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From the Outside In

From the Outside In: World War II and the American State

Bartholomew H. Sparrow
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    From the Outside In
    Book Description:

    From the Outside Inexamines the profound impact of World War II on American government. The book argues that the wartime and immediate postwar experiences of the 1940s transformed and redirected the policies and government institutions of the New Deal. In a work that makes significant contributions to the study of U.S. politics and history, Bartholomew Sparrow proposes a new model of the state and of "state-building." The author applies this model, which derives from the resource dependence perspective, to the historical record of four areas of public policy: social security, labor-management relations, public finance, and military procurement.

    This book is the first to use recently available archival materials documenting the consequences of World War II for the programs and political agendas of the welfare state. It is also the first to apply the resource dependency perspective to the U.S. federal government as a complex organization. The book will lead readers to reevaluate the impact of international factors on American political development, to reappraise the role of the New Deal in shaping the postwar federal government, and to reconsider the application of organizational theory to American government.

    From the Outside Inwill be of particular interest to political scientists, political sociologists, and historians. It will appeal to anyone with an interest in the comprehensive effects of the Second World War on domestic policies and U.S. government itself.

    Originally published in 1996.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-6421-8
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Figures
    (pp. ix-ix)
  4. Tables
    (pp. x-xii)
  5. Preface
    (pp. xiii-2)
  6. 1 Introduction
    (pp. 3-32)

    States make wars; wars make states. The political development of the United States is no exception. The War of Independence brought the United States into being; the Civil War established the politics and government of the United States for much of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; and the First World War spurred the development of the twentieth-century American state. But most important for understanding American political development in the latter half of the twentieth century is the Second World War. World War II jolted a moribund national economy out of the Depression, led to the creation of international systems...

  7. 2 Social Security’s Missing Years
    (pp. 33-66)

    As recently as 1988, the Democratic National Platform claimed that “[t]here is no good reason why … the greatest and richest nation on earth should rank first among the industrialized nations … in the percentage of total expenditures devoted to defense but nearly last in the percentage devoted to education and housing.”¹ Contra this conventional wisdom, there may be good reasons for what many identify as a weak American welfare state.² The decade of the 1940s in particular—from the beginning of U.S. rearmament after the German invasion of France to the beginning of the Korean conflict—was crucial in...

  8. 3 The Regulation of Labor-Management Relations
    (pp. 67-96)

    Even as the National Labor Relations Act (Wagner Act) has been called the “most radical” part of the New Deal, the Second World War played a crucial role in reversing the momentum of the labor movement emerging from the 1930s. Notwithstanding the increase of union membership by over four million persons over the course of the war, the position of labor unions in the American economy was already beginning to slip. By 1942, the rate of union victories in National Labor Relations Board elections (elections on collective representation) was starting to decline, and by 1945, the percentage of union members...

  9. 4 The Revolutions of Public Finance
    (pp. 97-160)

    At least three revolutions were taking place in U.S. public finance during the 1940s. One was “the permanent shift in the sources of federal revenue”: income taxes became the most important source of U.S. government revenues.¹ Whereas individual and corporate income tax receipts constituted 42 percent of government revenues in 1941, income tax receipts (including excess profits taxes) came to 68 percent of federal revenues by 1950.² The absolute amount collected in income taxes rose by more than a factor of ten over the same period, from $2.2 billion to $26 billion. Federal revenues from personal and corporate income taxes...

  10. 5 The Transformation of Navy Procurement
    (pp. 161-257)

    The transformation of the U.S. merchant marine—the “fourth arm of defense”—paralleled the changes in the U.S. naval fleet. The total tonnage of Navy ships in service increased from 1.9 million tons on 1 July 1940 to 13.5 million tons by 30 June 1945, and the total number of Navy vessels rose from 1,099 to 50,759 over the same period. The U.S. government spent a total of $22 billion in the building and fitting of ships during the war, and $6 billion on Navy aircraft alone; the number of operational aircraft increased from 1,741 in 1940 to 40,912 by...

  11. 6 Relative State-Building in the 1940s: The Terms of Exchange
    (pp. 258-268)

    The Second World War had uneven effects on societal actors relative to each other and to the government. Following the arguments of the first chapter, the bargains struck between the government and societal actors (or clienteles) during the war should depend upon the sets of alternatives available to the government and clienteles, and on the uncertainty of resource supplies.

    The labor unions, investors in government securities, and Navy contractors should all fare equivalently well. The unions wanted to work and had little alternative to cooperating with the government during the war, just as the government had no alternative but to...

  12. 7 A Resource-Dependent American State
    (pp. 269-316)

    The Second World War and its aftermath had a profound impact on the American state. The war transformed the bureaucracies of the federal government; it reconfigured the pattern of government-society relations; and it altered the means of public administration with respect to social welfare programs, the regulation of labor-management relations, public finance, and material procurement by the Navy Department. Nor were these effects experienced evenly or equally across policy domains.

    But are these findings, gleaned from testing each of the hypotheses of the resource dependence perspective, generalizable beyond the policy histories studied here? What is the role of hegemonic war...

  13. Select Bibliography
    (pp. 317-336)
  14. Index
    (pp. 337-354)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 355-355)