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Rhodes - Do Bureaucratic Politics Matter.docx

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Political Science
Course Code
POLI 243
Mark Brawley

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Do Bureaucratic Politics Matter? Some Disconfirming Findings from the Case of the U.S Navy By: Edward Rhodes Notes Pages: 12-21 - What is observed: a stable set of rules; they establish “action-channels” that give the (chief of naval operations) CNO immense power. - Principal variation in game: identity and parochial interests of players who occupy CNO’s office. - CNO’s identity=key variable in the force-posture game due to the “bureaucratic and intellectual baggage” CNO carries. - Model III’s dominant interference pattern suggests that the variations we observe in force-posture should reflect the variation in this game. - The rules of the force posture game: the 3 unions compete for shares of the navy’s resources; they do not collaborate to increase the “size of the pie” instead. - The navy’s unionization made rational analysis of force requirements impossible. - The unions’ parochialism led to an ironic consequence – it made serious analysis impossible, as well as completely undercut navy’s case for any possible further resources. - Civilians observers stressed that intraservice rivalry is “unusually severe” and the competition between the 3 dominant unions of the navy has driven its force posture. - The balance of power between the 3 unions influenced the shape of the Navy. - The reality of limited resources means the parochial intraservice fights about force posture are simply inevitable. - Defense journalist Arthur Hadley writes, “the Navy divides up its monies to satisfy the claims of those conflicting unions as much as for reasons of national defense.” - The CNO’s position cannot let him stand above this parochial, intranavy fray. - The CNO arrives into office depending on his OWN union for support; therefore there is impartiality present. - Similarly, union affiliation is said to be an important factor in civilian decision makers’ evaluations of potential CNO candidates. - Existence of deep parochial divisions within navy, centrality of force-posture, ties between CNO and his union thus suggest that CNO has an interest in favouring his union above all others. - What is also equally clear is that the CNO has the power to DO so, as well. - After WWII, the CNO emerged as having a great amount of power in controlling the otherwise decentralized navy. -
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