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Lecture 3

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Political Science
POLI 243
Mark Brawley

11/01/13 Lecture 3: Liberalism  last 20 yrs: liberalism dominant, esp in IPE  before (60s & 70s): structural realism dominant Assuming Rational Action  assumption made by all paradigms  actions are purposive  actors have perfect info – rarely happens that actors have all info  actors know their preferences & can rank them  actors know all possible options, incl their conseq  actors calculate the costs & benefits associated w each option Liberalism’s Origins  critics of mercantilism in late 18 cent  monarch taxed ^ trade – collected tariff as goods crossed border  Adam Smith wrote The Wealth of Ntns – criticized Brit mercantilism  Smith understands need for $ collected from tariff & milit expansion  Smith’s criticism: definition of wealth (gold & silver) – said wealth = what society can consume (goods & services) o you’re not better off by hoarding $ & not spending on goods & serv. o trade  society wealthier – get goods you otherwise wouldn’t have o mercantilism = some people got special deals, unfair, taking away people’s choice over econ policy o mercantilism: econ control of markets thru colonialism/monopolies for expensive goods like tea (little consumer choice)  David Ricardo made formal arguments Reasons for Birth of Liberalism (1830s & 1840s)  British colonies revolting – Brit must re-think mercantilism  Brit undergoing industrialization  Brit adopts classical liberal policies internally & externally in early 19 cent th  success for Brit  ^ in power during 19 cent Assumptions of Classical Liberalism 1. individuals are the primary actors 2. individuals are rational, unitary actors (easier to assume than to assume society as whole is rational & unitary) 3. individuals maximize utility (individuals choose what they want) 4. everything can be traded 5. indivi
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