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  • Published on: 21st September 2019
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Task IV (Week VI)

The bureaucratic politics approach is a hypothetical approach towards public policies that underscores internal bargaining within the state. It contends that the outcome of policies is as a result of a bargaining game among a small, highly placed sets of governmental actors. Also, rather than focusing on organizations as actors who compete over foreign policy objectives, bureaucratic politics strongly focuses on those within the organizations. Therefore, the primary actors are neither the organizations nor the state but the individuals. The actors come to the bargaining game with different preferences, abilities, and power positions. The participants choose the policy objectives and approach based on the different ideas of whichever outcomes might be suitable for their organizational and personal interests. This seems to be the notable feature of bureaucratic politics model. The bargaining then continues through a pluralist process of give-and-take which mirrors the dominant rules of the game together with the power dealings among the participants.

The bureaucratic political model referred to as governmental politics by Allison and Zelikov gives an intersection between many different competing theories of foreign policy. Alison's primary goal was to show that the popular assumption among several practitioners of foreign policies; that governments are rational and unitary actors was basically erroneous. Therefore, to comprehend the action for the state and of any large and complex organization, one must of necessity understand the rules that guide decision-making process and the inspirations of the participating actors. This understanding of the decision-making process which leads to the introduction of organizational process and governmental bureaucratic political models became the alternative or a supplement to the rational actor model. Therefore, although the bureaucratic politics model has often been applied in describing decision-making in several different settings, it is popularly used in the national policymaking particularly in America.

Task VII

Recently, the global audience has been exposed to the issues relating to the American election. Further, several discussions have focused on the economy of the United States, health, leadership, and more attention is continuously being given to the US foreign policy issues. It is vitally essential to understand how leaders create and implement their own foreign policies. In most if not all, presidential candidates promise the electorates how they would mend the nation's image, reinstate or increase the relative power of the state or take up leadership positions in global institutions.

The foreign policy of a given state may tremendously change with a particular leader. However, ultimately, the polarity and stability of international schemes dictate how leaders would behave. Foreign policies in middle powers are virtually unnecessary since their policies depend on more by their on the constraints, opportunities, interests, and decisions they may want to make concerning foreign policies.

A leader's personality may also influence their decision-making process. Their personality and their psychological beliefs and attitudes may influence international negotiations making them tougher or easier. Therefore, this might explain Trump's foreign policy approach. Cognitive psychology may be used in assessing the beliefs and attitudes that form the building blocks for decision-making. For instance, cognitive biases and heuristics may be used in understanding how leaders cope with uncertainty in nearly all foreign policy settings. The leadership feature of President Trump may be described as ambitious, and therefore, he would expect others to recognize his special qualities. As a result of foreign policy exhibits a bold approach that indicates a desire to dominate. Also, with a dominant attitude, Trump believes he should enjoy coercive power which evokes obedience. Therefore, political institutes and processes being run through the human agency, Trump's leadership style is typically charismatic and non-deliberative, hence resulting in high-dominance, extraverted, influential foreign policy orientation.

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