Group polarization and competitioning political behavior essay

This research was pioneered by James A. Stonerwho first found the tendency in groups who were considering risk-taking behaviors; the phenomenon was thus initially labeled "risky shift. Group polarization has been applied to understand behavior cases ranging from political and financial decision-making to gambling.

Group polarization and competitioning political behavior essay

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On Tuesday, November 14,in what has been perceived as the years biggest non-event, the federal government shut down all "non-essential" services due to what was, for all intents and purposes, a game of national "chicken" between the House Speaker and the President. And, at an estimated cost of million dollars a day, this dubious battle of dueling egos did not come cheap Bradsher,p.

Why do politicians find it almost congenitally impossible to cooperate? What is it about politics and power that seem to always put them at odds with good government?

Indeed, is an effective, well run government even possible given the current adversarial relationship between our two main political parties? It would seem that the exercise of power for its own sake, and a competitive situation in which one side must always oppose the other on any issue, is incompatible with the cooperation and compromise necessary for the government to function.

As the United States becomes more extreme in its beliefs in general, group polarization and competition, which requires a mutual exclusivity of goal attainment, will lead to more "showdown" situations in which the goal of good government gives way to political posturing and power-mongering.

In this paper I will analyze recent political behavior in terms of two factors: Group behavior with an emphasis on polarization, and competition. However, one should keep in mind that these two factors are interrelated. Group polarization tends to exacerbate inter-group competition by driving any two groups who initially disagree farther apart in their respective views.

In turn, a competitive situation in which one side must lose in order for the other to win and political situations are nearly always competitivewill codify the differences between groups - leading to further extremism by those seeking power within the group - and thus, to further group polarization.

Group polarization and competitioning political behavior essay

In the above example, the two main combatants, Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich, were virtually forced to take uncompromising, disparate views because of the very nature of authority within their respective political groups. Therefore, if the extreme is seen as a desirable characteristic, individuals who exhibit extreme beliefs will gain authority through referent power.

In other words, they will have characteristics that other group members admire and seek to emulate p. Unfortunately, this circle of polarization and authority can lead to a bizarre form of "one-upsmanship" in which each group member seeks to gain power and approval by being more extreme than the others.

The end result is extremism in the pursuit of authority without any regard to the practicality or "reasonableness" of the beliefs in question. Since the direction of polarization is currently in opposite directions in our two party system, it is almost impossible to find a common ground between them.

In addition, the competitive nature of the two party system many times eliminates even the possibility of compromise since failure usually leads to a devastating loss of power. If both victory and extremism are necessary to retain power within the group, and if, as Alfie Kohn stated in his book No Contest: The Case Against Competition, competition is "mutually exclusive goal attainment" one side must lose in order for the other to winthen compromise and cooperation are impossible p.

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This is especially so if the opponents are dedicated to retaining power "at all costs. It served no logical purpose. Beyond costing a lot of money, it had no discernible effect except as a power struggle between two political heavyweights. Therefore, it would seem that at least in this case government policy is created and implemented, not with regard to its effectiveness as government policy, but only with regard to its value as a tool for accumulating and maintaining power.

Another of Kipnis's negative effects of power is the tendency to use it for selfish purposes p. In politics this can be seen as the predilection towards making statements for short term political gain that are either nonsensical or contradictory to past positions held by the candidates themselves.

Group polarization and competitioning political behavior essay

While this may not be the use of actual power, it is an attempt to gain political office and therefore power without regard for the real worth or implications of a policy for "good" government. A prime example of this behavior can be seen in the widely divergent political stances taken by Governor Pete Wilson of California.

At this point I should qualify my own political position. While I do tend to lean towards the Democratic side of the political spectrum this is undoubtedly what brought Pete Wilson to my attention in the first placeI examine Governor Wilson because he is such a prime example of both polarization and pandering in the competitive pursuit of power.

Accordingly, I will try to hold my political biases in check. In any case, selfish, power seeking behavior is reflected in Wilson's recently abandoned campaign for President. Although he consistently ruled out running for President during his second gubernatorial campaign, immediately after he was re-elected he announced that he was forming a committee to explore the possibility.

And, in fact, he did make an abortive run for the Republican nomination. In both cases presidential and gubernatorial electionshe justified his seemingly contradictory positions in terms of his "duty to the people" No Author This begs the question; was it the duty that was contradictory, or was it Wilson's political aspirations.

In either case it seems clear that his decision was hardly based on principles of good government. Even if Wilson thought he had a greater duty to the nation as a whole and I'm being charitable herehe might have considered that before he ran for governor a second time.

It would appear much more likely that the greater power inherent in the presidency was the determining force behind Wilson's decision.The most common type of polarization is group polarization. Group polarization in general refers to the notion that judgments made by a group tend to be more extreme than judgments made by individual members.

The concept of group polarization developed from a notion of the “risky shift.”. Free essays available online are good but they will not follow the guidelines of your particular writing assignment. If you need a custom term paper on Humanities: Group Polarization And Competition In Political Behavior, you can hire a professional writer here to write you a high quality authentic monstermanfilm.com free essays can be traced by Turnitin (plagiarism detection program), our custom.

Group Polarization And Competition In Political Behavior Essay Words 10 Pages On Tuesday, November 14, , in what has been perceived as the years biggest non-event, the federal government shut down all "non-essential" services due to what was, for all intents and purposes, a game of national.

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If you need fresh and competent research / writing on Humanities, use the . Campaigns and Elections 10/2/14 David Sousa American Political Polarization In , when fresh-faced presidential candidate Barack Obama coasted to electoral victory, it was clear that the world had ended.

Flabbergastingly, in an insane display of In their essay “Is Polarization a Myth?”, political scientists Alan Abramowitz and Kyle. Group Polarization and Competitioning Political Behavior. Essay by Anonymous User, University, Bachelor's, A+, January download word file, 8 pages, Downloaded times.

Keywords Group. polarization tends to exacerbate inter-group competition by driving any.

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