About the Blog

I shall post videos, graphs, news stories, and other material. We shall use some of this material in class, and you may review the rest at your convenience. I encourage you to use the blog in these ways:

--To post questions or comments about the readings before we discuss them in class;
--To follow up on class discussions with additional comments or questions.
--To post relevant news items or videos.

There are only two major limitations: no coarse language, and no derogatory comments about people at the Claremont Colleges. This blog is on the open Internet, so post nothing that you would not want a potential employer to see.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

California's next governor: These are the people running in the June 5 primary

Check out this article regarding CA's next governor.


From last time:
Reasons for Third Party Bursts
  • Major party deterioration and issue responsiveness
  • Economic decline
  • Unacceptable major party candidates

Hershey (p. 382):  "Why should partisanship help citizens who have so many other sources of information about candidates and issues?  Perhaps it is because they are exposed to so much information."

In all bodies, those who will lead, must also, in a considerable degree, follow. They must conform their propositions to the taste, talent, and disposition, of those whom they wish to conduct: therefore, if an assembly is viciously or feebly composed in a very great part of it, nothing but such a supreme degree of virtue as very rarely appears in the world, and for that reason cannot enter into calculation, will prevent the men of talent disseminated through it from becoming only the expert instruments of absurd projects!
And finally, Russia

Mueller indicted "the Internet Research Agency"
Defendant ORGANIZATION had a strategic goal to sow discord in the U.S. political
system, including the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Defendants posted derogatory information about a number of candidates, and by early to mid-2016, Defendants’ operations included supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump (“Trump Campaign”) and disparaging Hillary Clinton. Defendants made various expenditures to carry out those activities, including buying political advertisements on social media in the names of U.S. persons and entities. Defendants also staged political rallies inside the United States, and while posing as U.S. grassroots entities and U.S. persons, and without revealing their Russian identities and ORGANIZATION affiliation, solicited and compensated real U.S. persons to promote or disparage candidates. Some Defendants, posing as U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and
with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities.

Examples of their work

Americans served as signal boosters.


They targeted Michigan and Wisconsin.

We close on a disturbing note:

Kellen Browning's presentation


Thursday, April 26, 2018

Net Neutrality- Tess van Hulsen Presentation

What does it all mean???

Michael Cohen to Take Fifth Amendment in Stormy Daniels Lawsuit

Trump would "prefer" the popular vote?

Regarding campaign/election reform: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/04/26/trump-electoral-college-popular-vote-555148 

Appraisals II

Lee (203): "Bipartisanship is particularly problematic for a party seeking to win a larger share of institutional power"

Schier (137):  "The American founders did not design a system to encourage and enhance an ideological politics"

Schier (136): "...the decline in the vital function of intermediation."A paradox: are more democratic parties bad for democracy?

 From CBO:

Budget: compare opinion on cuts with the composition of federal spending.

Examples of multiparty systems:  CanadaBritainIsrael

Causes of the two-party system:

Types of Third-Party Movements
Reasons for Third Party Bursts

  • Major party deterioration and issue responsiveness
  • Economic decline
  • Unacceptable major party candidates