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Nation of DevilsDemocratic Leadership and the Problem of Obedience$
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Stein Ringen

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780300193190

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300193190.001.0001

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The Powerlessness of Powerful Government

The Powerlessness of Powerful Government

(p.1) 1 The Powerlessness of Powerful Government
Nation of Devils

Stein Ringen

Yale University Press

Governments have two functions: they must make policy and they must put their policies to work in society. In the popular press, governments are victorious when they are able to get their programs enacted and they lose when the opposition is able to defeat it. However, this chapter argues, in making policy work, the challenge is just as much or more in the actual implementation. Decisions count for the political class, but it is the implementation of policy that is important for society. This chapter asks some basic questions that will be answered in the rest of the book: what is government? What does government do? How can they get it right?

Keywords:   policy, implementation, political class, government, society

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