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Thread: Motivation vs. causation

  1. #61
    Council Member Bob's World's Avatar
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    Sadly, the "net-nazis" won't let me view youtube from here...

    I'll sit down with a glass of the Irish and watch it when I get home.
    Robert C. Jones
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    "The modern COIN mindset is when one arrogantly goes to some foreign land and attempts to make those who live there a lesser version of one's self. The FID mindset is when one humbly goes to some foreign land and seeks first to understand, and then to help in some small way for those who live there to be the best version of their own self." Colonel Robert C. Jones, US Army Special Forces (Retired)

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    Council Member slapout9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob's World View Post
    Sadly, the "net-nazis" won't let me view youtube from here...
    I'll sit down with a glass of the Irish and watch it when I get home.
    All the more reason to watch it

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    Default What MarcT said...

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob's World View Post
    ...the way I look at it I should not have to tone down what I think needs to be done to move forward simply becuase it suggests actions required of elected officials that they historically prove themselves unlikely to take on. I'll set the bar where it needs to be, not where I think they can clear it.
    Good for you -- I'm merely an old cynical guy pointing out that you're likely doomed to be disappointed. I'm also pointing out that while what you want is desirable IMO I believe you'd be better off or more likely to achieve success with a flanking movement or infiltration rather than a frontal assault...

    I also suggest that while you don't have regurgitate stuff verbatim and that it's great to be an "understander," that those who oppose your ideas will latch on to any apparent egregious errors to discredit your positions. That's not an accusation, it's a cautionary...
    I'm simply saying that we might want to step back a few inches and be a bit more tolerant of others a bit less intrusive in the governance and morality of the world.
    As you know, I agree. We simply differ on the tactics...

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    Council Member Pete's Avatar
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    In the final analysis I think it was a good thing that FDR steered us in the direction of becoming involved in World War II. A great grandfather of mine who served six months in a California National Guard cavalry unit at Camp Lewis during the Spanish-American War was a outspoken believer in the "Yellow Peril." During the 1930s he used to listen on the radio to Father Coughlin, the Rush Limbaugh of his day. Although the "Yellow Peril" sounds unacceptably racist to us now, the hindsight of the war with Japan and later wars in Korea and Vietnam makes me wonder whether old granddad was on to something. My grandma said her father would drive her mother nuts when he'd fiddle around with his Army-issue Colt .45 revolver when he was working his way through a bottle of whisky.

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    Default Rule of law vs rule by law ...

    there is a difference.

    I see "rule of law" as something that arises from the People (and yes, I agree with Dayuhan that "village factions" exist); but, if a rule of law develops, it results from a sythesis of the theses and anti-theses of those factions. As such, it (the rule of law) is a valid expression of "self-determination" - something that could be called "legal" ("hey, Mr Lawyer, is this legal ?") or "legitimate".

    Much of the world (and too often us - USAians) translates our self-determinate "rule of law" as "rule by law". The latter could be called "positive law" imposed from above - that is, by whatever elites happen to be be ruling the roost. The dichotomy between "rule by law" and "rule of law" is illustrated in Manchu law, where the imperial codes represented "rule by law" and village traditional law (preferred by the villagers) came closer to our "rule of law".

    The bottom line is that in most of the world (and often in the US), I will have to do a lot of explaining to get across what I mean by "rule of law". And, after all that, the listener may still think that I am speaking about "rule by law".

    Another case where closely-sounding terms mean very different things.

    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
    there is a difference.

    I see "rule of law" as something that arises from the People (and yes, I agree with Dayuhan that "village factions" exist); but, if a rule of law develops, it results from a sythesis of the theses and anti-theses of those factions. As such, it (the rule of law) is a valid expression of "self-determination" - something that could be called "legal" ("hey, Mr Lawyer, is this legal ?") or "legitimate".
    That's excellent and relates to something I've been reading out this week - the Troubles in Northern Ireland in the mid-late 1960's. The increase in repressive policies toward Catholics was coming to a head and the response was initially a series of protests by nationalists calling for change. So far, so good. This passage from "The Dirty War" really caught my eye and was an aspect of this time I didn't know about:

