicians, and Economic Policy Economic trends affect who voters vote for. Economic conditions are the best predictor of voters evaluation of the President. Republicans worry about inflation and cutting taxes whereas Democrats stress the importance of low unemployment and maintaining healthy wages for workers. Two Major Worries: Unemployment and Inflation Unemployment Rate: measured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the proportion of the labor force actively seeking work, but unable to find jobs Inflation: the rise in prices for consumer goods Consumer Price Index: the key measure of inflation that relates the rise in
prices over time Policies for Controlling the Economy Monetary Policy and the Fed Monetary Policy: the manipulation of the supply of money in private handstoo much cash and credit produces inflation; too little cash and credit causes unemployment and a pullback on economic growth. Money supply affects the rate of interest paid - low interest rates accompanied by lots of cash in circulation encourage borrowing and lending. If there are lots of loans out and an economic downturn occurs, which can be sudden, loans get defaulted, banks then default on their obligations, and recessions/depressions result. Main policymaker is the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve
System usually referred to as the Fed. Created in 1913 to regulate lending practices of banks and thus they money supply. Essentially it is the bank of banks, or for a 19 th century term, it is the nations central bank. Policies for Controlling the Economy Monetary Policy and the Fed (continued) How does the Fed influence the supply of money in circulation? They set the federal funds interest rate and they Buy and sell government bonds to either go into debt to create greater cash flow or to try and pay off debt if buying. It seems obvious, but because the Fed sets monetary policy and interest rates, the Feds decisions directly affect the overall economy.
Laissez-faire: principle that government should not meddle in the economy; it is one of the primary concepts behind Adam Smiths classic treatise The Wealth of Nations, the idea that government is not a needed element in a capitalist economy as the market selfadjusts to meet demand i.e. the invisible hand. Policies for Controlling the Economy Fiscal Policy of Presidents and Parties Fiscal Policy: the policy that describes the impact of the federal budget on the economy. In economics and political science, fiscal policy is the use of government revenue collection (mainly taxes) and expenditures (spending) to influence the economy. According to Keynesian economics, when the government
changes the levels of taxation and governments spending, it influences aggregate demand and the level of economic activity. Thus, government spending and deficits help the economy weather its normal ups and downs. In this sense, its the governments job to help to increase demand of goods, which will spur economic growth. Policies for Controlling the Economy Fiscal Policy of Presidents and Parties Supply-Side Economics is a macroeconomic theory/policy that says that too much taxation will not leave people enough money to privately purchase goods and services, which hurts economic growth by reducing demand. The theory argues that economic growth can be most effectively
created by investing in capital, and by lowering barriers on the production of goods and services. Consumers will then benefit from a greater supply of goods and services at lower prices, the investment and expansion of businesses will increase the demand for employees and therefore create jobs. Typical policy recommendations of supply-side economists are lower marginal tax rates and less government regulation. This theory is also referred to as trickle down economic theory, referring to the idea that if you give the wealthy and big corporations tax breaks, the benefits will trickle down to the rest of the people. Why It Is Hard to Control the Economy
Some people think politicians manipulate the economy to win reelection, but there are problems with that idea, such as: Things like the budget are prepared in advance of when they go into effect. As we all know, the best laid plans can come undone quickly. Government makes economic policy slowly, and it takes awhile for the effects of any policy to be felt. The private sector can also affect the economy independent of government action. The federal government spends less than 20 percent of the nations GDP. Politics, Politics, and the International Economy
Protectionism is the economic policy of shielding an economy from imports, usually through high tariffs. World Trade Organization (WTO) is the international organization that regulates international trade. Designed to promote freer trade and lower barriers i.e. lower tariffs. Free trade is controversial in many ways, and has been blamed for jobs increasingly being outsourced to other countries where the corporations can pay lower wages. Proponents say that the short-term pain will lead to long-term gain, yet the counter to that is that those that gain will be those who already have a lot; regular people will see higher unemployment rates and lower paying jobs. Arenas of Economic
Policymaking Business and Public Policy: Corporate Corruption and Concentration There has been an increase with the incidence of bankruptcy and scandals within the financial community. There has been an increase in the number of corporate mergers big businesses consolidating and getting larger, a trend that tends to mute or retard competition. Antitrust policy are laws/policies designed to ensure competition and prevent monopoly, which is the control of a market by one company where there are no reasonable alternatives. Deregulation and a general laissez-faire attitude toward business over the past thirty or so years has led us to this point.
