Robert E. Goodin's book Manipulatory
Politics (Yale Univ. Press, 1980) is valuable for its
"cataloguing [of] various modes of political manipulation," as the
author wrote in his Preface. Goodin found only a few of the cases
"ethically worrisome," but the fact that I disagree does not make
the catalog any less valuable.
Goodin's definition of "manipulation" is "power...
David A. Marcello, the Executive Director of the Public Law Center
at Tulane University Law School in New Orleans, has been keeping
close tabs on New Orleans' troubled ethics program. In 2011, he
published a report on how Hurricane Katrina (2005) led New
Orleans' officials to turn a moribund ethics program into one...
Last month, Jonathan Rauch published a sincere and well-written defense of political machines, entitled "Political Realism: How Hacks, Machines, Big Money, and Back-Room Deals Can Strengthen American Democracy" (Brooking Institution Press; available free as a PDF or e-book). Although the essay scarcely mentions conflicts of interest, gifts, nepotism, and the like, and it makes no mention at all of conflicts of...
Anyone who follows my blog knows that my favorite city to write about is Vernon, CA, the "Dream Machine," a city with lots of industry and no one other than city employees who might complain about what's in their backyard, or call for oversight.
I just read a classic work of philosophical psychology, Self-Deception(Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1969), wherein Herbert Fingarette takes an interesting approach to a phenomenon common to politics, but which seems...
More from St. Louis County municipalities. According to an article in Sunday's St. Louis Post-Dispatch, several of these municipalities — with the connivance of municipal court judges, local prosecutors, police officers, and lawyers — use the state's point system for traffic tickets to get more money for...