Sept 19 , 2012-11-07 Main concern is polarity.
Different types of polarity : Unit polarity, geminy or hegemont, biopolarity,
which is most condusive to peace, and which is most condusive to war?
The condition of two powers is most condusive to peace… lines are clear
who’s on who’s side. Balance.
Other will say unipolarity… for ex. The Roman Empire in the West.
Meersheimer talks about regional hegemonts. Different regions of the world.
Have his cake and eat it too.
Others will say multipolarity—obviously controversial… if everyones on par
then nobody has a reason to try and upset the status quo.
Athens vs. Sparta
Roman Empire—was it stable?
Multipolar stable—is this stable or more condusive to war?
MADELINE SOMETHING: we need to spread nuclear weapons—if everyone
has bombs no one will bombs‖
Anarchy understand a certain way of uncertainty.
Realists—play into the issue of security and arms
Liberals—going to have a similar view point.
SQUEAL-SILENT—basic fundamental choice
SILENT-SQUEAL –basic fundamental choice
You’re going to squeal. What happens?
Less than best outcome if both squeal.
GET KELLYS NOTES
The outcomes, preferences and the interests are shaped by the actors
determined by the system.
HOW DO WE GET OUT OF THIS?
-once chance to confess or not confess.
-don’t get caught.
-create a new structure—adjust the rules.
HOW WOULD YOU DO THAT?
First thing you’d want to attack is:
Create a context which changes the rewards and punishments.
Create a context where the actors are not faced with orders faced this. International organizations: UN, EU, WTO –what these groups are meant to
do is address issues of uncertainty—by changing the payouts of this.
If you cheat, you get less out of it.
If you cooperate, you get more of it.
Set up institutions wthat will change interactions.
ONE SHOT GAME. What do you want to choose?
1) try to establish mutual communication
2) You want to extend the game ( an interested game)
3) ONE SHOT GAME change it in 2-3 days)
4) Create mechanisms of game changes that lead to preferences.
In terms of nuclear arms races, WW1:
What ends up happening is two sides: warefare and artillery. One shot
game =bomb the hell of someone before they bomb you. Trench
warefare=increase body count. The artillery would begin to fire at regular
times at regular targets.
Ex. Of shooting one spot same time every day…
―tit for tat‖
Rotating artillery teams for a new area. You wind up back in the
prisoner’s dilemma ―fire fast and hope you can get away with it‖
Example of logic works and can be avoided.
Trying to create lines of communication= patterns of behavior.
They tried to make a discrimination between the offensive and defensive
concentrate on offensive capabilities—basically while you’re spending time
on offensive…it exaggerates security dilemma.
If you spend time on defense, it can moderate the security dilemma.
If you can gain an offensive advantage against opponent. Gives you
incentive to attack them. ―War is worth it‖
Realists don’t necessarily encourage this.
Offensive vs. defense shows how the security dilemma can be exaggerated
In the cold war, was it a defense advantage?
Ex. Chariot—let’s go. You have the chariot, they don’t, you run them over.
Trenches, barb-wire. DEFENSIVE capabilities. Blunts the security dilemma.
France line. We lessen the security dilemma we face.
What about rifles, tanks, airplanes? SDI? How does that work out? You’re taking away our means of striking
you…this is vulnerable to you. We’re going to send so many nuclear weapons
you won’t be able to stop them.
In the readings neo-realists talk about this.
In the situation such as SDI, where it’s unclear whether it’s an offensive or
defensive ---default position is ALWAYS OFFENSIVE.
Terms of relative gains or absolute gains. Why you’re doing this and what
you hope to get out of this.
For realism & neo-realism: gains are to be understood relative to your
opponent. You’re trying to do better than the other person.
Ideally, what you should try to do is make the best grade you can make.
Gains are measured relative to other actors. If gains come, and there are
other things people gain or benefit from, you want them to be as equal as
you can get them.
You will not engage in cooperation that benefits someone else better than
you. Any gain that’s applied can be used against you. No matter how small
the advantage---that’s a potential threat.
The system gives incentives to avoid cooperation.
The incentive reflects.
Discussion on Liberals:
The theory of liberalism: READ KANT ARTICLE ― Perpetual peace‖ and DOYLE
article… refines it in a way for temporary discussions.