Arenas of Economic Policymaking Consumer Policy: The Rise of the Consumer Lobby Consumers historically have had little government protection. The following are some examples of progressive changes in consumer protection: Food and Drug Administration (FDA): approves foods and drugs sold in the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC): responsible for regulating false and misleading trade practices, which now includes consumer lending practices United States Department of Agriculture (USDA): is responsible for developing and executing federal government policy on farming, agriculture, forestry, and food. It aims to promote agricultural trade and
production, work to assure food safety, protect natural resources, and end hunger in the United States and internationally. Arenas of Economic Policymaking Labor and Government Government has historically sided with business over labor unions, a link tied to the politics of wealth. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) regulates labormanagement relations; created in 1935 by the Wagner Act, a law that legalized unions and more or less forced employers to collectively bargain. The Taft-Hartley Act (1947) continued to guarantee unions the right of collective bargaining, but prohibited various unfair practices by unions, at least unfair from a pro-business perspective. Seen as an
anti-union pro-business action by unions. Government now provides unemployment compensation and an enforced minimum wage. Social Welfare Policymaking Chapter 17 Copyright 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. Publishing as Longman. What Is Social Policy and Why Is It So Controversial? Social welfare policies provide benefits to individuals, through: Entitlement programs, which are government benefits that certain qualified individuals are
entitled to by law because they are a member of a group targeted for aid i.e. the elderly, unemployed people, poor people, etc. Examples include Social Security, Medicare, most Veterans' Administration programs, federal employee and military retirement plans, and unemployment compensation. Means-tested programs are government programs only available to individuals below the poverty line, as seen below for 2016: $11,770 for individuals $15,930 for a family of 2 $20,090 for a family of 3 $24,250 for a family of 4 $28,410 for a family of 5 $32,570 for a family of 6 $36,730 for a family of 7
$40,890 for a family of 8 Income, Poverty, and Public Policy Whos Poor in America? Poverty Line: considers what a family must spend for an austere standard of living; austere meaning having an extremely plain and simple lifestyle. 46.5 million Americans - about 15 percent - were poor in 2015 Many people move in and out of poverty in a years time, but the movement is not extreme. Even if not technically under the poverty line their lifestyles are austere. Feminization of poverty: high rates of poverty among unmarried women, especially those with children. Whos Getting What?
Income is the amount of funds collected between any two points in time, usually measured annually. Wealth is the value of assets already owned. 1/3 of Americas wealth is held by 1 percent of the population. In 2015, the percentage for the top fifth was 62.8% Income, Poverty, and Public Policy What Part Does Government Play? Taxation Progressive tax policies tax people with higher incomes at a greater % share. For example, someone like me is taxed at the 26-28% bracket, whereas Warren Buffet, who is worth billions, is taxed at 38%. The Eisenhower government cut the top rate
from 90% to 70%. Reagan led the cut to 50%, and then in 1986 it went from 50% to 28% at the top. Bush the father and Bill Clinton slowly brought it to 39% by 2000. George W. Bush (the silly son) saw the top rate cut to where it is today (36%). This is the genesis of the reason why the wealthy control so much more of the wealth than they used to. Proportional taxes require all people pay the same share of their income; often referred to as a flat tax. Flat taxes, however, tend to be regressive in reality. Regressive taxes see the tax burden fall relatively more heavily on middle and lower income groups; the opposite of a progressive tax. Earned Income Tax Credit is a negative income tax that provides income to very poor people in lieu of charging them income tax. This one drives conservatives nuts. Income, Poverty, and Public Policy
What Part Does Government Play? Government Expenditures Transfer benefits AKA transfer payments are benefits given by the government directly to individuals. Some transfer benefits are actual money, such as social security and other entitlement programs. Other transfer benefits are in kind benefits where recipients get a benefit without getting actual money, such as food stamps; usually involves means-tested programs. Helping the Poor? Social Policy and Poverty Social Security Act of 1935 was the first major step by the federal government to help protect people against absolute
poverty as they grow old. The law set up the Social Security Program and AFDC, a national assistance program for poor children. President Johnson declared a war on poverty and created many new social welfare programs as part of his Great Society program. This legislation created many of the entitlement programs Republicans have been trying to eliminate since 1968. Helping the Poor? Social Policy and Poverty Welfare as we knew it a few decades ago. President Reagan cut welfare benefits and removed people from benefit rolls while lowering taxes on the wealthy.