    Undoubtedly there was a rise in anti-Catholic militancy in response to nationalist demands for change, but there was another factor which is rarely mentioned and is conveniently forgotten by Unionists who were prominent in politics at that time. Within Unionism itself there was a moderating influence led by Captain Terence O'Neill, the Northern Ireland Prime Minister, who was regarded by many people on both sides as liberal. O'Neill was prepared to give ground slowly to the clamour for change, but he did not take account of the fact that there were those within the Unionist establishment who were prepared to plot against him and overthrow him if he was seen to be capitulating to nationalists....During his period in office he witnessed the coming together of the dangerous elements which would set the society alight. What he did not know was that three prominent Unionists who reckoned that he was not hard enough on the issues re-formed the Ulster Volunteer Force, a paramilitary organization which was involved in the killing of Catholics in the 1920's Troubles. Those three men, who for legal reasons cannot be named here, introduced the one ingredient which the IRA was not prepared to provide in the mid-sixties: violence.
    The passage goes on to explain the history of the first UVF attacks, the forced movement of Catholic families and the deployment of British troops, initially done to defend Catholic areas.

    What's interesting here is the "rule of law," already written by the dominant group to repress the minority, was not sufficient for some who resorted to violence. The government was too moderate for the unionists and too repressive for the nationalists, but it was the dominant group that began using violent extra-legal means. It sounds kind of crazy to say it, but couldn't they be considered the first "insurgents" in that conflict? Eventually, of course, the Unionists closed ranks and the IRA more clearly became "insurgents."

    I'd be interested in Col. Jones take on this, specifically in regard to motivation/causation and his theory on governance and insurgency.

  7. #67
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Stranger than fiction

    Entropy,

    Maybe not the best place to re-open how 'The Troubles' in Northern Ireland started in 1969. That aside.

    I always remember the first RUC police officer to be killed in 'The Troubles' was a constable shot dead by a 'Loyalist' mob protesting at the 'Young Report' publication on a Friday afternoon that the RUC be disarmed (amongst other changes). The RUC in 1969 was very different from "mainland" policing and was truly para-military.

    Afterwards government reports were not published on a Friday afternoon I.e. allowing for a drunken reaction and the RUC underwent some changes. It never was totally disarmed, the para-military aspect did change and evolved in different ways.
    davidbfpo

  8. #68
    Council Member Bob's World's Avatar
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    Default This BW type thinking here!

    Quote Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
    there is a difference.

    I see "rule of law" as something that arises from the People (and yes, I agree with Dayuhan that "village factions" exist); but, if a rule of law develops, it results from a sythesis of the theses and anti-theses of those factions. As such, it (the rule of law) is a valid expression of "self-determination" - something that could be called "legal" ("hey, Mr Lawyer, is this legal ?") or "legitimate".

    Much of the world (and too often us - USAians) translates our self-determinate "rule of law" as "rule by law". The latter could be called "positive law" imposed from above - that is, by whatever elites happen to be be ruling the roost. The dichotomy between "rule by law" and "rule of law" is illustrated in Manchu law, where the imperial codes represented "rule by law" and village traditional law (preferred by the villagers) came closer to our "rule of law".

    The bottom line is that in most of the world (and often in the US), I will have to do a lot of explaining to get across what I mean by "rule of law". And, after all that, the listener may still think that I am speaking about "rule by law".

    Another case where closely-sounding terms mean very different things.

    Mike
    Mike,

    I'll probably have steal this, as it nests in well with my line of thinking regrading these types of well intended, but slightly off azimuth, concepts/programs.

    The problem is that we say "enforce the rule of law; whereas to expand your remarks as I understand them, we would more accurately say enable the rule of law. One would enforce the rule by law.


    This is critcal as it links directly back to:

    1. One of my key causal factors of perceptions of Justice/Injustice; and

    2. One of the West's current "easy button" cures for insurgency "enforce the rule of law."

    My take is that when one has a populace in subversion due in part to perceptions of injustice; and the government comes in to resolve the problem by enforcing the rule of law, they more often than not push a larger setment of the populace into the movement, and the movement deeper into insurgency.

    But, if they came in, recoginzing both the perceptions of the populace in regards to injustice (note to all Americans, our own civil rights based insurgency with the African American popualce is in no ways "over", it is merely "contained," and there are strong perceptions of injustice toward that segment of our society that we would do well not to ignore) and also then set out to "enable the rule of law" instead, they could move problem down and to the left on the chart I provided earlier.



    I confess, most people just look at you and say "whatever" when you attempt to explain such critical subtleties as:

    Effective Governance vs Good Governance

    Rule of Law vs Rule by law

    Legitimacy of governance vs officialness of government.