They loosen the differentiation between international relations (system
levels) and domestic level
Basic principles of liberalism:
Individual is important—we have rights and responsibilities.
We are free and equal—which means that to achieve our goals, we are free
to cooperate with one another. We are free to associate or not associate with
one another. Domestic level: opportunities for individuals to form clubs etc.,
liberals in IR politics will hold you can do the same thing at the system level.
Just like the domestic level, when there is a dispute between us there
usually means of judication.
Liberal theorists will try to make an argument that there are on the
international level. Analogy between domestic vs. IR level.
They understand the emphasis of anarchy and the consequences. This is Enbal saying some bullshit about the PSSA. There will be beer.
Ferrel will be there. Also, she just told me to apply to VP Communications.
This is my friend Jess, from last Thursday night. She’s pretty cool too, you
should do this as you meet a lot of people from poli sci. Its good for
Now class starts. Time to stop taking notes.
Prof said that he’s really stoned.
Conferences start next week. There will be a Friday lecture.
Different types of realism.
Classical realism vs. structural realism
classical is based on Morgenthau. States pursue power as a reflection of
human nature. We have a desire to dominate. This creates competition
among nations. We touched on some problems already.
From this perspective anarchy is the result of this pursuit of power. It isn’t a
result of functions similarities among states, but rather a reflection of how
individuals are constituted.
Power is designed as influence over other peoples minds. Similarly it
indicates power as not physical coercion solely.
They juxtapose their views over the individual level. Because individuals at
the domestic level aren’t worried about survival.
Because the concern for power is so sharp, they need to pursue things that
will ensure them to survive.
for the classical realist this is defined primarily as the national interest.
also, there is the idea of realpolitik. The idea of the national interest is the
articulation of the concern for power. RP is the policies necessary to pursue
the national interest. National interest is the articulation of the concern for
power and the ensurance of survival. RP refers to the policies and the
flexibility that allows us to pursue the national interest. NI is the ends, RP is
the means. One thing to note about this. RP implies that statesmen need
some realistic perception of what’s going on in their affairs with others. They cannot allow themselves to be guided by hopes or ideals, or be overly
optimistic, but rather must have realistic views of the strengths and
weaknesses of others.
Similarly, they need to choose the appropriate means to get what they want.
Along these lines, ideology and morality don’t really matter.
Example is Nixon and Kissinger during the Vietnam War allowing the USA to
invade Cambodia. The Viet Cong was using Cambodia to sneak around the
army in Vietnam. Doing this essentially was bombing a neutral country.
This was them doing what was necessary to achieve their goals, without
dealing with the moral issues of bombing a neutral country.
Another example from Nixon is Nixon going to China. Although he hates
Communism, he wants détente. Therefore he goes to China in order to
augment the rift between China and the USSR. Even though he ideologically
hates communism, he makes allies with a communist power because it gets
him what he wants. It will help advance the national interest.
They were at war with Vietnam over communism, while making Communist
allies in China.
Realpolitik is understood as a balancing act. There is an equilibrium
between the great powers, and they should all balance each other out in
order to avoid war. When the USA was fighting the USSR they pursued
détente with China in order to balance out a perceived imbalance with the
Soviets. A balance of power does not imply peace, although it does create
the likelihood of peace. An imbalance does not.
Another example is the USA setting up NATO in 1949. The first thing the
USSR did was apply for membership. Since they are not allowed to join,
they set up the Warsaw Pact in order to balance things. This is something
that a classical realist would anticipate.
Morgenthau indicates several keys of strategies that statesmen would
pursue. One is the divide and conquer. Another thing that is pursued is
compensations. Then there is arming oneself and forming alliances.
what are the strengths of the classical approach? There is after all the
problem of using the excuse of human nature. There are descriptive claims
about things being made regarding peace and war. The pursuit of power
trumps everything else. The problem is that these then bleed into policy
prescriptions. A theory of how things are then bleeds into a theory of what
you should do. It is not clear to understand the difference between analysis and prescription in classical realist tracts. They are two very different
things. This is why scholars move away from human nature. It mixes
description with evaluation.
As interesting and insightful as classical realism is, the two get bled
there is some ambiguity in the theory.
There is positive and negative peace. FIO.
How would a classical realist explain the persistence of NATO
Moving on to neo and structural.