Conservatives argued that welfare programs discouraged the poor from solving their problems. Rugged individualism. Attitudes toward welfare became race coded, the belief that most people on welfare were African Americans when in fact that is untrue. The Welfare Reforms of 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act Each state to receive a fixed amount of money to run its own welfare programs. People on welfare would have to find work within two years. Lifetime limit of five years placed on welfare. AFDC changed to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Welfare rolls declined, even though income of TANF recipients is still low and many who would have qualified before 1996 were left out in the cold.
Immigration and Social Policy Myths about Immigration Most are (NOT!) illegal immigrants. Most are (NOT!) from Mexico. Most are (NOT!) consuming federal benefits while avoiding taxes. Immigration Today 13% of Americans are first-generation immigrants. Many are admitted because of high skills and education. Immigration and Social Policy Immigration Policy and Politics Immigration has had little support throughout American
history Illegal immigration is a new issue, as the distinction between legal and illegal immigration did not exist until the late 20th century. Illegal immigration has been a major and difficult issue in presidential politics. Most of the jobs illegal immigrants take are the jobs Americans wont do. In other words, if they arent doing these jobs they wont get done. Immigration and Social Policy Meanwhile, back in Washington . . . No general immigration policy was created until the 20th
Century. Prior to this, most policy was aimed at banning certain nationalities. Congress banned Chinese immigration in 1882. 1924: Quota system favors northern and western Europeans and discriminates against others (including southern and eastern Europe). Immigration from Latin America climbs after World War II. Immigration and Social Policy Simpson-Mazzoli Act (1986) Provided a path to citizenship (amnesty) for existing illegal immigrants - 3 million immigrants become
citizens. However, employers were forbidden from hiring illegal immigrants with criminal charges for those that did and got caught. Some states punish employers by taking away their business licenses. Despite several proposals, no major policy changes since. Immigration and Social Policy Meanwhile, back at the state level States are hardest hit by the costs of illegal immigration and get little aid from the federal government. Proposition 187 in California cut off public services to illegal
immigrants; mostly found unconstitutional by the SCOTUS and repealed. However, it shows the depth of fear and hate that many Americans feel toward immigrants. Many state battles over college tuition breaks for the children of illegal immigrants. Living on Borrowed Time: Social Security The New Deal, the Elderly, and the Growth of Social Security Social Security has grown rapidly since 1935, adding Medicare in 1965. Employers and employees contribute to the Social Security Trust Fund - the bank account into which Social Security contributions are deposited and used to pay out eligible recipients. The Future of Social Security
The problem is that the number of Social Security contributors (workers) is growing slowly, while number of recipients (retired) is growing rapidly At some timecurrently 2038payouts will exceed income. The Trust Fund will soon be in the red as the ratio of workers to beneficiaries is narrowing. This will require either a change in funding to the positive, meaning tax increases or a shift away from Social Security entirely or privatizing it into the stock and bond markets, both options which Americans have plainly told lawmakers over and over again isnt in the game plan. Living on Borrowed Time: Social Security How George W. Bush Tried and Failed to Reform Social Security Bush proposed diverting 2 percent of social security
contributions to private retirement fundsprivate savings accounts where people could do whatever they wanted to with it, invest it, leave it alone, etc. The problem with the plan was that the social security trust fund would run out of money very quickly as people put their money into private savings accounts - or, government would have to borrow trillions of dollars to cover the payouts. As a result, the social security reform effort failed. Living on Borrowed Time: Social Security Social Welfare Policy Elsewhere Many industrialized nations are more generous than the U.S., but the tax rates are higher in those countries than in the U.S.,
many times much higher. Collectivism is much more common outside America; the people are willing to pay higher taxes in order to assure that all people have health care, food, and a place to stay. America is much more into individualism. Other countries (especially Europe) have worked to reform their welfare programs, as their programs are in trouble, too. Understanding Social Welfare Policy Social Welfare Policy and the Scope of Government The growth of government has been partially driven by the growth of social welfare policies, which grow generation by generation.
