CONGRESS AND FOREIGN POLICY by Robert A. Dahl

CONGRESS AND FOREIGN POLICY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A thoughtful and often provocative analysis of the factors operating in Congress that make difficult the formulation of a foreign policy control. Three criteria are indicated:- provisions for responsible leadership, facilitating of agreement, leads to rational policies. Is it attainable of desirable to relieve Congress of the responsibility and yet save democracy? He explores the influences on Congress, the constituents, the pressure groups, personal preferences and predilections, the difficulties in attaining facts of public opinion, etc. The power of the executive is up; is this wise and can it be controlled? The citizen has inadequate facilities for sound discussion, and a better system of communication is needed, between citizen and Congress. How raise the citizen's competence? Congressional competence? The responsibilities of the political parties must be intensified; at present there is substantially no difference on foreign policy. He then views the experiments in collaboration, in bipartisanship, and the problems of agreement, and urges five points that need strengthening:- prediction, planning, flexibility, speed and adequacy. (One might venture the opinion that the last is the most difficult of all.) A publication under the Yale Institute of International Studies. Not likely to reach a very wide general market.

Publisher: Harcourt, Brace