    But I firmly believe, that it is in the understanding of these subtle differences and the design of words and deeds that are sensitive to those differences that mark the difference between a long, drawn out, effort with to suppress an insurgent vs a much shorter, and more enduring effort to address an insurgency.
    Last edited by Bob's World; 01-23-2010 at 01:42 AM.
    Robert C. Jones
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    (Understanding is more important than Knowledge)

    "The modern COIN mindset is when one arrogantly goes to some foreign land and attempts to make those who live there a lesser version of one's self. The FID mindset is when one humbly goes to some foreign land and seeks first to understand, and then to help in some small way for those who live there to be the best version of their own self." Colonel Robert C. Jones, US Army Special Forces (Retired)

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    Default Now, I'd say JMM thinking ....

    and some day, we might meet (over your Bud Lite and my Bud Regular) and determine who has the larger ego. I'd like that.

    To be consistent (and swallowing a bit of ego), I have to admit sloppiness in using the term "rule of law". Typically, I've used "rule of law" to refer to civilian law (domestic or international), as opposed to the "laws of war" (LOAC, or a term I think is terrible: "international humanitarian law"), or to the UCMJ (consider whether that is "rule of law" or "rule by law" - how much of it bubbles up from the military, and how much is imposed on it ?).

    Let's leave aside that confusion (which might be better expressed by the terms "Civilian Law" and "Military Law" - would that be better, Polarbear ?).

    The contrast between "rule of law" and "rule by law" (as used in my prior post) continues through the entire process of development, acceptance and enforcement of the rule. Enforcement does not suddenly change the "rule of law" into "rule by law".

    I could illustrate that by reference to Manchu law, contrasting the imperial codes ("rule by law") to the traditional village law (more akin to "rule of law"). But, that would entail more writing than I want to do and what you want to read. So, let's take something that we've already discussed: Mao's doctrine of "from the people, to the people" (a positive feedback loop) in development and implemention of the "Narrative Cause". That process also sums up the "rule of law" process, including enforcement.

    Interestingly (but not surprisingly) enough, Mao did not use the "from the people, to the people" process in developing the Chinese Criminal Code, which was (when I studied it: and probably still is) much more "rule by law" than anything we would recognize as "rule of law". The imperial codes still live.

    Now, "rule by law" can be accepted by the people (or at least a substantial majority of them); if so, it is "legal", "legitimate"; and the government has "legitimacy" (at least in that area of acceptance).

    Also, what may be called the "rule of law" may not be accepted by the people (or at least a substantial majority of them) where the development or implementation process is via a representative democracy with a republican form of government - and there is a disconnect between the "law makers" and the people. Perhaps, the by-elections in VA, NJ and MA were evidence of that disconnect. We shall see.

    As to this (and what follows):

    from BW

    This is critcal as it links directly back to:

    1. One of my key causal factors of perceptions of Justice/Injustice; and

    2. One of the West's current "easy button" cures for insurgency "enforce the rule of law." ......
    one of our (US) problems is not understanding "rule of law" ourselves, or by using sloppy language about it (my mea culpa is above). Their (much of the world, especially where "insurgencies" exist) "problem" is that the "rule of law" is totally foreign to them - and they enforce "rule by law", as their autocratic governments have done for thousands of years.

    As a practical matter, we (US) would be better served by recognizing their "rule by law" - and by suggesting changes in those rules to make them acceptable to the people. But, as Dayuhan will say, the Powers That Be are not likely to gore their own oxen by doing that - and may in fact act outside of their "rule by law".

    In that case, we have "Blazing Saddles" where the populace's logical response is bringing in "foreign fighters", "mobilizing the masses", "accepting allies" (except for the Irish ! ) and "setting IEDs". All in the script.

    Agreed to this:

    I confess, most people just look at you and say "whatever" when you attempt to explain such critical subtleties as:

    Effective Governance vs Good Governance

    Rule of Law vs Rule by law

    Legitimacy of governance vs officialness of government.

    But I firmly believe, that it is in the understanding of these subtle differences and the design of words and deeds that are sensitive to those differences that mark the difference between a long, drawn out, effort with to suppress an insurgent vs a much shorter, and more enduring effort to address an insurgency.
    but these are difficult terms in their understanding; and even more difficult in reducing them to practice.

    Now, a truly interesting meeting would be Bill Moore, Ken White, you and me, to engage in a discussion of "good governance", which still needs a bit of work.