Democracy and Social Welfare The U.S. has the smallest social welfare system in the world. There is considerable unequal political participation by those that use the programs; most dont vote or participate at all. One exception to this are the elderly, who are generally are well-organized and influential; the poor are not. National Security, Military, and Foreign Policymaking Ch. 20 Instruments, Actors, and Policymakers There are three fundamental instruments of foreign policy:
The military represents the oldest and most dire. In a perfect world, it should be used very infrequently. We live in a far from perfect world, however. Limited wars have become the norm. Total war was last fought by the US in WW II. Economic sanctions/threat of sanctions has become a more powerful tool as other countries have become more reliant on US aid. This sort of tactic can backfire, and rather than quell disturbances, it may be used by another nation's leaders as a way to inflame hatred toward us. Typical examples of this strategy are trade regulations, higher tariffs, cutting funding/aid, embargos, and monetary policies that aim to hurt the other nation. Diplomatic strategies represent the quietest of the three tools,
but many times is the most effective. Negotiations and summits where leaders speak and bargain to attain considerations that both can live with work well many times. Instruments, Actors, and Policymakers Actors on the world stage include international organizations such as the United Nations (UN), which was created in 1945 to replace the ineffective League of Nations. All member nations agree to renounce war and respect certain human and economic freedoms (Kellogg-Briand Pact). It can be used as an international military force, and although its always referred to as a peacekeeping force, this can be far from peaceful.
Some organizations are regional. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was created in 1949 to face the threat of the Soviet Union and communism in general. Today, NATO is far less regional; after the fall of communism in the late 80s and early 90s, NATO gobbled up many of the former Soviet satellite nations to ensure that the Warsaw Pact never happened again. The European Union (EU) is a transnational government composed of Western European countries that coordinates economic policies. The EU nations share a common currency (the euro) and have entered into a binding economic partnership. It has been having troubles of late, with some member nations (Greece, Ireland, and France) needing to be bailed out of financial messes, usually with Germany and England bearing the brunt of the bailouts. Englands
citizens finally had enough of it and left the EU in June of 2016 (BREXIT). Instruments, Actors, and Policymakers Other forces on a worldwide scale are: Multinational Corporations, which possess great financial power, use that to have a voice in shaping world events. Nongovernmental Organizations, meaning groups such as Greenpeace or Amnesty International, work to further environmental and human rights initiatives. Wealthy and powerful individuals, those with economic and/or political power because of who they are and what they represent can many times help shape world events.
