5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity


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Where Advantage Lies

Instead of parties arising based on region or ethnicity, various regions and ethnic groups sought a place in one of the two major parties. Scholars of voting behavior have also suggested at least three other characteristics of the U. First, the United States has a presidential system in which the winner is selected not directly by the popular vote but indirectly by a group of electors known collectively as the Electoral College.

The winner-take-all system also applies in the Electoral College. Even if a new, third party is able to win the support of a lot of voters, it must be able to do so in several states in order to win enough electoral votes to have a chance of winning the presidency. Besides the existence of the Electoral College, political scientist Gary W. Such parties are common in other countries.

Finally, party success is strongly influenced by local election laws. Someone has to write the rules that govern elections, and those rules help to determine outcomes. In the United States, such rules have been written to make it easy for existing parties to secure a spot for their candidates in future elections.

But some states create significant burdens for candidates who wish to run as independents or who choose to represent new parties. For example, one common practice is to require a candidate who does not have the support of a major party to ask registered voters to sign a petition.

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We were so pumped up to get started that we went out at a. Visit Fair Vote for a discussion of ballot access laws across the country. Given the obstacles to the formation of third parties, it is unlikely that serious challenges to the U. But this does not mean that we should view it as entirely stable either. The U. Third-party movements may have played a role in some of these changes, but all resulted in a shifting of party loyalties among the U.

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Political parties exist for the purpose of winning elections in order to influence public policy. This requires them to build coalitions across a wide range of voters who share similar preferences. Since most U. Election outcomes would probably be based on the way voters compared the parties on the most important events of the day rather than on electoral strategy. There are many reasons we would be wrong in these expectations, however.

Each generation of voters has been a bit different from the last. Over time, the United States has become more socially liberal, especially on topics related to race and gender, and millennials—those aged 18—34—are more liberal than members of older generations. Also, as young Latinos reach voting age, they seem more inclined to vote than do their parents, which may raise the traditionally low voting rates among this ethnic group.

Additionally, the major parties have not always been unified in their approach to contesting elections.


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While we think of both Congress and the presidency as national offices, the reality is that congressional elections are sometimes more like local elections. Voters may reflect on their preferences for national policy when deciding whom to send to the Senate or the House of Representatives, but they are very likely to view national policy in the context of its effects on their area, their family, or themselves, not based on what is happening to the country as a whole.

For example, while many voters want to reduce the federal budget, those over sixty-five are particularly concerned that no cuts to the Medicare program be made. Finally, it sometimes happens that over a series of elections, parties may be unable or unwilling to adapt their positions to broader socio-demographic or economic forces. Parties need to be aware when society changes. If leaders refuse to recognize that public opinion has changed, the party is unlikely to win in the next election. For example, people who describe themselves as evangelical Christians are an important Republican constituency; they are also strongly opposed to abortion.

As a result, many women view the Republican Party as unsympathetic to their interests and are more likely to support Democratic candidates. Either way, the party system will be upended as a result of a party realignment , or a shifting of party allegiances within the electorate. One of the best-known party realignments occurred when Democrats moved to include African Americans and other minorities into their national coalition during the Great Depression.

After the Civil War , Republicans, the party of Lincoln, were viewed as the party that had freed the slaves. Their efforts to provide blacks with greater legal rights earned them the support of African Americans in both the South, where they were newly enfranchised, and the Northeast.

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When the Democrats, the party of the Confederacy, lost control of the South after the Civil War, Republicans ruled the region. However, the Democrats regained control of the South after the removal of the Union army in Democrats had largely supported slavery before the Civil War, and they opposed postwar efforts to integrate African Americans into society after they were liberated.

In addition, Democrats in the North and Midwest drew their greatest support from labor union members and immigrants who viewed African Americans as competitors for jobs and government resources, and who thus tended to oppose the extension of rights to African Americans as much as their southern counterparts did.

From to , Democratic candidates won just four of sixteen presidential elections. This rather-dismal success rate suggested that a change in the governing coalition would be needed if the party were to have a chance at once again becoming a player on the national level. That change began with the presidential campaign of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. FDR determined that his best path toward victory was to create a new coalition based not on region or ethnicity, but on the suffering of those hurt the most during the Great Depression.

