By Philip Green (auth.)
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Additional resources for American Democracy: Selected Essays on Theory, Practice, and Critique
Perhaps this trade of independence for participation has been worthwhile from the perspective of a problematical democratic pluralism; perhaps not. In any event, Smith offers no aid toward the answering of that question. We must also, finally, take as ironic Smith’s comment about RAND’s “long and arduous struggle” to sell its ideas to the Air Force: “The decision maker does not emerge here in the passive and largely reactive role that Sir Charles Snow portrays in Science and Government. ’ There is opportunity for laborious dissection of advisory recommendations at various policy levels” (p.
H. 5 Not only that, but in fact the “national defense” sector of any social order is now and probably always has been perceived of by its clientele as a welfare state. Thus when Friedman asserts, in Capitalism and Freedom, that the military should be a public charge, but long-distance highways should be “privately” owned and operated, we must charitably assume his ignorance of the fact that the bulk of the interstate highway network in the United States has been constructed by the authority of national defense legislation.
Beyond this major function, government may enable us at times to accomplish jointly what we would find it more difficult or expensive to accomplish severally. ”3 What is perhaps most instructive about this formulation is the way it typifies the kind of equivocating language in which a casually proffered exception (“may enable us at times”) can eat up the alleged rule, thus leaving us with an accurate feeling for the author’s class interests and attitudes but none the wiser about any operational principle he might be pursuing.
American Democracy: Selected Essays on Theory, Practice, and Critique by Philip Green (auth.)