POLI 142K Lecture Notes - Lecture 10: Opportunity Cost, David Stahel, Finnish War

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Published on 8 Sep 2015
School
UCSD
Department
Political Science
Course
POLI 142K
Poli%Sci%142K%
Politics%and%Warfare%
Spring%2015%
%
Week%5,%Friday,%May%1st%
%
I. Domestic%Commitment%
A. The%level%of%commitment%a%civilian%population%will%accept%to%fight%and%
win%war.%
a. This%can%be%represented%as%an%opportunity%cost%–%the%cost%of%
opportunities%foregone%
1. Taxation%and%Debt%
2. Mass%Conscription%
3. Military%Preparedness%
4. The%Risks%of%War%–%fighting%(damage%to%homeland)%
5. And%these%are%the%costs%of%commitment;%shift%of%
resources%from%peace%and%civilian%resources%to%war%
(opportunity%costs)%
B. Escalation%of%the%minimum%commitment%level%
a. Minimum%commitment%levels%measure%the%average%cost%the%
median%subject%or%citizen%of%a%given%state%will%pay%to%wage%
war%
1. This%cost%accrues%in%periods%of%peace%as%well%as%actual%
war%
2. The%average%level%can%be%understood%as%a%threshold%or%
floor%that%is%stable%and%will%not%shift%downward%under%
the%stress%of%war%
3. War%requires%domestic%resource%mobilization%and%this%is%
an%opportunity%cost%
II. Significance%of%the%Paradox%of%Domestic%Commitment%
A. Explaining%burden%bearing%and%burden%sharing%
a. Capacity%of%societies%to%bear%and%share%the%costs%of%warfare%
B. Explanation%of%variability%of%commitment%across%time%and%states%
C. Explanation%of%asymmetric%war%when%apparently%weaker%power%wins%
a. RussoVJapanese%War%1904V5%
III. Explaining%the%American%Revolution:%The%American%War%Choice%1775%(1775V
83)**%
A. Technological%asymmetries%
B. Leadership%
C. Domestic%Commitment%
D. British%Strategy%
a. 1775V1777%–%New%England%
b. 1777V1779%–%Middle%Atlantic%
c. 1779V1781%–%South%
**If%we%add%capabilities%measured%by%population%and%resources%minus%
domestic%commitment,%the%British%are%even%more%advantaged.%
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