The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear

The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear I watched this documentary last night. Like most documentaries most of the information is true but framed in a way which persuades viewers to come to a certain conclusion. The documentary’s thesis (if you want to call it that) argues that for the last 60 or […]

New Graduate Student Conference on the EU and World Politics!

I am the co-adviser to the University at Buffalo’s SUNY Model European Union organization, which is a transatlantic collegiate simulation of the European Union in the US. At this year’s simulation, held at the University of Exeter in the UK, several colleagues from Buffalo State College and I decided to organize an inter-campus graduate student conference on […]

Media Bias and the Ability to Uncover the Truth

Media Bias Those of you familiar with my Wartime Elections model know that I assume the actor, I call the Media (M), to be “unbiased”. Specifically, Nature send a noisy signal to M, and M sends that “unbiased” but potentially noisy signal to the Electorate (E) about the “true” state of the war. You may already be thinking, […]

LaTeX Math WordPress Plugin: Jetpack vs. Simple Mathjax

Jetpack LaTex vs. Simple-Mathjax I just recently discovered the Simple Mathjax plugin. I was suggesting to someone that they could use HTML code to embed math into their blogger blogs using the HTML editor and Peter Krautzberger (one of the developers of the Simple Mathjax plugin for WordPress) suggested this plugin for WordPress (Mathjax also […]

Link Between Wealth and Homo Economicus Behavior?

Do individuals who earn higher income behave more like John Stewart Mill’s Economic Man? In other words, does wealth increase the likelihood of greedy predispositions and thus increased “unethical behavior”? New research published in the early edition of  the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences seems to suggest this very result. Researchers from the the University of California, Berkeley and Rotman School of Management, […]

Prolonging Defeat (Wartime Elections)

Yesterday there was an interesting blog post by Phil Arena discussing how the costs of war are distributed within democracies. The idea behind distributing the costs of war is that, “By shielding the average voter from the worst of war’s ravages, which they can do through a variety of strategies, not the least of which is avoiding […]

Wartime Elections

Motivation How does war (or any highly significant policy) affect the electorate’s vote choice? Moreover, how do different signals regarding the state of the war (success or failure) help the electorate to form their belief about the incumbent’s war policy? The political science literature regarding the affect of war on elections has a long history, beginning with […]

The Importance of (Formal) Theory and the Theoretical Consistency Assumption

Hello Again Everyone, I have just received my copy of A Model Discipline: Political Science and the Logic of Representations by Clarke and Primo. I have not yet begun to read the book; however, the  idea that the emphasis political scientists put on testing (formal) models and the way that practice may distort how we view […]

Should Political Scientist Prescribe Public Policy?

Happy Holidays! I hope everyone is having a great holiday season and enjoying time with family and friends. Prescriptive Realism I just received the December 2011 copy of Perspectives on Politics. As I was flipping through an article immediately caught my eye: “A Realist Foreign Policy for the United States” by Rosato and Schuessler. In this piece the […]

Random Assignment as an Instrumental Variable…

Hello All, I am still reading Experimental Political Science and the Study of Causality by Morton and Williams and in Chapter 5 the authors discuss how randomization in experimental design actually works like an “idea” instrumental variable (IV) in terms of controlling for confounding variables. Essentially there are three conditions for an ideal IV: (1) Statistical […]