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    How changes to how the Census counts people has implications for democracy and inequality

How changes to how the Census counts people has implications for democracy and inequality

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The US Census Bureau recently announced that it will be changing the demographics it measures and how it counts people. Hannah L. Walker and Rebecca U. Thorpe argue that the Bureau’s revisions are an important opportunity to correct current practices of counting prisoners as residents where they are incarcerated rather than in their home communities. Such practices distort democratic […]

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    Rand Paul’s budget filibuster shows the decline of the US Senate as a deliberative body

Rand Paul’s budget filibuster shows the decline of the US Senate as a deliberative body

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Last week Kentucky GOP Senator Rand Paul filibustered a budget bill which would have kept the US government open. John D. Rackey writes that Paul’s filibuster – which was very unusual in and of itself – was in protest that his amendment to the budget bill was not given a vote. This lack of input outside of the Senate […]

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    Book Review: Picturing the Cosmos: A Visual History of Early Soviet Space Endeavor by Iina Kohonen

Book Review: Picturing the Cosmos: A Visual History of Early Soviet Space Endeavor by Iina Kohonen

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In Picturing the Cosmos: A Visual History of Early Soviet Space Endeavor, Iina Kohonen examines a variety of artworks and archival materials to offer a visual history of the Soviet space programme. This beautifully illustrated book provides compelling insight into the construction of the cosmonauts as idealised heroes of the Soviet Union, finds Taylor R. Genovese, and shows the role that cosmic images played […]

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    Book Review: The Neopopular Bubble: Speculating on ‘the People’ in Late Modern Democracy by Péter Csigó

Book Review: The Neopopular Bubble: Speculating on ‘the People’ in Late Modern Democracy by Péter Csigó

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In The Neopopular Bubble: Speculating on ‘the People’ in Late Modern Democracy, Péter Csigó argues that the financial crisis of 2008 has exposed the novel forms of sense-making that have come to dominate public discourse: mechanisms that are collective, speculative and mythological in nature, resulting in autonomous discursive ‘bubbles’ that are largely immune to falsification. The book provides a foundation for a […]

American democracy sold to the highest bidder

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If the quality of democracy is to be measured by the extent to which it constrains the economically dominant, then American democracy is failing, writes George Tyler. Recent research has shown how campaign financing is skewing policy influence towards top earners. This is in contrast to many northern European countries, which can offer practical models for the US to […]

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    State of the States for 9 February: Vermont’s plan to buy Canadian drugs, South Carolina’s uncompetitive elections, and Oregon’s budget hoax

State of the States for 9 February: Vermont’s plan to buy Canadian drugs, South Carolina’s uncompetitive elections, and Oregon’s budget hoax

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USAPP Managing Editor, Chris Gilson, looks at the week in US state blogging.  
Northeast 
On Saturday, New Hampshire’s Granite Grok is unsurprised that the state’s Attorney General has determined that a ban on firearms on school property was unlawful.  They comment that the state is a “Dillon’s Rule State”, meaning that municipal government – in this case, local school officials – only […]

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    How white middle class social capital can lock immigrants out of more generous state welfare policies

How white middle class social capital can lock immigrants out of more generous state welfare policies

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Social capital is often a positive force in communities: it can help connect individuals and help societies run more smoothly. But, it can also work to enforce controls against those who society perceives to be rule-breakers. In new research which examines social capital’s role in influencing states’ welfare provision, Daniel Hawes and Austin McCrea find that as a state’s […]

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    States with partisan judicial elections and professionalized courts attract greater campaign contributions

States with partisan judicial elections and professionalized courts attract greater campaign contributions

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More than twenty US states use competitive elections – some partisan, some not – to choose their judges. As with much of the rest of US politics, judicial candidates are often reliant on campaign contributions from businesses, ideological groups, and individuals. In new research, Brent Boyea finds that where states hold partisan elections and have professionalized courts, individual contributors […]

Book Review: Assembly by Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri

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Why is it that so many revolutions and other social movements have seemingly failed to bring their emancipatory ideals into being? In response to this enduring question, Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri offer Assembly, which inverts the traditional division of revolutionary labour to give strategic force to the assembly of the multitude. While the book aims to offer a blueprint […]

  • Permalink Petroleum-based plastics now take up about 25 percent of the volume of landfills. But knives, forks, and spoons made from a starch-polyester material won't contribute to the problem, thanks to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA),  Agriculture Research Service (ARS) innovation. Various biodegradable starch-polyester compositions can be used for other one-time-use items such as plastic bags and wraps that are now made from petroleum. USDA photo by Scott Bauer.Gallery

    Book Review: Food, Power and Agency by Jürgen Martschukat and Bryant Simon

Book Review: Food, Power and Agency by Jürgen Martschukat and Bryant Simon

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In Food, Power and Agency, editors Jürgen Martschukat and Bryant Simon bring together contributors to explore how food, power and agency contribute to the formation of ‘culinary capital’ around the world. This is a rich and invigorating account of the forces shaping our everyday food and eating practices, both historically and in the present day, finds Gurpinder Lalli. 

Food, Power and Agency. Jürgen Martschukat and […]

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