Paul Peterson makes a strong case for school choice in central cities, and coeditor Bryan Hassel offers the case for charter schools. John E. Brandl offers his vision of school governance in the next century. The book's other contributors--economists, political scientists, and education specialists--provide case studies of the experience with voucher programs in Indianapolis, San Antonio, Cleveland, and Milwaukee; survey charter schools; analyze public school choice; discuss constitutional issues; and study the effects of private education on democratic values.
Contributors include David J. Armor, George Mason University; Chester E. Finn Jr. and Bruno V. Manno, Hudson Institute; Caroline M. Hoxby, Harvard University; Brett M. Peiser, Partnerships in Learning; and Joseph P. Viteritti, New York University.
• Divisions between teachers and the public are wider and deeper than differences between other groups often thought to contest school policy, such as Republicans and Democrats, the young and the old, the rich and the poor, or African Americans and whites.
• The teacher-public gap is widest on such issues as merit pay, teacher tenure reform, impact of teacher unions, school vouchers, charter schools, and requirements to test students annually.
• Public support for school vouchers for all students, charter schools, and parent trigger laws increases sharply when people are informed of the national ranking of student performance in their local school district.
• Public willingness to give local schools high marks, its readiness to support higher spending levels, and its support for teacher unions all decline when the public learns the national ranking of their local schools.
• On most issues, teacher opinion does not change in response to new information nearly as much as it does for the public as a whole. In fact, the gap between what teachers and the public think about school reform grows even wider when both teachers and the public are given more information about current school performance, current expenditure levels, and current teacher pay.
The book provides the first experimental study of public and teacher opinion. Using a recently developed research strategy, the authors ask differently worded questions about the same topic to randomly chosen segments of representative groups of citizens. This approach allows them to identify the impact on public opinion of new information on issues such as student performance and school expenditures in each respondent's community.
The changes in public opinion when citizens receive information about school performance are largest in districts that perform below the national average. Altogether, the results indicate that support for many school reforms would increase if common core state standards were established and implemented in such a way as to inform the public about the quality of their local schools. These and many other findings illuminate the distance between teacher opinions and those of the public at large.
About the Research: In partnership with the Harvard Program on Education Policy and Governance and the journal, Education Next, authors Paul E. Peterson, Martin West and Michael Henderson surveyed nationally representative samples of teachers and the public as a whole annually between 2007 and 2013.
The states differ widely in their assessment of what a family needs to meet a reasonable standard of living, and the interstate differences in welfare benefits cannot be explained by variations in wage levels or costs of living. The states with higher welfare benefits act as magnets by attracting or retaining poor people. In the competition to avoid becoming welfare havens, states have cut welfare benefits in real dollars by more than one-third since 1970. The authors propose the establishment of a minimum federal welfare standard, which would both reduce the interstate variation in welfare benefits and stem their overall decline.
Peterson and Rom develop their argument in four steps. First they show how the politics of welfare magnets works in a case study of policymaking in Wisconsin. Second, they present their analysis of the overall magnet effect in American state politics, finding evidence that states with high welfare benefits experiencing disproportionate growth in their poverty rates make deeper welfare cuts. Third, they describe the process by which the current system came into being, identifying the reform efforts and political crises that have contributed to the centralization of welfare policy as well as the regional, partisan, and group interests that have resisted these changes. Finally, the authors propose a practical step that can go a long way toward achieving a national welfare standard; then assess it's cost, benefits, and political feasibility.
This book presents an interdisciplinary collection of papers addressing these questions. In the introduction, editor Paul E. Peterson discusses the ways in which adverse economic and racial changes interact and urges more realistic federal policies to counteract these changes. In Part 1, "The Processes of Urban Growth and Decline," sociologist John D. Kasarda analyzes the growing mismatch between inner-city jobs and residents, and geographer Brian J. L. Berry discusses the economics of inner-city gentrification. Racial change is the subject of Part II: sociologist Elijah Anderson depicts race relations in a gentrifying inner-city neighborhood; sociologist William J. Wilson delineates the social and economic problems of inner-city blacks; and political scientist Gary Orfield calls for bold efforts to reverse the continuing urban pattern of racial segregation. Part III looks at the way cities have responded to economic and racial change. Economist Kenneth A. Small discusses the impact of transportation policy; political scientist Herbert Jacob finds that increasing efforts to control urban crime have not been effective; and sociologist Terry Nichols Clark emphasizes the effect of political factors on the fiscal condition of cities. Economist Anthony Downs, reviewing the issues raised by the other authors, sees little hope for racial integration as the central social strategy for solving urban problems, but does see hope in the internal resources of America's minority communities.
In When Federalism Works, Paul E. Peterson, Barry G. Rabe, and Kenneth K. Wong examine the new conventional wisdom about federal grants. Through documentary research and hundreds of interviews with local, state, and federal administrators and elected officials, they consider the implementation and operation of federal programs for education, health care, and housing in four urban areas to learn which programs worked, when, and why. Why did rent subsidy programs encounter seemingly endless difficulties, while special education was a notable success? Why did compensatory education fare better in Milwaukee than in Baltimore? Among the factors the authors find significant are the extent to which a program is directed toward groups in need, the political and economic circumstances of the area in which it is implemented, and the degree of professionalism among those who administer it at all levels of government.
When Federalism Works provides a solid introduction to the most important grant-in-aid programs of the past twenty years and a thoughtful assessment of where they might be going.
Howell shows that an appetite for power may not inform the original motivations of those who seek to become president. Rather, this need is built into the office of the presidency itself--and quickly takes hold of whoever bears the title of Chief Executive. In order to understand the modern presidency, and the degrees to which a president succeeds or fails, the acquisition, protection, and expansion of power in a president's political life must be recognized--in policy tools and legislative strategies, the posture taken before the American public, and the disregard shown to those who would counsel modesty and deference within the White House.