    As to this:

    from BW
    I'll probably have to steal this, as it nests in well with my line of thinking regrading these types of well intended, but slightly off azimuth, concepts/programs.
    feel free to dog rob with reckless abandon. The work you are doing is far more important than my "proprietary rights" (which you as a lawyer, know don't exist in this stuff; but thank you for asking first).

    Regards

    Mike

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    Council Member Dayuhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
    I see "rule of law" as something that arises from the People (and yes, I agree with Dayuhan that "village factions" exist); but, if a rule of law develops, it results from a sythesis of the theses and anti-theses of those factions. As such, it (the rule of law) is a valid expression of "self-determination" - something that could be called "legal" ("hey, Mr Lawyer, is this legal ?") or "legitimate".
    I agree... however, we need to remember that the process by whicyh a rule of law or a synthesis of various factions, develops is often a rocky one and sometimes conflict is part of it. That process may not necessarily suit our interests in any given place at any given time. Our reflexive view of insurgency as something to be countered can make it difficult for us to see that sometimes insurgency is part of that developmental faction. When a ruling elite refuses evolution, they find themselves facing revolution.

    When an outside force, even one with altruistic motives, steps into this developmental process and tries to influence or direct or "help" it, distortions are created that don't always work out as intended.

    I'll be the first one to admit that America has stepped on a lot of toes over the years. Sometimes intentionally, sometimes just being a bit clumsy. I'm simply saying that we might want to step back a few inches and be a bit more tolerant of others a bit less intrusive in the governance and morality of the world.
    In many ways we've been doing this, in many parts of the world. In some places it's worked out fairly well, as I mentioned earlier, in others it hasn't. Not everything that happens, even when it involves us, is a response to our actions and our positions; there are many other forces in play as well. Certainly we need to be aware of our influence, but not to the extent where we start thinking we're the only influence.

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    Council Member M-A Lagrange's Avatar
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    Default If I may

    Hello everybody,

    I confess, most people just look at you and say "whatever" when you attempt to explain such critical subtleties as:

    Effective Governance vs Good Governance

    Rule of Law vs Rule by law

    Legitimacy of governance vs officialness of government.


    But I firmly believe, that it is in the understanding of these subtle differences and the design of words and deeds that are sensitive to those differences that mark the difference between a long, drawn out, effort with to suppress an insurgent vs a much shorter, and more enduring effort to address an insurgency.
    Rule of Law has to be understood as it is: a politic philosophy and not another tool from the State Building box.

    In my opinion, what most of the people implementing Rule of Law do not get is that Rule of Law does not replace the social contract that fond a society.
    The twist may come that in the US Rule of Law is the Social Contract: the US constitution. When rule of law is exported, either you have a social contract meeting the pre requirement of rule of law and it's a success. Or you just have a social contract that support socio-economical division of political power and you end up with Rule by Law. Rule of Law cannot be exported without being supported by the people.

    And yes you have village factions, as we have conservators and liberals. (If I can add). Why do we always see the others not as complex as us? Most of the time, they are even more complex than us because less united and more fractioned.

    Sorry to introduce an additional subtle difference.

    M-A

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    Default Better than I've said ....

    or at least more succinctly:

    from MA

    Rule of Law has to be understood as it is: a politic philosophy and not another tool from the State Building box.

    In my opinion, what most of the people implementing Rule of Law do not get is that Rule of Law does not replace the social contract that fond a society.

    The twist may come that in the US Rule of Law is the Social Contract: the US constitution.

    When rule of law is exported, either you have a social contract meeting the pre requirement of rule of law and it's a success.

    Or you just have a social contract that support socio-economical division of political power and you end up with Rule by Law.

    Rule of Law cannot be exported without being supported by the people.
    QED (Quod est demonstratum).

    That having been said, the term "rule of law" is very much in the "toolkit". E.g., the 2009 Rule of Law Handbook (available at CLAMO website), A Practitioner's Guide for Judge Advocates, which deals in practice with the domestic, civilian law of host nations - as well as with some I Law and Military Law issues.

    So far as defining "rule of law", the doctrine provided is (pp. 24-25):

    Rule of law is a principle of governance in which all persons, institutions and entities, public and private, including the state itself, are accountable to laws that are publicly promulgated, equally enforced, and independently adjudicated, and which are consistent with international human rights principles.

