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  • Author: Adam Jones
  • Publication Date: 07-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: The progress of the Russian press in the late Soviet and post-Soviet eras can be described (with apologies to Vladimir Lenin) as "two steps forward, on step back." The flowering of glasnost (openness) under Mikhail Gorbachev le to a "golden age" of Soviet journalism, including an explosion of new publications and a lifting of nearly all state restrictions on journalists' professional activities. However, the collapse of the USSR and the onset of material crisis in 1991-92 quickly produced a winnowing of the press and a retrenchment on the part of surviving publications. At the same time, powerful new forces - especially oligarchs and regional and leaders - arose to vie with the state for influence over post-Soviet media. This paper explores the trajectory of one of the leading newspapers of the Soviet and post-Soviet period, Izvestia, in the light of those broader trends. While Izvestia emerged from the ashes of Soviet communism with formal control over its material plant and journalistic collective, it was soon subjected to a tug-of-war between powerful actors determined to control its destiny - first the Communist-dominated Duma (parliament), and then large corporations and business oligarchs. The struggle led, in 1997, to the dismissal of the paper's editor. Oleg Golembiovsky, and the departure of many staff to form Novye Izvestia (New Izvestia) - though this publication too, was also unwilling or unable to avoid the temptations of a close alliance with one of the leading oligarchs, Boris Berezovsky. The findings are place in the broader comparative context of the press in transition, based on the author's research into process of media liberalization and transition worldwide.
  • Topic: Cold War, Development, Government
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Catherine Boone, Jake Batsell
  • Publication Date: 02-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: Political Science as an academic discipline has been slow to grapple with the enormous implications of the AIDS crisis for society, politics, and economy in much of the developing world. This paper argues that political scientists do, in fact, have much to offer the struggle to understand and respond to the AIDS crisis. It also argues that research in this area could contribute to theory-building in areas of traditional concern to political science. There is a rich array of research agendas linking AIDS and politics that are worthy of systematic attention. We sketch out five of these as they relate to Africa. They have to do with explaining variations in state response to the pandemic; the relationship between African governments and NGOs; the AIDS challenge to neo-liberalism; AIDS and North-South tensions; and connections between AIDS and international security issues. The discussion is intended to be suggestive; it is intended to provoke and encourage research and scholarly debate on these issues.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Politics
  • Political Geography: Africa
  • Author: Jesús Velasco
  • Publication Date: 01-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: This essay analyzes the life and work of one of the most distinguished American sociologists of the twentieth century, Seymour Martin Lipset. The essay evaluates two fundamental themes in Lipset's work, his analysis of democracy and anti-democracy and his thoughts on American exceptionalism. The paper concludes with some lessons derived from Lipset's work and life for Mexico and Mexican academics.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Education
  • Political Geography: America
  • Author: Joge Schiavon
  • Publication Date: 01-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: The article explores the Mexico-United States bilateral relation during the administrations of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lazaro Cardenas, in order to better understand how U.S. domestic and foreign policies influence the management of its relation with Mexico, which in turn can facilitate or not the implementation of public policies in the Mexican system. The principal hypothesis is that the New Deal modified the American liberal conception of state intervention in economic and social issues inside the United States, and that this permitted Cardenas' economic heterodoxy, both in political and ideological terms. Evidence is provided to support two points. First, the changes in U.S. foreign policy that resulted from the enactment of the Good Neighbor Policy invested the Cardenas administration with greater autonomy in economics issues. Second, the new economic ideas derived from the New Deal facilitated and justified increased state intervention of Cardenas' government in the economy, using fiscal policy and direct sate participation in economic areas defined as strategic. In sum, this article demonstrates that Roosevelt's domestic and foreign policies generated a permissive environment for the enactment of the most important public policies during the administration of Cardenas, supporting the idea that U.S. internal and international actions directly affect the possibilities of policy implementation in Mexico.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Mexico
  • Author: Peter Trubowitz
  • Publication Date: 01-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: This paper, the first of a planned two-part analysis, examines the institutions of paramilitarism, death squads, and warlords in Latin America, with a focus on the case-studies of Mexico and Peru. It begins with an overview of the small comparative literature on paramilitary movements and death squads around the world, seeking to define and clarify the terminology. The literature on "warlordism" is then reviewed, and the similarities and distinctions between paramilitaries and warlords are considered. Lastly, I examine two case-studies that have not, as yet, received extended attention in the comparative literature: Mexico and Colombia. The paper concludes by summarizing the findings and charting a course for future investigations.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Colombia, Latin America, Mexico
  • Author: Alan Wolfe
  • Publication Date: 09-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues
  • Abstract: It is very difficult to discuss the issues which are raised in my book, without talking about September 11. This event is so important in our history, and, in fact, so important in the history of the modern world generally, that I am going to tailor at least some of my comments around it and try to reflect both on the event itself and on some of the things that I have said in my work over the course of the last few years and how these things interact with each other.