Thinking about the Presidency assesses how the search for and defense of presidential powers informs nearly every decision made by the leader of the nation. In a new preface, Howell reflects on presidential power during the presidency of Barack Obama.
In Relic, William Howell and Terry Moe point to the Constitution as the main culprit. The framers designed a government for a simple, agrarian society—and that government is unsuited to a huge, complex, post-industrial nation the founders did not even remotely foresee. Howell and Moe argue that we need a second Progressive movement to bring reform to American government, above all by strengthening the power of the president. Relic challenges us to reconsider the very foundation of our political system, shedding new light on what is wrong with our government and what can be done about it.
An overview of the American presidency that focuses on institutional context
An American Presidency: Institutional Foundations of Executive Politics provides a thorough, engaging overview of the most important political office in the world’s most powerful country. In addition to providing detailed coverage of executive politics, author William Howell uses the presidency as a point of departure for broader thinking about political power and democracy. Designed to inform, to enlighten, and to stimulate debate, An American Presidency gives students the knowledge they need to think critically about the American presidency — and about our political system as a whole.
An American Presidency: Institutional Foundations of Executive Politics is also available via REVEL™, an interactive learning environment designed for the way today's students read, think, and learn.
"Wow! The CME Group Risk Management Handbook is a 'ten strike' and long overdue. A must-read and reference for the risk management industry!"
—Jack Sandner, retired chairman of CME Group, member of the Executive Committee
"This is a powerful book for its integration of futures and options markets with an understanding of the whole economy. It is an eye-opener to see how central these markets are to our economic lives."
—Robert J. Shiller, Okun Professor of Economics, Yale University; Chief Economist, MacroMarkets LLC
"Risk management is essential to successful investing, and The CME Group Risk Management Handbook provides the essentials for understanding risk management. In the wake of the financial turmoil of the last few years, managing risk should be part of any investment program. Among the key elements of risk management are stock index, bond, currency, and commodity futures as well as a growing number of futures, options, swaps, and other financial instruments built on indices tracking housing prices, weather conditions, and the economy. The CME Group Risk Management Handbook offers a comprehensive guide for using all of these to better manage financial risks."
—David M. Blitzer, PhD, Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee, S&P Indices
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—Philip McBride Johnson, former CFTC chairman
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—H. Jack Bouroudjian, CEO, Index Futures Group
To answer these questions, Paul Peterson sets forth two theories of federalism: functional and legislative. Functional theory is optimistic. It says that each level of the federal system is well designed to carry out the tasks for which it is mainly responsible. State and local governments assume responsibility for their area's physical and social development; the national government cares for the needy and reduces economic inequities. Legislative theory, in contrast, is pessimistic: it says that national political leaders, responding to electoral pressures, misuse their power. They shift unpopular burdens to lower levels of government while spending national dollars on popular government programs for which they can claim credit.
Both theories are used to explain different aspects of American federalism. Legislative theory explains why federal grants have never been used to equalize public services. Elected officials cannot easily justify to their constituents a vote to shift funds away from the geographic area they represent. The overall direction that American federalism has taken in recent years is better explained by functional theory. As the costs of transportation and communication have declined, labor and capital have become increasingly mobile, placing states and localities in greater competition with one another. State and local governments are responding to these changes by overlooking the needs of the poor, focusing instead on economic development. As a further consequence, older, big cities of the Rust Belt, inefficient in their operations and burdened by social responsibilities, are losing jobs and population to the suburban communities that surround them.
Peterson recommends that the national government adopt policies that take into account the economic realities identified by functional theory. The national government should give states and localities responsibility for most transportation, education, crime control, and other basic governmental programs. Welfare, food stamps, the delivery of medical services, and other social policies should become the primary responsibility of the national government.
The attendant political controversies have become the debate of a generation. Paul Peterson and Daniel Nadler have assembled experts from both sides of the Atlantic to break down the structural flaws in federal systems of government that have led to economic and political turmoil. Proposed solutions offer ways to preserve and restore vibrant federal systems that meet the needs of communities struggling for survival in an increasingly unified global economy.
Contributors: Andrew G. Biggs (American Enterprise Institute); César Colino (National Distance Education University, Madrid); Eloísa del Pino (Instituto de Políticas y Bienes Públicos, Madrid); Henrik Enderlein (Hertie School of Governance, Berlin); Cory Koedel (University of Missouri); Carlos Xabel Lastra-Anadón (Harvard University); Daniel Nadler (Harvard University); Shawn Ni (University of Missouri); Amy Nugent (Government of Ontario, Canada); James Pearce (Mowat Centre, University of Toronto, Canada); Paul E. Peterson (Harvard University); Michael Podgursky (University of Missouri); Jason Richwine (Washington, D.C.); Jonathan Rodden (Stanford Uni versity); Daniel Shoag (Harvard University); Richard Simeon (University of Toronto, Canada); Camillo von Müller (University of St. Gallen, Switzerland, and Leuphana University, Germany); Daniel Ziblatt (Harvard University)
In a series of lively chapters, Professors Greenstone and Peterson show how the coalitions that formed around the community action question developed not out of electoral or organizational interests alone, but were strongly influenced by our conceptions of the nature of authority in America. They discuss the factors that affected the development of the action program and they note that democratic elections of low-income representatives, however much preferred by democratic reformers, were an ineffective way of representing the interests of the poor.
The book stresses the way in which both machine and reform structures affected the ability of minority groups to organize effectively and to form alliances in urban politics. It considers the wide-ranging critiques made of the Community Action Program by conservative, liberal, and radical analysts and finds that all of them fail to appreciate the significance and intensity of the racial cleavage in American politics.