    That principle can be broken down into seven effects:

    • The state monopolizes the use of force in the resolution of disputes

    • Individuals are secure in their persons and property

    • The state is itself bound by law and does not act arbitrarily

    • The law can be readily determined and is stable enough to allow individuals to plan their affairs

    • Individuals have meaningful access to an effective and impartial legal system

    • The state protects basic human rights and fundamental freedoms

    • Individuals rely on the existence of justice institutions and the content of law in the conduct of their daily lives
    The Chinese legal scholars of the Manchu period (and before, and perhaps now) would call that fa-chie (rule by law) effectively implemented. Absent the bullet points of "and which are consistent with international human rights principles" and "The state protects basic human rights and fundamental freedoms", which did not enter the picture.

    What is interesting is that the Chinese people avoided the hsien (district) courts like the plague (for good reasons), in favor of the traditional clan, village and guild methods of dispute resolution.

    Regards

    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
    Entropy,

    Maybe not the best place to re-open how 'The Troubles' in Northern Ireland started in 1969. That aside.
    Agreed and I see that I made my point poorly. I'm only using it as a possible example of a case where "governance" was not the root problem. When you have two factions, or factions within factions, that have completely incompatible goals, are willing to use violence and unwilling to compromise, then I question whether there is any kind of governance that can contain that. BW's theory is that insurgency is caused by a lack of "good governance" but governance comes from people and sometimes people want violence.

    M-A Lagrange brings up the social contract (or lack of), which related, IMO. When one group views another group in terms of the "other" as more than a mere enemy, then there is no social contract and therefore no basis for "good governance." At least that is something I've been thinking about lately.

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    Council Member M-A Lagrange's Avatar
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    Entropy,

    When one group views another group in terms of the "other" as more than a mere enemy, then there is no social contract and therefore no basis for "good governance." At least that is something I've been thinking about lately.
    Can you make your point much clearer?
    Excluding a group of people from the society or from the protection of the society (as slaves in antiquity) can be part of the social contract.
    As I understand it, it is ennemies who are not part of the social contract as they want to destroy/change it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by M-A Lagrange View Post
    Entropy,



    Can you make your point much clearer?
    Excluding a group of people from the society or from the protection of the society (as slaves in antiquity) can be part of the social contract.
    As I understand it, it is ennemies who are not part of the social contract as they want to destroy/change it.
    I think the point was that it can be difficult or impossible to establish a social contract in an arbitrarily delineated "nation" that includes traditional enemies within its borders. An example might be the former Yugoslavia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    I think the point was that it can be difficult or impossible to establish a social contract in an arbitrarily delineated "nation" that includes traditional enemies within its borders. An example might be the former Yugoslavia.
    That's basically it yes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    I think the point was that it can be difficult or impossible to establish a social contract in an arbitrarily delineated "nation" that includes traditional enemies within its borders. An example might be the former Yugoslavia.
    Quote Originally Posted by Entropy View Post
    That's basically it yes.
    One of the rather odd things I've picked up over the years is a slightly different view of the concept of a social contract. The fact that X and Y are traditional enemies means that they have a specific, defined and accepted relationship already, which is part of a contract. This has some interesting implications since, I would argue, every nation state (barring possibly Andorra, Monaco and few others) are arbitrarily delineated "nations" that only bear a passing resemblance to an ethnoi.

    As to whether or not such a contract can be established, sure it can and has been in a number of places: Canada, Belgium, and Switzerland all spring to mind as classic examples. The question, IMHO, should be more in line with how did such a multi-ethnoi social contract come into existence and why and how has it been maintained?

    Cheers,

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    Quote Originally Posted by marct View Post
    One of the rather odd things I've picked up over the years is a slightly different view of the concept of a social contract. The fact that X and Y are traditional enemies means that they have a specific, defined and accepted relationship already, which is part of a contract. This has some interesting implications since, I would argue, every nation state (barring possibly Andorra, Monaco and few others) are arbitrarily delineated "nations" that only bear a passing resemblance to an ethnoi.
    I suppose two groups agreeing to kill as many of one another as possible at every available opportunity could be said to constitute a social contract of sorts. Whether that contract would be a viable basis for nationhood is another question.

    Quote Originally Posted by marct View Post
    As to whether or not such a contract can be established, sure it can and has been in a number of places: Canada, Belgium, and Switzerland all spring to mind as classic examples. The question, IMHO, should be more in line with how did such a multi-ethnoi social contract come into existence and why and how has it been maintained?
    It might be more accurate to say that these contracts evolved, rather than speaking of establishment. The process of evolution varies widely from case to case; sometimes it's peaceful, sometimes it's not, sometimes the groups involved end up separating and establishing different nations. I don't think it's something something that can be effectively imposed on a deus ex machina basis.