  • Topic: Education, Government, Politics, Religion
  • Author: Paul S. Boyer
  • Publication Date: 03-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues
  • Abstract: In 1967, Louis Halle published a book called The Cold War as History. If that title seemed jarring and premature in 1967, it would simply appear obvious and conventional today. The Cold War is receding from our collective consciousness with breathtaking rapidity. Cold War encyclopedias are appearing; an Oxford Companion to the Cold War will doubtless arrive at any moment. To the college freshmen of 2000 — seven years old when Ronald Reagan left the White House — the Cold War is merely a chapter in a textbook, an hour on the History Channel, not lived experience.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Cold War, Communism
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States
  • Author: Michael Hardt
  • Publication Date: 10-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute on Globalization and the Human Condition, McMaster University
  • Abstract: The discourse of globalization has become dominant in recent years in an extraordinarily wide variety of contexts, equally on the left and on the right – from journalism to public policy discussions, from business strategy to labor organizing, and within the university across the social sciences and humanities. It is something like the discourse on postmodernism that blossomed about a decade earlier but seems to me even more extensive. This paper is an attempt to sort out some of the political positions taken within the discourse on globalization to help clarify the stakes in the globalization debates and the political consequences of the various theoretical and empirical claims. My assumption, in fact, is that political positions or desires dictate to a large extent the various analytical characterizations of globalization. What I will attempt, then, is to construct a typology of positions on globalization using the question of democracy as the first line of division. In other words, I will first divide theories in two groups: those who claim that globalization fosters democracy and those who maintain that globalization hinders or obstructs democracy. I will further divide these positions into arguments on the right and those on the left because this is a context in which I believe there remain very clear divisions between right and left, and it would be incoherent to group them together.
  • Topic: Globalization, International Political Economy, Political Economy
  • Author: William D. Coleman
  • Publication Date: 10-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute on Globalization and the Human Condition, McMaster University
  • Abstract: Global finance is simultaneously one of the most globalized and one of the most esoteric sectors in the world economy. Within global finance, perhaps no activity is more esoteric and more difficult to understand than the buying and selling of derivatives. Their names are familiar perhaps – futures, options, forwards, swaps – but their nature is obscure. Simply put, derivatives are financial instruments that are used to hedge risk. If a Canadian corporation knows that it will want to buy 50 million US dollars on foreign exchange markets in three months time, it can arrange a fixed price for that purchase using a financial contract called a derivative. In doing so, it lowers the risk of the price of the currency changing drastically before it purchases the amounts it needs.
  • Topic: Globalization, Government, International Trade and Finance, Markets
  • Political Geography: United States, Canada
  • Author: Raymond J. Struyk, L. Jerome Gallagher
  • Publication Date: 11-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Urban Institute
  • Abstract: A hallmark of the administration of social assistance under the socialist regimes in Eastern Europe and the USSR was the universal nature of eligibility for benefits, either to all citizens or to categories of deserving citizens, e.g., the physically handicapped. During the transition period since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Russian Federation has taken limited steps to improve the targeting of benefits. The challenge to improvement is acute because the administration of the great majority of programs rests with agencies of local government. The question addressed here is how amenable local program administration is to improved targeting and more progressive program administration in general. Presented is an analysis of the results of assessments of two pilot programs implemented in two Russian cities in 2000–2001. The “school lunch pilot” introduced means testing in the school lunch program on a citywide basis; eligible families receive cash payments and all children pay the same price for their lunches in cash. The “jobs pilot” is a new, local means-tested program that provides cash support to families while unemployed workers search for work; continued receipt of funds is conditional on a minimum job search effort. We find that both programs were successfully implemented and that there was little resistance to the sharper targeting. On the other hand, a variety of problems with program administration were identified—problems that need to be addressed if program integrity and credibility are to be maintained.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia