Six Pollitical Illusions by Jim Payne

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Chapter 1

About the Author

James L. PayneJames L. Payne began his career as a political scientist in 1961 when, as a junior from Oberlin College, he traveled to Peru and produced the first comprehensive book on its labor movement. Since that time, he has written books on foreign policy, Latin American politics, militarism, the history of force, welfare, social science methodology, voluntarism and volunteer groups, taxation, and the U.S. Congress. His articles have appeared in Reader’s Digest, the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, and many other publications.

For eighteen years, he taught political science at academic institutions, including Yale, Wesleyan, Johns Hopkins, and Texas A&M University. In 1985, he resigned his tenured professorship and moved to Sandpoint, Idaho, where he works as an independent scholar and freelance writer.

Books by James L. Payne:

Labor and Politics in Peru; The System of Political Bargaining (Yale University Press, 1965)

Patterns of Conflict in Colombia (Yale University Press, 1968)

The American Threat; The Fear of War as an Instrument of Foreign Policy (Markham/Rand-McNally, 1970)

Incentive Theory and Political Process; Motivation and Leadership in the Dominican Republic (D.C. Heath, 1972)

Foundations of Empirical Political Analysis (Markham/Rand-McNally, 1973)

Principles of Social Science Measurement (Lytton, 1975)

The American Threat; National Security and Foreign Policy (Lytton, 1981)

The Motivation of Politicians (senior author), (Nelson-Hall, 1984)

Why Nations Arm (Basil Blackwell, 1989)

The Culture of Spending; Why Congress Lives Beyond Our Means (ICS Press, 1991)

Costly Returns; The Burdens of the U. S. Tax System (ICS Press, 1993)

The Promise of Community: Local Voluntary Organizations as Problem-Solvers (The Philanthropy Roundtable, 1994)

The Befriending Leader; Social Assistance without Dependency, Essays by Octavia Hill (editor), (Lytton, 1997)

Overcoming Welfare; Expecting More from the Poor—And from Ourselves (Basic Books, 1998)

A History of Force; Exploring the Worldwide Movement against Habits of Coercion, Bloodshed, and Mayhem (Lytton, 2004)

Fiction — political philosophy/satire:

Princess Navina Visits Malvolia (Lytton, 1990)

Princess Navina Visits Mandaat (Lytton, 1994)

Princess Navina Visits Nueva Malvolia (Lytton, 1999)

Princess Navina Visits Voluntaria (Lytton, 2002)

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Non-fiction memoir of kayaking adventures:

One Inch above the Water; Running away on America’s rivers (Lytton, 2008) (

Articles in scholarly journals:

“Peru: The Politics of Structured Violence,” Journal of Politics (May 1965)

“The Oligarchy Muddle,” World Politics (April 1968)

“Incentives for Political Participation,” (with Oliver H. Woshinsky) World Politics (July 1972)

“Fishing Expedition Probability: The Statistics of Post Hoc Hypothesizing,” Polity (Fall 1974)

“Betting after the Race is Over: The Perils of Post Hoc Hypothesizing,” (with James A. Dyer), American Journal of Political Science (Fall 1975)

“Inflation, Unemployment, and Left-Wing Political Parties: A Reanalysis,” American Political Science Review (March 1979)

“Show Horses and Work Horses in the United States House of Representatives,” Polity (Spring 1980), pp. 428-456

“The Personal Electoral Advantage of House Incumbents, 1936-1976,” American Politics Quarterly (October 1980), pp. 465-482

“Career Intentions and Electoral Performance of Members of the U. S. House,” Legislative Studies Quarterly (February 1982)

“The Congressional Brainwashing Machine,” Public Interest (Summer 1990)

“Limiting Government by Limiting Congressional Terms,” Public Interest (Spring 1991)

“Why Government Spending Grows: The Socialization Hypothesis,” Western Political Quarterly (June 1991)

“The Agony of Public Education,” The Independent Review (Fall 2000)

“Violence in the Twentieth Century: A Closer Look,” The Independent Review (Winter 2002)

“The Prospects for Democracy in High-Violence Societies,” The Independent Review (Spring 2005)

“Does Nation-building Work?” The Independent Review (Spring 2006)

“Did the United States Create Democracy in Germany?” The Independent Review (Fall 2006)

“What Do the Terrorists Want?” The Independent Review (Summer 2008)

“Making the World Safe for Muddle; The Meaning of Democracy in American Foreign Policy,” The Independent Review (Spring 2009)


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