Instruments, Actors, and Policymakers The American policymakers include the President, the Presidents array of diplomats, chief among them the Secretary of State. If national security is the issue, other policymakers come into play, such as the National Security Establishment, which includes the Secretary of Defense, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the National Security Agency (NSA ) and the National Security Council (NSC), which is led by the National Security Advisor, which is constituted of the President, Vice-President, the NSA and CIA directors, and the Secretaries of State and Defense. The final actors in
national security policymaking is the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI ), and of course, Congress is also involved in the process of foreign policy making. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy Isolationism was the foreign policy of the US during the 20th century until their involvement in WW II. The goal of the US was to stay out of other nations conflicts, particularly in Europe. The policy really began with the Monroe Doctrine of 1823, which is essentially a concise statement demanding that other nations steer clear of our space (western hemisphere). The tacit understanding was that this would be reciprocated. World War I (1914-1918) tested the philosophy of isolationism and began the process of its death. America didnt really end isolationism until after WW II,
however. WW I ended badly for the US in that we spent billions of dollars and lost hundreds of thousands of American lives, and in the end Europe and the world were no better off for it. To many, it was a supreme loss of precious resources for nothing gained, and it reaffirmed isolationism as the way to go. While some post-war efforts were made by America to strengthen peace (the Washington Naval Conference on Disarmament, the Kellogg-Briand Pact), once aggression began to rear its ugly head again in Europe when Hitler and Mussolini came to power, America retreated diplomatically and tried desperately to stay out of the coming conflict. The US tried diplomatic and economic tactics to try and keep Japan out of China, but those failed. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) After the conclusion of the war, it was obvious that
isolationism was unworkable. Americas interests were best served by being a leader in the world, rather than trying to remain separate from it. Woodrow Wilson saw this fact in 1919, but no one bought into his vision of a League of Nations, or any of his 14 Points for that matter. There also was a new threat to world peace, the growing power of the Soviet Union. First Lenin and then Stalin had built the nation into a manufacturing giant, and even after staggering losses in WW II, Stalin made no bones about his desire to spread communism to other areas of the world. This desire, and the fear of communism that existed in the western world, soon grew into a new kind of war that became known as the Cold War.
116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) The Cold War was all about competition and conquest, or in Americas case, an effort to prevent the Soviets from gaining control over other nations. Two major philosophies emerged during the immediate aftermath of WW II that drove US foreign and military policy for the next several decades, those being Domino theory and Containment theory. Domino theory stated that if one nation falls to communism, the other nations around it will be in danger of falling as well, like dominoes lined up in a row. Containment theory is a foreign policy strategy that called for the United States to isolate the Soviet Union, contain/control its
advances, and resist its encroachments on other nations by peaceful or, if necessary, more forceful measures, and that, over time, the communists would not be able to sustain themselves. Containment theory abroad and anti-communist propaganda at home was the main strategy. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) There was also a fear that the Soviets were planting spies in important areas of American government, culture, and commerce. This led to the 2nd Red Scare, led by none other than Senator Joseph McCarthy. McCarthyism in the 1950s referred to the fear that international communism was conspiratorial, insidious, bent on world domination, and that communists had already infiltrated
American government and cultural institutions. This led to a witch hunt that McCarthy led, accusing many high ranking government officials and, most famously, Hollywood actors, producers and directors, of being communist. None of the accusations had merit, and when McCarthy was never able to produce any evidence, his career went down in flames. Today, McCarthyism refers to the practice of making accusations of subversion or treason without evidence. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) One of the main effects of the Cold War was the swelling of the Pentagon, as well as the rest of the military rank and file. The Pentagon is the building that houses the offices of our
military leaders. It was made larger as more military leaders were commissioned. The buildup was not only at the top; the number of combat ready enlisted men exploded as well. After WW II the military draft was not suspended until the end of the Vietnam War in 1973, meaning that we drafted men in peace-time, not just during times of conflict. This emphasis on the military was constant through the early 1990s. Up until that time, over 50% of the nations budget was spent on the military. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) Part of this massive expenditure was the Arms Race, a competition between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. that led to a huge increase in both conventional
and nuclear weaponry - so much for the post WW I disarmament efforts. As with both World Wars, militarism was doomed to lead to conflict, even though the US and USSR never technically faced off against one another. Instead, two wars were fought in which democratic forces squared off against communist forces; both may be referred to as proxy wars. The first was the Korean War, and the second was the Vietnam War. The Era of Dtente is what the period following the Vietnam War is called, as Presidents Nixon, Ford, and Carter worked on breaking down the barriers of the Cold War in an effort to promote peaceful coexistence. Dtente is a French word defined as a slow transformation from conflict to cooperation designed to relax tensions. At first, dtente applied to the Soviet Union, but Nixon later applied it to China as well. One of the main thrusts was disarmament, especially nuclear disarmament, as evidenced by the Strategic
Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) held with the USSR in the 1970s. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) Under former President Ronald Reagan who, along with Walt Disney, aided McCarthy in the 1950s by revealing actors, producers and directors they falsely claimed were communists), the American military budget for the arms race swelled even further. While the defense budget had been declining in the 1970s, Reagan changed all that in a major way. His hatred of communism was well known, and he despised the fact that the USSR had more tactical (nuclear) weapons than we did, and a larger and better armed military in general. Reagan added approximately $32 billion to the defense budget in his first term in office to oppose the Soviet buildup. So much for disarmament once again! By the end of his 2nd term, the US had a military strength equal to that of the Soviets, with
the financial ability to sustain it that the Soviets lacked. We were #1 again!!! One of the final pieces of Reagans vision was the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). Many people mockingly called it the Star Wars Initiative. He stated publicly that America was close to finishing a new high tech computer based network that would give us the ability to defend against Soviet missiles from space. It was a fabrication as the technology still doesnt exist today for that type of thing. The USSR, however, didnt know that. It was a beautiful bluff, and the financially challenged Soviets spent money they didnt have to try and match us. 116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) George H.W. Bush proposed to move beyond containment to integrate the Soviet Union into the
community of nations. Other events, however, led to the fall of communism in Germany, with West and East Germany finally reunited in 1989. In the early 90s under Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet Union supported the ending of communism and split up, with many of its formerly conquered satellite states regaining their lost sovereignty. The Soviet Union once again became known as Russia, a smaller and less powerful nation that no longer threatened world peace. The Cold War was finally over. Or was it? Putin has raised the ugly specter of a revisit to that harsh place.
116 Years of American Foreign Policy (cont.) With the end of the Cold War, terrorism became the main threat to world stability in the 1990s. After 9/11, it became the highest priority of George W. Bushs administration. Bush supported preemptive strikes against terrorists and hostile states (Bush Doctrine). Bush also referred to a trio of nations, Iran, Iraq, and North Korea as the Axis of Evil and committed American foreign policy to working towards the elimination or conversion of these countries to a more world friendly temperament. Because of the unpredictability of international relations, the world has entered an era of political improvisation. Afghanistan and Iraq are examples. Neither had any relation to the 9/11 bombings, but both were suspected (never proven) of harboring
terrorists, especially Osama Bin Laden. The difficulty of these wars show that fighting terrorism will be a very difficult task. The Politics of Defense Policy Defense spending currently takes up a little less than one-fifth of the federal budget (which will change upward if Trump gets his way). Conservatives argue against budget cuts that would leave the military unprepared whereas liberals argue for budget cuts to provide more money for social programs here in the U.S. Military spending is hard to cut since it means a loss of jobs in most congressional districts. Defense spending is cyclical. In times where world threats are lessened, we see cuts; when threats are significant, we see spending gains. Since 2001, weve seen a general trend of military increases,
though as American military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan have closed down for the most part, weve seen that reversed since 2010. The Politics of Defense Policy The projected active duty end strength in the armed forces for 2016 was 1.3 million people, with an additional 800,000 people in the seven reserve components. It is an all-volunteer military, but conscription (draft) through the Selective Service System can be enacted at the President's request and Congress' approval. All males ages 18 through 25 who are living in the United States are required to register with the Selective Service for a potential future draft. Over the past decade there has been a greater reliance on National Guard and reserve troops due to cuts in
defense spending. Reliance is great on the nuclear triad (ICBMs, SLBMs, and strategic bombers), but this is expensive. Treaties designed to reduce nuclear missiles have been achieved in the past (SALT and more recently the START treaties in the 1990s). High-tech non-nuclear weapons are becoming more prevalent. The New Global Agenda The Changing Role of Military Power Military actions are no longer the primary instrument in foreign policy as the strategy has lost much of its utility to resolve many
international issues, especially with terrorism. Economic Sanctions have become much more prevalent as a means of forcing other countries to toe the line we set for them as they are very dependent on American aid. These and other nonmilitary penalties imposed on foreign countries as an attempt to modify their behavior are generally the first resort in a crisis. Nuclear Proliferation is a major concern, even though only a few countries have known nuclear weapon capabilities. The fear is that rogue countries (i.e. Iran, Iraq, North Korea) will attain nuclear weapons capabilities and use them against their neighbors or the U.S., therefore the U.S. will continue to focus on discouraging the deployment of developed nuclear weapons.
