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 Department: Department of Political Science
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
The Road to Development is Paved With Good Institutions: The Political and Economic Implications of Financial Markets

The Road to Development is Paved With Good Institutions: The Political and Economic Implications of Financial Markets

Date: May 2008
Creator: Brown, Chelsea Denise
Description: This research seeks to identify the factors that account for the variation in development levels across nations by focusing on the institutional components of development, especially the effects of financial market development on economic and political development. I argue that financial market institutions are critical to economic and political development, and provide a partial explanation for the variation in development observed across nations. Financial market development affects political development indirectly through greater economic efficiency and growth and directly by reducing poverty, increasing economic equality, strengthening the middle class and increasing political participation. Increased financial market development also produces more efficient institutions and eliminates certain perverse incentives in government that result in corruption. The action mechanisms rest largely on the idea that increasing access to financial services allows the lower and middle- income segments of society to smooth their income and invest in high return activities that can lift people out of poverty. These improvements distribute both economic and intellectual resources throughout society and provide greater opportunities for political entrepreneurship from all societal groups. This, along with greater ability to participate either through monetary means or greater time, increases political participation and democratic development. Using a variety of econometric techniques to ...
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Rubber Stamps and Litmus Tests: The President, the Senate, and Judicial Voting Behavior in Abortion Cases in the U.S. Federal District Courts

Rubber Stamps and Litmus Tests: The President, the Senate, and Judicial Voting Behavior in Abortion Cases in the U.S. Federal District Courts

Date: August 2007
Creator: Craig, McKinzie
Description: This thesis focuses on how well indicators of judicial ideology and institutional constraints predict whether a judge will vote to increase abortion access. I develop a model that evaluates a judge's decision in an abortion case in light of ideological factors measured at the time of a judge's nomination to the bench and legal and institutional constraints at the time a judge decides a case. I analyze abortion cases from all of the U.S. Federal District Courts from 1973-2004. Unlike previous studies, which demonstrate that the president and the home state senators are the best predictors of judicial ideology, I find that the Senate Judiciary Committee at the time of the judge's nomination is the only statistically significant ideological indicator. Also, contrary to conventional wisdom, Supreme Court precedent (a legal constraint) is also a significant predictor of judicial voting behavior in abortion cases.
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Saying Sorry: Conflict Atrocity and Political Apology

Saying Sorry: Conflict Atrocity and Political Apology

Date: August 2009
Creator: Chalkley, Marie Leone
Description: This study proposes and tests a comprehensive theory detailing the motivations behind political apologies. A brief survey of the literature shows a field rich in case studies but lacking in rigorous scientific analysis. The theory presented proposes a three-level examination of political apology at the state, dyadic, and system levels and incorporates the effects of culture, conflict, and the nature of the international system into analysis. This study makes use of a new dataset recording the occurrence of political apologies for interstate conflict atrocities from 1900 to 2006. The results suggest that the existing literature, while rich, does not account for all the motivating factors behind apology. The results also confirm that political apology is a creation of the modern era and a result of the liberalization of the international system. In conclusion, paths for future research are suggested and the advent of a global "age of apology" is confirmed.
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Schoolyard Politics: Ethics and Language at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Schoolyard Politics: Ethics and Language at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Date: December 2010
Creator: Hatcher, Robert
Description: The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) has been both contentious and successful. By examining the ICTY from a Levinasian ethical standpoint, we might be able to understand how the court uses language to enforce ethical and moral standards upon post-war societies. Using linguistic methods of analysis combined with traditional data about the ICTY, I empirically examine the court using ordinary least squares (OLS) in order to show the impact that language has upon the court's decision making process. I hypothesize that the court is an ethical entity, and therefore we should not see any evidence of bias against Serbs and that language will provide a robust view of the court as an ethical mechanism.
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Service Matters: The Influence of Military Service on Political Behavior, Ideology and Attitudes

Service Matters: The Influence of Military Service on Political Behavior, Ideology and Attitudes

Date: August 2010
Creator: Johnson, Catherine L.
Description: The objective of this research is to explore the influence of military service on political behaviors and attitudes. Existing studies of the military have long recognized the existence of a predominantly conservative political ideology with a resulting propensity for strong Republican Party support within the military community, but have failed to explain the likely causal mechanism for this. Drawing on multiple sources of data from the 2008 Presidential election cycle, I utilized a descriptive analysis of campaign contribution data and bivariate and multivariate analyses of data from the 2008 Military Times Survey and the 2008 American National Election Survey. Much of the data also permitted me to analyze the effect of an individual's service branch on their attitudes as well. I examined the behavior and attitudes of the military across several dimensions, including candidate support and positions on policies of particular relevance to the military, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. This analysis found that people who serve in the military tend to be conservative but in many ways their political attitudes are reflective of those of the general population. An individual's race, ethnicity and gender appear to have more influence than military factors, with the exception of service ...
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Shared Norms, Hierarchical Maintenance, and International Hierarchy