This alignment sought to bring African American voters in as a means of shoring up support in major urban areas and the Midwest, where many southern blacks had migrated in the decades after the Civil War in search of jobs and better education for their children, as well as to avoid many of the legal restrictions placed on them in the South. Roosevelt accomplished this realignment by promising assistance to those hurt most by the Depression, including African Americans.

The strategy worked. The election is considered an example of a critical election , one that represents a sudden, clear, and long-term shift in voter allegiances. Those who favor stability of the current political and economic system tend to vote Republican, whereas those who would most benefit from changing the system usually favor Democratic candidates.


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  • Based on this alignment, the Democratic Party won the next five consecutive presidential elections and was able to build a political machine that dominated Congress into the s, including holding an uninterrupted majority in the House of Representatives from until From a fundamental point of view, one of the most interesting questions to ask about a blend of two polymers is whether they form a miscible mixture or solution. The thermodynamics of polymer blends is quite different from that of mixtures of low-molecular-weight materials, owing to their molecular size and the greater importance of compressibility effects.

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    Because of these, miscibility of two polymers generally is driven by energetic rather than the usual entropy considerations that cause most low-molecular-weight materials to be soluble in one another. The simple theories predict that miscibility of blends is unlikely; however, recent research has shown that by carefully selecting or designing the component polymers there are many exceptions to this forecast.


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    • The phase diagram for polymer blends is often opposite of what is found for solutions of low-molecular-weight compounds. Polymers often phase separate on heating rather than on cooling as expected for compounds of low molecular weight. Theories to explain the behavior of miscible polymer blends have emerged, but theoretical guidance for predicting the responsible interactions is primitive. With the advent of modern computing power and software development, molecular mechanics calculations of this type are being attempted.

      Neutron scattering has provided considerable insight about the thermodynamic behavior of blends and the processes of phase separation. One of the earliest blend products was a miscible mixture of poly phenylene oxide and polystyrene. The former is relatively expensive and rather difficult to process. The addition of polystyrene lowers the cost and makes processing easier. Numerous other commercial products are now based on miscible or partially miscible polymer pairs, including polycarbonate-polyester blends and high-performance ABS materials.

      Frequently, the unfavorable polymer-polymer interactions that lead to immiscibility cause an unstable and uncontrolled morphology and a weak interface. These features translate into poor mechanical properties and low-value products, that is, incompatibility. When this is the case, strategies for achieving compatibility are sought, generally employing block or graft copolymers to be located at the interface, much like surfactants. These copolymers can be formed separately and added to the blend or formed in situ by reactive coupling at the interface during processing.

      The former route has, for example, made it possible to make blends of polyethylene and polystyrene useful for certain packaging applications by addition of block copolymers formed via anionic synthesis. However, viable synthetic routes to block copolymers needed for most commercially interesting combinations of polymer pairs are not available.

      gohu-takarabune.com/policy/rastreamento-celular/givyd-app-localizar-celular.php For this reason, the route of reactive compatibilization is especially attractive and is receiving a great deal of attention for development of commercial products. It involves forming block or graft copolymers in situ during melt processing by reaction of functional groups. Extensive opportunities exist for developing schemes for compatibilization and for fundamental understanding of their mechanisms.

      A better understanding of polymer-polymer interactions and interfaces e. Especially important is the development of experimental techniques and better theories for exploring the physics of block and graft copolymers at such interfaces. This knowledge must be integrated with a better understanding of the rheology and processing of multiphase polymeric materials so that the morphology and interfacial behavior of these materials can be controlled.

      A wide variety of compatibilized polymer alloys have been commercialized, and the area is experiencing a high rate of growth. A product based on poly phenylene oxide , a polyamide, and an elastomer has been introduced for use in forming injection-molded automobile fenders and is currently being placed on several models of U.

      5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity 5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity
      5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity 5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity
      5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity 5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity
      5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity 5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity
      5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity 5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity
      5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity 5: The Five Structural Barriers to American Strength and Prosperity

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