The New Global Agenda The concept of an international economy stresses interdependency; its tough to attack a nation you depend on for certain things. This mutual dependency in which the actions of nations reverberate and affect one anothers economic lifelines make it less likely that total war will ever break out. International trade has become a hot button topic as calls for lowered barriers to trade (tariffs) have been met with a great deal of controversy. For example, many Americans resent the loss of jobs in the US to corporations that outsource to other countries where they can pay workers less, and then bring the products back into the US to sell tariff free. This issue, as much as immigration, is what helped Trump win in 2016. Tariffs: a tax on imported goods to raise the price, thereby
protecting American businesses and workers NAFTA (America, Canada, and Mexico) and GATT (international pact that is the basis of the WTO) are ways to lower tariffs and increase international trade. Congress approved the Central American-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement in 2005. Balance of Trade Ratio of what is paid for imports to what is earned for exports The New Global Agenda The International Economy Foreign aid is used to stabilize nations friendly to the United States and to attempt to help and stabilize
nations that may potentially be friendly with the US. A substantial percentage of foreign aid is military. Foreign aid has never been very popular with Americans and is typically one of the first things cut by Congress. Environmental Policy Ch. 21 Copyright 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. Publishing as Longman. Environmental Policy Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is a federal agency created
in 1970 and charged with administering all the governments environmental legislation. It administers policies dealing with toxic wastes and is the largest independent regulatory agency. The Clean Air Act of 1970 charged the Department of Transportation with responsibility to reduce automobile emissions. The 1990 amendments to the law allowed emissions trading (also known as cap and trade, this is a government-mandated, marketbased approach to controlling pollution by providing economic incentives to companies for achieving reductions in the emissions of pollutants). The Water Pollution Control Act of 1972 was intended to clean up the nations rivers and lakes by requiring the use of pollution control technology. It has helped reclaim numerous rivers and lakes since its passage, but misses runoff pollution from city streets and other
areas. Environmental Policy Wilderness Preservation: The U.S. is a world leader in this category. The national parks and national forests may be restricted to keep them for future generations. George W. Bush proposed letting states decide on roads in wilderness areas. He was defeated. Endangered Species Act: The federal government must protect actively endangered species regardless of economic impact. Conservatives HATE this law. Toxic Wastes has been addressed with the Superfund, which was created by Congress in 1980 to clean up hazardous waste sites;
money comes from taxing chemical products. It has virtually eliminated haphazard dumping of toxic waste, but has been less successful in cleaning up existing waste. Nuclear waste presents a serious challenge; for example, the Yucca Flats in Nevada is home for much of the nations nuclear waste. What effect does this have on the environment and the people who live nearby? Energy Policy Energy Sources and Energy Politics 87% of the nations energy comes from coal, oil, and natural gas. Coal is the most abundant fuel90 percent of nations energy resourcesbut also the dirtiest. As a result, coal
usage has been dropping sharply over the past couple of years. Oil accounts for 40% of our energy, but creates a dependence on foreign (especially Middle East) sources. This dependence has become much less because of the fracking revolution in America; as a result, the USA currently produces more oil than any other nation in the world. The most controversial energy source is nuclear, for obvious reasons. Energy Policy The Global Warming Gridlock
Earth is warming to between two and six degrees by 2100 due to carbon dioxide. Total costs could be $5 trillion or more if changes arent made soon. United States is the worlds second leading producer of carbon dioxide, but still hasnt ratified the Kyoto treaty, which required greenhouse emissions to drop to 1990 levels by 2010. China is #1 in greenhouse gas emissions. With the republicans currently in unified government mode, dont expect this to change anytime soon. Environmental clean up is political since it pits the creation of public goods against ecological concerns. Explosion of groups formed to protect the environment in 1960s and 1970s things have changed to a more laissez-faire
attitude with the Republicans in control. They oppose strict environmental laws, claiming it will hurt business and the overall economy.