Shared Norms, Hierarchical Maintenance, and International Hierarchy

Date: August 2013
Creator: Kurz, Aaron
Description: The dissertation studies two aspects of international hierarchy. The world of international politics is not one of completely sovereign states competing in anarchy. Patterns of hierarchy, where a dominant state has legitimate control over some actions of a subordinate state, color the globe. First, I look at shared norms and hierarchy. Most studies concerning hierarchy focus on material maximization as an explanation for hierarchy--if hierarchy increases the wealth and security of two states, then hierarchy is more likely. I argue that shared norms held by two states facilitate hierarchy. Shared norms produce a common in-group community, generate common interests, create common ways of doing business, and give rise to common values that increase subordinate states' ability to persuade the dominant state. These factors ease the creation and maintenance of international hierarchical relationships. Second, I study interstate behaviors that can be explained as actions of maintenance by dominant states over subordinates to preserve or increase a level of hierarchy. I theorize that sticks and carrots from a dominant state (like economic sanctions, military interventions, and foreign aid) help sustain a dominant state's rule by convincing subordinate states to follow the dominant state's commands and expectations. Using data on U.S. hierarchies from ...
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Solicitor Success: The Continuing Exploration of the Determinants of Governmental Success at the Supreme Court, 1986-2005

Solicitor Success: The Continuing Exploration of the Determinants of Governmental Success at the Supreme Court, 1986-2005

Date: August 2007
Creator: Grubbs, Kevin
Description: Studies of the Supreme Court consistently show that the Office of the Solicitor General enjoys remarkable success before the Supreme Court, both at the certiorari stage and at the merits stage. These studies offer a variety of explanations for Solicitor General success, but fail to portray accurately the Office of the Solicitor General and to account for variations in governmental success. This paper seeks to continue the exploration of governmental success. By looking at the Office of the Solicitor General as a series of individuals with distinct characteristics rather than as a single entity, and by accounting for various situational dynamics, I attempt to explain the variations in executive success.
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The South in Presidential Politics: The End of Democratic Hegemony

The South in Presidential Politics: The End of Democratic Hegemony

Date: August 1973
Creator: Buchholz, Michael O.
Description: The purpose of this paper is to document and quantify the primary reasons for the gradual erosion of southern Democratic hegemony in presidential elections during the last twenty-four years. The results confirm and reinforce the findings of the historical study, which indicates the primary reason for changing southern allegiance has been the changing philosophy of the Democratic Party in the civil rights field.
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State Level Causes of Terrorism: Limits on Political Expression

State Level Causes of Terrorism: Limits on Political Expression

Date: December 2009
Creator: Case, Erik S.
Description: Expanding on prior research into the state level causes of terrorism, I argue that state repression and limited state capacity reduces opportunities for non-violent political expression and increases the utility of terrorism. I also argue that economic freedom can is a form of political expression that can dissipate political grievances. While previous authors analyzed some of these variables separately using data on transnational attacks, I created a complete model incorporating the three categories of variables and tested my hypotheses using data that includes both domestic and transnational attacks. I use regression analysis for hypothesis testing and find support for the three primary contentions of this thesis and conclude that limits on political expression increase the likelihood nations will experienced increased levels of terrorism.
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The status of democratization and human rights of the Middle East.

The status of democratization and human rights of the Middle East.

Date: December 2006
Creator: Spinks, Brandon Todd
Description: The end of the Cold War and the collapse of communism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe have been accompanied by the spread of democracy, advancement in respect for human rights, and the introduction of market reforms in different parts of the world. The Middle Eastern region has not been an exception to this trend, where, in response to the mounting economic crisis and domestic public pressure, several governments introduced democratic and economic reforms. This thesis investigates the trends in the distribution of political authority among the Middle Eastern countries and the progress that these countries have made on the path of democracy and respect of human rights. Also explored are the various processes of political liberalization in Middle East states, and explanations posed as to why certain types of regimes have allowed for conditions conducive for reform and others have not.
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