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    I'd like to throw in a little wrinkle on the social contract discussion that's evolving here as it's a term that's come up a lot for me recently in the international development business (when I'm not winning no bid contracts and fleecing american taxpayers...).

    International Review of Administrative Sciences 75(4), "Decentralized local governance in fragile states: learning from Iraq" by Derick W. Brinkerhoff and Ronald W. Johnson, the authors use the word "covenant" in this sense:

    The good governance agenda assumes a form of state—society relations that results from a covenant between citizens and their government, yet historically most states arose through conquest.
    Page 5.

    I though the use of word "covenant" curious since it seems such a religiously and racially charged term - a bit heavy-handed for what seems to be a kind of social contract or partnership.

    The first time I saw the term used was in the USAID report titled, “Democratic Decentralization Strategic Assessment: Indonesia Final Report". In this report, the term is used in this context:

    An innovative concept emerging from this assessment is that a feasible approach for future local governance programming in the near term may be the introduction of a more efficient approach to the accountability challenge that works through multi-party relationships (accountability covenants) that bind a large number of actors together in support of shared aims. Local politicians and CSOs in Indonesia might organize a participatory planning process that first yields a shared vision then leads to formulation of an action plan. By assigning specific tasks to multiple actors, a dense network of mutual accountability is created
    . p. 28

    Social contract theory (Putnam) has driven a lot of development programming, most explicitly the World Bank's Community Driven Development approach applied broadly (over 30,000 villages and $1 billion distributed) in Indonesia. For a good overview of that, see a paper by Scott Guggenheim.

    Donors, especially USAID, have consistently focused on supporting civil society and building the social contract (largely in the absence of a strong or even functional government) and I've been wondering if the use of "covenant" is an attempt to strengthen and expand the concept/approach. I find the concept and approach appealing, but it does have a lot of issues when it comes to international development.

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    Default A longish (and rambling) response...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    I suppose two groups agreeing to kill as many of one another as possible at every available opportunity could be said to constitute a social contract of sorts. Whether that contract would be a viable basis for nationhood is another question.
    What is fascinating about it is, really, the structures negotiated to contain conflict to specific times, places, styles and forms. "Nationhood", like the concept of nation state, is, IMO, quite tricky and a very recent invention. Honestly, as far as establishing a model of social contracting between either different ethnoi or sub-groups of the same ethnoi, nation states are pretty irrelevant except as a special case.

    Where it does become relevant is when we start examining how multi-ethnoi, multi-group polities can function. Again, the nation state is a special, and quite recent, case, so it can't serve as the basis for a general theory.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dayuhan View Post
    It might be more accurate to say that these contracts evolved, rather than speaking of establishment. The process of evolution varies widely from case to case; sometimes it's peaceful, sometimes it's not, sometimes the groups involved end up separating and establishing different nations. I don't think it's something something that can be effectively imposed on a deus ex machina basis.
    It's a very interesting question - evolution vs. contract ex machina. In most cases, I suspect that initial contract conditions are imposed and, from that imposition, evolve over time; that was certainly the case in Canada.

    Quote Originally Posted by Beelzebubalicious View Post
    I'd like to throw in a little wrinkle on the social contract discussion that's evolving here as it's a term that's come up a lot for me recently in the international development business (when I'm not winning no bid contracts and fleecing american taxpayers...).

    International Review of Administrative Sciences 75(4), "Decentralized local governance in fragile states: learning from Iraq" by Derick W. Brinkerhoff and Ronald W. Johnson, the authors use the word "covenant"....

    Donors, especially USAID, have consistently focused on supporting civil society and building the social contract (largely in the absence of a strong or even functional government) and I've been wondering if the use of "covenant" is an attempt to strengthen and expand the concept/approach. I find the concept and approach appealing, but it does have a lot of issues when it comes to international development.
    It's an interesting term, especially since they are using it in the 19th century sense. Technically, using "covenant" as a "coming together" it is correct, although you're right that it now carries religious connotations. How do you see it as being useful for development work?
    Sic Bisquitus Disintegrat...
    Marc W.D. Tyrrell, Ph.D.
    Institute of Interdisciplinary Studies,
    Senior Research Fellow,
    The Canadian Centre for Intelligence and Security Studies, NPSIA
    Carleton University
    http://marctyrrell.com/

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