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Policy Paradox: The Art of Political Decision Making (Third Edition) 3rd Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
She juxtaposes two models in this book. (1) The rationality project. This is where we use rational approaches to policy making, including economic analysis. The idea is to use neutral and objective data to make the best policy decision possible.The model for society and its functioning is the market, with its emphasis on self-interest and rational calculation. (2) On the other hand, she points out that this does not describe the political world. Here (see the chart on page 35), we see that community is important (not just self-interest), altruism has a role to play, cooperation and competition coexist, and so on. Politics is an arena where there is contestation over facts, values, even numbers. There is no objective, neutral evaluation of facts. The very nature of the economic, rational approach is contested.
The volume explores the debates between the political and rational models in such arenas as the goals for society, the nature of deciding on which problems should be addressed, and how solutions are addressed.
This is a thought-provoking work that will leave readers thinking about the nature of policy making and what is at stake.
My one large critique of Stone is her extremely apparent liberal bias. While the ideas she presents are not inherently liberal or conservative (though one could certainly make the argument that the 'market model' she argues against is a conservative one and the 'polis model' she champions is a liberal one), the examples she draws to illustrate them are biased towards a liberal perspective. Whenever she presents something 'bad' done in a policy situation, it is almost always a Republican or conservative doing it, while liberal ideas and actions are almost always presented as the 'right thing' to do or a compassionate application of policy. Even as a liberal myself, it got a bit grating towards the end of the book. At times in certain chapters it seemed like Stone was soapboxing about an issue, even if that issue was only tangentially relevant to the topic at hand.
If you can get past the bias, and perhaps only skim the examples she uses, there is still a lot to get out of this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved this book and have used it many times to cite references in college papers. I highly recommend buying from this seller.Published 1 month ago by CCasale
Great book but long - its over 300 pages and i felt some things were dragged unneccesarily. but overall, a good public policy bookPublished 4 months ago by Eve
Deborah Stone makes complicated policy issues easy to understand. Used this book for a public policy course as part of my undergrad, and actually found myself looking forward to... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Milhouse
Stone's framework of understanding public policy is easy to read and understand. Her endless pro-Progressive agenda examples are tiresome and often, seemingly, poorly place MSNBC... Read morePublished 11 months ago by rickg
The book arrived very quickly and I was very pleased, however, the book is cut/torn on the spine and the bottom is frayed. Read morePublished 12 months ago by dya