There are a couple of things to know about structures that a neo realist
provides. Structures provide interests and constraints to the actors. What
this indicates is that the structure shapes the characters. Sometimes the
examples given are sports analogies.
Changes in the nature of football rules from 70s to 80s. at one time d-men
couldn’t take their hands away from their torso, and the defensive ends
could hold them or do anything really.
this will lead to a ground running game. In the 80s the rules change, which
allows lineman to move their arms around and hit people back. Receivers
cannot be touched past a certain point. This leads to the development of the
passing game. This changed the interests and actions of the actors.
whether the system is anarchic or hierarchic determines who the actors are,
and how they will behave. Along these lines there is a process of
socialization that goes with the system. Actors see what is successful and
they begin to imitate it. When passing becomes successful everyone does it.
what is the influence of Harry Potter on the publishing industry? It has lead
to the rise of the Franchise. You want products that can be Franchised, and
filmed and merchandised and the like. Everyone is asking who is the next
JK Rowling? Not because she is a great writer, but because she is a great
franchisor. This leads to the development of Twilight, and 50 Shades of
Justin Biebers success leads to One Direction.
If one form of technology works well in battle, then everyone else will
develop it. A certain type of behavior can affect the actors and socialize them in it. If
you do not pursue these changes then you will not be in the system for very
where does structural level come from?
An important question of structural analysis is how it deals with change? J
biebs became famous from YouTube. YouTube was a change in society, but
not in the recording industry, but now it has affected the recording industry.
States from the neo perspective, are rational actors, and they are the
primary foci of attention. This means that they have preferences, and they
will engage in the appropriate means to achieve them. The preferences are
a reflection of the system, not of the individuals in the system. Anarchy
puts us in a situation of self-help. You want to survive, and cannot rely on
anyone else. How does this compare with how we saw classical realists?
The idea of states having a preference for survival and self-help is very
logically sound. Survival is a major preference. Survival not necessarily
All states have this preference. Every state is faced with a preference for
survival given the anarchic system they find themselves in. therefore, from
the neo perspective, there is no specialization among states. No one can
provide you with the guarantee for survival that you need. While the theory
is logically precise, it is problematic. In the Cold War the USA uses its
nuclear weapons to guarantee the existence of NATO states. Neo theory
says that we should not expect this. Perhaps the USA saw it as necessary
for its survival to ensure their trade partners survival as well. In neo there
is a sharp divide between what the theory is and what the application should
be. In any event, the ability to meet this preference is measured by the
distribution of capabilities in each place. There is a division of power. How
this interest shapes itself out is based upon how well each state can
guarantee its survival. This is described in Miershimer(FIO). This is through
existing resources as well as through reputation and influence. One thing
about neo is given that there is the importance of the system is that the
distribution of power is understood through polarity. This depends on the
number of powerful actors in the system at the time. In a unipolar world
there is a hegemon. Bipolar and so on. Bipolar is cold war, and Athens and
Sparta during the 5 thC. Are we in a unipolar world or a multipolar world?
Why doesn’t the USA act in Syria? Because Russia and China would block
them. Does that mean we are in a unipolar world or a multipolar world?
What if the USA were to guarantee Russian Naval leases? the major thing to worry about in the distribution of power in a polar world is
the security dilemma. The major theoretically concern of the neo. The more
you do to provide security for yourself, the more you make others insecure.
In a self-help system where you cannot depend upon others, the more you
do to protect yourself, the more you worry others. Maud’s notes for WEEK 3:
Anarchy is what results from pursuit of power
Not a result of functional similarities between states
Power is defined in terms of influence of power over people’s minds
Political power is not necessary physical coercsion
Classical realist – governments don’t face the same issues at the domestic
level, not the case at the international level
National interest (pusue of power for survival)
Real politik (means)
National interest (ends)
Policies to pursue the national interest
Implies that states need to have some sort of realistic perception of
what is going with their relations with others
Cannot be influenced by hopes or ideals
Need to chose the appropriate means for what they want
o Nixon and Kissinger – Vietnam
o Allowed Vietnam to invade Cambodia
o So the USA bombed Cambodia (neutral country)
o You do what you can to achieve your goal – doesn’t matter
Moral principle is not important
o Nixon hates communism (détente with china)