Friday, March 31, 2006

Defense versus State

Via Powerline, this is an absolutely fascinating post over at Big Lizards. The thesis is that Presidential administrations can be characterized by whether the Department of State or the Department of Defense is ascendant. Without subscribing to all the editorial comments in the post, it does seem to characterize recent administrations--and the way they are personified in the media--quite well.

Taking the framework a little bit furhter, I think that most elite college campuses are State campuses. Very few, outside of the service academies, would be Defense campuses. And that may explain some of the disconnect between the military and the academy.

4 comments:

Arun Khanna said...

I think foreign policy is driven by influence brought to bear on specific issues by think tanks including Council on Foreign Policy, Rand, Brookings, Hoover, AEI, Carnegie and others. The weight that specific think tank’s carry within an administration determines, on the margin, the course of American foreign policy.

Arun Khanna said...

To clarify, my previous post suggests that defense versus state department suffers from an omitted variables problem. The omitted variable is weighted average think-tank in the capital (WATC), which is a reliable empirical proxy for post World War-II American foreign policy.

Anand said...

What do you call a Presidential Administration characterized by the Department of Homeland Security being ascendant?

Arun Khanna said...

What do you call a Presidential Administration characterized by the Department of Homeland Security being ascendant?

Bush administration.